Demosthenes Bust, British Museum

Demosthenes Bust, British Museum

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The Original Busts

Surrounding the top of library’s mezzanine are 16 niches, in which busts have sat for almost two centuries. Ten of these “well-executed busts of illustrious personages, ancient and modern,” indicated below with an asterisk, were donated to the library in 1840 by member James Phalen. Phalen, a Providence resident, was a managing contractor for U.S. lotteries. In 1838, Phalen’s Exchange and Lottery Office was located on North Main Street, very close to the newly opened Athenæum.

Homer* (c. 800 BCE)
Very little is known about the life of Homer, the fabled poet of the epics the Iliad and the Odyssey. It may be that there never really was a Homer, but rather a series of poets who passed down the epics using the oral tradition. In the Homeric epics, we see the introduction of poetic devices like meter and rhyme, which were invented to preserve the integrity of the story, and to train the memory for oral recitation. It is believed that Demodokos, a blind traveling singer from the Odyssey, may be a self-portrait of the poet. As a result, most images of Homer have been created in the character’s likeness.

Socrates* (c. 470 – 399 BCE)
Executed in 399 BCE on charges of heresy and corrupting the youth of Athens, Socrates is the most influential figure in Western philosophy. Although he left behind no written works of his own, his students Plato and Xenophon immortalized his dialogues in their own works. The Socratic Dialogues were revolutionary in the fields of ethics, metaphysics, political science, moral philosophy, and epistemology. Plato would go on to mentor Aristotle, who in turn would mentor Alexander the Great.

Demosthenes* (384 – 322 BCE)
A contemporary of Plato and Aristotle, Demosthenes is known for rousing Athens to fight against Philip of Macedon and his son Alexander the Great. In 354 BCE, he gave his famous speech “On the Navy Boards” to the Athenian Assembly, convincing them to expand their navy to win the fight against the Persians.

Roman General*
This is the Athenæum’s only bust without confirmed identification. It is possible that when it was given to the library in 1840, he was thought to be Napoleon. Further research reveals that this figure has been identified in other collections as Aratus, Lysimachus, Demosthenes, a Roman general, and simply, Bust of Man. The original 2nd century marble in the National Archaeological Museum of Naples, known as Lysimachus, was a regular stop for European travelers on the Grand Tour in Italy during the second half of the 17th century. The library has chosen to acknowledge this bust as an unknown Roman General.

Marcus Tullius Cicero* (106 – 43 BCE)
Statesman, translator, and philosopher Cicero lived through the final days of the Roman Republic. He survived Julius Caesar and the chaotic civil wars that engulfed Rome, and he advocated for a return to republican government. After Caesar’s death, Cicero found himself on the wrong side of Mark Antony, who had him executed in 43 BCE. In the years that followed, the Roman Republic would collapse, and Rome would descend into empire under Augustus Caesar. Apart from being an influential political and moral philosopher in his own right, Cicero was an important translator. He brought Hellenistic ideas into Latin, a language that ensured their preservation for centuries. It’s even argued that Petrarch’s rediscovery of Cicero’s letters in the 14th century launched the Renaissance itself, as it brought antique ideas like humanism back into the public consciousness.

Dante Aligheri (c. 1265 – 1321)
Dante is best known for his epic poem the Divine Comedy, widely considered the greatest literary work composed in the Italian language. Though Latin was the preferred language of scholarly writing at the time, Dante promoted the Italian language as a respected literary dialect, which allowed his work to be read by a more general audience. Dante was virtually unknown in the United States until 1867, when Henry Wadsworth Longfellow [1807-1882] produced his own translation of the Divine Comedy. This bust was likely donated to the Athenæum in the 19th century, although the donor and exact date are unknown.

Francesco Petrarch (1304 – 1374)
One of the early renaissance humanists, Petrarch was a revolutionary poet and scholar. His rediscovery of Cicero’s letters brought classical ideas back to the fore, and ignited a frenzy to rediscover classical teachings — a frenzy that soon became a renaissance. After briefly studying law in Bologna, Petrarch, who was born in Tuscany, abandoned his studies to pursue scholarship of the classics. He was a prolific poet and writer of letters, essays, and histories, and is credited with the invention of the Petrarchan sonnet. This bust was likely donated to the Athenæum in the 19th century, although the donor and exact date are unknown.

William Shakespeare* (1564 – 1616)
Though he had “small Latin and less Greek,” William Shakespeare is widely regarded as the greatest writer and dramatist in the English language, or, as Ben Jonson put it, “He was not of an age, but for all time!” Shakespeare’s deep exploration of the human condition still astonishes us today, and his works continue to be produced and adapted for contemporary audiences, who find their own struggles represented in timeless classics such as Hamlet, King Lear, and Julius Caesar. William Shakespeare was born and educated in Stratford-upon-Avon, England. He was soon an established playwright in London, and later owned stock in the Globe Theatre, where many of his works were first performed.

John Milton* (1608 – 1674)
Born in London, Milton was educated at St. Paul’s School, and later attended Christ’s College in Cambridge. In 1638, he traveled to Italy, where he met the astronomer Galileo Galilei. The visit greatly impacted Milton – he became a freethinker, challenging conventional ideas of religion and politics. Milton is best known for his epic poem Paradise Lost.

Benjamin Franklin (1706 – 1790)
Franklin was an author, printer, politician, scientist, inventor, and diplomat. He served as a member of the Philadelphia City Council in 1748, and as a justice of the peace the following year. He later traveled to England to negotiate long-standing trade disputes, and to France as an American congressional emissary. He was also the founder of the first membership library in America, the Library Company of Philadelphia. Although Franklin owned slaves as a young man and carried advertisements for the sale of slaves in his newspaper, he came to condemn the practice and identified as an abolitionist in his later years. Two months before his death, he petitioned Congress on behalf of the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery to abolish slavery, end the slave trade, and “devise means for removing the Inconsistency from the Character of the American People.” This bust was likely donated to the Athenæum in the 19th century, although the donor and exact date are unknown.

George Washington* (1732 – 1799)
Washington is widely regarded as the most important political figure in American history. He commanded the Continental Army in the Revolutionary War, presided over the constitutional convention that led to the Constitution of the United States, and served as the nation’s first President, where he established many of the norms and practices that have been observed in the republic for centuries. In 1781, he defeated British forces at Yorktown, which secured American independence. Perhaps most notable among his many accomplishments, Washington declined absolute power when it was available to him. In 1783, Washington resigned his military commission, declined monarchical power, and retreated to his Mount Vernon plantation, echoing the actions of the famed Roman General Cincinnatus.

While Washington contributed much to the formation of the country, he was also deeply entrenched in the practice of slavery. Washington owned slaves for 56 years, and their labor made him one of the wealthiest men in the young republic. In private he expressed his desire for the gradual emancipation of slavery through legislative authority, but he never spoke publicly about abolition, and he never gave up the practice of slave ownership in his lifetime.

Walter Scott* (1771 – 1832)
Scott was born in Edinburgh, and after graduating from Edinburgh University at age 17, he became a lawyer. Scott started writing several years later, and by the 1820s was arguably the most famous writer in Scotland, as well as one of its leading intellectuals. He developed the historical novel genre, and many of his works, including Ivanhoe and Waverly, remain classics of the Romantic period.

Henry Clay (1777 – 1852)
The American statesman Clay was born in Virginia the year after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. He served a variety of important roles in the new republic, including representing the state of Kentucky in both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives, and serving as the U.S. Secretary of State. Clay was considered one of the most skilled orators of his generation and was renowned as a compromise broker, but his legacy remains tarnished. While he publicly condemned slavery, calling it “this great evil… the darkest spot in the map of our country,” his own slaves were not freed until his death. The busts of Clay and his contemporary in the Senate, Daniel Webster of Massachusetts, were given to the Athenæum in 1853 shortly after their deaths.

William Ellery Channing (1780 – 1842)
Channing was born in Newport, RI to an accomplished family. Like his father and grandfather, he attended Harvard College. After graduating, he spent a year tutoring in Richmond, Virginia, where he witnessed the inhumane treatment of enslaved people. This experience drew him to religion and the campaign for human rights, and he returned to study theology at Harvard. Channing was ordained in 1803, dedicated himself to the educational and spiritual development of children, and became the voice of the American Unitarianism movement. Toward the end of his life, Channing became more involved in the abolitionist movement. The Athenæum’s bust was donated to the library in 1867 by member Albert Gorton Greene. Greene greatly admired Channing after Channing’s death in 1842, he wrote “Ode on the Death of William Ellery Channing,” which was published in the abolitionist newspaper The Liberator.

Daniel Webster (1782 – 1852)
The American statesman Webster was born in New Hampshire, graduated from Dartmouth College, and went on to study law. He was elected to represent New Hampshire in Congress in 1812 and, after moving to Massachusetts, was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1827. He went on to serve as the United States Secretary of State under Presidents William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, and Millard Fillmore. A major political figure in the first half of the 19th century, Webster was greatly admired for his oration skills, but his views on slavery and the Compromise of 1850 remain controversial. The busts of Webster and his contemporary in the Senate, Henry Clay of Kentucky, were given to the Athenæum in 1853 shortly after their deaths.

Lord Byron* (1788 – 1824)
Born in London, Byron was both a leading Romantic poet and a member of the House of Lords. He is best known for his ability to write in many styles and genres, particularly satire and verse narrative. Despite his literary accomplishments, Byron’s life was plagued with scandal, and in 1816 disgrace and debt led him to leave England. He traveled extensively across Europe and lived in Italy for seven years before fighting as a revolutionary in the Greek War of Independence. Byron’s major works include Don Juan and Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage.

John Keats (1795 – 1821)
Born in London, Keats was the oldest of four children and lost his parents at an early age. In 1816 he became a licensed apothecary, but later decided to pursue poetry. Keats, perhaps best known for his “Ode to a Nightingale” and “Ode on a Grecian Urn”, was heavily inspired by mythical and Classical themes. In 1819, Keats contracted tuberculosis, and died in Rome two years later at the age of twenty-five. His works had only been in publication for four years before his death. This bust was likely donated to the Athenæum in the 19th century, although the donor and exact date are unknown.

William Hickling Prescott (1796 – 1859)
Prescott was born in Salem, MA, and attended Harvard University, where he excelled in the study of history. He is best known for his three-volume work History of the Conquest of Mexico (1843) and subsequent two-volume History of the Conquest of Peru (1847). In 1844, Prescott commissioned a bust of himself from the neoclassical sculptor Richard Saltonstall Greenough (1819 – 1904). This bust earned Greenough notable recognition, and his career took off. Prescott, a member of the Boston Athenæum, immediately donated the bust to that institution. The Providence Athenæum’s copy is likely a plaster replica of the original and was donated to the library in 1865 by Mrs. Moses B. Lockwood.

The J. Paul Getty Museum

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Bust of a Man (after the antique)

Joseph Wilton (English, 1722 - 1803) 59.7 cm (23 1/2 in.) 87.SA.110

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Currently on view at: Getty Center, Museum West Pavilion, Gallery W101

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Object Details


Bust of a Man (after the antique)

Object Number:

Signed and dated, "I Wilton.fec.[ ] 1758". [Superscript t].

Alternate Title:

Bust of a Man (Display Title)


Sculpture & Decorative Arts

Object Type:
Object Description

With his strong profile, authoritative expression, and dramatic turn of the head, this bust was closely modeled on an ancient marble head in the Museo Nazionale, Naples. When it was made in 1758, the bust was mistakenly believed to represent the famous Athenian orator Demosthenes.

For those who could not afford to own real antiquities, busts like this one could be ordered from one of many eighteenth-century English sculptors who spent time living in Italy. Such artists established their reputations making replicas of famous antiquities for British aristocrats. Charles Watson-Wentworth, the second marquess of Rockingham, either commissioned this bust directly from the sculptor, Joseph Wilton, or bought it from the sculptor's stock of busts made all'antica. Along with Joseph Nolleken's statues of Venus , Minerva , and Juno , the bust was incorporated into a Neoclassical decorative scheme, perhaps first in the marquess's London townhouse and then later in his country house in Wentworth. Both the individual sculptures and the decorative scheme were designed to be expressive of the owner's taste and classical erudition.

After 1765 - 1782

Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd marquis of Rockingham, English, 1730 - 1782 (London, England), on display in the Grand Floor Center Room in his Grosvenor Square House (London, England), by inheritance to his nephew William Wentworth fourth earl Fitzwilliam
Source: Penny, 1991, p. 20, mentions the 1782 inventory for the location.

1782 - 1833

William Wentworth, 4th earl Fitzwilliam, English, 1748 - 1833 (Wentworth Woodhouse, Yorkshire, England), brought from London to Wentworth Woodhouse between 1782 and 1802, by inheritance within the Wentworth Fitzwilliam family.
Source: The sculpture was seen at Wentworth Woodhouse in 1802 by Richard Warner (Warner, A Tour through. vol. 1 (1802), pp. 219-20).

1833 - 1986

Wentworth Fitzwilliam Family (Wentworth Woodhouse, Yorkshire, England) [sold, Christie's, London, July 15, 1986, lot 88, to Cyril Humphris]

1986 - 1987

Cyril Humphris, S.A. (London, England), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1987.


Christie's, London. Important English Marble Statuary, European Sculpture and Works of Art. July 15, 1986, pp. 72-73, lot 88, ill. [as a fine mid-eighteenth-century English marble bust of a man, by Joseph Wilton].

"Acquisitions/1987." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 16 (1988), p. 181, no. 80.

Penny, Nicholas. "Lord Rockingham's Sculpture Collection and The Judgment of Paris by Nollekens." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 19 (1991), p. 20, fig. 19.

Baker, Malcolm. Figured in Marble: The Making and Viewing of Eighteenth-Century Sculpture (Los Angeles: The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2000), p. 70.

Fittschen, Klaus. Die Bildnisgalerie in Herrenhausen bei Hannover: Rezeptions- und Sammlungsgeschichte antiker Porträts (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2006), 293, no. 14, listed among the copies of the bust of Demosthenes.

Roscoe, Ingrid and Emma Hardy, eds. A Biographical Dictionary of Sculptors in Britain, 1660-1851 (London: Yale University Press, 2009), p. 1391 (listed as a bust of a man, after the antique Demosthenes).

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Casts – II.Busts & heads

[photo: Queen’s Reading Room, MPL, looking north (SLV H4740, accredited to Sears’ Studios, c.1910)]

The initial group of casts ordered for Melbourne from Brucciani included 󈬠 Busts of remarkable persons selected not for their artistic value, but for the celebrity of the persons represented”: see letter of 26 October 1860 from R.Chester Waters to Redmond Barry, quoted by Galbally, “Lost museum,” 1988, p.37. Others were purchased in the next few years. Galbally (p.37) adds that a selection was installed in Queen’s Hall, emulating similar arrangements at Trinity College, Dublin, and elsewhere, familiar to Redmond Barry and his peers: see photo above (Galbally dates this to c.1870, but the SLV catalogue suggests c.1910, noting electric wiring).

