Severan Tondo

Severus Tondo
The Severan Tondo or Berlin Tondo from circa AD 200, is one of the few preserved examples of panel painting from Classical Antiquity.wikipedia
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Panel painting

paneloil on paneloil on wood
The Severan Tondo or Berlin Tondo from circa AD 200, is one of the few preserved examples of panel painting from Classical Antiquity.
The Severan Tondo, also from Egypt (about 200AD) is one of the handful of non-funerary Graeco-Roman specimens to survive.

Antikensammlung Berlin

AntikensammlungBerlin, AntikensammlungBerlin Museum
It is now part of the Antikensammlung Berlin (inventory number 31329), currently held in the Altes Museum.
The objects displayed were the core of the collection of small artworks (including the well-known bronze statue of the "Cretan ram-carrier"), most of the former vase collection, the ancient gold jewellery collection (including the Hildesheim silver hoard), parts of the glass collection, the existing mummy portrait collections (with the addition of one of the few surviving ancient panel paintings, the Severus Tondo), and the collection of ancient helmets from Lipperheide.

Tondo (art)

tondotonditondos
It is a tempera or egg-based painting on a circular wooden panel or tondo with a diameter of 30.5 cm.

Fayum mummy portraits

Faiyum mummy portraitsFayum mummy portraitFayum portrait
The tondo appears to be of Egyptian origin, using similar materials and style to the Fayum mummy portraits.
One of the few examples besides the mummy portraits is the Severan Tondo, also from Egypt (around 200), which, like the mummy portraits, is believed to represent a provincial version of contemporary style.

Pitsa panels

Pitsa
The best known examples of ancient panel painting, the Fayum mummy portraits and the Severan Tondo, are of Roman date.

Classical antiquity

antiquityclassicalancient
The Severan Tondo or Berlin Tondo from circa AD 200, is one of the few preserved examples of panel painting from Classical Antiquity.

Roman emperor

EmperoremperorsWestern Roman Emperor
It depicts the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus with his family: to the left is his wife Julia Domna, and in front of them are their sons Geta (probably with the erased face) and Caracalla.

Septimius Severus

Septimus SeverusSeverusLucius Septimius Severus
It depicts the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus with his family: to the left is his wife Julia Domna, and in front of them are their sons Geta (probably with the erased face) and Caracalla.

Julia Domna

Iulia DomnaJuliaJulia Augusta
It depicts the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus with his family: to the left is his wife Julia Domna, and in front of them are their sons Geta (probably with the erased face) and Caracalla.

Geta (emperor)

GetaPublius Septimius GetaPublius Septimius Geta Caesar
It depicts the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus with his family: to the left is his wife Julia Domna, and in front of them are their sons Geta (probably with the erased face) and Caracalla.

Caracalla

Marcus Aurelius AntoninusAntoninus CaracallaEmperor Caracalla
It depicts the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus with his family: to the left is his wife Julia Domna, and in front of them are their sons Geta (probably with the erased face) and Caracalla.

Altes Museum

Royal MuseumOld MuseumRoyal Museum in Berlin
It is now part of the Antikensammlung Berlin (inventory number 31329), currently held in the Altes Museum. It remains in the collection at the Altes Museum, one of the Berlin State Museums (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin).

Tempera

egg temperaTempera on panelTempera and gold on panel
It is a tempera or egg-based painting on a circular wooden panel or tondo with a diameter of 30.5 cm.

Sceptre

scepterImperial Sceptrescepters
Septimius Severus and his sons are also holding sceptres and wearing gold wreaths decorated with precious stones.

Libya

State of LibyaLibyanLBY
The darker skin tone of the Emperor reflects his origins in Libya.

Syria

Syrian Arab RepublicSyrianEtymology of Syria
Julia Domna has her distinctive hairstyle, crimped into parallel locks, possibly a style from her home in Syria, and perhaps a wig.

Iconoclasm

iconoclasticonoclasticiconoclasts
One son's face has been obliterated in a deliberate act of iconoclasm, and the vacant space smeared with excrement.

Damnatio memoriae

condemned to oblivionerasedremoved
Most scholars believe it is Geta whose face has been removed, probably after his murder by his brother Caracalla and the ensuing damnatio memoriae.

Parthia

Parthian EmpireParthian PersiaParthians
It may have been painted to celebrate the visit of Septimius Severus to Egypt in AD 199, following his military victories against Parthia the previous year, and before his campaigns in north Africa in AD 203.

Berlin State Museums

Staatliche MuseenStaatliche Museen zu BerlinBerlin Museum
It remains in the collection at the Altes Museum, one of the Berlin State Museums (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin).

Portrait painting

portrait painterportraitureportrait
Again, the few painted survivals, in the Fayum portraits, Tomb of Aline and the Severan Tondo, all from Egypt under Roman rule, are clearly provincial productions that reflect Greek rather than Roman styles, but we have a wealth of sculpted heads, including many individualized portraits from middle-class tombs, and thousands of types of coin portraits.

Roman art

Romanartancient Roman
Unfortunately, since wood is a perishable material, only a very few examples of such paintings have survived, namely the Severan Tondo from c. 200 AD, a very routine official portrait from some provincial government office, and the well-known Fayum mummy portraits, all from Roman Egypt, and almost certainly not of the highest contemporary quality.

200

year
* The Severan Tondo, depicting Septimius Severus, Julia Domna and their children Geta and Caracalla, from Fayum, Egypt, is made.

Ancient Greek art

classical artGreekArt in ancient Greece
There is a large group of much later Greco-Roman archaeological survivals from the dry conditions of Egypt, the Fayum mummy portraits, together with the similar Severan Tondo, and a small group of painted portrait miniatures in gold glass.