This near life-size stone statue of Diana portrays the goddess in the midst of a hunt.
Diana was the Roman goddess of chastity, the moon and the hunt. The ancient Greeks also worshiped her under the name of Artemis. Diana is usually represented in art with a bow and quiver of arrows, accompanied by a deer or dog – all indicative of her status as the deity of the hunt.
This particular statue is based on a 1st or 2nd century Roman statue, which was in turn a restored version of an ancient bronze Greek statue attributed to Leochares in 325 BC.
The Roman version of this statue, which is now referred to as “Diana of Versailles”, was originally carved in marble.
The stag at Diana’s feet was added during the Roman restoration.
Our Diana is looking to her right with her right hand on her quiver of arrows, as if she has spotted her prey in the distance and is about to ready her bow. Her left hand is down by her side, resting on a salient (or springing) deer’s head. The fact that Diana is preparing to nock (or load) an arrow is why many believe that Leochares original statue had her holding a bow. There is also the remnant of a small fragment in her left hand, which many posit was the bow grip. Diana is wearing a short Dorian chiton, a himation around her waist, and sandals.
This statue is sure to be a focal point of any outdoor display, especially if placed on a pedestal.