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Marble portrait of Alexander the Great
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Тhis portrait of the great Macedonian leader is probably from Alexandria, the city founded by Alexander after he conquered Egypt in 332 вс, and where he was eventually buried.

Most of Alexander's portraits were produced long after his death and share similar general characteristics. He was always shown clean shaven, whereas all previous portraits of Greek statesmen or rulers had beards. Alexander was also the first king to wear the royal diadem, a band of cloth tied around the hair that was to become the symbol of Hellenistic Greek kingship.

After his death Alexander was worshipped as a god and the forefather of the Ptolemaic dynasty which ruled Egypt. Earlier portraits of Alexander, in heroic style, look more mature than the portraits made after his death, such as this example. These show a more youthful and perhaps more god-like character. He has longer hair, a more dynamic tilt of the head and an upward gaze.

Marble portrait of Alexander the Great

Said to be from Alexandria, Egypt, 2nd-lst century bc
Ht 38.1 cm.

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