As it stood, the selection of busts of “remarkable persons” was inherently conservative (women, for example, were largely absent). A list of about 80 further desirable busts was published in AR 1870-71, p.95 (Schedule C), and some 20 of these were purchased in 1872 and later. Various other names on this list (Charlotte Bronte, Blake, Dickens, Garibaldi, Poe, and so on), would have added significant variety to the original selection.

Even so, the existing list provides some interesting exceptions to the expected roll-call of British prime ministers and other worthies. Some of the more adventurous choices included artists, scientists and engineers (including noted Europeans and Americans), and even a few radical political figures, e.g. Charles Fox (II.50), Daniel O’Connell (II.96), Richard Cobden (II.29) and John Bright (II.13).

Some noted Australians also appeared, including Robert O’Hara Burke (II.18) and George Augustus Robinson (II.108). However, busts of William Lanne, Truganini and Woureddy (II.70, 124 and 134), donated by William Lynch in 1891 as “casts of the last three survivors of the Tasmanian Race,” were seen as more appropriately housed in the MPL’s Ethnographic collection.

Also listed here are various casts after antique and more recent heads and “masks.” The order is alphabetical. Unlike Melbourne’s casts after antique and later statuary (see Casts – I.Statues, statuettes and reliefs), the original sources for most of these busts and heads cannot be identified with confidence (comparative photos are supplied only for definite or probable sources). General biographical references have been consulted for the most part ADB refers to the Australian Dictionary of Biography (available online). For further general remarks and notes on references etc., see introductory entry on Plaster Casts.

NB only a few of these busts appear to be extant, notably four still in the SLV: II.21 (Carlyle), II.30 (Coleridge), II.43 (Dryden) and II.108 (Robinson). Research into the whereabouts of other examples is continuing.

II.1 A’Beckett, Sir William

AR 1880, p.74 NGV 1894, VII.51

The sitter (1806-69) was Victoria’s first Chief Justice from 1852 to 1857, and a supporter of the Melbourne Public Library in its early years, donating a number of books and a plaster cast (I.27 [Canephora]). Several of his own publications were early acquisitions for the Melbourne Public Library, including a number of legal texts, and his 1854 autobiography Out of Harness (listed in MPL 1857 and 1861). For further information and references, see the linked entry on his son W.A.C.A’Beckett, the donor of this bust.

II.2 Prince Albert

Summers list 1861, no.20 NGV 1865, p.29, Bust no.1 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1880 NGV 1894, VII.3 cf.Brucciani (185?), p.18, cat.101

In the absence of photographs or further information, it is impossible to be certain of the source of the present bust. If it was a pair for II.127 (Queen Victoria), as seems likely, both casts may have reproduced Joseph Durham’s 1855 busts of the royal couple (often reproduced together, especially in Parian porcelain) Brucciani sold plaster busts of the royal couple together (cat.100-101), but without indicating the source.

II.3 Alexander VIII, Pope

AR 1904, p.25 (describing the original as by “Bernini. S.K.Museum” price: £1/10/-)

This cast evidently reproduced the bronze bust of c.1690 in the V&A Museum, ascribed to Domenico Guidi (1625-1701). Alexander VIII was Pope from 1689-91.

The details listed in the 1894 NGV catalogue offer little scope for identification.

II.5 Apollo Belvedere [bust]

AR 1870-71, p.28 (Schedule XXIX, II “casts of busts and masks,” probably this bust) NGV 1894, VIII.25 Cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.28 & Brucciani (1891), p.7 (bust)

The bust identified in NGV 1894 as after the Apollo Belvedere was presumably the Apollo bust listed in AR 1870-71 as presented to the Melbourne School of Design by Murphy. Brucciani produced casts of the head of the famous Vatican statue as well as the whole figure (see cast I.11).

II.6 Apollo [Townley bust]

NGV 1865, bust no.3 AR 1870-71, p.42 not listed in NGV 1894

[photo: Townley bust, British Museum]

This cast is catalogued in NGV 1865 as a copy of the Townley head of Apollo in the British Museum (1805,0703.59), acquired from the Albani collection, Rome, in 1773 (as reproduced here). Charles Townley recorded Winckelmann’s description of the original as “a rare specimen of the sublime early style of Greek sculpture,” but it is now catalogued by the British Museum as a Roman copy, “considerably restored and reworked.”

II.7 Aristotle

NGV 1865, bust no.4 AR 1870-71, p.42 not listed in NGV 1894

The Greek philosopher (384-22 BC) studied with Plato, taught Alexander the Great, and then established his own school in Athens in 335 BC. His extant writings, covering a large range of topics, from aesthetics to natural science and political philosophy, were widely influential.

II.8 Augustus Caesar

“Donations” (1863) NGV 1865, bust no.5 NGV 1894, VIII.35 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.8, & Brucciani (1905), p.47 (“Young Augustus”)

After defeating Mark Antony at Actium in 37 BC, Augustus (63 BC – 14 AD) ruled as Rome’s first Emperor. Another bust (“Augustus, the young”) noted in the list of casts donated by James Murphy (AR 1870-71, p.28), may have been a duplicate however, only one cast is listed in NGV 1894.

NGV 1865, p.30, bust no.6 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.6 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.120

This cast showed English statesman and philosopher Francis Bacon (1561-1626), noted particularly for formulating the principle of scientific induction.

II.10 Barnade

No “remarkable personage” of this name (or similar) seems to be listed in the standard biographical sources. Perhaps the entry in the 1904 annual report was a misprint.

II.11 Sir Redmond Barry

[comparative photo: Bust of Barry by Scurry, 1884 (Supreme Court of Victoria Library)]

The origin and exact date of acquisition of this image of the Melbourne Public Library founder (1813-80) are uncertain. James Scurry’s posthumous plaster bust of Barry, commissioned for the Supreme Court of Victoria (reproduced here), may have been the source. For other portraits of Barry, see linked entry.

II.12 Borgia, Lucrezia

The daughter of Pope Alexander VI and the brother of Cesare Borgia, Lucrezia (1480-1519) acquired a notorious reputation (mostly posthumously?) as a femme fatale and poisoner. In 1502, she married Duke Alfonso de’Este of Ferrara (1476-1534), a noted patron of Titian and others. A portrait acquired for the NGV through the Felton Bequest in 1956 (as an anonymous early 16th-century “Portrait of a Youth”) was identified recently as a portrait of Lucrezia (1520s?) by the Ferrarese painter Dosso Dossi (c.1486-1541/2) and/or his brother Battista Dossi (active 1517-48): for details and a reproduction, see and (both accessed 6 Oct.2020).

II.13 Bright

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.11

John Bright (1811-89) was an English reform politician who opposed the Corn Laws and supported free trade, together with Cobden (see II.29), denounced the Crimean War (1854), and was involved with the Reform Act of 1867.

II.14 Lord Brougham

SB p.74 NGV 1865, bust no.8 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.23 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.102

As British Lord Chancellor, Henry Brougham (1778-1868) played a key role in ensuring that the 1832 Reform Act and the 1833 Slavery Abolition Act passed through the House of Lords. A note added to the NGV stock-book entry for this bust indicates “shattered 4/5/04.”

II.15 Brunel

NGV 1865, bust no.9 AR 1870-71, p.42 (quoted below) NGV 1894, VII.49

This bust showed Sir Marc Isambard Brunel (1769-1849), as the 1865 NGV catalogue explains, adding a thumbnail sketch of the French-born sitter: “Engineer invented block-making machinery in Portsmouth Dockyard designed and executed the Thames Tunnel, and many other works of great ingenuity and usefulness.” His son, Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-59), joined his father’s office, and became even more famous for his engineering feats, especially bridges and tunnels for Britain’s expanding rail network.

II.16 Buffon

NGV 1865, bust no.10 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.40

George-Louis Leclerc (1707-88), dubbed Comte de Buffon by Louis XV, is famed for his Histoire naturelle, published in 44 volumes between 1749 and 1767. There is a bust by Houdon.

II.17 Edmund Burke

NGV 1865, p.30, bust no.11 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.8

Irish political philosopher and Whig parliamentarian (1729-97).

II.18 Robert O’Hara Burke

AR 1870-71, p.28 (under Busts and Casts of Busts) not listed in NGV 1894

This bust of the ill-fated Australian explorer (1821-61), apparently in plaster, is recorded in the consolidated Annual Report for 1870-71 (covering 1853-70) as “presented by a committee of gentlemen” the exact date of presentation is unclear. Its relationship to Charles Summers’ Burke and Wills monument, installed in Melbourne in 1865, is also uncertain.

NGV 1865, bust no.12 AR 1870-71, p.42 not catalogued in NGV 1894

This bust of Robert Burns (1759-96) is catalogued in the 1865 NGV catalogue, but not in the 1894 edition. However, this can hardly be attributed to waning local interest in the famed Scottish poet. On the contrary, Burns had an enthusiastic following amongst Melbourne’s Scottish community, who financed a memorial statue, produced by Scottish sculptor George Anderson Lawson (1832-1904), and unveiled in St Kilda Road in January 1904 the statue is now in the Treasury Gardens: see e.g. (accessed 15 August 2020).

II.20 Lord Byron (Original by Edward H.Baily)

NGV 1865, bust no.13 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.69 cf. Brucciani (1858?), cat.105

[photo: Baily’s marble bust of Byron at Newstead Abbey]

Byron poetry and dramatic life both exemplify the Romantic era. Baily (see cast I.50) carved his bust of the poet (1788-1824) in about 1826 several marble versions and plaster casts are extant, one reproduced here.

II.21 Carlyle [State Library of Victoria purchased 1872]

AR 1872, p.23 (as purchased from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.55

Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881) was a Scottish essayist and historian, whose major writings include Sartor Resartus (1833-34) and histories of the French Revolution (1837) and Frederick the Great (1858-65).

For this bust, see SLV catalogue (YPCLTS 51 listed as by D.Brucciani), and Galbally, First Collections (1992), cat.74, both noting it as 70 cm high. It is currently in storage, but an ID photo supplied by the SLV (detail reproduced here) indicates a similarity to other busts of Carlyle produced before his death: see e.g. a marble bust in Dundee by William Brodie 1879 (

II.22 Chantrey

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.77

English sculptor Sir Francis Chantrey (1781-1841) produced portrait statues and busts of a generally idealizing character, including several reproduced in other casts formerly in Melbourne: see II.62 (Hunter) and II.131 (Watt). He also taught John Francis: see now Francis Lord Melbourne 1837 <1901>SLV [SC].

II.23 Charles I

NGV 1865, bust no.15 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.105 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.18 (3’ high)

Charles (1600-1649), crowned in 1625, and his French wife Henrietta Maria, presided over a sophisticated English court, exemplified by van Dyck’s role as court painter from 1632. But his perceived Catholic sympathies and autocratic style riled Parliament, leading to the English Civil War (1642-45), and his subsequent imprisonment and beheading. See also II.33 (Cromwell).

II.24 Lord Chatham

Summers list 1861, no.19 NGV 1865, bust no.16 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.25

William Pitt the Elder (1708-1778), known for his grand oratory and aggressive foreign policy (particularly against France), was made 1 st Earl of Chatham in 1766, and was British Prime Minister from 1766-78. William Pitt the Younger (see cast II.104) was his second son.

II.25 Child of Niobe (mask)

NGV 1880, p.35 NGV 1894, VIII.66 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.83/4 (?), and later Brucciani catalogues, e.g. 1891, pp.8-9

[photo: plaster cast based on the bust of one of the daughters of Niobe, from the collection of Anton Mengs (Dresden, Semperbau)]

The Niobe group, discovered in Rome in 1583 and now in the Uffizi, is an extraordinary ensemble of marble copies after Greek originals described by Pliny the Elder as by Scopas and Praxiteles: see Haskell & Penny 1981, cat.66 (with reproductions, also noting other related works in other collections). They illustrate the legend of Apollo and Artemis’s murderous response to the Theban queen Niobe’s boast about her many offspring, told in Homer’s Iliad and other sources. The Uffizi figures were prized particularly for the restrained suffering they expressed (evidently influential on Baroque artists such as Guido Reni), and the fame of the sculptures continued in the 18th and 19th centuries. Brucciani & co. sold casts of individual figures as well as masks, but it is impossible to be certain which statue served as the model for the present cast. The bust reproduced here is a plaster cast based on one of the daughters in the group, from the collection of Anton Raphael Mengs (1728-79): see There is an historic photograph of the Uffizi group, by Longworth Powers, in Powers (L.) & others Views of Florence SLV [PH].

II.26 Child’s Head. Original by Donatello

In the absence of any specific details, this cast may be presumed to have been based on one of the many heads of children that have circulated since the 19th century, supposedly by Donatello or contemporaries such as Luca della Robbia or Desiderio da Settignano. In most cases, claims that they date back to the Renaissance seem tenuous. See also *Donatello [after] Boy’s Head Loc? [SC], a different work, possibly in bronze, though it was also listed among the other casts in NGV 1894 (VIII.71).

II.27 Cicero

NGV 1865, bust no.17 AR 1870-71, p.42

The Roman politician and orator (106-43 BC), famous for his speeches against corruption, was killed after condemning Mark Anthony in the aftermath of Julius Caesar’s own assassination. Ann Galbally (“Lost museum,” 1988, p.46), notes that this bust was acquired by well-known Australian painter Pro Hart (1928-2006) after it was de-accessioned by the NGV.

II.28 Clytie

SB, p.12, and AR 1870-71, p.28 (casts presented by Murphy) NGV 1894, VIII.28 (noting both Murphy as the donor, and the Townley bust in the British Museum as the source)

[photo: Townley bust (BM 1805,0701.79)]

This cast, one of those presented by James Murphy in 1862 – see now Casts – III.Miscellaneous (i) – is identified in NGV 1894 as based on the popular British Museum bust from the Townley collection (regarded as Roman work, extensively reworked in the 18 th century): see photo at right. The pre-Felton collection also included a separate bust based on the same figure, but in Parian porcelain (and described thus in a separate entry on p.28 of AR 1870-71), see now * Unknown (Copeland & Sons?) Clytie Loc? [SC].

II.29 Cobden <1872>

AR 1872, p.23 (as purchased from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.29

[photo: marble bust by Woolner, National Portrait Gallery, London]

Richard Cobden (1804-69), Yorkshire parliamentarian and cloth manufacturer, campaigned against the unpopular Corn Laws (abolished in 1846), and for free trade between England and France, enshrined in the Cobden-Chevalier Treaty (1860). The present cast may have been based on the marble bust of him by Thomas Woolner, 1866 (NPG 219): see photo at right.

II.30 Coleridge [State Library of Victoria purchased 1872]

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.74

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) joined Wordsworth (see II.133) in publishing Lyrical Ballads (1798), which opened with his famous Rime of the Ancient Mariner. Later, he continued to write poetry, as well as some fine literary criticism.

