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Unknown (sculptor)






Copper alloy, probably bronze, gilt. Minerva stands, wearing a cloak draped over a cuirass and a plumed helmet, decorated with a grotesque mask. The lower part of the legs and arms are bare. The statuette is mounted on a green marble plinth.

Production Notes

A figure for a niche in a tall cabinet, the chasing stopping short at the rear.

Previously thought by Mr Goldschmidt and John Pope Henessey (7.10.1963) to be in the style of Tiziano Aspetti (1565-1607).

Production Place

Venice (sculptor) (place)

Italy (sculptor) (country)

Venetian (sculptor) (nationality)

Italian (sculptor) (nationality)

Technique Description

copper alloy, probably bronze, gilt, cast and chased


height: (Minerva): 26.7 cm
width: (Minerva): 9.0 cm
depth: (Minerva): 7.3 cm


early 18th Century


circa 1700 to 1730


given: The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum 1950 (Filtered for: Applied Arts collection)

Henry Harris Collection; sold Sotheby's, 24 October 1950, The Henry Harris Collection, Catalogue of the celebrated collection of Renaissance works of art and paintings, the property of Henry Harris (decd.), p. 17, part of lot 93, as Marsand Venus; sold for £240 to A. Spero.

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum


  1. Sotheby's (1950) The Henry Harris Collection, Catalogue of the celebrated collection of Renaissance works of art and paintings, the property of Henry Harris (decd.), London: Sotheby's [page: p. 17] 24th-25th October 1950)
    [comments: Publ. p. 17, part of lot 93]
  2. (1951) Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Forty-second Annual Report, for the Year 1950, Cambridge (Cambs.)
    [comments: Publ. p. 4, see also p. 2]
  3. Sotheby's (1991) Sotheby's Sale Catalogue, 12th December 1991, London? [page: p. 69] 12th December 1991)
    [comments: Publ. Mentioned, as similar Venus and Minerva statue to lot no. 153, p. 69]
  4. Avery, Victoria (2002) Renaissance and Baroque Bronzes from the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, London: Gli Ori [page: pp. 158-163]
    [comments: Publ. pp. 158-163, 268, no. 21]

Other Notes

Minerva, was the daughter of Metis, whom Jupiter swallowed up pregnant for fear that his children would dethrone him. She was born a fully developed adult out of Jupiter's head. She is the Roman goddess of wisdom, medicine, the arts, dyeing, science and trade, but also of war.

Accession Number

M.19A-1950 (Applied Arts)
(Reference Number: 13916; Input Date: 2000-10-06 / Last Edit: 2011-07-22)

Related Object

M.19B-1950 - Venus

Related Image/s

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