Catalog of the Fine Arts Collection
Please note that the St. Johnsbury Athenaeum prohibits the use of images from its collection in public exhibition, broadcast, electronic reproduction or publication in any form without prior written permission from the institution. If you would like to reproduce any of the Art Gallery images in any form, contact us at 748-8291.
This detail of the head of the central figure in the ancient Pasquino group somewhat adapts the original composition, elevating the figure's gaze in a more dramatic upward sweep than is the case in the original. During the late eighteenth century, archaeologist Ennio Quirino Visconti persuasively argued that the Pasquino group depicts a scene from Homer's Iliad in which Menelaus, Helen's rightful husband, recovers the body of his ally Patroclus, whom Achilles had sent into battle in his place. The original Menelaus figure responds more stoically to Patroclus' death than in the Athenaeum's version. (The original Pasquino group, one of three known ancient versions of the same subject, was, contrary to convention, named for an irreverent tailor near whose shop the sculpture was originally discovered rather than for its subject.)