For this bust, see SLV catalogue (YPCLTS 78 listed as by D.Brucciani), and Galbally, First Collections (1992), cat.73, as 70 cm high. It is currently in storage, but an ID photo supplied by the SLV (detail reproduced here) suggests a similarity to other posthumous busts of Coleridge, e.g. one by William Thornycroft, 1884 (NT 253350 in the Coleridge Cottage, Somerset): see

Identification is uncertain, since several famous Frenchmen have held this title. In the absence of further information, two possibilities seem equally likely:

either (i) Louis, the 4 th Prince de Condé (1621-86),known as “the Great Condé,” one of Louis XIV’s generals, who defeated the Spanish in Franche-Comté (1668): for the history, see Simonneau after Le Brun Franche Comt é reconquered 1688 <1879>NGV [PR]. An 1852 edition of Lord Mahon’s biography of him (written in 1842 and originally published in 1845) was an early acquisition for the Melbourne Public Library: see MPL 1857, II, p.9

or (ii) the last Prince de Condé, Louis d’Orléans (1845-66), who died in Sydney, aged only 20, during a world trip arranged by his father, in exile in England after the 1848 Revolution: see now Ivan Barko, “Le petit Condé: the death in Sydney in 1866 of Australia’s first royal visitor,” Explorations: Journal of French-Australian Connections 35 (Dec.2003), pp.26-32 (cited in the Wikipedia article on Louis d’Orléans).

II.32 Cowper

NGV 1865, bust no.19 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.73

William Cowper, English poet (1731-1800), noted for his evangelical fervour, and his focus on nature (prefiguring Wordsworth: see II.133).

II.33 Oliver Cromwell

Not listed in NGV 1865 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.101 Cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.19, and other Brucciani catalogues

Cromwell (1599-1658) led the Puritan Revolution against Charles I (see II.23), and ruled as Lord Protector, 1653-58. After the Restoration of the British monarchy in 1660, his body was disinterred from Westminster Abbey and hanged from the gallows at Tyburn. See also * Unknown (British 17C) “Portrait, time of Cromwell” <1870>Loc? [PA], including further information, and a reproduction of a comparative portrait of Cromwell by Samuel Cooper.

II.34 Cruikshank

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani)

This bust showed the English illustrator George Cruikshank (1792-1878): the pre-Felton collection included several of his prints (refer linked entry for details).

II.35 Cuvier, Georges

NGV 1865, bust no.21 not listed in NGV 1894

French naturalist (1769-1832), noted for his studies of comparative anatomy and palaeontology.

II.36 Dawn (mask) [Michelangelo]

AR 1904, p.25 (price: £0/6/-) cf.Brucciani (1891), p.10 (no.2328: Dawn on Pedestal, by Michael Angelo [mask] also priced at £0/6/-)

The price listed in AR 1904 correlates with the listing in Brucciani (1891). The source was obviously the famous Medici Chapel statue (see also I.39).

II.37 Demosthenes (head)

NGV 1865, bust no.22 (noting the source as the British Museum bust acquired in 1818) AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VIII.21

[photo: British Museum bust]

The bust in London, reproduced here, is said to be a Roman copy of a 4 th -century original by Polyeuktos. For the famed Athenian orator (384-322 BC), see also I.41 (a cast of a full-length statue in the Vatican, probably also based on the same Greek original).

II.38 Diana (mask)

NGV 1894, VIII.54 cf.Brucciani 1891, p.10 (no.2417)

Brucciani sold masks based on the Louvre statue of Diana a la Biche (see I.43), and this cast was probably an example (though its exact origin is not spelt out in NGV 1894).

II.39 Diana (bust)

NGV 1865, bust no.23 AR 1870-71, p.28 NGV 1880, p.28 NGV 1894, VIII.29 cf. Brucciani (1891), p.7 (no.1617)

According to the 1870-71 Annual Report, this was a bust of the head of “Diana (robing)” (for the statue, see I.44) the head was available as a separate cast through Brucciani, as noted above.

II.40 Diogenes

NGV 1865, bust no.24 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VIII.100

[comparative photo: bust of Chrysippos in the British Museum (bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight, 1824)]

Diogenes, known as the first “Cynic” philosopher (405-323 BC), scorned possessions. NGV 1865 and AR 1870-71 identify the original as a bust “bequeathed to the British Museum by the late R.Payne Knight, Esq…. in Pentelic marble.” Richard Payne Knight (1751-1824) left his large collection, mostly antique coins and medals, to the British Museum on his death, but the only statue from this bequest that seems relevant is a Roman/Hellenistic figure (BM 1824.0201.2), described by the Museum as of the Stoic philosopher Chriysippos, and clearly in the yellowish marble known as Pentelic: see comparative photo shown here.

II.41 Diomedes

NGV 1865, p.33, bust no.42 (“Male head (one of the Homeric heroes?”) AR 1870-71, p.28 (“bust of Diomede”) NGV 1894, VIII.93 (Diomedes) cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.85, & later eds.

[photo: Townley bust in the British Museum]

In Homer’s Iliad, Diomedes is one of the most heroic of the Greek warriors. Several extant Greco-Roman statues are identified as of him, and Brucciani (1858?) listed a cast. NGV 1865 indicates that the original was discovered by Gavin Hamilton at Hadrian’s Villa in 1771. These details clearly point to the Townley collection bust of a man described by the Museum as a companion of Ulysses (BM 1805,0703.86), dated to c.100-150 AD: see photo reproduced here. The BM catalogue quotes Townley’s own suggestions for the identification of the figure, including both “Head of a Homeric hero” and “Diomedes.”

II.42 Doryphorus (bust)

AR 1892, p.23 (“Plaster Bust”) NGV 1894, VIII.90

This cast was based on the marble statue in Naples (Mus.Arch.), recognized in 1863 as a Roman copy of the famous bronze by Polyclitus (c.450-440 BC), traditionally regarded as a demonstration of perfect human proportions.

II.43 Dryden [State Library of Victoria purchased by 1865]

NGV 1865, bust no.25 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.62 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.108

John Dryden (1631-1700) flourished in the Restoration period, writing poetry and plays, as well as libretti for masques and operas by Henry Purcell. He also translated Virgil and other classical writers.

For this bust, see SLV catalogue (PCLTS 80) and Galbally et al., First Collections (1992), cat.72. It is currently in storage, but an ID photo provided by the SLV (detail shown here) suggests that its source may have been an original such as the marble bust of Dryden after French-English sculptor Louis François Roubiliac (1702-62), held in Canons Ashby, Northamptonshire (NT 494806): see (accessed 12 March 2021). For other casts based on Roubiliac, see also I.61 and II.56.

II.44 Lord Eldon

NGV 1865, bust no.26 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.18 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.103 (as Elton)

A lawyer and politician, John Scott, 1 st Earl of Eldon (1751-1838), was British Lord Chancellor from 1801 to 1827.

II.45 Faraday

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.32

English scientist Michael Faraday (1791-1867) made numerous important discoveries relating to electricity, notably electromagnetic induction (1831).

Unidentified cast, donated by Wood while he was working in Melbourne: see linked artist entry. See also II.80 (male head), presumably a pair for this cast.

II.47 Female Head (Donatello)

NGV 1880, p.32 NGV 1894, VIII.78

[photo: terracotta bust in the V&A (7585-1861)]

The source, identified in NGV 1894 as a terracotta work in the South Kensington Museum (later V&A), seems to have been the “female saint” reproduced here, formerly attributed to Donatello, now described by the museum as a “pasticcio,” combining a mid 19 th -century head with what remained of a quattrocento bust. Melbourne’s cast is recognizable in the left foreground of the overview of the cast collection published in NGV 1905.

II.48 Female bust (Donatello)

AR 1900, p.29 (price given as £0/5/-)

The origins of this cast seem impossible to trace. For the 19 th -century proliferation of heads and busts said to be by Donatello, see remarks above under II.26. See also previous entry.

II.49 Flaxman

NGV 1865, bust no.27 AR 1870-71, p.42

John Flaxman (1755-1826) was a noted British neoclassical artist, two of whose works were reproduced as casts in the Melbourne collection: see I.62 and I.82-83.

II.50 Charles James Fox

NGV 1865, bust no.28 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.19 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.121

A radical Whig politician, Fox (1749-1806) was leader of the opposition while William Pitt the Younger (II.104) was Tory Prime Minister. A vocal critic of King George III, Fox also supported both the American War of Independence and the French Revolution, and opposed slavery. There are several busts of him by Joseph Nollekens (1737-1823), one of which may have been the source for this cast.

II.51 Benjamin Franklin

NGV 1865, bust no.29 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.27

Franklin (1706-90) was not only an American Founding Father, but also a political philosopher, polymath and inventor. There is a bust by Houdon (1778).

II.52 Gladstone

AR 1872, p.23 (purchased from D.Brucciani) 1880 catalogue NGV 1894, VII.9

William Gladstone (1809-98) was English Chancellor of the Exchequer and then Prime Minister on several occasions from 1868 until shortly before his death.

II.53 Goethe

NGV 1865, bust no.30: AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.60

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), poet, dramatist and critic. His retelling of the legend of Faust (1808/1832) occupied him for much of the last part of his life.

II.54 Goldsmith

AR 1872, p.23 not listed in NGV 1894

Irish writer Oliver Goldsmith (1728-74), probably best known now for his play She Stoops to Conquer (first performed in 1773).

II.55 Hadrian

NGV 1865, bust no.32 AR 1870-71, p.43 (noting British Museum original) NGV 1894, VIII.12

[photo: Townley bust (BM 1805,0703.95)]

This cast reproduced the Townley bust of Hadrian, Roman Emperor from 117 to 138 (reproduced here): refer British Museum’s online catalogue.

II.56 Handel

NGV 1865, bust no.31 AR 1870-71, p.42 NGV 1894, VII.81

Melbourne’s cast collection included both a statuette of the German-English composer, probably after a famous marble figure by Roubiliac, now in the V&A (for details, see I.61). The present cast may have been based on one of the same sculptor’s busts of Handel: see now David Wilson, “’By Heaven Inspired’: A marble bust of Handel by Roubiliac rediscovered,” British Art Journal 10.1, Spring/Summer 2009, pp.14-29 (available online), reproducing various examples.

II.57 Harvey

NGV 1865, bust no.33: AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VIII.61

English physician William Harvey (1578-1657) discovered the circulation of blood in 1628, overturning traditional medical opinion.

II.58 Head Inconnue (Caffieri?)

AR 1904, p.26 (price: £0/12/- details as shown above)

The Caffieri were a family of 17 th -18 th -century French sculptors, whose most famous member was Jacques (1678-1755). Little else can be determined about the source of this cast.

II.59 Heales

Richard Heales (1822-64), Victorian premier in 1860-1, was acknowledged in two busts in the early Melbourne collection: * Todt Richard Heales Loc? [SC], and this second cast, of unknown origin. Both busts were listed separately in AR 1870-71 (pp.43 and 28 respectively), but only Todt’s was catalogued in NGV 1894.

II.60 Herschel

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.104

English astronomer Sir John Herschel (1792-1871) discovered numerous new stars and nebulae through his surveys of the northern and southern skies, expanding on the work of his father Sir William Herschel (1738-1822). The list of further desirable busts in AR 1870-71, p.95, clarifies the fact that this bust showed John Herschel. A number of his astronomical publications were among the early acquisitions for the Melbourne Public Library (refer MPL 1857 and 1861 for details).

II.61 Homer

Summers list 1861, no.17 NGV 1865, bust no.35 (noting via original found 1780) AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1880, p.29 NGV 1894, VIII.69 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.8 listing two different busts), and (1905), p.41

[photo: Townley bust (BM 1805,1703.85)]

The details provided in NGV 1865 and AR 1870-71 identify the source as the Townley bust in the British Museum, a Roman copy after a Hellenistic type, reproduced here.

II.62 John Hunter (Chantrey)

NGV 1865, bust no.36 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.39

[photo: original bust in London]

Hunter (1728-93) was a noted surgeon and anatomist. His posthumous bust by Francis Chantrey (for whom, see II.22), dated 1820, is in the collection of the Royal College of Surgeons in London: photo shown here. The head is said to be based on a portrait of Hunter by Reynolds.

II.63 “Isotta da Rimini”

AR 1898, p.26: “Bust believed to be Isotta da Rimini. From original, Caposanto (sic>, Pisa”

[photo: Louvre bust formerly said to be of Isotta]

This bust was described in AR 1898 as representing Isotta degli Atti (1417-74), mistress and later wife of Sigismondo da Malatesta, the condottiero and ruler of Rimini from 1432-68 (a patron of both Leon Battista Alberti and Piero della Francesca). AR 1898 suggested that the source was a bust at the Camposanto, Pisa’s famous cemetery (built from the 13th century), but there is no record of such a work there Isotta was actually buried in S.Francesco in Rimini (the “Tempio Malatestiano” designed for Sigismondo by Alberti). The most likely source for Melbourne’s cast would appear to be a marble bust in the Louvre (reproduced here), previously thought to be a portrait of Isotta from the studio of Florentine sculptor Desiderio da Settignano, but now seen as a bust of an unknown woman by Matteo Civitali, a sculptor from Lucca (1436-1501): see Arnold Coonin in Artibus et Historiae no.59, 2009, fig.14, p.53. The most faithful likenesses of Isotta degli Atti are presumably two profile medals of her by Matteo de’Pasti an impression of the later medal (c.1453-4) is owned by the NGA, Canberra.

II.64 Dr Johnson

Summers list 1861, no.23 (“Head off”) NGV 1865, bust no.38 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.52 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.118

Samuel Johnson (1709-84) wrote the first significant English dictionary (published in 1755), and was a noted poet and critic, whose achievements are celebrated in James Boswell’s remarkable Life of Samuel Johnson (1791). There is a fine bust by Joseph Nollekens (1777), possibly the source of this cast.

II.65 Inigo Jones

NGV 1865, bust no.39 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.86

The English architect and stage designer (1573-1652) admired Palladio (see II.98), and designed the Banqueting House at Whitehall (1619-22) and other buildings in classical style.

II.66 Julius Caesar

NGV 1865, bust no.14 AR 1870-71, p.42 (as Caesar) NGV 1880, p.27 NGV 1894, VIII.14 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.28 & Brucciani (1905), p.47 (ill.)

[photo: British Museum bust (1818,011.3)]

Caesar (c.100–44 BC), having triumphed over Pompey and other rivals, became sole leader of Rome, but was assassinated shortly afterwards by staunch republicans (the subject of Shakespeare’s play). Melbourne’s cast is identified in NGV 1865 as based on the British Museum bust reproduced here, now regarded as a forgery of c.1800, but accepted in the 19th century, and reproduced by Brucciani. Other busts are now seen as more likely images of Caesar, e.g. a head found in Turkey in 1868/9 (B.Mus.1870,0320,201).

II.67 Head of Juno

AR 1870-71, p.28? (‘mask’) NGV 1894, VIII.79 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.7 (no.2338, as noted below)

[British Museum bust (1873,0820.740)]

The cast catalogued in NGV 1894 may correspond to the one listed in AR 1870-71 as “Mask of Juno.” It may be the bust listed by Brucciani (1891) as “Juno, Castellani, British Museum,” noted as based on a head purchased from Alessandro Castellani in 1873, and now regarded by the museum as a Roman copy of a Greek original of Demeter or Hera/Juno: see photo reproduced here.

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani): NGV 1894, VII.75

John Keats (1795-1821) published a number of major English Romantic poems (e.g. The Eve of St Agnes and To Autumn), before dying of consumption in Rome, aged just 26.

