Hercules with Cornucopia and Cloak

By
Laura Hutchison
Laura Hutchison is finishing her first year of course-work in the Interdepartmental Ph.D. Program in Classical Art and Archaeology at Hopkins. Her research interests include Greek and Roman religion, the human form in ancient art, and modern issues in illicit trade of antiquities. She was excited and grateful to work so closely with ancient objects in preparation for The Roman House at Hopkins.

 

 

_D3M0922web

  • Accession Number: JHUAM 418
  • Measurements: Width: 4cm, Height: 7.8cm
  • Material: Copper alloy
  • Culture/Date: Roman, 1st-2nd c. CE
  • Provenance: Unknown

_D3M0931web

Back view.

The thick beard and heavy musculature of this Hercules statuette allude to his mature age. The figure carries a cornucopia, an ancient symbol of bounty, in the crux of his left arm. Deities found in lararia, such as Hercules, Isis-Tyche, Ceres, and Harpokrates, are often shown carrying a cornucopia—a sign of their role as guarantors of a family’s prosperity. During the Roman Imperial period, Hercules was celebrated both as one of the mythical founders of Rome and as a guardian of households, shops and civic spaces.