Tyrtée or Tyrtaeus
Emile Laporte was born in Paris on November 18, 1858. He studied under the sculptors Augustin Dumont (1801-1894) and Gabriel-Jules Thomas (1824-1905) at the École des Beaux-Arts, Paris and was also a pupil of Jean-Marie Bonnassieux (1810-1892). He exhibited at the Paris Salon from 1881 to 1906, winning a number of prizes there for his work. He also won a bronze medal at the 1889 Exposition Universelle and a silver medal at the 1900 Exposition. Many of Laporte’s sculptures were of ancient warriors or historical figures such as this fine example.
Tyrtée or Tyrtaeus was a Greek lyric poet from Sparta who composed verses around the time of the Second Messenian War, sometime in the latter part of the seventh century BC. He is especially known for political and military elegies which were sung at banquets.