The colossal head of Zeus was found a hundred years or more ago at Otricoli, a small village to the north of Rome. The antique part is a mere mask; the back of the head and the bust are modern. The material is Carrara marble, a fact which alone would prove that the work was executed in Italy and in the imperial period. At first this used to be regarded as copied from the Olympian Zeus of Phidias, but in the light of increased acquaintance with the style of Phidias and his age, this attribution has long been seen to be impossible. The original belongs about at the end of the period now under review, or possibly still later. Although only a copy, the Otricoli Zeus is the finest representation we have of the father of gods and men. The predominant expression is one of gentleness and benevolence, but the lofty brow, transversely furrowed, tells of thought and will, and the leonine hair of strength.
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