Bust of Agrippina the Younger (ca. 40 CE)
The display reads:
Portrait of Agrippina the Younger
ca. 40 CE
Marble (from Paros) head, 18th-century colored marble bust
Anonymous gift 56.097
Agrippina (15 - 59 CE), the subject of this portrait, was related to four different Roman emperors: she was the great-granddaughter to Augustus, sister to Caligula, mother to Nero, and niece and later wife to Claudius. It is therefore not surprising that many portraits of her survive. These invariably depict her with a broad forehead, a square jaw, large eyes, thin lips, and a sharp chin, all facial features shared by many members of the imperial family.
Ancient pieces were sometimes combined with other sculptural elements to create "new" composite sculptures. This ancient portrait head was inserted into a bust composed of different-colored marble in the 18th century.
Taken November 16th, 2010.