One of the very rare male Cycladic figurines, this piece, along with the Cycladic flute-player, are the first depictions of musicians in the Greek world. It was found in a tomb on 1884 on Keros, a deserted island opposite Amorgos. A seated man is shown playing the harp: perhaps he was some official bard or hero, as he appears to be sitting on an elaborate throne. His head, tilted up and back above the strong neck, indicates his absorption in the music. The artistic achievement is astonishing: not only the perfect carving, but the way the figure is rendered in all dimensions and dominates the space. We do not know the purpose if this figurine - perhaps to entertain the deceased, or to comfort him in the other world. The original, dating to the third millennium BC, is now in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens.
Cycladic Keros harpist figurine
- Height including base: 23cm Width: 17cm