Head of a veiled goddess, Classical, ca. 425 b.c.
Marble; H. 6 7/8 in. (17.5 cm)
Ex coll.: George L. Hern Jr.
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Told Jr., on the occasion of the reinstallation of the Greek and Roman galleries, 2007 (2007.328)
The presence of both a diadem and a himation (cloak) drawn over the hair suggests that this small, exquisitely carved head represents a female divinity such as Hera or Demeter. It may have belonged to a figure that was part of a high relief or the pediment of a small building. The neck and an inner fold of the himation curve quite strongly, suggesting that the figure was depicted moving rapidly to her left. Every fragment of original Greek sculpture from the High Classical period is precious; this particularly fresh and well-preserved head must have been carved at approximately the same time as the frieze of the Parthenon in Athens.