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A Roman Bronze Rein Guide with Pantheress, Roman Imperial Period, ca. 2nd century CE

RB001-PB

Rendered with its head turned out, standing on the guide with forelegs on the crossbar, a facing head of Io in a roundel on the right side of the crossbar, the panther with well-defined details and musculature, its outer forepaw resting on the top of Io's head.

Background:  In Greek and Roman art, of all the cats devoted to Dionysus, the panther was the most loyal attendant, being not only the most graceful and fascinating but also the most savage and bloodthirsty. The lightning-fast agility and perfect elegance of its movements, whose purpose is to kill, exhibit the same union of beauty and fatal danger found in the maenad women who accompany the god.

Dimensions: Height: 2 3/4 inches (7 cm), Length: 3 inches (7.6 cm)

Condition: Missing a matching panther that would have been connected via the u-shaped guide and crossbar. Otherwise intact and in very good condition overall.

Provenance: Clarence Schroder private collection, acquired prior to 1970 and then to a private Virginia collector in the late 1990's.


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