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Mercury, variant on ''Hermes Andros-Farnese''
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Mercury, variant on "Hermes Andros-Farnese"

150 - 200. Marble.
Not on display

The ancient ephebe torso was completed in the modern era with a head that recalls portraits of Antinous, the missing limbs and a command baton, which was added as an attribute because the robe folded over his left arm was interpreted as a general´s paludamentum. he sculpture was identified as a statue of Caesar. The robe draped over the left shoulder was not originally held by the right hand. It hangs down the back to the hips and is wrapped over the left forearm, as the restorer correctly noticed. Researcher Gerhild Hübner though the torso belonged to a statue of Mercury. The model, a famous statue of Hermes of the Andros-Farnese type created in the late 4th century B.C.E. is more slender in the Prado´s version, and it presents the god as a svelte adolescent, with no pubic hair and some modified details. With a slightly inclined head, the god is represented as a conductor of souls and he originally held the miraculous caduceus entwined with serpents in his left hand. He rested his right hand on his hip, about where the Prado´s statue has a large plaster patch. It is therefore likely that his right hand originally touched that point. portrait statues of this type, or quite similar to it, began to be made in the late Hellenistic period, and it is not currently possible to determine whether this torso in Madrid was originally a portrait, or whether it bore a head of Mercury. The work´s characteristics suggest it dates from the Antonine or the early Severan period (Text from Schröder, S. F.: Catálogo de la escultura clásica, Museo Nacional del Prado, 2004, pp. 437-440).

Schröder, Stephan F., Catálogo de la escultura clásica: Museo del Prado, Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado, 2004, p.437-440

Technical data

Related artworks

Inventory number
Mercury, variant on ''Hermes Andros-Farnese''
150 - 200
Height: 125 cm; Width: 50 cm; Base/bottom: 39 cm; Weight: 131 Kg
Colección Cristina de Suecia
Royal Collection (Collection of Cristina de Suecia; Collection of Livio Odescalchi; San Ildefonso, Palacio Real, Collection of Felipe V)

Bibliography +

Hübner, Emil, Die Antiken Bildwerke in Madrid, Druck Und Verlag Von Georg Reimer, Berlín, 1862, pp. 45.

Ricard, Robert, Marbres Antiques du Musee du Prado a Madrid, Feret & Fils, Burdeos, 1923, pp. nº34.

Museo Nacional del Prado, Catálogo de la escultura, Madrid, 1957, pp. nº500-E.

Blanco, Antonio; Lorente, Manuel, Catálogo de la escultura. Museo del Prado, Patronato Nacional de Museos, Madrid, 1981, pp. nº500.

Fernandez Miranda y Lozana, Fernando, Inventarios Reales Carlos III 1789-1790, II, Patrimonio Nacional, Madrid, 1988, pp. 298.

Elvira Barba, Miguel Ángel, El Cuaderno de Ajello y las esculturas del Museo del Prado, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1998, pp. nº56.

Schröder, Stephan F., Catálogo de la escultura clásica: Museo del Prado, II, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, 2004, pp. 437-440.

Corona y arqueología en el Siglo de las Luces, Patrimonio Nacional, 2010, pp. 85-93.

Other inventories +

Inv. Real Museo, 1857. Núm. 794.
794. Una estatua de un joven de mar- / mol de Carrara muy estropeada. / Este numero y los ocho anteriores / están colocados en la escalera, pa- / sillo y entrada que mira al Botanico. / Alto 4 pies, 10 pulg.

Inv. Carlos III, 1789-1790. Núm. 2821.
2821 Un Penates solo el Torso, antiguo, restaurada la Cabeza, y algunas otras piezas del cuerpo: en 6.000

Inscriptions +

Inscribed in black. Plinth

Exhibitions +

El cuaderno de Ajello y las esculturas del Museo del Prado
19.10.1998 - 03.01.1999

Update date: 21-05-2022 | Registry created on 28-04-2015

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