Measurements: 23 cm – length, 14 cm - width


Description: A large bronze Roman strigil with a long curved blade tapering to a point, incised with spiral motifs – now largely lost and showing on the tip of the blade and close to the handle (please see close up photo). The handle is rectangular and fenestrated close to the base. Strigils like this one were used for scraping the dirt and sand mixed with perspiration and oil from the skin after exercise and before bathing. Athletes and soldiers used strigils alike. Wealthier members of the Roman society would have strigils with finely incised decoration such as this one. They also served as a common grave good, deposited usually with a bottle of oil. Croatian Apoxyomenos (‘the Scraper’) is a fine example of Greek bronze sculpture showing how an athlete would use a strigil.


Reference: See Christie’s sale 5524, lot 136 for similar items.


Period: 1st – 3rd cent. AD


Condition: Very fine, intact, with some patina and deposits to the surface.

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