Acropolis Athens Greek Caryatid Column Sculpture Statue Item No. 5011 Reproduced after an ancient original from the Acropolis in Athens ca. 465 B.C. A caryatid is a sculpted female figure serving as an architectural element such as a column or a pillar supporting an entablature on its head. Some of the earliest known examples were found in the treasuries of Delphi, dating to about the 6th century BC, but their origins can be traced back even further to ritual basins, ivory mirror handles from Phoenicia, and draped figures from archaic Greece. The best-known and most-copied examples are those of the six figures of the Caryatid Porch of the Erechtheion on the Acropolis at Athens. Our reproduction represents one of them. One of those original six figures, removed by Lord Elgin in the early 1800s, is now in the British Museum in London. The other five figures, although they are damaged by erosion, are in the Acropolis Museum. The Romans also copied the Erechtheion caryatids, installing copies in the Forum Augustum and the Pantheon in Rome, and Hadrian's Villa at Tivoli. The male counterpart of a caryatid is referred to as a telamon or Atlas (plural, atlantes) - the name refers to the legend of Atlas, who bore the world on his shoulders. A caryatid supporting a baskets on her head is called a canephora, representing one of the maidens who carried sacred objects used at feasts of the gods.
Made of cast stone. Cast stone is a type of gypsum cement whose properties are much different from plaster of paris which is what most sculpture shops use. Unlike plaster, which is soft, light and weak, cast stone is hard, heavy and strong. Cast stone feels like, and is heavy like a real stone would be, which can be experienced as soon you try to lift it.
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