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HOME : Classical Antiquities : Classical Bronzes : Hellenistic Bronze Sculpture of an Actor/Priapus
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Hellenistic Bronze Sculpture of an Actor/Priapus - FZ.355
Origin: Alexandria, Egypt
Circa: 200 BC to 100 BC
Dimensions: 4.125" (10.5cm) high
Collection: Classical Antiquities
Medium: Bronze

Location: UAE
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We cannot know for sure whether this actor played in the tragedies of Sophocles or the comedies of Aristophanes. He gazes downward with silver inlaid eyes in a somber and pensive expression, suggesting he was more likely a tragic actor. However, there is something comical about his stance. His arms rest at his hips as he extends his belly forward while leaning back. His lower half is completely exposed, a fact that can be interpreted as dually tragic and comic. His head is bare save for a single wavy lock of hair at the back called a cirrus. Actors first emerged in their own right when a solitary character was separated from the chorus, a technique credited to Greek playwright and poet Thespis. The actor then communicated individually with the audience through monologues or engaged in dialogues with the leader of the chorus. Today, this figure appears before us and grabs our attention as if he was still in front of the audience in an ancient amphitheatre. - (FZ.355)


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