Ex private collection M.A., acquired in Rome in the 1950’s; Sotheby’s NY, 5th June 2008, Lot 21; with Phoenix Ancient Art, 2008 (cat. no. 1, no. 17); private collection A. , Paris, France.
Literature: Gisela M. A. Richter, American Journal of Archaeology, Vol. 47, N° 4 (Oct.-Dec. 1943) pp.365-378, The University of Chicago Press.
The cherubic child depicted with lidded almond-shaped eyes, small nose, and rounded chin, his small, full mouth slightly open, his hair arranged into a central plait running up to his crown, with luxuriant locks either side curling at the tips and falling onto his forehead, held in place by a fillet.
The child wears a band in his hair, which may represent a ribbon or, perhaps, a metallic diadem. If the latter is correct, this could indicate that the head is in fact a portrait of a noble child, as the diadem in Hellenistic art was utilised as a signifier of those belonging to a princely family.