When this interesting bust, identified and published by Sir Cecil Harcourt Smith, by whose kind permission I reproduce it here, in the Burlington Magazine 1908, was transferred to the British Museum for cleaning purposes in 1916, a close examination of it in its new state led me to think that the portrait character of this obviously Mithraic work had been overstated. The photograph in the Burlington Magazine somewhat exaggerates the prominence of the lower part of the face, which is neither so full nor so individual as the plate suggests; the low Zeus-like forehead differs essentially from the high and rounded brow of the emperor, while the parted hair, curling only at the ends, and the beard are, as Sir Cecil Smith notes, like those of a Zeus, though they are surely very different in character from the frizzed interlacing locks of Commodus. The admittedly Zeus-like character of the bust is in fact against the identification as a Commodus-Mithras, sicnce not only does the youthful god differ in every respect from the ruler of Olympus, but the one known mythological portrait of Commodus, the Commodus-Hercules in the Conservatori, far from modifying the emperor's features to suit his part, rather represents the portrait element as triumphing at the expense of the divine; so that the lion-skin is pushed back and unnaturally balanced on the crest of hair, in order to keep the latter unmodified by one lock or curl, and the polished beauty of the imperial arms supersedes the mighty muscles of the hero. Again, the features of the Salting bust are finer, straighter and less sensual than in any known portrait of the emperor, while the features of the Commodus-Hercules are presented in their most extreme form. Perhaps, then, the explanation of the bust of a portrait is untenable, and its Zeus-like character is perplexing in the case of a head intended for a Mithras.