NYC: New York Public Library Main Branch - Truth
The marble figures and fountains on either side of the main portico entrance of the New York City Public Library Main Branch, by Frederick MacMonnies, were installed in 1921. Plaster casts stood in place of the statues for nearly five years.
On the right (north) is Truth, a man seated on a Sphinx, the form associated with Wisdom. Above the figure is an inscription from the Apocrypha (1 Esdras, chapter 3): BUT ABOVE ALL THINGS / TRUTH / BEARETH AWAY / THE VICTORY.
On the left (south) is Beauty, a woman seated on the winged horse Pegasus, representative of inspiration and elevation above wordly concerns. Above the figure is an inscription from the twenty-first stanza from American poet, John Greenleaf Whittier's The Shadow and the Light: BEAUTY / OLD YET EVER NEW / ETERNAL VOICE / AND INWARD WORD.
The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations, was designated a landmark by the New York Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1967.
In 2007, the New York Public Library was ranked #47 on the AIA 150 America's Favorite Architecture list.
National Register #66000546 (1966)