II.69 “Head La Rienzi (?). Carpean”

AR 1904, p.25 (price: £0/3/4: information as quoted above)

These details seem particularly obscure, offering little hope for identifying the subject, authorship or source of this cast.

II.70 William Lanne [Museums Victoria presented by William Lynch, 1891] (by James Scurry?)

[comparative photo: bust of Lanne exhibited in Sydney, 1879]

This bust (called “Lanney”) was listed in AR 1891, under “Ethnographic Objects,” as one of three casts of Aboriginal Tasmanians donated by Melbourne art collector William Lynch. For the other two busts, of Truganini and Woureddy, see II.124 and II.134. Lanne (c.1835-69), the so-called last “full-blooded” Tasmanian aborigine, was taken to Flinders Island as a child in 1842 by Robinson (see II.108) after his death, his body was mutilated, in a disgraceful quasi-scientific attempt to discover the supposed physiological effects of his origins and “civilized” upbringing: see Stefan Petrow, “The Last Man: the mutilation of William Lanne in 1869 and its aftermath,” Aboriginal History vol.21 (1997), pp.90-112, available as The cast donated to Melbourne in 1891 is probably the one shown in the Tasmanian Courts of both the Sydney International Exhibition in 1879 and the Melbourne International Exhibition in 1880-81 (for details and further references, refer my forthcoming article in the La Trobe Journal 2021). Scurry’s authorship is suggested by mention of another plaster bust of Lanne, in the QV Museum and Art Gallery in Launceston, as his work (according to Scurry’s biography in DAAO).

II.71 Laocoon (bust)

SB, p.79 AR 1884, p.36 NGV 1894, II.70 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.28 & Brucciani (1891), p.8 (busts)

Brucciani & Co. sold casts of Laocoon’s head, as well as the whole group (see I.74). A note in the NGV stock-book indicates that this bust was “broken by 2 students,” 2 Oct.1899.

II.72 Leopold II, King of the Belgians

One of the most thoroughly unpleasant rulers of any era, Leopold II (1835-1909), crowned King of Belgium in 1865, hardly merited recognition in the pre-Felton NGV – but in fact was represented not only by this cast (donated at the time of the 1881 Melbourne International Exhiibition), but also by a print: see now * Unknown after Ghémar Frères Léopold II & Marie-Henriette of Belgium Loc? [PR] (including further details regarding the maltreatment of the inhabitants of the Belgian Congo under Leopold’s rule).

II.73 Linnaeus

NGV 1865, bust no.40 not listed in NGV 1894

Swedish scientist Carl Linnaeus (1707-78) was the originator of modern taxonomy.

NGV 1865, bust no.41 NGV 1894, VII.21 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.112

John Locke, English empirical philosopher (1632-1704), is known particularly for his influential Essay concerning Human Understanding (1690). There are busts and portraits by Kneller and others.

II.75 Lyndhurst

AR 1872, p.23 (see above) not listed subsequently

One of several plaster busts listed in the 1872 Annual Report as purchased from Brucciani, this example was described as “broken beyond repair.” It presumably represented John Copley, 1 st Baron Lyndhurst (1772-1863), Lord Chancellor of Great Britain under Peel in the 1830s and 40s.

II.76 Macaulay

NGV 1865, bust no.43 NGV 1894, VII.53

Thomas Babington Macaulay (1800-1859) was a Whig politician and writer his History of England was begun in 1848.

II.77 & 78: Madonna [Masks] (Michelangelo)

NGV 1880, p.35 (one mask) NGV 1894, VIII.83 & 84 (noting the South Kensington Museum as the source) cf.Brucciani (1891), p.10 (no.2204: Mask of an unidentified Madonna by Michelangelo)

These casts, evidently based on one or more of Michelangelo’s Madonnas, may have been acquired from Brucciani. The reference to the V&A is unclear, as nothing comparable seems to exist there now perhaps these casts were made from other casts?

II.79 “Maiden of Lille” <1900>]

AR 1900, p.29 (details as quoted below price given as £0/7/6)

[photo: original bust in Lille]

This cast was described in the NGV’s Annual Report for 1900 as “Bust of a Girl, from a wax bust, attributed to Raphael, in the Lille Museum,” pointing clearly to the source as the once-famous “Maiden of Lille,” bequeathed to the French museum in 1834, and reproduced here. The bust was widely copied in the later 19 th and earlier 20 th centuries, and given various romantic interpretations: see now Lawrence Riviale, “The ‘fortuna critica’ of the ‘Maiden of Lille’,” Burlington Magazine no.1406 (May 2020), pp.404-11. Riviale adds that a plausible 18 th -century origin for the figure has been proposed recently (the Raphael attribution having long since been abandoned). Melbourne’s cast could have been made either from the original, or from a mould in Berlin.

Without further information, it seems impossible to identify this cast or its source. For Wood, see linked entry see also II.46.

II.81 Bust of Pietro Mellini (Benedetto da Maiano)

AR 1898, p.26 (noting that the original bust, by Benedetto da Maiano, is in the Bargello, Florence)

The original bust of Mellini, a Florentine merchant and patron, dates from 1474. For Benedetto da Maiano (1442-97), a member of a family of Florentine artists, see also II.120. There is a plaster cast of the present bust in the V&A (credited to Oronzio Lelli, c.1885): see comparative photo shown here.

II.82 Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy

AR 1870-71, p.28 (“presented by a Committee of Gentlemen”) NGV 1894, VII.90

The German composer (1809-47) visited England on several occasions, producing his oratorio Elijah in Birmingham in 1846.

II.83 Michelangelo

NGV 1865, bust no.2 AR 1870-71, p.42 (Angelo) NGV 1894, VIII.67 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.119

Michelangelo Buonarotti (1475-1564), described in Vasari’s influential Lives of the Artists (1 st publ.1550) as bringing the development of Italian Renaissance art to a climax, was represented in the pre-Felton collection by several engravings after his works, as well as a number of plaster casts of his sculpture (for details, see linked entry). The most famous portrait of him is a bust by Daniele da Volterra, possibly the basis for this cast.

II.84 Milton

NGV 1865, bust no.44 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.71 Brucciani (1858?), cat.104

John Milton (1608-74) achieved early fame as a poet, but then spent his middle years in active support for the Puritan Revolution led by Cromwell (see VII.101). Later, after he had turned blind, he returned to poetry, publishing his most famous work, Paradise Lost, in 1667.

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.63

Thomas Moore (1779-1852) was an Irish poet and musician, said to be to Ireland what Robert Burns is to Scotland. He was portrayed by Thomas Lawrence, and there are several busts.

II.86 Moses (bust)

The “casts of busts and masks” donated by James Murphy in AR 1870-71 included this bust and also a mask (see II.87), both presumably derived from the famous statue of 1513-15 (S.Pietro in Vincoli, Rome), the embodiment of Michelangelesque terribilità: see detail reproduced here.

II.87 Moses (mask)

AR 1870-71, p.28 NGV 1880, p.35 NGV 1894, VIII.55 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.9 (no.461)

II.88 Mulready

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.87

Irish painter William Mulready (1786-1863) reproductions of his life drawings were donated to the pre-Felton collection by James Scurry in 1884.

II.89 Napoleon Bonaparte

NGV 1865, bust no.46 NGV 1894, VII.95

The pre-Felton collection also included other portraits of Napoleon (1769-1821): see Maile Napoleon I <1875>NGV [PR] and * Unknown artist Portrait of Napoleon I <1875>Loc? [DR] as well as various images associated with the wars against him. He was frequently portrayed, usually in uniform.

II.90 Lord Nelson

NGV 1865, bust no.47 NGV 1894, VII.100 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.123

Horatio Nelson (1758-1805) died heroically during his triumph over French naval forces at the Battle of Trafalgar. See now * Sharpe after Maclise Death of Nelson <1878>Loc? [PR] and * Unknown after Carew The Death of Nelson <1871>Loc? [PR], the latter reproducing the famous relief at the base of the column erected in Nelson’s honour in Trafalgar Square (1830ff.).

II.91 Head of Nero

NGV 1865, bust no.48 AR 1870-71, p.43 (quoted below) NGV 1894, VIII.67 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.8 & (1905), p.47 (also noting B.Mus.original)

[photo: British Museum bust (1805,0703.236)]

AR 1870-71 notes that the original on which this cast was based was “brought from Athens by Dr Askew, 1740,” clearly identifying it as the Townley bust in the British Museum, now regarded as an 18 th -century reworking of a Roman original: see photo. Nero’s reign as Roman Emperor (54-68 AD) was marked by extreme extravagance and cruelty, including the persecution of Christians, a favourite 19th-century topic: see now * Bourne after Doré The Christian Martyrs 1875 <1876>Loc? [PR] and Tegazzo after Siemiradzki Les Torches vivantes de Neron 1878 <1879>NGV [PR]. After opposition to him grew, Nero suicided, aged 31.

II.92 Newton

NGV 1865, bust no.49 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.97

Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) formulated the theory of gravitation and its effect on heavenly bodies, and then went on to develop his famous laws of motion in Principia Mathematica (1687).

II.93 & 94: Heads of Nicolo da Uzzano (Donatello)

[photo: the original bust in the Bargello, Florence]

The original bust, in polychromed terracotta, was produced after the death of Uzzano (1359-1431), Gonfaloniere of Justice in Florence. The attribution to Donatello is uncertain. There seem to have been 2 casts in Melbourne, one apparently visible in the overview of the casts published in NGV 1905.

II.95 Bust of Numa Pompilius

[bust in Villa Albani, Rome]

Numa was the legendary second king of Rome from 715-653 BC, succeeding Romulus. A Sabine, he is said to have introduced many rituals and institutions later central to Roman culture, including the Vestal Virgins. This cast probably reproduced the bust in the Villa Albani, traditionally taken to represent him.

II.96 O’Connell

1880 catalogue, p.30 NGV 1894, VII.7

Daniel O’Connell (1775-1847), influential leader of the Roman Catholics in Ireland in the first half of the 19 th century, was known as the “Irish Liberator.”

II.97 Richard Owen

AR 1872, p.23 (“Professor Owen” as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.41

English biologist and palaeontologist Owen (1804-92) invented the term “dinosaur” (“terrible reptile”) in 1841. Later, he argued that Darwin’s theory of evolution was simplistic in places, and was instrumental in the establishment of London’s Natural History Museum (1881).

II.98 Palladio

NGV 1865, bust no.50 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.78

Andrea Palladio (1508-80)’s classicizing villas and churches in Venice and its region strongly influenced later European architecture, especially in 18 th -century England.

II.99 Palmerston

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.17

As British Foreign Secretary (from 1830) and Prime Minister (from 1855), Lord Palmerston (1784-1865) pursued a nationalist agenda that sometimes brought him into conflict with Queen Victoria (a clash embellished in the recent TV series Victoria, where Palmerston is cast as a scheming villain). Various portraits and statues were produced, including a Wedgwood bust, c.1870.

II.100 The Hon.H.Parkes

PF 1869 ( probably this bust) NGV 1894, VII.34

Sir Henry Parkes (1815-96), known as the “Father of Australian Federation,” entered the New South Wales parliament in 1854, and became Premier in 1872 (and several times thereafter). The donor of this cast, Sir James Martin (1820-86), was also NSW Premier several times, including a 2-year period (1866-68) when he led a coalition government with Parkes. Involved increasingly actively in the federalist movement from the late 1880s, Parkes was the target of several biting Bulletin caricatures by Phil May (several 1888 examples were bought for the pre-Felton collection in 1903).

II.101 Sir Robert Peel

NGV 1865, bust no.51 AR 1870-71, p.43 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.99 NGV 1894, VII.24

Peel (1788-1850) was British Prime Minister during the 1830s and 40s for further details, see * Linnell Sir Robert Peel 1838 Loc? [PR].

II.102 Pericles

NGV 1865, bust no.52 (noting that the source was found near Tivoli in 1781) AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.36 cf.Brucciani (1905), p.28 (noted as via the B.Mus.original ill.)

Pericles (c.495-429 BC) presided over the “golden age” of Athens, including the building and decoration of the Parthenon. The NGV catalogue descriptions identify the source as the Townley bust acquired for the British Museum in 1805 (see photo at right), one of several Roman copies of a Greek original. Melbourne also owned a second cast: see next entry.

II.103 Head of Pericles

This second bust of the famed Athenian leader (cf.previous entry) may have reproduced the same original, or another extant Roman copy (Berlin, Vatican etc.) both casts are listed in NGV 1894.

II.104 William Pitt

NGV 1865, bust no.53 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.30 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.122

Pitt (1759-1806) was British Prime Minister during the French Revolution and the rise of Napoleon (for further details, see * Goed after Owen William Pitt Loc? [PR]).

II.105 Plato

NGV 1865, bust no.54 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VIII.96 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.29

Identification of the original is uncertain (there are various possibilities, and the NGV sources provide no details).

II.106 Raphael

NGV 1865, bust no.55 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.66 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.109

Raphael (1483-1520), born Raffaello Sanzio, was still seen by many in the 19 th century as the greatest painter who ever lived. He was represented in the pre-Felton collection by a considerable number of engravings after his works, and a painting attributed to him (refer linked artist entry for details).

II.107 Reynolds

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.88

Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-92) was elected inaugural president of the British Royal Academy (1768). The pre-Felton NGV included several prints after his paintings (refer linked entry for details).

II.108 Head of Robinson (Benjamin Law) [State Library of Victoria (LTS 58) presented by Henry Downie (Downing?), by 1865]

NGV 1865, bust no.56 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1880, p.30 NGV 1894, VIII.62

This appears to be the sole remaining cast of a plaster bust produced by Benjamin Law (1807-82) in 1836. The library’s catalogue indicates that it was donated in about 1870-71, but it already appears in the 1865 catalogue of Melbourne’s casts and statues. George Augustus Robinson (1791-1866), a builder by trade, and a devout Christian and amateur preacher, migrated to Hobart in 1824. In 1828, he was appointed by Lt-Governor George Arthur to attempt a “conciliation” between the Tasmanian Aborigines and the immigrants, which he effected eventually by simply arranging for the few Aborigines still remaining in southern Tasmania after the “Black War” (c.1824-31) to be relocated to Flinders Island. Modern assessments of these events vary, but Robert Hughes (The Fatal Shore 1987, p.121) plainly describes the treatment of the Tasmanian Aborigines as “the only true genocide in English colonial history.” Later, Robinson held the post of “Protector of Aboriginals” in Port Phillip (1839-49), then returning to England for the remainder of his life.

Gareth Knapman, publishing this bust in 2010 (see reference below), emphasizes the word “Pacificator,” inscribed on the back of the cast, in assessing Robinson’s role in both Tasmania and Victoria, thus complicating the traditional image of him as a humanitarian hero, developed by himself and others in the 1830s-40s. In Law’s bust, Robinson’s character is implied through the traditional Roman toga and idealized features, by contrast with the same artist’s busts of Truganini and Woureddy (see II.124 and II.134), produced at the same time (1835/36), and extant in multiple plaster casts. For other early images of Robinson, see Benjamin Duterrau’s The Conciliation (Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, 1840), and * Gauci (?) George Augustus Robinson Loc? [PR]. For further information, see Gareth Knapman, “The Pacificator: discovering the lost bust of George Augustus Robinson,” LaTrobe Journal 86, Dec.2010 and Gareth Knapman, “The Art of Conciliation,” Portrait 57, Winter 2017 (National Portrait Gallery, Canberra), both available online. See also the anonymous biography of Robinson in ADB, vol.2 and cast II.70 (William Lanne).

