Indiana University Bloomington IU Bloomington IUB

Portrait Bust of Child

Portraits of children from wealthy aristocratic families are abundant in the Roman era. The use of terracotta, a material less expensive than marble or bronze, may indicate a minor patrician family, but the portrait of this young boy is skillfully made. It was likely to have been part of a herm (post with head) and used as a memorial. The child wears a bulla around his neck; these round amulets were given to boys just after birth and worn as protective amulets until their coming of age ceremony.

Portrait Bust of Child
Imperial period, 1st century AD
H. 5 1/2 in. (13.9 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, 64.58.8