late 2nd Century BC
Overall: 30.5 x 31.1 cm (12 x 12 1/4 in.)
Weight: 6.577 kg (14.5 lbs.)
Leonard C. Hanna, Jr. Fund 1990.32
This sculpture depicts a pregnant goat, which is extremely rare.
Goats were among the earliest domesticated animals and figured prominently in Greek art and mythology since at least the 8th century BC. This example with its powerful stance, curly beard, and horns is not a ram but an expecting doe with swollen flanks. The subject is rare and its meaning unclear. Possibly she was part of a group dedication to a goddess. The sunken areas at the tail and hips and her open mouth, indicating heavy breathing, are signs that she is ready to give birth.
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