II.109 Lord John Russell

NGV 1865, p.35, bust no.57 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.10

English statesman (1792-1878), Prime Minister from 1846-52, and later 1 st Earl Russell.

II.110 Bust of Franc Sadleier, D.D.

AR 1870-71, p.28 (as Sadler) NGV 1880, p.30 NGV 1894, VIII.60 (providing the details shown here)

Sadleier (1775-1851) was Provost of Trinity College, Dublin, from 1837 until his death.

II.111 Friedrich Schiller

NGV 1865, bust no.58 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.59

German poet and dramatist (1759-1805), friend of Goethe, and author of An die Freude (c.1788), later used by Beethoven as the basis for the final movement of his 9 th Symphony.

II.112 Sir Walter Scott

AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.56 Cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.113

Scottish writer (1771-1832), noted particularly for his historical novels (Rob Roy, Ivanhoe, etc.). Substantial memorial statues to him were erected in both Edinburgh and Glasgow.

II.113 Bust of Seneca

NGV 1865, bust no.60 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VIII.18 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.29

[photo: bronze bust in Naples]

This was probably a cast of the “Pseudo-Seneca,” a bronze head found in Herculaneum in 1754 (Naples Mus.Arch.), previously understood to depict the Stoic philosopher: see photo. However, a marble bust inscribed with Seneca’s name, found in 1813 (now in Berlin), is now considered a more plausible likeness (for reproductions of both busts, see

II.114 Head of Severus

NGV 1865, bust no.61 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1880, p.31 NGV 1894, VIII.33 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.9, & Brucciani (1905), p.47

[photo: British Museum bust (1805,0703.104)]

Roman Emperor Septimius Severus (145-211 AD). The Melbourne references are not specific as to the source, but it was probably the Townley bust in the British Museum, found in Rome in 1776, as reproduced here.

II.115 Shakespeare

Summers report 1861, no.21 NGV 1865, bust no.62 AR 1870-71, p.43 not listed in NGV 1894

This cast was obviously a separate cast from the larger copy of Scheemaker’s Westminster Abbey statue acquired in 1872 (see I.96), sold at auction in 1943.

II.116 Socrates

NGV 1865, bust no.63 AR 1870-71, p.43 not listed in NGV 1894

The philosophy of Socrates (c.469-399 BC) is known essentially through Plato (see II.105) and others influenced by his dialectic “method.” Traditionally said to be snub-nosed and ugly, he was represented thus in a number of busts (there are examples in the Louvre and elsewhere).

II.117 Sophocles

NGV 1865, bust no.64 AR 1870-71, p.43 (noting original as in the British Museum) NGV 1894, VIII.65 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.29

[photo: Townley bust (1805,0703.87)]

The Townley collection bust in the British Museum (reproduced here) combines a Roman head, based on a Greek original, with a modern base. Melbourne’s collection also included a cast of the full-length statue of the playwright in the Vatican (I.98).

II.118 St George (bust)

SB, following p.546 (no.45): as bought for £1/5: see details above) AR 1898, p.26 (indentifying the source as Donatello’s statue in Florence) cf.Brucciani (1891), p.7 (no.2353)

[photo: Brucciani cast in the Royal Academy ©]

Donatello’s Orsanmichele statue of 1415-17 is now in the Florence Bargello. A plaster bust produced by Brucciani is extant in the Royal Academy in London: see photo reproduced here. However, Melbourne’s cast is noted specifically in the NGV stock-book as purchased from the local firm of Pellegrini & Co. in March 1898.

II.119 George Stephenson

NGV 1865, bust no.65 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.47

The inventor of the railway engine (1781-1848). There are various portraits, including a bronze bust by E.W.Wyon (1811-85), held in the Science Museum, London.

II.120 Bust of Filippo Strozzi (Benedetto da Maiano)

AR 1894, p.22 (as above) not listed in NGV 1894

[photo: plaster cast in the V&A]

Maiano (see II.81) produced his terracotta model of the wealthy Florentine merchant (1428-92), a rival of the Medici, in 1475 (Bode Museum, Berlin). It served as the basis for a marble bust later installed in the Strozzi Chapel, S.Maria Novella, Florence (now in the Louvre). Melbourne’s cast was listed in the 1894 Annual Report as donated by the Education Department. The cast reproduced here (apparently based on the Berlin bust) is in the V&A, dated to c.1864, and documented as made by a Signor Stiattesi.

II.121 Thackeray

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.54

William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-63) is best known for his 1848 novel Vanity Fair, satirizing the new English middle classes. There are various portraits, including a statue by Sir Joseph Boehm.

II.122 Thomson, James

NGV 1865, bust no.66 AR 1870-71, p.43 not listed in NGV 1894

Scottish poet (1700-48), best known for his cycle The Seasons (1726-30).

II.123 Bust of Trajan
NGV 1865, bust no.67 AR 1870-71, p.43 (noting the source as the Townley bust in the British Museum) NGV 1894, VIII.16 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.29 & Brucciani (1905), p.47

[photo: Townley bust. British Museum (1805,0703.93)]

The Roman Empire was at its greatest extent under Trajan’s rule (97-117 AD). For the triumphal Column erected in Rome in 113 AD to celebrate his vctory over the Dacians, see Bartoli Colonna Traiana (1672) SLV [IB].

II.124 Truganini [Museums Victoria presented by William Lynch, 1891] (by Benjamin Law)

[comparative photo: cast in the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra: photo by Gordon Makryllos]

Gareth Knapman, discussing the National Portrait Gallery’s cast, observes that this bust of 1836 is imbued with a deep sorrow (“The Art of Conciliation,” Portrait 57, Winter 2017, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, available online). This was one of the “casts of the last three survivors of the Tasmanian Race – Truganina, Lanney, and Woureddy,” donated by William Lynch in 1891, and described as “Ethnographic Objects”: for general comments, see II.70 (William Lanne).

The sculptor Benjamin Law (1807-82), who arrived in Hobart in February 1835, having worked as a silversmith in Sheffield, produced this bust and the busts of Woureddy (II.133) and the colonial “conciliator” G.A.Robinson (II.108) in 1835-6. The heads of the two native Tasmanians (who were coopted to help Robinson bring conflict to an end in the colony) proved particularly popular, and were cast in about 30 coloured plaster pairs, with extant examples held in the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, and elsewhere, including a cast of the Truganini bust in the British Museum (2009.2025/1). In 2009, when a pair of Law’s busts of Truganini and Woureddy, described as “the first sculptures made and exhibited in British Australia,” were withdrawn from a planned auction at Sotheby’s in Melbourne, following significant protests: for a critical response, see David Hansen, “Seeing Truganini,” Australian Book Review, May 2010, pp.45-53. For the larger issues involved, see e.g. Bernard Smith, The Spectre of Truganini, Australian Broadcasting Commission, 1980 (Boyer Lectures)

II.125 Venus de Milo (bust)

AR 1870-71, p.28 NGV 1880, p.31 NGV 1894, VIII.82 cf.Brucciani (1891), p.7 (no.1616: bust)

For Melbourne’s cast of the Venus de Milo statue, see I.108.

II.126 Verus

NGV 1865, bust no.68 (via an original “sold by Mr Lyde Brown to the Empress Catherine II of Russia”) AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VIII.23 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.74 (quoted below) & Brucciani (1870?), p.29

Lucius Verus, co-emperor with Marcus Aurelius, 161-69 AD, is characterized by Brucciani (1858?), as “licentious and dissolute” (listing a plaster bust of unidentified origin). The details recorded in NGV 1865 point to the source of Melbourne’s cast as the bust of Verus now in the Hermitage Museum: see photo reproduced here. Another “colossal” bust of Verus, in the Louvre, was presumably the basis for a cast formerly in Sydney, described as “heroic size” (see AGNSW catalogue 1888, p.93).

II.127 Queen Victoria

NGV 1865, bust no.69 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.14 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.1007

The cast of Prince Albert (see II.2) was presumably the pair of the present work, and both, as discussed in the remarks on that cast, may have been based on the marble busts of the royal couple by Joseph Durham (1855). However, this is only a speculative suggestion. See also * Noble [after] Queen Victoria Loc? [SC], a Parian bust also listed in NGV 1894.

II.128 Bust of Publius Virgilius Maro

NGV 1865, bust no.71 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VIII.59 cf.Brucciani (1870?), p.29

The source of this cast of the author of The Aeneid (70-19 BC) is unclear. For the general difficulty of relying on any of the known images of him, see J.B.Trapp, “Virgil and the monuments,” Proceedings of the Virgil Society 18 (1986), available online.

II.129 Voltaire

Summers report 1861, no.22NGV 1865, bust no.72 AR 1870-71, p.43 not listed in NGV 1894

French Enlightenment writer (1694-1778), best known for his Candide (1759) Houdon made several lively busts of him.

II.130 George Washington

NGV 1865, bust no.73 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.94

After leading the American forces in the War of Independence, Washington (1732-99) became the first US President in 1789. There are several busts and statues of him, including Horatio Greenough’s remarkable marble statue (1840), modelled on the gigantic 5 th -century BC statue of Zeus formerly in the Temple of Zeus at Olympia.

II.131 James Watt (Chantrey)

NGV 1865, bust no.74 NGV 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.48

[photo: marble bust by Chantrey]

Scottish engineer Watt (1736-1819) perfected the steam engine, facilitating the development of the Industrial Revolution and the railways (cf. II.119). Chantrey produced a marble statue of Watt, and a bust (Scottish Nat.Gall.), reproduced here. See also Pratt James Watt’s Workshop 1886 <1889>NGV [PA]. For Chantrey, see II.22.

II.132 Duke of Wellington

Summers report 1861, no.18 NGV 1865, bust no.75 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.102 cf.Brucciani (1858?), cat.98

[comparative photo: marble bust by Chantrey, 1823 (Met.Mus., NY)]

Arthur Wellesley, 1 st Duke of Wellington (1769-1852), together with Marshall Blücher, won the decisive victory over Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo in June 1815. His resultant fame led to many honours and portraits, both before and after his death and spectacular state funeral in November 1852. Melbourne’s cast was presumably based on an early source like the suitably heroic marble bust of 1823 by Chantrey (for whom, see II.22): see photo. Wellington was celebrated in several other pre-Felton prints and paintings: see e.g. Unknown after Dawe Duke of Wellington 1842 <1875>NGV [PR].

II.133 Wordsworth

AR 1872, p.23 (as bought from D.Brucciani) NGV 1894, VII.70

The poet William Wordsworth (1770-1850), who lived for much of his life in the English Lake District. Initially a harbinger of Romanticism, with Coleridge (see cast II.30), he later wrote reflectively about man and nature.

II.134 Woureddy [Museums Victoria presented by William Lynch, 1891] (by Benjamin Law)

[comparative photo: cast in the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra: photo by Gordon Makryllos]

One of three busts of Tasmanian aborigines donated by William Lynch in 1891: see also II.70 (Lanne) and II.124 (Truganini) and, for further context, II.108 (bust of G.A.Robinson). This bust of Woureddy was said to be the most popular of the three busts by Benjamin Law, perhaps because of its “noble savage” characterization.

II.135 Sir Christopher Wren

NGV 1865, bust no.76 AR 1870-71, p.43 NGV 1894, VII.79 Brucciani (1858?), cat.115

Wren (1632-1723) designed St Paul’s Cathedral (1675-1710), and numerous smaller London churches, following the Great Fire of London in 1666.

II.136 Sir John Young

PF 1869 ( presumably this bust) AR 1870-71, p.28 NGV 1894, VII.31

Young (1807-76), NSW Governor 1861-67, was also represented in Melbourne’s Oval Portrait series (no.34).

II.137 Bust of a Young Lady (Donatello?)

AR 1898, p.26 (“from original in wood, by Donatello”)

The source is unclear see also comments on casts II.47 & 48 (with comments on the difficulty of identifying works like this).

II.138 Xenophon

NGV 1865, bust no.77 AR 1870-71, p.43 not listed in NGV 1894


Solon was born in Athens around 630 BC. [1] His family was distinguished in Attica as they belonged to a noble or Eupatrid clan, although they possessed only moderate wealth. [9] Solon's father was probably Execestides. If so, his lineage could be traced back to Codrus, the last King of Athens. [10] According to Diogenes Laërtius, he had a brother named Dropides who was an ancestor (six generations removed) of Plato. [11] According to Plutarch, Solon was related to the tyrant Peisistratos, for their mothers were cousins. [12] Solon was eventually drawn into the unaristocratic pursuit of commerce. [13]

When Athens and Megara were contesting the possession of Salamis, Solon was made leader of the Athenian forces. After repeated disasters, Solon was able to improve the morale of his troops through a poem he wrote about the island. [14] Supported by Peisistratos, he defeated the Megarians either by means of a cunning trick [15] or more directly through heroic battle around 595 BC. [14] [16] The Megarians, however, refused to give up their claim. The dispute was referred to the Spartans, who eventually awarded possession of the island to Athens on the strength of the case that Solon put to them. [17]

According to Diogenes Laertius, in 594 BC, Solon was chosen archon, or chief magistrate. [14] [18] As archon, Solon discussed his intended reforms with some friends. Knowing that he was about to cancel all debts, these friends took out loans and promptly bought some land. Suspected of complicity, Solon complied with his own law and released his own debtors, amounting to five talents (or 15 according to some sources). His friends never repaid their debts. [19]

After he had finished his reforms, he travelled abroad for ten years, so that the Athenians could not induce him to repeal any of his laws. [20] His first stop was Egypt. There, according to Herodotus, he visited the Pharaoh of Egypt, Amasis II. [21] According to Plutarch, he spent some time and discussed philosophy with two Egyptian priests, Psenophis of Heliopolis and Sonchis of Sais. [22] A character in two of Plato's dialogues, Timaeus and Critias, claims Solon visited Neith's temple at Sais and received from the priests there an account of the history of Atlantis. Next, Solon sailed to Cyprus, where he oversaw the construction of a new capital for a local king, in gratitude for which the king named it Soloi. [22]

Solon's travels finally brought him to Sardis, capital of Lydia. According to Herodotus and Plutarch, he met with Croesus and gave the Lydian king advice, which Croesus failed to appreciate until it was too late. Croesus had considered himself to be the happiest man alive and Solon had advised him, "Count no man happy until he be dead." The reasoning was that at any minute, fortune might turn on even the happiest man and make his life miserable. It was only after he had lost his kingdom to the Persian king Cyrus, while awaiting execution, that Croesus acknowledged the wisdom of Solon's advice. [23] [24]

After his return to Athens, Solon became a staunch opponent of Peisistratos. In protest, and as an example to others, Solon stood outside his own home in full armour, urging all who passed to resist the machinations of the would-be tyrant. His efforts were in vain. Solon died shortly after Peisistratos usurped by force the autocratic power that Athens had once freely bestowed upon him. [25] Solon died in Cyprus at the age of 80 [14] and, in accordance with his will, his ashes were scattered around Salamis, the island where he was born. [26] [27]

The travel writer Pausanias listed Solon among the seven sages whose aphorisms adorned Apollo's temple in Delphi. [28] Stobaeus in the Florilegium relates a story about a symposium where Solon's young nephew was singing a poem of Sappho's: Solon, upon hearing the song, asked the boy to teach him to sing it. When someone asked, "Why should you waste your time on it?", Solon replied, " ἵνα μαθὼν αὐτὸ ἀποθάνω ", "So that I may learn it before I die." [29] Ammianus Marcellinus, however, told a similar story about Socrates and the poet Stesichorus, quoting the philosopher's rapture in almost identical terms: "ut aliquid sciens amplius e vita discedam", [30] meaning "in order to leave life knowing a little more".

