This marble bust (700 x 400 x 500 mm) originates from a colossal, total body sculpture of the muse Melpomene created in (circa) 50 BC- additionally uploaded to Scan the World, research it here. It was part of the historical group of the Vatican and was found initially in Rome, close to the theater of Pompée.
Melpomene (From the Greek, "to sing" or "the one that's melodious"), initially the Muse of Singing, she subsequently became the Muse of Tragedy, for which she's best known now. Her name was derived from the Greek verb melpô or melpomai significance "to observe with dancing and song." She's frequently symbolized with a tragic mask and wearing boots, the cothurnus. Frequently, she holds weapon or a knife in one hand and the tragic mask in the other.
Melpomene is the daughter of Zeus and Mnemosyne. Her sisters contain Calliope (muse of epic poetry), Clio (muse of history), Euterpe (muse of lyrical poetry), Terpsichore (muse of dancing), Erato (muse of sensual poetry),Thalia (muse of humor), Polyhymnia (muse of hymns), and Urania (muse of astronomy).
In Greek poetry and Roman, it was conventional to invoke the goddess Melpomene that one might create amazing lyrical phrases.
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