Grand Tour Antique Serpentine Marble Sculpture Small Medici Lion 19th C 15 cm
A beautiful quality carved Victorian Grand Tour green serpentine marble sculpture of a Medici Lion after Fancelli's original. This sculpture is a reduced size copy of the the Roman version from the Medici collection that has sat in the Loggia dei Lanzi in Piazza della Signoria in Florence, Italy since 1789.
The Roman original from the 2nd century AD along with a mirrored version sculpted in 1594 by Flaminio Vacca were originally sited as ornaments for the garden staircase of the Villa Medici of Ferdinando I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, prior to their move to Florence.
This reduced size version was made in Italy, probably in Florence, in the late 19th century, circa 1880, during the reign of Queen Victoria most likely as a Grand Tour souvenir or memento. This is a well-carved green serpentine marble figurine of a standing male lion with his right front paw raised upon a ball or sphere standing on canted corner integral base. The level of detail on this sculpture is very impressive, faithful to the original, the notable elements are the face, mane and ribbed body of the lion.
The stone - verde Prato serpentine has been quarried for centuries near to Prato, northwest of Florence in Italy. The Serpentine stone is so named due to the resemblance to the skin of a serpent.
In excellent original condition with no breaks, losses or damage, very minor markings and scratching commensurate with age and use.
This is a great item for display and is highly decorative, attractive and is a reasonably unusual example of antique decorative sculpture or Victorian Grand Tour statuary.
Length 6 inches ( 15 cm)
Depth 2 inches ( 5 cm)
Height 4 3/4 inches ( 12 cm)
Weight 897 grammes unpacked
Free UK and international postage with this item when purchased at the listed price.
Same size but a pair - Bonham's - A pair of English Neoclassical style carved serpentine marble Medici lions, 19th century. Sold for US$ 2,000 (£ 1,495) inc. premium LOT 1274 in Fine Furniture, Silver, Decorative Arts & Clocks Including the Allure of Antiquity: The Bikoff Collection 4 Mar 2015 New York.
Similar but slightly larger - Christies - The Gothick Pavilion - A Private Collection from Belgravia - Price realised GBP 2,750 26 Jan 2010 Lot 237 AN ITALIAN GREEN SERPENTINE MARBLE MODEL OF THE MEDICI LION 19TH CENTURY, AFTER FLAMINIO VACCA