A free-standing Roman bronze figure representing a slave with schematic anatomy. He is seated on the ground with his legs bent up and his hands resting on the knees near the chest. The position of the head is of note: this is fully bowed down as a sign of obedience.

The technique of lost wax casting is a sculptural procedure using a mould made from a prototype of the piece to be worked, and this prototype is usually made from beeswax. This is covered with a thick layer of soft material, usually clay, which then solidifies. Once this has hardened it is put in a kiln where the wax inside melts and leaks out through expressly made holes in the clay. In its place molten metal is injected and this takes on the exact form of the mould. To release the final piece the mould must be removed.

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