This reproduction is based on the Lansdowne Hercules, a Roman statue found in the collection of the Getty Villa Museum that depicts the hero carrying a club over his left shoulder and holding a lion skin in his right hand. These objects help identify him, since Hercules was often portrayed with a club and the pelt of the Nemean Lion, which he killed in the first of his legendary twelve labors. The youthful figure is shown nude, representing the ideal form of beauty in the Classical world.
- Material: Bonded Marble - Dimensions:13½ inches H x 5¾ inches W x 3 inches D - Item #: MRSH
The original sculpture, carved about AD 125, was inspired by a lost Greek statue of Hercules dating around the mid 300s BC. Found in 1790 near the ruins of the Villa of Hadrian at Tivoli outside Rome, this statue was one of numerous copies of Greek sculpture commissioned by the Roman emperor, who admired Greek culture. Shortly after its discovery, the sculptor Carlo Albacini (active 1780–1807) restored the fragmentary figure, replacing the missing lower left leg and parts of both arms. The statue is named for Lord Lansdowne, who purchased it in 1792 for his antiquities collection in London. The Lansdowne Hercules was one of J. Paul Getty’s most prized acquisitions.
Source Object: Statue of Hercules (Lansdowne Herakles) Unknown Maker Roman Roman Empire (Place Created) Hadrian's Villa, northern area, near the Casino Fede, Tivoli, Italy (Place Found) About A.D. 125 Marble 70.AA.109 193.5 × 77.5 × 73 cm, 385.5575 kg (76 3/16 × 30 1/2 × 28 3/4 in., 850.0001 lb.) Gift of J. Paul Getty