A Roman Period Carved Marble Fragment of a Left Hand; c.150-200 AD

Origin: Roman
Period: Late 1stC AD
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.150-200 AD
Height: 3”
Width: 9”
Depth: 4.5”

The weathered marble fragmentary hand, of oversized proportions, with coiled fingers once holding an attribute, the marble having a good patination, and surviving from the late 1stC AD period.

The hand has several losses, and repairs, as pictured, with the index finger and thumb with larger loss and a cracked repair to the other finger section. The patination is pleasing and the piece is wonderfully tactile.

When statues toppled during periods of turmoil, either of man-made variety, or through natural disaster, the joins of hands and feet for example, often proved to be the weakest point, explaining why more fragments exist today than complete statues. This hand, in its position, is similar to the hand from a large sculpture, possibly Mithraic at the British Museum. That hand was found buried with Serapis and Mercury at the east end of the temple of Mithras and was placed within the entrance under the penultimate floor, across the line of the north arcading, dating to around 150 AD - 200 AD.

Lifelike, yet lifeless, but somehow not inanimate.