This work is a Hellenistic marble double-headed bust that portrays a helmeted, youthful male on one side and a female wearing a headband on the other. The head that is presumably Ariadne’s has what looks like a crown, which is an indication of royalty, around wavy, pulled-back hair. The male on the bust is wearing a helmet, and Theseus is often shown bearing a helmet in many visual comparanda.
This bust (on the left) of Theseus depicts the hero wearing a helmet.
Although not all of the original features are easy to see on the double-headed bust, the most evident features are the lips and eyebrows, both of which are important in determining facial expression. However, both of the faces on the piece are mostly neutral and do not express much emotion. Both of the noses have suffered a degree of damage, and the left half of the male’s face seems to have been worn down by time. The heads are connected behind the ears, and the partial sculpture features a janiform bust, that is, two heads looking in opposite directions. This piece may have come from a herm, a sculpture with a head and shoulders set atop a square pillar that was often used as a boundary marker in Classical Greece, and as a decorative item of furniture in post-Classical times. Such herm may be indicated by the slight angular transition between the sides and the backs of the heads.