During Solon's time, many Greek city-states had seen the emergence of tyrants, opportunistic noblemen who had taken power on behalf of sectional interests. In Sicyon, Cleisthenes had usurped power on behalf of an Ionian minority. In Megara, Theagenes had come to power as an enemy of the local oligarchs. The son-in-law of Theagenes, an Athenian nobleman named Cylon, made an unsuccessful attempt to seize power in Athens in 632 BC. Solon was described by Plutarch as having been temporarily awarded autocratic powers by Athenian citizens on the grounds that he had the wisdom to sort out their differences for them in a peaceful and equitable manner. [31] According to ancient sources, [32] [33] he obtained these powers when he was elected eponymous archon (594/3 BC). Some modern scholars believe these powers were in fact granted some years after Solon had been archon, when he would have been a member of the Areopagus and probably a more respected statesman by his peers. [34] [35] [36]

The social and political upheavals that characterized Athens in Solon's time have been variously interpreted by historians from ancient times to the present day. Two contemporary historians have identified three distinct historical accounts of Solon's Athens, emphasizing quite different rivalries: economic and ideological rivalry, regional rivalry and rivalry between aristocratic clans. [37] [38] These different accounts provide a convenient basis for an overview of the issues involved.

  • Economic and ideological rivalry is a common theme in ancient sources. This sort of account emerges from Solon's poems, in which he casts himself in the role of a noble mediator between two intemperate and unruly factions. This same account is substantially taken up about three centuries later by the author of the Aristotelian Athenaion Politeia but with an interesting variation:
    ". there was conflict between the nobles and the common people for an extended period. For the constitution they were under was oligarchic in every respect and especially in that the poor, along with their wives and children, were in slavery to the rich. All the land was in the hands of a few. And if men did not pay their rents, they themselves and their children were liable to be seized as slaves. The security for all loans was the debtor's person up to the time of Solon. He was the first people's champion." [39]
    Here Solon is presented as a partisan in a democratic cause whereas, judged from the viewpoint of his own poems, he was instead a mediator between rival factions. A still more significant variation in the ancient historical account appears in the writing of Plutarch in the late 1st – early 2nd century AD:
    "Athens was torn by recurrent conflict about the constitution. The city was divided into as many parties as there were geographical divisions in its territory. For the party of the people of the hills was most in favour of democracy, that of the people of the plain was most in favour of oligarchy, while the third group, the people of the coast, which preferred a mixed form of constitution somewhat between the other two, formed an obstruction and prevented the other groups from gaining control." [40]
  • Regional rivalry is a theme commonly found among modern scholars. [41][42][43][44]
    "The new picture which emerged was one of strife between regional groups, united by local loyalties and led by wealthy landowners. Their goal was control of the central government at Athens and with it dominance over their rivals from other districts of Attika." [45]
    Regional factionalism was inevitable in a relatively large territory such as Athens possessed. In most Greek city states, a farmer could conveniently reside in town and travel to and from his fields every day. According to Thucydides, on the other hand, most Athenians continued to live in rural settlements right up until the Peloponnesian War. [46] The effects of regionalism in a large territory could be seen in Laconia, where Sparta had gained control through intimidation and resettlement of some of its neighbours and enslavement of the rest. Attika in Solon's time seemed to be moving towards a similarly ugly solution with many citizens in danger of being reduced to the status of helots. [47]
  • Rivalry between clans is a theme recently developed by some scholars, based on an appreciation of the political significance of kinship groupings. [45][48][49][50][51][52] According to this account, bonds of kinship rather than local loyalties were the decisive influence on events in archaic Athens. An Athenian belonged not only to a phyle or tribe and one of its subdivisions, the phratry or brotherhood, but also to an extended family, clan or genos. It has been argued that these interconnecting units of kinship reinforced a hierarchic structure with aristocratic clans at the top. [37][38] Thus rivalries between aristocratic clans could engage all levels of society irrespective of any regional ties. In that case, the struggle between rich and poor was the struggle between powerful aristocrats and the weaker affiliates of their rivals or perhaps even with their own rebellious affiliates.

The historical account of Solon's Athens has evolved over many centuries into a set of contradictory stories or a complex story that might be interpreted in a variety of ways. As further evidence accumulates, and as historians continue to debate the issues, Solon's motivations and the intentions behind his reforms will continue to attract speculation. [53]

Solon's laws were inscribed on large wooden slabs or cylinders attached to a series of axles that stood upright in the Prytaneion. [54] [55] These axones appear to have operated on the same principle as a turntable, allowing both convenient storage and ease of access. Originally the axones recorded laws enacted by Draco in the late 7th Century (traditionally 621 BC). Nothing of Draco's codification has survived except for a law relating to homicide, yet there is consensus among scholars that it did not amount to anything like a constitution. [56] [57] Solon repealed all Draco's laws except those relating to homicide. [58] During his visit to Athens, Pausanias, the 2nd century AD geographer reported that the inscribed laws of Solon were still displayed by the Prytaneion. [59] Fragments of the axones were still visible in Plutarch's time [60] but today the only records we have of Solon's laws are fragmentary quotes and comments in literary sources such as those written by Plutarch himself. Moreover, the language of his laws was archaic even by the standards of the fifth century and this caused interpretation problems for ancient commentators. [61] Modern scholars doubt the reliability of these sources and our knowledge of Solon's legislation is therefore actually very limited in its details. [ citation needed ]

Generally, Solon's reforms appear to have been constitutional, economic and moral in their scope. This distinction, though somewhat artificial, does at least provide a convenient framework within which to consider the laws that have been attributed to Solon. Some short-term consequences of his reforms are considered at the end of the section.

Constitutional reform Edit

Before Solon's reforms, the Athenian state was administered by nine archons appointed or elected annually by the Areopagus on the basis of noble birth and wealth. [62] [63] The Areopagus comprised former archons and it therefore had, in addition to the power of appointment, extraordinary influence as a consultative body. The nine archons took the oath of office while ceremonially standing on a stone in the agora, declaring their readiness to dedicate a golden statue if they should ever be found to have violated the laws. [64] [65] There was an assembly of Athenian citizens (the Ekklesia) but the lowest class (the Thetes) was not admitted and its deliberative procedures were controlled by the nobles. [66] There therefore seemed to be no means by which an archon could be called to account for breach of oath unless the Areopagus favoured his prosecution.

According to the Constitution of the Athenians, Solon legislated for all citizens to be admitted into the Ekklesia [67] and for a court (the Heliaia) to be formed from all the citizens. [68] The Heliaia appears to have been the Ekklesia, or some representative portion of it, sitting as a jury. [69] [70] By giving common people the power not only to elect officials but also to call them to account, Solon appears to have established the foundations of a true republic. However some scholars have doubted whether Solon actually included the Thetes in the Ekklesia, this being considered too bold a move for any aristocrat in the archaic period. [71] Ancient sources [72] [73] credit Solon with the creation of a Council of Four Hundred, drawn from the four Athenian tribes to serve as a steering committee for the enlarged Ekklesia. However, many modern scholars have doubted this also. [74] [75]

There is consensus among scholars that Solon lowered the requirements – those that existed in terms of financial and social qualifications – which applied to election to public office. The Solonian constitution divided citizens into four political classes defined according to assessable property [67] [76] a classification that might previously have served the state for military or taxation purposes only. [77] The standard unit for this assessment was one medimnos (approximately 12 gallons) of cereals and yet the kind of classification set out below might be considered too simplistic to be historically accurate. [78]

  • Pentakosiomedimnoi
    • valued at 500 medimnoi or more of cereals annually.
    • eligible to serve as strategoi (generals or military governors)
    • valued at 300 medimnoi or more annually.
    • approximating to the medieval class of knights, they had enough wealth to equip themselves for the cavalry
    • valued at a 200 medimnoi or more annually.
    • approximating to the medieval class of Yeoman, they had enough wealth to equip themselves for the infantry (Hoplite)
    • valued up to 199 medimnoi annually or less
    • manual workers or sharecroppers, they served voluntarily in the role of personal servant, or as auxiliaries armed for instance with the sling or as rowers in the navy.

    According to the Athenian Constitution, only the pentakosiomedimnoi were eligible for election to high office as archons and therefore only they gained admission into the Areopagus. [79] A modern view affords the same privilege to the hippeis. [80] The top three classes were eligible for a variety of lesser posts and only the thetes were excluded from all public office.

    Depending on how we interpret the historical facts known to us, Solon's constitutional reforms were either a radical anticipation of democratic government, or they merely provided a plutocratic flavour to a stubbornly aristocratic regime, or else the truth lies somewhere between these two extremes. [a]

    Economic reform Edit

    Solon's economic reforms need to be understood in the context of the primitive, subsistence economy that prevailed both before and after his time. Most Athenians were still living in rural settlements right up to the Peloponnesian War. [81] Opportunities for trade even within the Athenian borders were limited. The typical farming family, even in classical times, barely produced enough to satisfy its own needs. [82] Opportunities for international trade were minimal. It has been estimated that, even in Roman times, goods rose 40% in value for every 100 miles they were carried over land, but only 1.3% for the same distance were they carried by ship [83] and yet there is no evidence that Athens possessed any merchant ships until around 525 BC. [84] Until then, the narrow warship doubled as a cargo vessel. Athens, like other Greek city states in the 7th century BC, was faced with increasing population pressures [85] and by about 525 BC it was able to feed itself only in 'good years'. [86]

    Solon's reforms can thus be seen to have taken place at a crucial period of economic transition, when a subsistence rural economy increasingly required the support of a nascent commercial sector. The specific economic reforms credited to Solon are these:

    • Fathers were encouraged to find trades for their sons if they did not, there would be no legal requirement for sons to maintain their fathers in old age. [87]
    • Foreign tradesmen were encouraged to settle in Athens those who did would be granted citizenship, provided they brought their families with them. [88]
    • Cultivation of olives was encouraged the export of all other fruits was prohibited. [89]
    • Competitiveness of Athenian commerce was promoted through revision of weights and measures, possibly based on successful standards already in use elsewhere, such as Aegina or Euboia[90][91] or, according to the ancient account but unsupported by modern scholarship, Argos. [92]

    It is generally assumed, on the authority of ancient commentators [92] [93] that Solon also reformed the Athenian coinage. However, recent numismatic studies now lead to the conclusion that Athens probably had no coinage until around 560 BC, well after Solon's reforms. [94] Nevertheless, there are now reasons to suggest [95] that monetization had already begun before Solon's reforms. By early sixth century the Athenians were using silver in the form of a variety of bullion silver pieces for monetary payments. [96] Drachma and obol as a term of bullion value had already been adopted, although the corresponding standard weights were probably unstable. [97]

    Solon's economic reforms succeeded in stimulating foreign trade. Athenian black-figure pottery was exported in increasing quantities and good quality throughout the Aegean between 600 BC and 560 BC, a success story that coincided with a decline in trade in Corinthian pottery. [98] The ban on the export of grain might be understood as a relief measure for the benefit of the poor. However, the encouragement of olive production for export could actually have led to increased hardship for many Athenians to the extent that it led to a reduction in the amount of land dedicated to grain. Moreover, an olive produces no fruit for the first six years [99] (but farmers' difficulty of lasting until payback may also give rise to a mercantilist argument in favour of supporting them through that, since the British case illustrates that "One domestic policy that had a lasting impact was the conversion of 'waste lands' to agricultural use. Mercantilists felt that to maximize a nation's power all land and resources had to be used to their utmost. "). The real motives behind Solon's economic reforms are therefore as questionable as his real motives for constitutional reform. Were the poor being forced to serve the needs of a changing economy, was the economy being reformed to serve the needs of the poor, or were Solon's policies the manifestation of a struggle taking place between poorer citizens and the aristocrats?

    Moral reform Edit

    In his poems, Solon portrays Athens as being under threat from the unrestrained greed and arrogance of its citizens. [100] Even the earth (Gaia), the mighty mother of the gods, had been enslaved. [101] The visible symbol of this perversion of the natural and social order was a boundary marker called a horos, a wooden or stone pillar indicating that a farmer was in debt or under contractual obligation to someone else, either a noble patron or a creditor. [102] Up until Solon's time, land was the inalienable property of a family or clan [103] and it could not be sold or mortgaged. This was no disadvantage to a clan with large landholdings since it could always rent out farms in a sharecropping system. A family struggling on a small farm however could not use the farm as security for a loan even if it owned the farm. Instead the farmer would have to offer himself and his family as security, providing some form of slave labour in lieu of repayment. Equally, a family might voluntarily pledge part of its farm income or labour to a powerful clan in return for its protection. Farmers subject to these sorts of arrangements were loosely known as hektemoroi [104] indicating that they either paid or kept a sixth of a farm's annual yield. [105] [106] [107] In the event of 'bankruptcy', or failure to honour the contract stipulated by the horoi, farmers and their families could in fact be sold into slavery.

