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Detail of Hermes’ Left Hand | by donsutherland1
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Detail of Hermes’ Left Hand

Detail of Hermes’ Left Hand

Roman, Imperial Period, 1st or 2nd Century A.D.

Marble, Pentellic

Copy or adaptation of a Greek stature of the late 5th or early 4th century B.C.

The left hand, tip of nose, and tips of some fingers of the right hand are restored.

Gift of the Hearst Foundation

Accession #: 56.234.15

Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, New York)—April 1, 2012


The statue is almost intact, although the surface was strongly cleaned as was the custom in the eighteenth century. During that period, newly excavated ancient sculpture was cleaned and restored in Roman workshops before being sold to members of the European nobility. This work was acquired by the English statesman William Fitzmaurice, second earl of Shelburne, who assembled a distinguished collection of antiquities at Lansdowne House in London. The statue of Hermes once stood in a niche in the dining room at Lansdowne House, serving the same decorative function that it doubtless once served in a Roman villa of the first or second century A.D. The dining room, designed by Robert Adam, is now at the Metropolitan Museum, where it is installed with other period rooms from England.


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Taken on April 1, 2012