Antique French Grand Tour Bust of Ariadne on Marble Column 19th C

GBP 2,250.00

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Object Description

A superb antique French Grand Tour patinated bronze bust of Ariadne, on a turned socle and a bronze and rosso antico marble column, C 1850 in date.

Ariadne, in Greek mythology, was a Cretan princess. She is mostly associated with mazes and labyrinths because of her involvement in the myths of the Minotaur and Theseus.

The bust is stamped “GS” for Georges Emile Henri Servant (French 1828-1890)

This high quality hot cast solid bronze was produced using the traditional “lost wax” process, otherwise known as the “cire perdue” method.

The craftsmanship is second to none throughout all aspects of this beautiful sculpture.


The Collection of Sir Jeremy Lever.

In excellent condition, please see photos for confirmation.

Provenance: The Collection of Sir Jeremy Leve

Dimensions in cm:
Height 49 x Width 12 x Depth 12

Dimensions in inches:
Height 19.3 x Width 4.7 x Depth 4.7

Georges Emile Henri Servant (1828-1890)
Was a French clockmaker who, in 1855, took over his father’s workshop and foundry in the Marais district of Paris. He is known for the production of Greek and Egyptian revival style clocks and bronzes.
His work was praised for its high quality and he exhibited at many of the international exhibitions taking place in Paris and London, including the 1855 Paris Universal Exhibition and in London in 1862. He was awarded a gold medal for his neo-Greek and Egyptian clock models at the Paris Universal Exhibition in 1867.
He was awarded France’s highest honour – the Legion d’Honneur in 1874

The Grand Tour
was the traditional trip of Europe undertaken by mainly upper-class European young men of means. The custom flourished from about 1660 until the advent of large-scale rail transit in the 1840s, and was associated with a standard itinerary.

It served as an educational rite of passage. Though primarily associated with the British nobility and wealthy landed gentry, similar trips were made by wealthy young men of Protestant Northern European nations on the Continent, and from the second half of the 18th century some South American, U.S., and other overseas youth joined in. The tradition was extended to include more of the middle class after rail and steamship travel made the journey less of a burden.

The primary value of the Grand Tour, it was believed, lay in the exposure both to the cultural legacy of classical antiquity and the Renaissance, and to the aristocratic and fashionably polite society of the European continent. In addition, it provided the only opportunity to view specific works of art, and possibly the only chance to hear certain music. A grand tour could last from several months to several years. It was commonly undertaken in the company of a knowledgeable guide or tutor.

The Grand Tour not only provided a liberal education but allowed those who could afford it the opportunity to buy things otherwise unavailable at home, and it thus increased participants’ prestige and standing. Grand Tourists would return with crates of art, books, pictures, sculpture, and items of culture, which would be displayed in libraries, cabinets, gardens, and drawing rooms, as well as the galleries built purposely for their display; The Grand Tour became a symbol of wealth and freedom.

Our reference: 09383

Object Details

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