The Ludovisi and Boston Thrones

The Critical Debate Surrounding the Authenticity of the Boston Throne

"The Boston antique undeniable partner of the famous Ludovisi Throne." F. Studnickza, 1911.

"The Boston an unjustifiable modern fake." L. Curtis, 1959.

In 1887, The Ludovisi Throne, a three sided marble relief dating from the 5th Century BC, was discovered in Rome. Seven years later, when the Ludovisi Throne was purchased for a large undisclosed sum, a similar work appeared on the antique market. Touted as a counterpart to the now famous Ludovisi Throne, The Boston Throne was sold to the Museum Of Fine Arts, Boston, for 165,000 gold lire. Since then, a heated critical debate has raged over the authenticity of the Boston Throne, questioning the function, meaning and origin of both "thrones". This presentation aims to collate and explore the various theories raised concerning the two sculptures, encouraging the viewer to consider the authenticity of the Boston Throne themselves, whilst illustrating the problems encountered in trying to evaluate a work of unknown origin.

Introduction to The Ludovisi Throne

Introduction to the Boston Throne

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Copyright © 1997 by Melissa M. Terras
Page constructed by Melissa M. Terras as part of the fulfilment of an MA in Art History and English Literature, University of Glasgow
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