Statue of a Ptolemaic King

Statue of a Ptolemaic King
Polished Diorite; H. 44.5 cm; W. 24.2 cm; D. 16.2 cm
Egypt; 220–180 BCE
Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, Division of Anthropology: ANT 256941
© YPM ANT.256941. Courtesy of the Division of Anthropology; Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University;


This bust constituted the upper part of a statue that depicted a king, possibly Ptolemy IV or Ptolemy V, dressed in a belted kilt and striding forward with his arms held to the sides. Contrary to most pharaonic sculpture, in which symmetry and idealization dictated the representation, here the evident differences in the rendering of the ears and eyebrows, and of the nemes’ lappets, as well as the accentuated lower lip and the softness of the muscular tone in the torso, all bear evidence of the Ptolemaic revisitation of earlier sculptural models.

P. E. Stanwick. Portraits of the Ptolemies: Greek Kings as Egyptian Pharaohs. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2002. 109, B15, fig. 61.