The Antikythera Ephebe is a bronze statue of a young man discovered in a 1st century BC shipwreck in 1900 by sponge-divers off Antikythera, Greece. If Antikythera sounds familiar, it is associated with the Antikythera Mechanism (an astronomical calculating device) which was also in the same wreck.
The bigger-than-life-size (over six feet) statue was badly damaged (as in multiple small fragments) when it was salvaged. A recent restoration corrected some of the errors made in the first restoration in the 1950s. The statue was likely produced in Peloponnesa (the south of Greece) in the 4th century BC. The statue is posed holding something in his right hand. Since there is no context, archaeologists can’t determine its identity. Possibilities include Paris presenting the apple to Aphrodite after the Judgment of Paris, Hercules holding the apple of Hesperides, or Perseus holding the Gorgon’s Head. The statue is displayed at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens.
Next week, more on the Antikythera Mechanism. Rita Bay