There are extraordinary pieces of ancient art throughout Sicily–even in the smallest of museums. One example is in the Museo Whitaker of Mozia off of Sicily’s west coast. The world-renowned “Youth of Motya” or “Motya Charioteer” is a mid-5th century BCE statue made of Parian marble. It was uncovered on the Island of Motya (or Mozia) in 1979 under a mound of dirt and rubble thought to have been created as a barricade during an ancient siege. After many years touring the globe, it was returned to Motya in 2014.
Thought to be the work of a Sicilian-Selinuntine sculpture, it is believed to have been made for a wealthy Phoenician or Greek local. The statue is larger than life (71.25 inches tall without his feet). The depiction of the man’s chiton (or tunic) with its clinging folds in concert with his breathtaking physique make it stupendous.