Antonio Canova (1757-1822), the renowned Italian artist, created the originals of these lions as a part of the monumental tomb for Clement XIII, in 1792 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. By the early 1800’s, Canova became the most celebrated artist in Europe. Canova’s lions are instantly recognizable when compared to other lion sculptures. The Lion who is awake represents vigilance, and the one who is asleep symbolizes moderation. The originals rested upon two rectangular slabs on pedestals at the base of the monument (see bottom photo). These fantastic lions have been carved out of an Italian limestone and rest upon rectangular stone slabs, further supported by a rectangular shaped stone pedestal.
CONDITION: Very good with only minor nicks. WEIGHT: Each lion/base combo is approximately 2,090 lbs