Open Context

Descriptive Variable Value(s)
Type Male Votaries with Diadems and Cypriot Shorts
Title Fragmentary Male Votary wearing Cypriot Shorts with Rosettes
Excavation Unit 10
Stratigraphic Unit 1023
Context Found on the surface of the hard-packed floor layer associated with the Hellenistic-Roman phase of the sanctuary (EU 10/SU 1023).
Current Location Kallinikeio Municipal Museum of Athienou, Cyprus
Material Limestone
Height (cm) 24.6
Width (cm) 13.8
Date 480 – 450 BCE
Thickness (cm) 7.8
Weight (kg) 1.66
Description Torso of a male statuette broken at the neck, at each arm below the shoulders, and at the legs. The figure wears a tight-fitting chitoniskos ornamented with a vertical band extending down the center of the torso from the neckline to the belt line; the band is decorated with inverted chevrons. A series of oval-shaped depressions along the shoulders renders the fastening of the garment. A spiral arm band is preserved on the left biceps. The chitoniskos is tucked into short pants (“Cypriot shorts”). From the belt, above each leg, two hems in relief curve inwards towards the genitalia and then out in a semi-circular pattern to meet up with the raised hems of the legs. Slight traces of a central tie are visible between the two semi-circular ridges. The shorts are decorated with a relief rosette on each thigh (the right is well- preserved; the left is badly worn). The back of the statuette is detailed and rounded: the drapery is indicated by the visible sleeve lines of the chitoniskos and the hem lines of the shorts, as well as the bunching of the shorts between the legs under the buttocks. Breaks on the hips suggests that both arms were extended down to the legs. The figure stands frontally in subtle contrapposto; movement of the body is suggested by the slightly higher right pectoral and the position of the legs and hips. The right hip is slightly higher and corresponds to the stationary right leg, which carries the weight of the body; the left hip is lower, corresponding to the left leg, which is advanced. Miniature porous holes are visible passim. There is no evidence of pigment; natural discoloration is concentrated on the back.
Commentary With very few exceptions, limestone statues donning the so-called Cypriot shorts (a form of the Greek perizoma) tend to be (1) under- life-size, (2) beardless (or short-bearded) youths, and (3) a phenomenon of the sixth century BCE (Hermary and Mertens 2015: 47-–57). Thus, AAP-AM-96 represents an intersection of sixth-century BCE attributes (shorts and spiral armlet) with emerging late Archaic and early cClassical styles most often associated with well-modeled, nude torsos (see the comments on AAP-AM-1172). In that sense, the statue might best be characterized as “archaizing,” although one could also consider the garment more simply as a lingering style. Two statues from Golgoi-Ayios Photios, now in Istanbul, illustrate the same basic type. The earlier statue (Istanbul 3333 A), dated by Haluk Ergüleç (1972: C.18) to circa. 540 BCE, is clearly less vigorous and less skillful in execution— with its straight and long, almost rectangular torso— than the second one (Istanbul 3319), dated to circa. 510-–500 BCE (Ergüleç 1972: C.20). While AAP-AM-96 is most more comparable with the latter, it is clearly more advanced in its representation of movement and should likely fall between circa. 480-–450 BCE. Although clothed in Archaic garb, the effort to show displaced weight, the subtle torsion of the body, and the positioning of the arms alongside the hips suggest imminent movement and the first signs of the “athletic” stance of early cClassical Greek sculpture (Ridgway 1985: 9-–10). John Boardman (2007: 84-–85) characterized the shift from a rigid, vertical axis as a “sigh of relief for the history of western art.” There are few other examples of statues with shorts that so clearly juxtapose the Archaic garment with the cClassical body. A mid-fifth- century BCE torso from Golgoi, now in the Musée du Louvre (Hermary 1989a: 49, cat. no. 62), exudes a similar archaizing feel with its combination of Cypriot shorts—identical in type to AAP-AM-96—and its a well-executed stance. The presence of Cypriot shorts suggests that the sculptor had consciously taken the model of the new, cClassical body type and draped it in a garment characteristic of the preceding generation. Various theories have been put forth regarding the identification of male figures donning Cypriot shorts (especially when combined with rosette iconography), including associations with religious activities (sacrifice [Hurschmann 2003]) and/or royal/elite social identities (Hermary 1989a: 44; Sørensen 1994: 82). The famous terracotta group from Meniko, which features two male figures wearing diadems and shorts and escorting a bull, also suggests a connection of this dress to sacrifice (Karageorghis 1977: 37; Hermary 1989a: 44; Karageorghis 1977: 37). Discovered on the surface of the Hellenistic–-Roman phase hard-packed floor layer, the statue’s archaeological context is inconsistent with its stylistic date, suggesting that the statue was still on display during this later phase or otherwise kept within the sacred temenos as an heirloom (Counts 1998: 97; see also the perceptive comments [“different pasts in a continuously forward-moving present”] in Sørensen 2017: 79-–80).
Bibliography Counts 1998: 151, cat. no. 13; Counts et al. 2016: 212-213, figs. 4-5.
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Editorial Note

Open Context editors work with data contributors to annotate datasets to shared vocabularies, ontologies, and other standards using 'Linked Open Data' (LOD) methods.

The annotations presented above approximate some of the meaning in this contributed data record to concepts defined in shared standards. These annotations are provided to help make datasets easier to understand and use with other datasets.

Suggested Citation

Erin Averett, Kevin Garstki, Derek Counts. "AAP-AM-96 from Cyprus/Athienou-Malloura". (2020) In Visualizing Votive Practice: Exploring Limestone and Terracotta Sculpture from Athienou-Malloura through 3D Models. Derek B. Counts, Erin Walcek Averett, Kevin Garstki, Michael Toumazou (Eds.) . Released: 2020-07-28. Open Context. <>

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