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Statuette of Tinia
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Unknown
Etruscan, about 480 B.C.
Bronze
6 3/4 x 3 9/16 x 1 9/16 in.
55.AB.12

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This bearded man wears a tebenna, a semi-circular form of toga. He once held something in his left hand, which probably would have identified him. Lacking this object, his identity is open to question. He might be Tinia, the Etruscan equivalent of Zeus, the king of the gods; if so, he would have held a scepter or a thunderbolt. However, he could just as easily represent a worshipper or a priest. Small figures like this were often left at temples as an offering to the gods. This statuette was reportedly found in Piombino, Italy.

Although his face and muscles are naturalistic, the bearded man is posed rigidly and his garment is arranged in an artificial manner. Such combinations of opposing stylistic traits are not unusual in Etruscan art. As an area rich in metal sources, Etruria produced large quantities of bronze statuettes.