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Blond Boy, left profile

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Blond Boy, right profile

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Blond Boy, left profile

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Blond Boy, frontal view

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Blond Boy, back view

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Blond Boy, frontal view

Collection: Athens, Acropolis Museum
Title: Blond Boy
Context: From Athens, Acropolis
Findspot: Found at Athens, Acropolis, within the walls of an ancient building at the SE corner
Summary: Statue of youth
Material: Marble
Sculpture Type: Free-standing statue
Category: Single sculpture
Style: Late Archaic
Technique: In-the-round
Original or Copy: Original
Date: ca. 490 BC - ca. 480 BC
Dimensions: H. 0.245 m
Scale: Under life-size
Region: Attica
Period: Late Archaic

Subject Description: Head of young man with blond hair, as indicated by the well-preserved traces of yellow paint on hair when found. Thick mop of hair ending in rows of curls in front, braided in back. Somewhat heavy, fleshy features. Head tilted noticeably to right, which corresponds with the fragment of lower torso usually associated with it. Both show elements of early classical pose with weight on left side of body.

Form & Style: Schematic treatment of hair links the head with archaic predecessors. Severe, vacant look of face is reminiscent of the Kritios Boy (Athens,Acropolis 698), which must be close in date. The strong tilt of the head to the right with a corresponding shift in the torso fragment is characteristic of the emerging Early Classical style. The often cited association with Persian debris is uncertain, hence there is no sure terminus ante quem. Some scholars see a Peloponnesian quality in the work, usually described as a heaviness of form, but there is no hard evidence to link this statue with any known sculptor.

Date Description: A proven archaeological context of Persian debris has not been upheld, although the extremely fresh condition of the surface has led most scholars to continue to date this piece prior to the Persian destruction of 480 B.C.

Condition: Head only (complete)

Condition Description: The head is preserved from the neck. It is often associated with another fragment (Athens, AM 6478), preserving hips and upper thighs of young male figure in pose similar to that of Kritios Boy. Yellow paint on hair. The extremely fresh surface suggests piece was exposed to weathering for only a short time.

Material Description: Parian Marble

Sources Used: Stewart 1990, 133; Boardman 1978a, 85; Brouskari 1974, 123; Ridgway 1965, 55-60; Payne 1950, pl. 113-15