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Joy of Museums

Museums, Art Galleries and Historical Sites

Busts from Ancient History in the National Roman Museum

Busts from Ancient History

Busts from Ancient History

The National Roman Museum and houses Rome’s ancient art collection consisting of sculpture, painting, mosaic work and goldsmith’s craft from the Republican Age to the Late Antiquity. A large part of the sculpture at the National Roman Museum consists of the bust of famous people from history.

Busts from Ancient History

  • Bust of Philip V of Macedon
  • Bust of Aristotle
  • Portrait of Socrates

Bust of Philip V of Macedon

Bust of Philip V of Macedon

This bust depicts Philip V King of Macedon wearing a Phrygian-style helmet which was common among the Macedonians. Philip V was king from 221 to 179 BC. Philip as a young man was a charismatic and courageous warrior, and he was inevitably compared to Alexander the Great. However, Philip’s reign was principally marked by an unsuccessful struggle with the emerging power of the Roman Republic. He would lead Macedon against Rome in the First and Second Macedonian Wars, losing both but allying with Rome in the Roman-Seleucid War towards the end of his reign.

Philip V was succeeded by his eldest son Perseus, who ruled as the last king of Macedon.

Bust of Philip V of Macedon

  • Title:            Bust of Philip V of Macedon
  • Born:           238 BC, Pella, Macedonia
  • Died:           179 BC (aged 59), Amphipolis, Macedonia
  • Date:            220 and 179 BCE Hadrian-era copy of 200 BC Pergamene original
  • Find site:      Tibur River, Rome
  • Material:      Marble
  • Type:            Statue
  • Museums:    National Roman Museum – Palazzo Massimo alle Terme

Bust of Aristotle

Bust of Aristotle

This bust of Aristotle is a marble Roman copy after a Greek bronze original by Lysippos from 330 BC. The alabaster mantle is a modern addition. Aristotle (384–322 BC) was a philosopher during the Classical period in Ancient Greece, the founder of the Lyceum and the Peripatetic school of philosophy and Aristotelian tradition. Along with his teacher Plato, he is considered the “Father of Western Philosophy”. His writings cover many subjects and provided a complex synthesis of the various philosophies existing before him.

At seventeen years of age, he joined Plato’s Academy in Athens and remained there until the age of thirty-seven. Shortly after Plato died, Aristotle left Athens and, at the request of Philip II of Macedon, tutored Alexander the Great beginning in 343 BC.

Aristotle’s works contain the earliest known formal study of logic, and medieval scholars studied them. He also influenced Islamic thought during the Middle Ages, as well as Christian theology.

Portrait of Aristotle

  • Title:          Portrait of Aristotle
  • Born:          384 BC, Stagira, Chalcidian League, Northern Greece
  • Died:          322 BC (aged approx. 62), Euboea, Greece, Macedonian Empire
  • Artist:        Roman copy in marble of a Greek bronze bust of Aristotle by Lysippos
  • Date:          330 BC
  • Material:      Marble
  • Type:            Statue
  • Museums:    National Roman Museum – Palazzo Altemps

Portrait of Socrates

Portrait of Socrates, Colosseum

This bust is a 1st cent AD marble sculpture of Socrates (470-399 BC) is a Roman copy of a Greek original by Lysippos (c. 395-305 BC) on the Pompeion of Athens. It was found at the construction site of the monument to Vitorio Emanuel II, Rome, Italy.

Socrates was a classical Athenian philosopher credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, and as being the first moral philosopher of the Western ethical tradition of thought. He made no writings and is known chiefly through the accounts of classical writers writing after his lifetime, particularly his students Plato and Xenophon.

Plato’s dialogues are among the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive, though it is unclear the degree to which Socrates views are hidden in the work. Through his portrayal in Plato’s dialogues, Socrates has become renowned for his contribution to the fields of ethics.

Socrates exerted a strong influence on philosophers in later antiquity and the modern era. Depictions of Socrates in art, literature and popular culture have made him one of the most widely known figures in the Western philosophical tradition.

Portrait of Socrates

  • Title:           Portrait of Socrates
  • Born:          470 BC, Deme Alopece, Athens
  • Died:           399 BC (aged approx. 71), Athens
  • Date:           1st cent AD
  • Material:      Marble
  • Type:            Statue
  • Museums:    National Roman Museum

Reflections

  • Which do you think is the most interesting?

Exploring Ancient Greek Masterpieces

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“In my opinion, a long and intense study of the human figure is the necessary foundation for a sculptor.”
– Henry Moore

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Photo Credit:0)Rabax63 [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)] 1) Livioandronico2013 [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)]; 2)Photo by Szilas, 2013-03-04 [Public domain] 4) Photo by Szilas, 2013-03-04 [Public domain]

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