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Head of Isis (?)

Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek


The head is made of white marble and very badly damaged: The nose, part of the diadem, as well as the lips have all been broken off; part of the lower lip added on. Visible damage also to the neck, the chin and forehead. The inlays of the eyes are missing. Traces of red paint can be seen with the naked eye on the diadem.

Description of object

Very badly damaged, probably as a result of lying in water.

Female head turned to the right. The face is narrow with a heavy lower lip. The eyes, which are of unequal size, were originally inlaid. The eyelids are accentuated and the lips are slightly apart. The hair is parted in the middle and surrounds the head in wavy locks, which are defined by drilled grooves. The locks cover the ears and are gathered in a loose bun at the neck. Falling beneath these are heavy spiral curls in two layers of varying length. On her head the woman wears a high, arched diadem. Visible behind this is a hole approximately 3×3×3 for the insertion of an attribute, possibly in another material.

Choice of methods

Visual examination

  • Macroscopic


F. Poulsen (1951), Catalogue of Ancient Sculpture in the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, cat. no. 320.

M. Moltesen (2005), Catalogue. Imperial Rome III. Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, cat. no. 23.

  • IN 554
  • Head
  • 140/150 C.E.
  • Roman Imperial
  • White marble
  • Bought in Egypt through the agency of Valdemar Schmidt.
  • H. 31 cm.; W. 11.5 cm.

Selected photos

  • Img_7181_red