    Solon's reform of these injustices was later known and celebrated among Athenians as the Seisachtheia (shaking off of burdens). [108] [109] As with all his reforms, there is considerable scholarly debate about its real significance. Many scholars are content to accept the account given by the ancient sources, interpreting it as a cancellation of debts, while others interpret it as the abolition of a type of feudal relationship, and some prefer to explore new possibilities for interpretation. [5] The reforms included:

    • annulment of all contracts symbolised by the horoi. [110]
    • prohibition on a debtor's person being used as security for a loan, i.e., debt slavery. [108][109]
    • release of all Athenians who had been enslaved. [110]

    The removal of the horoi clearly provided immediate economic relief for the most oppressed group in Attica, and it also brought an immediate end to the enslavement of Athenians by their countrymen. Some Athenians had already been sold into slavery abroad and some had fled abroad to escape enslavement – Solon proudly records in verse the return of this diaspora. [111] It has been cynically observed, however, that few of these unfortunates were likely to have been recovered. [112] It has been observed also that the seisachtheia not only removed slavery and accumulated debt but may also have removed the ordinary farmer's only means of obtaining further credit. [113]

    The seisachtheia however was merely one set of reforms within a broader agenda of moral reformation. Other reforms included:

    • the abolition of extravagant dowries. [114]
    • legislation against abuses within the system of inheritance, specifically with relation to the epikleros (i.e. a female who had no brothers to inherit her father's property and who was traditionally required to marry her nearest paternal relative in order to produce an heir to her father's estate). [115]
    • entitlement of any citizen to take legal action on behalf of another. [116][117]
    • the disenfranchisement of any citizen who might refuse to take up arms in times of civil strife, and war, a measure that was intended to counteract dangerous levels of political apathy. [118][119][120][121][122]

    Demosthenes claimed that the city's subsequent golden age included "personal modesty and frugality" among the Athenian aristocracy. [123] Perhaps Solon, by both personal example and legislated reform, established a precedent for this decorum. [ citation needed ] A heroic sense of civic duty later united Athenians against the might of the Persians. [ citation needed ] Perhaps this public spirit was instilled in them by Solon and his reforms. [ citation needed ]

    Aftermath of Solon's reforms Edit

    After completing his work of reform, Solon surrendered his extraordinary authority and left the country. According to Herodotus [124] the country was bound by Solon to maintain his reforms for 10 years, whereas according to Plutarch [60] and the author of the Athenian Constitution [125] (reputedly Aristotle) the contracted period was instead 100 years. A modern scholar [126] considers the time-span given by Herodotus to be historically accurate because it fits the 10 years that Solon was said to have been absent from the country. [127] Within 4 years of Solon's departure, the old social rifts re-appeared, but with some new complications. There were irregularities in the new governmental procedures, elected officials sometimes refused to stand down from their posts and occasionally important posts were left vacant. It has even been said that some people blamed Solon for their troubles. [128] Eventually one of Solon's relatives, Peisistratus, ended the factionalism by force, thus instituting an unconstitutionally gained tyranny. In Plutarch's account, Solon accused Athenians of stupidity and cowardice for allowing this to happen. [129]

    Solon's verses have come down to us in fragmentary quotations by ancient authors such as Plutarch and Demosthenes [130] who used them to illustrate their own arguments. It is possible that some fragments have been wrongly attributed to him [131] and some scholars have detected interpolations by later authors. [132] He was also the first citizen of Athens to reference the goddess Athena (fr. 4.1–4). [133]

    The literary merit of Solon's verse is generally considered unexceptional. Solon's poetry can be said to appear 'self-righteous' and 'pompous' at times [134] and he once composed an elegy with moral advice for a more gifted elegiac poet, Mimnermus. Most of the extant verses show him writing in the role of a political activist determined to assert personal authority and leadership and they have been described by the German classicist Wilamowitz as a "verified harangue" (Eine Volksrede in Versen). [135] According to Plutarch [136] however, Solon originally wrote poetry for amusement, discussing pleasure in a popular rather than philosophical way. Solon's elegiac style is said to have been influenced by the example of Tyrtaeus. [137] He also wrote iambic and trochaic verses, according to one modern scholar, [138] are more lively and direct than his elegies and possibly paved the way for the iambics of Athenian drama.

    Solon's verses are mainly significant for historical rather than aesthetic reasons, as a personal record of his reforms and attitudes. However, poetry is not an ideal genre for communicating facts and very little detailed information can be derived from the surviving fragments. [139] According to Solon the poet, Solon the reformer was a voice for political moderation in Athens at a time when his fellow citizens were increasingly polarized by social and economic differences:

    πολλοὶ γὰρ πλουτεῦσι κακοί, ἀγαθοὶ δὲ πένονται:
    ἀλλ' ἡμεῖς αὐτοῖς οὐ διαμειψόμεθα
    τῆς ἀρετῆς τὸν πλοῦτον: ἐπεὶ τὸ μὲν ἔμπεδον αἰεί,
    χρήματα δ' ἀνθρώπων ἄλλοτε ἄλλος ἔχει.

    Some wicked men are rich, some good are poor
    We will not change our virtue for their store:
    Virtue's a thing that none can take away,
    But money changes owners all the day. [9]

    Here translated by the English poet John Dryden, Solon's words define a 'moral high ground' where differences between rich and poor can be reconciled or maybe just ignored. His poetry indicates that he attempted to use his extraordinary legislative powers to establish a peaceful settlement between the country's rival factions:

    ἔστην δ' ἀμφιβαλὼν κρατερὸν σάκος ἀμφοτέροισι:
    νικᾶν δ' οὐκ εἴασ' οὐδετέρους ἀδίκως.

    Before them both, I held my shield of might
    And let not either touch the other's right. [76]

    His attempts evidently were misunderstood:

    χαῦνα μὲν τότ' ἐφράσαντο, νῦν δέ μοι χολούμενοι
    λοξὸν ὀφθαλμοῖς ὁρῶσι πάντες ὥστε δήϊον.

    Formerly they boasted of me vainly with averted eyes
    Now they look askance upon me friends no more but enemies. [140]

    Solon gave voice to Athenian 'nationalism', particularly in the city state's struggle with Megara, it's neighbor and rival in the Saronic Gulf. Plutarch professes admiration of Solon's elegy urging Athenians to recapture the island of Salamis from Megarian control. [15] The same poem was said by Diogenes Laërtius to have stirred Athenians more than any other verses that Solon wrote:

    Let us go to Salamis to fight for the island
    We desire, and drive away from our bitter shame! [141]

    One fragment describes assorted breads and cakes: [142]

    They drink and some nibble honey and sesame cakes (itria), others their bread, other gouroi mixed with lentils. In that place, not one cake was unavailable of all those that the black earth bears for human beings, and all were present unstintingly.

    The place of abundance described in Solon's fragment about cakes is unknown. Some authors speculate that it may have been Persia based on comments from Herodotus that cake was the most significant part of a meal, one of the Greek city-states, or even a literary allusion to 'paradise'. Though Athenaeus is not able to identify the hours cake from Solon's poem, he describes it as a plakous indicating it was a type of 'flat cake'. Similar cakes are described by Philoxenus of Cythera. [142]

    As a regulator of Athenian society, Solon, according to some authors, also formalized its sexual mores. According to a surviving fragment from a work ("Brothers") by the comic playwright Philemon, [143] Solon established publicly funded brothels at Athens in order to "democratize" the availability of sexual pleasure. [144] While the veracity of this comic account is open to doubt, at least one modern author considers it significant that in Classical Athens, three hundred or so years after the death of Solon, there existed a discourse that associated his reforms with an increased availability of heterosexual contacts. [145]

    Ancient authors also say that Solon regulated pederastic relationships in Athens this has been presented as an adaptation of custom to the new structure of the polis. [146] [147] According to various authors, ancient lawgivers (and therefore Solon by implication) drew up a set of laws that were intended to promote and safeguard the institution of pederasty and to control abuses against freeborn boys. In particular, the orator Aeschines cites laws excluding slaves from wrestling halls and forbidding them to enter pederastic relationships with the sons of citizens. [148] Accounts of Solon's laws by 4th century orators like Aeschines, however, are considered unreliable for a number of reasons [8] [149] [150]

    Attic pleaders did not hesitate to attribute to him (Solon) any law which suited their case, and later writers had no criterion by which to distinguish earlier from later works. Nor can any complete and authentic collection of his statutes have survived for ancient scholars to consult. [151]

    Besides the alleged legislative aspect of Solon's involvement with pederasty, there were also suggestions of personal involvement. Ancient readers concluded, based on his own erotic poetry, that Solon himself had a preference for boys. [152] According to some ancient authors Solon had taken the future tyrant Peisistratos as his eromenos. Aristotle, writing around 330 BC, attempted to refute that belief, claiming that "those are manifestly talking nonsense who pretend that Solon was the lover of Peisistratos, for their ages do not admit of it," as Solon was about thirty years older than Peisistratos. [153] Nevertheless, the tradition persisted. Four centuries later Plutarch ignored Aristotle's skepticism [154] and recorded the following anecdote, supplemented with his own conjectures:

    And they say Solon loved [Peisistratos] and that is the reason, I suppose, that when afterwards they differed about the government, their enmity never produced any hot and violent passion, they remembered their old kindnesses, and retained "Still in its embers living the strong fire" of their love and dear affection. [155]

    A century after Plutarch, Aelian also said that Peisistratos had been Solon's eromenos. Despite its persistence, however, it is not known whether the account is historical or fabricated. It has been suggested that the tradition presenting a peaceful and happy coexistence between Solon and Peisistratos was cultivated during the latter's dominion, in order to legitimize his own rule, as well as that of his sons. Whatever its source, later generations lent credence to the narrative. [156] Solon's presumed pederastic desire was thought in antiquity to have found expression also in his poetry, which is today represented only in a few surviving fragments. [157] [158] The authenticity of all the poetic fragments attributed to Solon is however uncertain – in particular, pederastic aphorisms ascribed by some ancient sources to Solon have been ascribed by other sources to Theognis instead. [131]


    One of the most important gems in the Sangiorgi collection is this extraordinary amethyst intaglio engraved with a portrait bust of Demosthenes, the 4th century B.C. Greek orator, and signed by the gem engraver Dioskourides. It is so deeply cut that in the impression, the bust stands out in such high relief that it nearly reads like a statue in the round. Demosthenes wears a mantle over one shoulder and turns his head slightly to one side. The orator is bearded, with a full mustache framing his lips. His brows are knitted and his forehead creased, giving him a serious expression. To the right, in small neat letters, is the inscription, “of Dioskourides,” the artist’s signature. The gem is mounted in an antique gilt silver frame.

    Dioskourides' portrait of Demosthenes is without question a masterpiece and one of the most important gems to survive from antiquity. “The Ludovisi gems, belonging to the Prince of Piombino, include many of great value,” wrote English gem collector C.W. King in 1866, “but its chief glory is the Demosthenes of Dioscorides.” In the time before, when it was in the collection of Lelio Pasqualini (1549-1611), and ever since, the gem has piqued the interest of every antiquarian, Grand Tour traveler, and glyptic scholar with a passion for ancient gems. Dutch Renaissance painter Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640) saw the gem sometime between 1600 and 1608 when visiting Rome, recording the inscription in his itinerary Johann Joachim Winckelmann (1717-1768), the father of modern art history and longtime resident of the Eternal City, included an engraving of it in his Monumenti antichi inediti (1767) and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), during his famous journey through Italy, saw the gem collection of the Boncompagni-Ludovisi in 1787. The gem was admired as much for the high quality of its craftsmanship and its exceptionally deep engraving, rare for an ancient intaglio, as for its identifying signature, since Dioskourides was recognized throughout the Renaissance and into the modern era as the greatest gem engraver of the Roman world.

    Born in Aegea, part of modern-day Turkey, in the 1st century B.C., Dioskourides moved to Rome, by then the cultural and artistic capital of the Mediterranean, where he was named chief gem engraver for the Emperor Augustus (63 B.C.-14 A.D.). Pliny the Elder (Natural History, XXXVII, 8) and Suetonius (Augustus, 50) mention that Dioskourides sculpted the Emperor’s signet ring, supposedly a portrait of Augustus himself (now lost), and that it was used by his successors for signing personal and imperial documents. An active patron of the arts, Augustus promoted the emulation of earlier Greek art, a style today called Augustan Classicism. Dioskourides participated in this zeitgeist, basing many of his gems on famous Greek statues, as was the case with his portrait of Demosthenes. Dioskourides is the only gem-engraver of the Roman period who is not only mentioned by ancient writers but also known from surviving works (p. 130 in G.M.A. Richter, Engraved Gems of the Romans). At present, in addition to his Demosthenes portrait, six other intaglio gems and one cameo survive that bear Dioskourides’ signature, while several others are assigned to him on account of quality and style (see p. 317 in P. Zazoff, Die antiken Gemmen).

    It was not until around 280 B.C., nearly forty years after Demosthenes’ death in 322 B.C., that the orator was commemorated on the Athenian Agora by a bronze statue by the sculptor Polyeuktos. For hundreds of years after his death, Demosthenes enjoyed a posthumous fame, particularly among the Romans, who prized his oratory and found in him a ready symbol of republicanism and liberty. Marble copies of Polyeuktos’ bronze were exceedingly popular with wealthy Romans, who adorned their villas with portraits of famous Greek thinkers. Such was the extent of his fame that more than fifty marble copies survive (see nos. 1-47 in G.M.A. Richter, The Portraits of the Greeks). After the fall of the Empire, as knowledge of the ancient world faded, the identity of the surviving marble portraits and that of Dioskourides’ gem was lost. Regarding the gem, some thought it depicted the playwright Terence while others thought it was the philosopher Arius, teacher of Augustus. It was not until 1753 when a bronze portrait bust with Demosthenes’ name inscribed on the breast was found at Herculaneum that the likenesses were once again positively identified.

    Nothing is known about the ancient owner of Dioskourides’ Demosthenes, and in fact the first mention of it does not occur until towards the end of the Renaissance in a letter dated 1602 from the French scholar and gem enthusiast Nicholas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc (1580-1637), when the gem was in the collection of Pasqualini. Through Pasqualini's nephew, it passed to the Boncompagni family, who for hundreds of years boasted one of Italy’s most prized gem collections, the highlight of which was undoubtedly Dioskourides’ portrait. By the late 1800s however, many of Rome’s storied aristocratic families were facing economic and political setbacks, and the Boncompagni-Ludovisi were no exception. They were forced to sell off much of their property, including the collection of engraved gems, which was sold via Francesco Martinetti (1833-1895) and Baron Michel Tyskiewicz (1828-1897). In an article published years later (Revue Archéologique, III, vol. 28, 1896, pp. 292-293), Tyskiewicz recalled how the two split the collection, most of the more modern gems going to Martinetti, and the ancient ones to Tyskiewicz. Dioskourides’ gem does not appear in the book cataloguing the most celebrated pieces of Tyskiewicz’s collection, nor was it offered in his estate auction, suggesting that he sold it during his lifetime.

    The gem was next acquired by Sir Arthur Evans (1851-1941), the famed excavator of Knossos and Keeper of the Ashmolean Museum. Towards the end of his life and in need of funds to publish the final volumes of his Palace of Minos, Evans sold what he described as “my treasure” to Sangiorgi. Sangiorgi had followed the fate of the gem for some time, eventually publishing an article in 1937, “Der Demosthenes des Dioskurides,” solely dedicated to the piece, calling it the “most personal and strongest” of the gem cutter’s works. He would later write: “Like all endowed collectors, I too had in my heart my determined aim, the non plus ultra, the definitive object, the absolute rarity, what could be such an object if not a work by Dioskourides?”

    Arbejder og transmission

    "Offentliggørelse" og distribution af prosatekster var almindelig praksis i Athen i sidste halvdel af det fjerde århundrede f.Kr. og Demosthenes var blandt de athenske politikere, der satte en tendens og offentliggjorde mange eller endda alle hans taler. Efter hans død overlevede tekster af hans taler i Athen (muligvis en del af biblioteket til Ciceros ven, Atticus, skønt deres skæbne ellers er ukendt) og i Alexandria-biblioteket .

    De alexandrinske tekster blev indarbejdet i kroppen af ​​klassisk græsk litteratur, der blev bevaret, katalogiseret og studeret af lærde fra den hellenistiske periode. Fra da indtil det fjerde århundrede AD blev kopier af Demosthenes 'taler multipliceret, og de var i en relativt god position til at overleve den spændte periode fra det sjette til det niende århundrede e.Kr. Til sidst overlevede enogtres tilskrivninger til Demosthenes indtil i dag (nogle er dog pseudonyme). Friedrich Blass , en tysk klassiker, mener, at der blev optaget yderligere ni taler af taleren, men de er ikke bevarede. Moderne udgaver af disse taler er baseret på fire manuskripter fra det tiende og det 11. århundrede e.Kr.

