Greece, Hellenistic period, ca. late 4th to 2nd century BCE. A beautiful votive statue of a sphinx with a Classically-styled woman's face and upper body. She sits upright on her back haunches, with her wings extended. Although the Great Sphinx of Giza is certainly the most famous, sphinxes have a large place in Classical mythology as well - probably because of the intermixing of Egyptian and Classical culture via trade routes across the Mediterranean. The Greek version of the sphinx, unlike the male Egyptian one, has the head of a human female, the body of a lioness, the wings of an eagle, and a serpent's tail. This charming example may have graced the interior of a fine Greek home. Size: 4.5" W x 7.5" H (11.4 cm x 19 cm)
This piece has been tested using thermoluminescence (TL) and has been found to be ancient and of the period stated. A full report will accompany purchase.
Provenance: private East Coast, USA collection
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Wings and paws have been repaired and partially restored; head and torso are original. Pigment on the restored areas is new.