This month’s sculpture from Hadrian’s Villa is a marble statue of a dancing female figure, thought to be a portrait of Praxilla of Sikyon.
Praxilla was a female poet writing in the mid-fifth century BC. She came from Sikyon, a city situated on a fertile coastal plain beside the Corinthian Gulf in the northeast Peloponnese (see images of the archaeological site here). She wrote, dithyrambs, hymns to the Greek gods as well as drinking songs (skolia). Her skolia were among the most celebrated of her time and were sung at banquets and festivals for over three hundred years.
The statue, made of white Pentelic marble, depicts the Greek lyric poetess in…
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