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The Strangford Apollo

  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Title (object)

    • The Strangford Apollo
  • Description

    Parian marble statue of a boy.
    Statue of nude standing youth. The legs from below the knees and the arms from the middle of the biceps are missing. The end of the nose, one or two curls, and the right side of the chin are abraded. The back is weather-stained.
    The figure faces the front, balanced on both legs; the right leg slightly drawn back, the left slightly advanced with the left knee bent. Both upper arms were bent back, and there is no trace of attachment of the hands, which must have been free of the body.
    The head is square-shaped, the face short and broad. The hair is arched over the forehead in two rows of spiral curls (three in front of the ears). A narrow fillet runs round the head above the curls, above which the hair is treated in waved flat tresses radiating from the crown; the ends are turned up from the neck in a roll, tucked under and over the fillet (the so-called crobylos). Five holes are drilled into the hair, one over the middle of the forehead, one over the right ear, two over the left and one, larger, on the top of the head.
    The forehead is low, the eyebrows long and arched, the upper eyelid separated by a groove. The eyes are small and set horizontally. The nose was broad, the mouth is small and straight, the lips in a bow, the corners very slightly grooved. The body forms are muscular; collar bone and chest bones are emphasised. Below the chest the epigastrium is framed by a slight ridge and its surface is divided up by the median and two horizontal grooves. Similarly under the armpits the ribs are clearly marked and framed off towards the back by a raised surface. The lower abdomen is overlong; the navel is placed high and eye-shaped. The back is modelled with a strongly incurved waist and heavy buttocks. The legs show an exaggeration of the thigh muscles, the kneecaps are carefully worked.
    Parian marble.


  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 490BC (circa)
  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 1.01 metres
  • Curator's comments

    BM Sculpture

    This is one of the latest examples of the archaic kouros type, dating from about 500-490 B.C. The old attitude is maintained with a developed treatment of anatomical details. A general resemblance to the figures from the pediments of the Temple of Aphaia at Aegina has long been noted, and most writers have followed Brunn in considering the statue Aeginetan. More recently, it has been thought Boeotian by Buschor, and by Langlotz a local island work under Doric influence.
    Smith, no. 206; Marbles and Bronzes in the Brit. Mus., pl. 2; Brunn-Bruckmann, 51; Baumgarten-Poland-Wagner, Hellenische Kultur, 2nd ed., p. 285, fig. 235; Beazley in Camb. Anc. Hist., V, p. 420; Brunn in Sitzungsber. d. bayr. Akad., 1872, p. 529, and Gr. Kunstgesch., ed. 1897, II, pp. 177, 182; Buschor, Skulpt. d. Zeustempels zu Olympia, p. 32; Conze in Arch. Zeit., 1864, p. 164; Deonna, Apollons archaiques, no. 161; Foat in J.H.S., 1915, p. 245; Friederichs-Wolters, no. 89; Furtwangler, 50th Winckelmannsprog., p. 131; E. A. Gardner, Gr. Sculpt., 2nd ed., p. 207, and in J.H.S., 1886, p. 192; Helbig in Bulletino d. Inst., 1874, p. 116; Holleaux in B.C.H., 1886, p. 272, and 1887, p. 280, and 1892, p. 451; Joubin, Sculpt, gr., pp. 64, 68; Kalkmann in Jahrbuch, 1892, p. 132 ff., and Proport, d. Gesichts, pp. 54, 89 et seq.; Klein, Ges. Kunst, I, p. 357; Lange, Darstellung d. Menschen, p. 39, fig. 10; Langlotz, Frühgr. Bildhauerschulen, p. 185; Legge, Gr. Sculpt., p. 22; Lermann, Altgr. Plastik, p. 31; Loewy, Gr. Plastik, pl. 8, no. 22; Lübke, Ges. d. gr. Plastik, 3rd ed., p. 107; v. Mack, Gr. Sculpt., pl. IV, 2; Michaelis in J.H.S., 1883, p. 348; Müller, Arch. d. Kunst, p. 601 and Atlas, pl. VIIa, Ib; Murray, Hist. Gr. Sculpt., 2nd ed., I, p. 174, pl. VI, right; Newton, Essays on Art and Arch., p. 81; Overbeck, Apollon, p. 32, and Gesch. d. gr. Plastik, 4th ed. I, p. 237, fig. 61, and p. 297, n. 169; Paris, Sculpt, ant., p. 161; and Catalogue des Moulages, Bordeaux, p. 39, no. 20; Pater, Greek Studies, p. 285; Perry, Gr. and Rom. Sculpt., p. 58; Petersen in Rom. Mitt., 1897, p. 125, n.; Powers, Message of Gr. Art, fig. 36; Prachov in Annali d. hist., 1872, p. 181, and Monumenti Ined., IX, pl. 41; Rayet, Milet, pl. 28; Reinach, Repertoire, II, p. 81. 6, and Manuel de Philol., 2nd ed., II, p. 90; de Ridder in B.C.H., 1894, pp. 45, 52; Robinson, Catalogue of Casts, Boston, 1896, p. 19; Tarbell, Hist. of Gr. Art, p. 157, fig. 100; Upcott, Introd. to Gr. Sculpt., p. 20; Walston in J.H.S., 1924, p. 231, and Alcamenes, p. 31, fig. 19; Wherry, Gr. Sculpt., p. 36; Evelyn White in J.H.S., 1916, p. 20.


  • Bibliography

    • Sculpture B475 bibliographic details
  • Location

    On display: G15

  • Exhibition history


    1990 24 Mar-10 Jun, Australia, Canberra, National Gallery of Australia, Civilization: Ancient Treasures from the British Museum, cat. no.65
    1990 28 Jun-23 Sep, Australia, Melbourne, Museum of Victoria, Civilization: Ancient Treasures from the British Museum, cat. no.65
    1990 20 Oct-9 Dec, Japan, Tokyo, Setagaya Art Museum, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.111
    1991 5 Jan-20 Feb, Japan, Yamaguchi, Prefectural Museum of Art, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.111
    1991 9 Mar-7 May, Japan, Osaka, National Museum of Art, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.111
    2012 May - Sept2, Italy, Motya, Museo Giuseppe Whitaker.
    2015, 26 Mar-5 Jul, The British Museum, Defining Beauty: the body in ancient Greek art.

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Department

    Greek & Roman Antiquities

  • Registration number


Parian marble statue of a boy. His hair is worn long in the archaic manner, braided around the back and in a formal arrangement of curls at the front.

Parian marble statue of a boy. His hair is worn long in the archaic manner, braided around the back and in a formal arrangement of curls at the front.

Image description



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Object reference number: GAA6535

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