An extremely fine Ancient Roman cast bronze protome or applique modelled in the shape of a ram’s head, protruding from a circular plate and featuring a hollow, unworked back. The animals’ facial and anatomical features are rendered in a naturalistic manner, with much attention given towards details. Such applique would have once decorated a household object or piece of furniture.
Date: Circa 1st-3rdCentury AD Condition: Very fine, some patination to the surface. The item has been mounted on a custom-made stand, ideal for display.
Rams’ heads are usually found on drinking vessels, bronze furniture, marble funerary altars and architectural decoration. They were used strictly as a decoration sometimes, though with ritual overtones. As much important animals in Roman sacrifice they were an especially convenient motif. In ancient astrology, they were important for Romans as the first sign of the zodiac (Aries) that reigned over spring months and brought fertility and crops.