Skip to Content
Closed today, next open tomorrow. Closed today, next open tomorrow.

The Horses of Anahita

A work made of plaster.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

Image actions

  • A work made of plaster.


Modeled 1848/50, cast 1882/1910


William Morris Hunt
American, 1824–1879

About this artwork

In 1846, after reading his brother’s translation of a sixth-century Persian poem about Anahita, the goddess of the night, William Morris Hunt became intrigued with the myth, and he returned to the subject repeatedly throughout his career. Anahita was an important Persian nature deity, probably derived from Babylonian mythology, who was identified with Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love. Although the poem describes Anahita fleeing the dawn in her chariot, Hunt did not actually include the deity in this relief. He probably created the relief as a study for his murals in the New York State Capitol, in Albany. The expressive sculpting of the figures—with the horses’ legs modeled fully in the round—captures the drama of the moment in three dimensions.


Currently Off View


Arts of the Americas


William Morris Hunt (Sculptor)


The Horses of Anahita


United States (Artist's nationality)


Modeled 1848–1850




49 × 74.5 × 31.1 cm (19 5/16 × 29 5/16 × 12 1/4 in.)

Credit Line

Purchased with funds provided by Brooks McCormick

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.

Learn more.

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions