|ITEM||Fragment of sarcophagus depicting a man being attacked by a snake|
|PERIOD||2nd – 3rd Century A.D|
|DIMENSIONS||280 mm x 173 mm|
|CONDITION||Good condition. Some parts restored by professional|
|PROVENANCE||Ex Belgian private collection, acquired between 1980’s – 1990’s|
Roman sarcophagi featuring depictions of men and serpents are a specific category of ancient sarcophagi that were produced during the time of the Roman Empire, particularly in the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD. These sarcophagi are known for their elaborate sculpted scenes portraying men engaged in combat with serpents or dragons and are often associated with mythological and religious themes.
In these scenes, men are often depicted as heroic figures or even emperors, bravely battling against serpents or dragons that symbolize evil forces or adversity. These representations can be linked to Roman myths and legends, such as Hercules’ battle against the Lernaean Hydra or Apollo’s struggle with the serpent Python. They may also carry religious connotations, symbolizing the struggle between good and evil, life and death.
These sarcophagi are impressive examples of the artistic skill and creativity of Roman sculptors of the time. In addition to their mythological and religious elements, they often feature decorative details and architectural elements that enrich their visual beauty.