Development of the Kouroi

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New York Kouros

7th Century BC

6'4" tall

Naxian Marble

Depicts a Kouros in Kouros pose (straight back, left foot forward, arms by side)

Archaic smile and almond bulging eyes

Stylised Features (telephone ears, narrow head, Vs on torso, no coccyx)

Accurate, detailed knees

Long beaded hair, unrealistic, stylised, supports head 

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Sounion Kouros


10ft tall

Stylised 'convey an ideal of human form' (Cambridge Faculty of Classics)

Kouros pose

Archaic smile and almond eyes

Large ears, like capitals of ionic columns

Detailed knees

Deep etched musculature, overly symmetrical 

Viewed in the round

Etchings of a ribcage on the back, very unrealistic

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Kleobis and Biton


Made by Polymedes

1.97 metres tall

Told they were made by the Argives as symbols of being the greatest men (Solon, Histories B1 P31)

Parian Marble

Almond eyes, archaic smile

Long beaded hair, supporting the neck at front and back

V shaped geometric lines

Little detail on back

Ears realistic, not telephone like other kouroi

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Anavysos Kouros


1.94m tall

Kouros pose

Archaic smile and eyes

First statue to acknowledge the coccyx bone 

Muscularture of abdomen defined, no longer etched

Long beaded hair still supporting the neck

Idealistic, less so than previous kouroi

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1.95 metres tall

Parian marble

Typical kouros pose, except arms are slightly raised, they were supported with bridges

Smaller more proprotionate head

Realistic ears and shorter more realistic hair (sacrificing the support)

Muscularture moulded, not etched

Proportions 'near perfect' (Boardman)

Looks more flesh-like than marble

'Convincingly realistic' - Woodford

Starfish *****, sculptor experminting

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