Statue of Faustina the Elder

Inv. Scu 48

The Empress Faustina, wife of Antonius Pius, is depicted in the Concordia type, with the cornucopia in her left hand and a bowl (patera) in her right. She is wearing a mid-sleeved tunic and a cloak, that covers the figure from the hips to the ankles.

Her hair, parted in the centre, is styled with a narrow braid at the top of her nape, according to the hairstyle in fashion in the 160s AD.

The standing figure, is resting on the right leg while the left leg is slightly withdrawn; the arms, even though they have undergone integrative restoration, were probably in a similar position: the left hand is holding a cornucopia and the right is extended slightly forward.

The classic type was re-interpreted and adapted in the Imperial period to represent particular personifications chosen for the images of the deified empresses; in this case, we have a posthumous image of the Empress Faustina the Elder, sculpted with particular refinement.

The restoration brought to light the remains of gilding on the face and among the locks of hair, and metal residues on her chest, which was perhaps decorated by a metal breastplate.

On the whole, it is an eclectic composition inspired by 5th century BC models, such as the kore in the Archaeological Museum in Venice and the “Kore Albani”.

The statue was found near a thermal bath area discovered in the Termini Station area, near Villa Massimo, formerly Villa Montalto-Negroni.