Roman / Portrait Head of the Emperor Hadrian / Imperial Period, Hadrianic Period, A.D. 117-138Roman
Portrait Head of the Emperor Hadrian
Imperial Period, Hadrianic Period, A.D. 117-138

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Creator Nationality: European; Southern European; Roman
Creator Dates/Places: Italy, Europe
Creator Name-CRT: Roman
Title: Portrait Head of the Emperor Hadrian
Title Type: preferred
View: 3/4 view
Creation Start Date: 117
Creation End Date: 138
Creation Date: Imperial Period, Hadrianic Period, A.D. 117-138
Creation Place: Early Western World,Roman Republic and Empire
Object Type: Sculpture
Materials and Techniques: marble
Dimensions: H.: 36 cm (14-1/4 in.); W.: 27.5 cm (10-13/16 in.)
AMICA Contributor: The Art Institute of Chicago
Owner Location: Chicago, Illinois, USA
ID Number: 1979.350
Credit Line: The Art Institute of Chicago, Katherine K. Adler Endowment
Subject Description: The life-sized portrait head, a fragment from a larger sculpture, shows the Spanish-born emperor who ruled the vast Roman empire from A.D. 117-138. He was a poet, a noted collector of art, and the builder of the Pantheon in Rome and a great palace at Tivoli which he filled with copies of Greek masterpieces. Hadrian is recognizable in sculpted and coin portraits by his luxuriant hair and his beard, a feature that he initiated. The drilling of eyes is also an innovation begun in the Hadrianic period.
Context: Hadrian inherited an empire which had reached its greatest extent under his predecessor Trajan. Instead to enlarging its boundaries, Hadrian devoted his reign to strengthening its borders and unifying its people under one law. He spent most of his reign visiting his realm where his portrait statues in temples dedicated to the imperial cult and on public buildings acted as unifying images in a diverse empire. The empire's prosperous and peaceful period began with Hadrian.
AMICA ID: AIC_.1979.350
AMICA Library Year: 1998
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Art Institute of Chicago, 1998

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