This round mirror has no handle but is small enough to fit comfortably in one hand. It is made of a sheet of bronze which has been worked in repoussé and gilded. The outer edge of the bronze is raised to form a simple convex band. Within this frame the group of three Graces stands out in low relief. The figures are aligned on a straight indication of ground - two facing front and one, in the center, seen from the rear. All three heads are seen in profile. The graceful extended arms provide a rhythmic interlacing of the figures. At their side, a thymiaterion, thurible used during Antiquity, diffusing the ritual incense. The grace on the left watches a winged child sitting, raising his face and extending. His hand toward her. The latter probably represents Eros, son of venus to whom the three graces are linked. In Greek and Roman mythology, the three Graces are personifying life in its fullness. Aglaé, Euphrosyne et Thalie personify beauty, creativity, youth and seduction. The subject was very much appreciated during Greek and Roman Antiquity. The same composition exists on Roman mosaic, coins, gems, and in a wall painting from Pompeii - which is not surprising, as the the subject was particularly appropriate for a toilet article.
Roman art, 2nd century AD
Formerly in the Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. (1909-1988) collection, founder of Chrysler Art Museum in Princetown, Massachusetts, U.S.A. Acquired circa 1940-1950.
Formerly in the Foy C. Casper, Jr. (1941-2002) collection, former curator in Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, Virginia (formerly in Massachusetts)
Milleker, Elizabeth J. “The Three Graces on a Roman Relief Mirror.” Metropolitan Museum Journal, vol. 23, 1988, pp. 69–81
4 200 €
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