    Nogle af talerne, der omfatter det "Demostheniske korpus", vides at være skrevet af andre forfattere, selvom forskere adskiller sig fra hvilke taler disse er. Uanset deres status er talerne tilskrevet Demosthenes ofte grupperet i tre genrer, der først blev defineret af Aristoteles:

    • Symbouleutisk eller politisk under hensyntagen til hensigtsmæssigheden af ​​fremtidige handlinger - seksten sådanne taler er inkluderet i det Demostheniske korpus
    • Dikanisk eller retlig , vurderer retfærdigheden af ​​tidligere handlinger - kun omkring ti af disse er sager, hvor Demosthenes personligt var involveret, resten blev skrevet til andre talere
    • Epidiktisk eller sofistikeret udstilling , der tilskriver ros eller skyld, ofte holdt ved offentlige ceremonier - kun to taler er inkluderet i det Demostheniske korpus, den ene en begravelsestale, der er blevet afvist som et "ret dårligt" eksempel på hans arbejde, og det andet sandsynligvis falske.

    Ud over talerne er der seksoghalvtreds prologer (åbninger af taler). De blev samlet til biblioteket i Alexandria af Callimachus , som troede dem var ægte. Moderne lærde er delt: nogle afviser dem, mens andre, såsom Blass, mener at de er autentiske. Endelig overlever seks bogstaver også under Demosthenes 'navn, og også deres forfatterskab drøftes varmt.

    Head of Augustus

    1. Click on the image to zoom in. Copyright Trustees of the British Museum
    2. The temple at Meroe as it looks today. Copyright Derek Welsby
    3. Map showing where this object was found. Copyright Trustees of the British Museum

    This head of the emperor Augustus was originally part of a statue in Egypt. The Romans used statues to remind the empire's largely illiterate population of the power of the emperor. Augustus is always depicted as a youth to reflect his strength and vitality. This head was decapitated by an invading army from Meroë in modern-day Sudan. They buried the head under the temple steps as an insult to Augustus. Ironically, it was this act of defiance that preserved the head.

    When did Rome become an empire?

    Augustus was the first emperor of Rome. He transformed Rome from a republic, led by competing nobles, to an empire, ruled by one man. In 31 BC Augustus defeated the armies of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra and made Egypt a part of the empire. Egypt's immense wealth helped Augustus to develop an effective army to expand and protect the empire's borders. The Roman Empire enjoyed a period of long-lasting peace under Augustus' reign. When he died he was declared a god by the Roman Senate.

    After Augustus' death the month Sextilius was officially renamed August in his honour

    One face to rule them all

    What’s striking about this bust is of course the hairstyle, because it is deliberately designed to echo the locks of Alexander the Great, the Hellenistic King, and what Augustus did - he was the first leader of Rome to claim that he was a God and in that he echoed Hellenistic ruler cult and by claiming that he was a God, he became a vital part of the glue that held the whole Roman Empire together. You could be out there in Spain or Gaul, you could be all over the world, you could go to a temple and you would find women with images of Augustus, of this man depicted in this bust sewn onto their cowls.

    People at dinner parties in Rome, would have busts exactly like this above their mantle pieces - imagine how freaky that was - imagine if in today’s Britain we had busts of Gordon Brown above people’s mantle place in Islington, we would think it was a culture that was completely sick and mad, wouldn’t we? But that was how he was able to infuse the entire Roman Empire with that sense of loyalty and adherence to Rome.

    If you wanted to become a local politician in the Roman Empire you became a member, you became a priest in the cult of Augustus.

    What’s striking about this bust is of course the hairstyle, because it is deliberately designed to echo the locks of Alexander the Great, the Hellenistic King, and what Augustus did - he was the first leader of Rome to claim that he was a God and in that he echoed Hellenistic ruler cult and by claiming that he was a God, he became a vital part of the glue that held the whole Roman Empire together. You could be out there in Spain or Gaul, you could be all over the world, you could go to a temple and you would find women with images of Augustus, of this man depicted in this bust sewn onto their cowls.

    People at dinner parties in Rome, would have busts exactly like this above their mantle pieces - imagine how freaky that was - imagine if in today’s Britain we had busts of Gordon Brown above people’s mantle place in Islington, we would think it was a culture that was completely sick and mad, wouldn’t we? But that was how he was able to infuse the entire Roman Empire with that sense of loyalty and adherence to Rome.

    If you wanted to become a local politician in the Roman Empire you became a member, you became a priest in the cult of Augustus.

    Boris Johnson, Mayor of London

    Ultimate authority and power?

    The bronze head of Caesar Augustus, Emperor of Rome, has long occupied a prominent place in the affections of British Museum visitors, but what few realise is that this powerful and striking imperial sculpture was discovered in Sudan, not in a part of the Roman Empire.

    While conducting excavations for the University of Liverpool in 1910, much to his surprise, John Garstang a British archaeologist, found this classical statue head buried beneath the threshold of a temple in the Kushite royal city of Meroe. In antiquity, those entering or leaving the temple would have purposefully trod on Augustus’ head in the process, an insulting act calculated to demonstrate as much contempt and derision towards him as possible.

    Situated along the Nile near the sixth cataract, Meroe is roughly 200 km north of modern Khartoum, Sudan. What was this head, of the founder of the Roman Empire, doing so far from home?

    Strabo, the classical historian, records that in 24 BC the ‘Aethiopians’, as the Kushites were known in the Greco-Roman world, attacked the southern border of the Roman province of Egypt with 30,000 men looting and pulling down imperial statues in Aswan, Elephantine and Philae including those of Augustus. The Kushites were led by a queen who was blind in one eye. Although later required to return their booty, it is clear that the Kushites did not return everything that they had taken as the presence of the statue head at Meroe clearly demonstrates.

    This bronze head came from a larger than life statue of the Emperor and is perfectly proportioned in accordance with the classical Greek ideal of the human form. The inlaid eyes stare off into the distance and are comprised of glass, calcite and metal rings. Combined with the slightly turned neck, they serve to give the head a very life-like appearance.

    Originally such statues of the ruler would have been spread throughout the provinces of the Roman Empire serving to remind his subjects of the Emperor’s ultimate authority and power.

    The bronze head of Caesar Augustus, Emperor of Rome, has long occupied a prominent place in the affections of British Museum visitors, but what few realise is that this powerful and striking imperial sculpture was discovered in Sudan, not in a part of the Roman Empire.

    While conducting excavations for the University of Liverpool in 1910, much to his surprise, John Garstang a British archaeologist, found this classical statue head buried beneath the threshold of a temple in the Kushite royal city of Meroe. In antiquity, those entering or leaving the temple would have purposefully trod on Augustus’ head in the process, an insulting act calculated to demonstrate as much contempt and derision towards him as possible.

    Situated along the Nile near the sixth cataract, Meroe is roughly 200 km north of modern Khartoum, Sudan. What was this head, of the founder of the Roman Empire, doing so far from home?

    Strabo, the classical historian, records that in 24 BC the ‘Aethiopians’, as the Kushites were known in the Greco-Roman world, attacked the southern border of the Roman province of Egypt with 30,000 men looting and pulling down imperial statues in Aswan, Elephantine and Philae including those of Augustus. The Kushites were led by a queen who was blind in one eye. Although later required to return their booty, it is clear that the Kushites did not return everything that they had taken as the presence of the statue head at Meroe clearly demonstrates.

    This bronze head came from a larger than life statue of the Emperor and is perfectly proportioned in accordance with the classical Greek ideal of the human form. The inlaid eyes stare off into the distance and are comprised of glass, calcite and metal rings. Combined with the slightly turned neck, they serve to give the head a very life-like appearance.

    Originally such statues of the ruler would have been spread throughout the provinces of the Roman Empire serving to remind his subjects of the Emperor’s ultimate authority and power.

    Julie R. Anderson, curator, British Museum

    Forever young

    In classical Greece there was a very famous sculptor called Polykleitos who came from Argos, and Polykleitos developed a canon of proportions to represent the human figure. These were considered very beautiful, and very useful, and very helpful, and were very much studied at the time when Octavian was coming to power and turning into Augustus the first Roman Emperor.

    So his rather small body - which was by no means perfect – became a Polykleitan hero, and his rather distracted expression and tousled hairstyle became settled, and purposeful, and combed into place, so he looked extremely reassuring. Having assumed this image when he was still in his 30s, he stayed with it until he died age 76 in AD 14. So there’s no suggestion in his portraits, even any subtle suggestion such as we see in the portraits of our Queen Elizabeth II, for example, of any aging process at all.

    And this was a very enduring image – we have surviving even today over 250 images of Augustus which come from all over the Roman Empire in every size and every medium, and they are pretty much the same the variations are really not very significant. So the portrait was very, very recognisable, and very enduring, and it was very successful marketing, in a sense, of an image because Augustus has never had a bad press.

    In classical Greece there was a very famous sculptor called Polykleitos who came from Argos, and Polykleitos developed a canon of proportions to represent the human figure. These were considered very beautiful, and very useful, and very helpful, and were very much studied at the time when Octavian was coming to power and turning into Augustus the first Roman Emperor.

    So his rather small body - which was by no means perfect – became a Polykleitan hero, and his rather distracted expression and tousled hairstyle became settled, and purposeful, and combed into place, so he looked extremely reassuring. Having assumed this image when he was still in his 30s, he stayed with it until he died age 76 in AD 14. So there’s no suggestion in his portraits, even any subtle suggestion such as we see in the portraits of our Queen Elizabeth II, for example, of any aging process at all.

    And this was a very enduring image – we have surviving even today over 250 images of Augustus which come from all over the Roman Empire in every size and every medium, and they are pretty much the same the variations are really not very significant. So the portrait was very, very recognisable, and very enduring, and it was very successful marketing, in a sense, of an image because Augustus has never had a bad press.

    Susan Walker, Keeper of Greek and Roman Antiquities, Ashmolean Museum

    Comments are closed for this object


    Where does October come from then ?
    Augustus always called himself Octavian (his real name)
    He was a real "Mr Shrewdy" always telling hed Senate that they were really in charge, which of course they were not.
    He always insisted on being "democratically" given his powers,and made a great ceremony out of his regular re-election. But woe betide any Senator who opposed him.
    Peter Bolt Pleb.

    October comes from Octo, meaning 8, like octopus. This is similar to September (7), November (9) and December (10). January and February were originally part of unassigned winter days, which fell into no month and the remaining year was split into 10 months.

    October was originally the eighth month of the Roman calendar year.

    It is true it would seem ridiculous in this age to have a picture of the prime minister over the mantelpiece. On the other hand, having a picture of the queen would not necessarily look out of place - but only then if it was discreet and not overly ostentatious

    The month August comes from Augustus, July from Julius. (also his real name was Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus.

    Also evidence displays Augutus not actually labelling himself as a God (stating in this Res Gestae that he turned down the opportunity to be deified), He preffered Divi Fillius (Son of a God), because the deification of Julius Caesar.

    Sorry, it seems rather pedantic to add a comment on the guy's name 10 months after the last comment was posted, but I am rather pedantic and sometimes I just can't help myself. My understanding (and I'm quite prepared to be corrected) is that his name was Gaius Julius Ceasar, his subjects would have known him as the Emperor Gaius, Augustus was an honorific or a title, and Octavian is a name used by historians that was never used in his lifetime. If anyone else is listening to the podcasts again (which is well worth doing) please let me know if I've got this right.

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    Most of the content on A History of the World is created by the contributors, who are the museums and members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC or the British Museum. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site’s House Rules please Flag This Object.

    Bronze Statue of a Youth

    This bronze statue of a young man is a Roman version of an earlier Greek figure made of polished bronze. The eyes are silvered, and the irises and pupils would have been of glass or semi-precious stones. The lips and nipples were inlaid with copper to give them a pinkish hue. Some of the locks of hair were added separately to provide them with their three-dimensional quality.

    In ancient Greek and Roman towns, statues adorned public places or sanctuaries of the gods. Over the time most of the bronze statues were melted down for re-use during military emergencies. This statue is one of the few bronze statues to have survived and was discovered in Zifteh, near ancient Athribis (modern Tell Atrib) in the Nile Delta, northern Egypt.

    The vast majority of Classical art works produced in ancient Greece and Rome have not survived to the present day. Paintings and wooden art made with organic materials have crumbled or burned. Marble or stone statues were smashed in wars and acts of ignorance or perished in medieval lime-kilns. And sculpture in bronze, have suffered as a result of their material value, with statues melted down throughout the centuries to fuel the need for weapons and defences during periods of conflict and war. Thus copies in bronze or marble for the Roman market based on earlier Greek bronze originals provide witness to our heritage of ancient art loss.


    • Why did the Roman value so highly Classical Greek art?
    • Why were bronzes held in particular esteem by the Graeco-Roman world?
    • What qualities do bronze statues communicate compared to stone statues?
    • In ancient Greek and Roman towns, statues such as these adorned the public places. How does this compare to the art that we have in our public spaces?


    Bronze Statue of a Youth

    • Title: Bronze Statue of a Youth
    • Date: 1st Century BC
    • Culture: Roman
    • Materials: Bronze
    • Find site: Zifteh, Egypt
    • Acquisition: 1840
    • Dimensions: H: 1.6 metres
    • Museum: The British Museum

    “Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises.”
    – Demosthenes

    Sources and historiography

    In Hadrian&rsquos time, there was already a well established convention that one could not write a contemporary Roman imperial history for fear of contradicting what the emperors wanted to say, read or hear about themselves. [263] [264] Political histories of Hadrian&rsquos reign come mostly from later sources, some of them written centuries after the reign itself. Book 69 of the early 3rd-century Roman History by Cassius Dio gives a general account of Hadrian&rsquos reign, but the original is lost what survives is a brief, Byzantine-era abridgment by the 11th-century monk Xiphilinius, focussed on Hadrian&rsquos religious interests and the Bar Kokhba war, and little else. Hadrian&rsquos is the first in the series of probably late 4th-century imperial biographies known as Historia Augusta. The collection as a whole is notorious for its unreliability (« a mish mash of actual fact, cloak and dagger, sword and sandal, with a sprinkling of Ubu Roi« ), [265] but most modern historians consider its account of Hadrian to be relatively free of outright fictions, and probably based on sound historical sources. [266] Its principal source is generally assumed, on the basis of indirect evidence, to be one of a lost series of imperial biographies by the prominent 3rd-century senator Marius Maximus, covering the reigns of Nerva through to Elagabalus. [267] Greek authors such as Philostratus and Pausanias, who wrote shortly after Hadrian&rsquos reign, confined their scope to the general historical framework that shaped Hadrian&rsquos decisions, especially those relating to Greece. Fronto left Latin correspondence and works attesting to Hadrian&rsquos character and his reign&rsquos internal politics. [268]

    In modern scholarship, these accounts are supplemented by epigraphical, numismatic, archaeological, and other non-literary sources, without which no detailed, chronological account would be possible the first modern historian to attempt such an account was the German 19th-century medievalist Ferdinand Gregorovius. [269] [270]



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