This plaque, housed in the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, is a marble relief originating from the Roman period (1st century BC–1st century AD). Measuring approximately 90 cm by 60 cm, this artifact retains much of its intricate original detail.
The relief features two primary female figures, carved from pentelic marble. The stylistic attributes echo Hellenistic Greek sculpture norms, a trend adopted and perpetuated by Roman artists during this period.
The seated figure on the left, depicted with a mature appearance, rests on a decorated throne while holding a torch, a common symbol of the divine, in her right hand. Her left arm is posed over a sheaf of grain. This characterization and iconography suggest that this figure represents Demeter, the Greek goddess of grain and agriculture.
The standing figure on the right, depicted as younger, presents a piglet with her extended arms. Given the symbolic connection between piglets and fertility in antiquity, and her proximity to the other figure, this character is likely meant to represent Persephone, Demeter's daughter, and the goddess associated with the return of spring.
Part of the broader collection of Eleusinian cult artifacts, this particular piece reflects the Eleusinian Mysteries, secretive annual rituals held in Eleusis, a city near Athens. This fusion of Hellenistic styles and Roman artistic preferences suggests an intersection of religious and artistic customs of the time.