Statues of the Ballarat Botanical Gardens

Stoddart Statues


1828 - 1905
Thomas Stoddart bought 12 white marble statues during a visit to Italy. Stoddart arranged for them to be shipped to Victoria and placed on pedestals of Sicilian marble and on bases of Victgorian granite. These statues were unveiled in the gardens on Queen Victoria's birthday, 24th May, 1884. His intention was for the statues to adorn and add interest to the gardens. Stoddart's gift inspired the moves to make Ballarat a "City of Statues".


1. Spring
Spring is a maiden wearing a toga dress and has a floral wreath on head and carrying a posy.
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2. Summer
Summer with handle of sickle and holding a sheaf of grain, symbolising harvest time.
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3. Autumn
Autumn is holding a bunch of grapes symbolic of the vintage.
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4. Winter
Wizened old man protecting himself again the winter chills.
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5. Flora Farnese
The noble Roman Farnese family statue of Flora, goddess of spring, shown with stylised dress and flowers in hair.
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Thomson was born in Scotland in 1818 and arrived in Australia in 1852. The Wallace statue is a tribute to his Scottish ancestry. At the time of its unveiling the statue was claimed to be the biggest that had been made south of the equator. Wallace is depicted standing on Abbey Craig at Stirling in 1297, waiting for the British to cross Stirling Bridge. He has to decide the right moment for a horn to be sounded as a signal for his forces to fall upon the enemy. With the defeat of the British forces, Wallace became recognised as a great Scottish hero.

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David Ham 1830 - 1908
David Ham MLC donated the two marble lions in 1893. These were characteristic of grand entrances in 19th Century landscapes and the lions were also an emblem of the strength of the British nation.

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6. Leda
Wife of the king of Sparta who was seduced by Zeus in the guise of a swan.
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7. Hebe
Greek goddess of eternal youth with the power to restore to age the vigour of youth and was cup-bearer to the gods.
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8. Mercury
Messenger of the gods shown with winged helmet and pouch.
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9. Hercules
Greek hero of great strength and courage wearing his lion skin and massive club. Killed his children and had to achieve atonement performing 12 special labours.
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10. Bacchante
Priestess to Bacchus, God of wine and good times, and so associated with wild orgies.
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11. Flora
Roman goddess of flowers is watering flowers at her feet and is dressed in a classical garment.
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12. Pomona
Roman Goddess of fruit trees and her care for their cultivation brings fruitful abundance.
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The statuary Pavilion, in 1888, was designed by Ballarat architect T.E. Molloy and is of national historic and architectural significance. It is unusual for its top-lit central lantern and curved roofs. The statues are seen to their best advantage because of the provision of all-round and top natural lighting.

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