Sandstone sculpture of male face, Palmyra, 1st – 2nd century A.D.

The Empire of Palmyra, located in present-day Syria, emerged in the 3rd century AD as a split from the Roman Empire, when the Queen of Palmyra, Zenobia, sought a disconnection from Rome by taking advantage of the power vacuum she had left in the East. The local elites accepted Zenobia's control of Palmyra because she was committed to defending their commercial interests. The geographical position of the city gave it a privileged status in commercial relations between East and West, as it became the key point for the caravan trade and the exchange of luxury products, participating as an enclave on the Silk Road. The artistic expressions of this period are extremely beautiful, with Roman technique, Palmira's style is even more detailed and full of expression and passion. This fragment of sculpture represents a face with a male face that, because of the quality of the sculpture, could have belonged to a high position. The arched and well-defined eyebrows frame thick eyelid eyes with incised pupils and irises, giving rise to the typical face of the Empire of Palmyra. His eternal gaze has remained unfading for thousands of years.


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