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THE EXHIBIT

Dreros. Second half of 8th c. BC

This group of three bronze statuettes, with a larger male figure between two female ones, was found inside the temple of the agora of the ancient city of Dreros. Dated to the 8th century BC, these are the earliest known hammered statuettes, made of joined bronze sheets over a wooden core which has not been preserved. The figures are identified as the god Apollo, the goddess Artemis and their mother Leto. The male statuette is a standing, naked figure with one foot slightly advanced, the right arm bent at breast height and the left arm held slightly behind the body. His hair is long, perhaps a feature drawn from Minoan art, and the eyes were originally inlaid with precious stones that have not survived. The female figures are standing and clothed, with their arms at their sides, parallel to the body. Their chiton tunics are decorated with two vertical bands and a horizontal band along the hem. They have short hair and a low cylindrical headdress called polos, while their eyes were also inlaid. The statuettes stood on a base and were probably cult statues, as they were found on a bench in the temple of Apollo Delphinios or Pythios, in the agora of ancient Dreros. The hammered statuettes of Dreros are rounder and bulkier than the earlier bronze statuettes of the early 8th century BC. They show the development of the human form, in Archaic art, in which anatomical details are rendered naturalistically.
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