The Leather Oaks Garden -- Spring 2008

Photos of the New Statues!

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This Page Created on March 24th, 2008
Hercules after his Twelth Labor      With my retirement from a perfectly good and rather interesting job with the Air Force, I began looking to fulfill some long repressed interests. One of them was in famuous statues of antiquity. Think of it as an early fascination with super heroes that somehow morphed back into the past!
     While Hercules never wore a cape or tights, he certainly was The Man! One has to admire a guy who can still appear so tough and buff after fulfilling the twelve labors with which he had been challenged by Eurystheus. (You can read details of his travails and eventual successes in Chapter 19 of Bulfinch's Mythology.) The original of this statue was not unearthed from the ruins of the Baths of Caracalla in Rome until the mid-sixteenth century, all nineteen feet of it!
     One of the most perfectly proportioned statues of a male athlete was Discobolos. My copy is based on the Myron interpretation. As in the case of Hercules, Discobolos is a copy in stone of an now-lost Grecian bronze original. Can you imagine what those first Olympics must have been like, if their athletes were all of this caliber? Discobolos of Myron
Telamon Bench      You may have noticed that I'm rather partial to men with beards. Here we have just their heads and arms, but what beards!

It apparently was a Greek idea to carve statues of their gods into support structures. Most likely it was the Romantic French period that created this melding of that idea with a garden bench. This bench has moved around a good bit in the Leather Oaks Garden. Its current and best home is near the Dive Feature on the new Schematic Stream.

     Finally, a non-mythic person! Marcus Claudius Marcellus was a name used by a good half dozen men in Roman History. It is thought that this statue is of the General and Statesman who became known as the Sword of Rome. Presumably, the head is of Marcellus, and the body is intended to represent Hermes. Someone said it appears that he's holding a cell phone, but maybe not, since he met his death in 208 B.C.E. Marcus Claudius Marcellus
Jupiter Garden Terminus

Jupiter Garden Terminus

      No this is not "the father of gods and men's" full name, but rather the particular statue. It might be intended to be hidden in some deep corner of a garden. But at Leather Oaks, Jupiter resides on one of the highest points in the yard. He "lords it over" a growing forest of Live Oak saplings. The saplings are the very healthy remains of what was my biggest Live Oak, so it's fitting that Jupiter should be in such upright company.
      Across from Jupiter, guarding the Leather Oaks front walk, is this pseudo-ancient copy of a small portion of Apollo Belvedere. Apollo, the son of Jupiter and archer, prophet and musician features prominently in Greek mythology. Maybe someday we'll find a finer likeness!

The linked photo shows Apollo greeting folks on the entry to Leather Oaks.

Apollo Belvedere
Atlas of the Flower Pot      I guess Atlas seems dejected due to his demotion from holding up the world to having to balance a flowerpot on his head. Yes I know, he's not really in the garden, but as one of the two statues on my front porch, he still expects some attention. And apparently, he's one of the few gods with a sense of modesty!