Bronze cast of a male portrait bust.  Believed to be either Seneca the Younger, Hesiod, or Aristophanes

Roman. Cast of the original in the National Museum of Archaeology, Naples. Roman copy of a bronze original found at Herculaneum, ca. 250-150 BCE.


The so-called Pseudo-Seneca is a Roman bronze bust of the late 1st century BCE that was discovered at Herculaneum in 1754, the finest example of about two dozen sculptures depicting the same face. It was originally believed to depict Seneca the Younger, the noted Roman philosopher, because its emaciated features were supposed to reflect his stoic philosophy. However, modern scholars agree it is likely a fictitious portrait, likely of either Hesiod or Aristophanes. It is thought that the original example was a lost Greek bronze created around 200 BCE.

Original Statue

Artist: Unknown
Material: Bronze
Culture: GreekHellenistic
Century: 2nd Century BCE3rd century BCE
Current Location: ItalyNaples
Museum: National Museum of Archaeology

  • bronze
  • hellenistic