Earlier Kouros from Actium, statue from left

Earlier Kouros from Actium, detail of back: shoulders

Earlier Kouros from Actium, detail of left profile

Earlier Kouros from Actium, frontal view

Earlier Kouros from Actium, detail of chest and thorax

Earlier Kouros from Actium, back view

Collection: Paris, Musée du Louvre
Title: Earlier Kouros from Actium
Findspot: Found at Actium, Sanctuary of Apollo
Summary: Standing nude youth
Material: Marble
Sculpture Type: Free-standing statue: kouros
Style: High Archaic
Technique: In-the-round
Original or Copy: Original
Date: ca. 580 BC - ca. 560 BC

H 0.945 m

Scale: Life-size
Region: Acarnania
Period: High Archaic

Subject Description:

One of two kouroi found at the Sanctuary of Apollo in Actium, this one is similar in style but at an earlier stage of development than the other. The shoulders and virtually straight arms emphasize the four-square design of the sculpture. The strong horizontals of the clavicles further this impression. A median line groove divides the torso in half, while a small arch separates the thorax from the abdomen. On the back half U's indicating the shoulder blades are set far to either side, while the blunt end of the broad mass of hair acts emphasizes the flatness as well as the width of the shoulders. The waist is narrow, and the distance between sternum and navel short. The arms, as mentioned, drop directly to the thighs, where they are securely attached to the body from just below the elbows to the tips of the fists. Only a small area inside the elbows has been carved free. The hands are in the usual clenched position, with the thumb carved directly against the thigh. The left leg is advanced.

Like the kouroi from Sounion and the Ptoon Sanctuary, these statues were apparently dedications to Apollo and suggest that such dedications at Actium spanned at least one generation.

Date Description:

Richter puts it in her Orchomenos-Thera Group, dated to the second two decades of the 6th century on the basis of comparison with Corinthian pottery. Freyer-Schauenburg places it later by comparison with the kouros of Leukios from Samos, which she dates to ca. 560 B.C.

Condition: Intact

Condition Description:

Preserved from neck to knees. Heavily weathered. Modern hole at back now filled with plaster.

Material Description:

Naxian marble (Richter)

Collection History:

Found by Champoiseau, French consul to Ioannina, in 1867 together with Louvre 687. Reportedly from the Sanctuary of Apollo at Actium, of which traces were noted when the find was made.

Sources Used:

Pedley 1976, 33; Richter 1970b, no. 40; Charbonneaux 1963, 4; Buschor 1950, 43; Freyer-Schauenburg 1974, 71

Other Bibliography:

Deonna 1909, no.1; Collignon 1886, 235ff.