Roman Marble Sculpture Depicting Venus - PF.0027 - For Sale
Roman Marble Sculpture Depicting Venus - PF.0027
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This complete and virtually intact group statuette depicts the goddess Venus standing on a two- tiered integral base. Her garment is draped around her lower thighs and held in place with her left hand just to the side of her pubic triangle. The garment billows out behind the legs of the goddess in a form evocative of a sea shell, reminding all that Venus arose full-grown from the foam of the sea on the shores of the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. Her hair is elaborately coiffed and adorned with a headdress, cascading to her shoulders. She holds an apple in her raised right hand, emblematic of her first place in the beauty contest judged by Paris in which she defeated two other goddesses. She is flanked on one side by Eros, who stands on an integral base but one that is separated from that of Venus.It is interesting to note the profusion of statuettes of Venus recovered from Roman sites in both Jordan and Syria. The popularity of this goddess in those areas is to be understood as the survival of the cult of the mother goddess of more remote times whose hold on the area was so iron-clad that it could not be readily released. That remote cult of the mother goddess emphasized her characteristics of fecundity couched in terms of human, female sexuality. By the time of the Roman Imperial Period, that sexuality was transformed into the most erotic and salacious depictions of the goddess.