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Head of Mars

A work made of marble.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of marble.


2nd century



About this artwork

Mars, the Roman god of war, was viewed as both a warrior and a guardian of the Roman people. He can be identified by his distinctive helmet, which here is richly carved with imagery alluding to his martial role. The
sides depict griffins, winged beasts associated with his vengeful nature, while the cheek pieces are each adorned with an image of Cupid carrying a spear and shield. Mars was closely associated with Cupid’s mother, Venus, the goddess of love, whose domain also included warfare and military victory.


On View, Gallery 150


Arts of the Ancient Mediterranean and Byzantium


Ancient Roman


Head of Mars


Roman Empire (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

101 CE–200 CE




59.2 × 29.5 × 37.8 cm (23 3/8 × 11 5/8 × 14 7/8 in.)

Credit Line

Katherine K. Adler Memorial Fund

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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