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Marathon Boy

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Origin and Discovery Site

The statue was recovered by fishermen using a net in June 1925. The location of the find was documented as “the Bay of Marathon between the coast and a small island.” This site allows for various hypotheses: the statue could have ended up in the sea due to a shipwreck, have been thrown overboard as ballast in a dangerous situation, or have been deliberately disposed of.


Description of the Statue

The statue depicts a youth or ephebe – a young man who is no longer a boy but not yet fully grown. Standing at 130 cm tall, the figure is smaller than life-size. The contrapposto of the statue is complex, possibly suggesting that the figure is leaning on a column with his right hand. The bronze casting of the statue is exceptionally well-preserved. Alterations are only noticeable on the left hand, the left heel, and the right sole of the foot: the hand was likely reshaped in antiquity, probably during the Roman period. The heel and foot sole were restored in the 20th century.


The reshaped left hand appears to have originally held a flat object, which has not survived. There is speculation that it might have been a tray with sacrificial instruments. The inlays in the eyes and nipples are remarkable: the eyeballs are made of white stone, the irises consist of black-edged yellowish glass paste, and the pupils, which are missing, were originally inserted in metal. The nipples are made of copper.


The statue has a significant influence history and has been widely reproduced. A plaster cast of the statue is part of the Collection of Classical Antiquities at the Free University of Berlin.


Bronze Replica

We do not currently offer a bronze replica of this statue. However, please contact us if you are interested, and we will be happy to explain what is currently feasible.


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