Mortuary Statue

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Roman Period
Near Eastern
Female Head
CBS Register: head of a woman in limestone, part of a Palmyrenian mortuary slab.

Romano: "Female head from a relief wearing elaborate jewelry and headdress. Hair seems to be parted in the middle and drawn to the sides of the face with the individual strands represented as ridges and valleys. Earrings are a globule on the earlobe with a smaller ball below and a large dangling segment which loops toward the back of the ear. Deep drilled hole separates the earring from the cheek. Over top of the hair is a hair ornament composed of rounded elements (jewels) linked by triple horizontal elements (chain). On top of the head is a rolled turban, decorated in relief with a raised X motif with small bosses filling the arms and a six-petal rosette to the right and left, composed of a raised boss in the center with circles with raised perimeters. Attached to the front of the turban is an elaborate pin or pendant composed of a rectangular piece with a register in the center, below which is a large oval with a central incised oval and beads around the perimeter; dangling from this are four globules which rest on the upper forehead. Over the top of his headpiece is a veil which is finished on the top and left side with rough chisel work and is squared off on the right and left sides. The face is oval with well-modelled cheeks. The eyes are cursorily rendered with deep incisions marking the upper lids, flattish eyeballs with no incision for the iris or pupil. Small nose; horizontal, off-center mouth with deep chisel gouge to right side. Small chin. Back of piece is roughly finished with deep chisel strokes."
Credit Line:
Babylonian Expedition to Nippur II, 1890, 1990


[Catalogue, Collection] Romano, Irene B. 2006. Classical Sculpture; Catalogue of the Cypriot, Greek and Roman Stone Sculpture in the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. : Page/Fig./Plate: p. 288, no. 135
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