Cypriot Terracotta Bust of a Goddess

Culture: Cypriot
Period: 6th century B.C.
Material: Terracotta
Dimensions: 21.4 cm high
Price: Sold
Ref: 2548
Provenance: Private collection George R. Francoeur (1934-2019), Michigan, acquired 1986 in Chicago. Thence in the US art market.
Condition: A crack below the left breast, a small restoration on the cap. Otherwise,a very beautifully preserved archaic terracotta bust.
Description: Large archaic terracotta bust of a female goddess, possibly Persephone. The face with archaic features, the typical smile and almond-shaped eyes. The goddess wears a high tapering cap, underneath the wavy hair frames the forehead. Long braided strands cascade on the sides over the shoulder and next to the breasts. At the back her hair cascade in thick waves far down. Persephone holds in the right hand an attribute in front of her chest, possibly the pomegranate. After eating four seeds of a pomegranate in the Hades, she was forced to spend one month for each seed in the underworld, before she was allowed to return to the surface, and everything started to blossom. During the four months, which she spent in the Hades, the plants withered on the surface, and winter started. Persephone wears an elegant gown, which cover in arranged pleats chest, belly and arms. The bust was part of a large statue. It originates from the eastern part of the Mediterranean region, the head cover and the light clay refer to Cyprus. See for the cap of the statue the example in the Metropolitan Museum of Art with the Accession Number 74.51.2599. Mounted.