Roman Legionary Votive Statuette of a Wild Boar

£ 495.00

A naturalistically rendered cast bronze statuette of a wild boar, dating to Roman Imperial Times. The animal is portrayed standing on four legs, with facial and anatomical features, such as eyes, ears, tusks, prominent spinal crest and coat, rendered through a series of incised lines. Bronze statuettes in the form of deities or animals would have been placed in temples or domestic shrines as votive offerings. This particular example might have belonged to the personal shrine of a soldier, as the boar was a common symbol across different Roman military legions. The famous Legion X Fretensis, stationed in Judaea, adopted the boar as a symbol, often depicted on inscriptions and stamped on roof tiles.

Date: Circa 1st-3rd Century AD
Condition: Fine, with red patina to the surface.


The boar played an important role in ancient Greek and Roman culture. It was often associated with its capacity to destroy humans and crops, with boar hunting consequently becoming a popular pastime amongst Romans, considered strengthening the body and mind. It was also a recurring motif in myths: hunting down the Erymanthian Boar was Hercules’ fourth labour, and the hunt of the Calydonian Boar had made a name for Atalanta’s skills.

To discover more about other animals in Roman art, please visit our relevant blog post:Animal Symbolism in Roman Art.

Weight 38.4 g
Dimensions L 4.4 x H 2.4 cm



Roman Mythology

Reference: For a similar item, The British Museum, item 1919,0620.9