Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Two roundels with theater masks, early 1st century b.c.; Hellenistic
    Greek
    Terracotta; H. 3 in. (7.6 cm), W. 5 3/4 in. (14.6 cm), Diam. 5 11/16 in. (14.5 cm)
    Purchase, David L. Klein Jr. Memorial Foundation Inc. Gift, 1999 (1999.316ab)

    Each of these terracotta roundels has raised moldings along the rim with a separately molded mask. The roundel at right depicts a slave; the one at left shows a hetaira (concubine). Both masks have perforated eyes and open mouths, as was characteristic of those worn by actors in Greek and Roman theater. By the fifth century B.C., theatrical masks developed as standard types, recognizable at once to the audience when the characters came on stage.

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    On view: Gallery 161
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  • Two roundels with theater masks, early 1st century B.C.; Hellenistic
    Greek
    Terracotta; H. 3 in. (7.6 cm), W. 5 3/4 in. (14.6 cm), Diam. 5 11/16 in. (14.5 cm)
    Purchase, David L. Klein Jr. Memorial Foundation Inc. Gift, 1999 (1999.316ab)

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