The statue, originally fixed on a stone base, is missing the left arm and two fingers of the right hand; these latter were broken in ancient times. On the arm there is an incomplete Etruscan inscription mentioning a votive offering to Selvans and to Śuri, etymologically the “black”, a sort of underworld Apollo for the Etruscans. Votive offerings depicting seated children have been found in the ancient Etruscan shrines of Lake Trasimeno [cf. Graziani Putto], Vulci, and Cerveteri. On account of the mature appearance of the face, this bronze work has hypothetically been identified with the mythical Tagetes, the prophet-child with the wisdom of an elder, who prodigiously appeared from ground ploughed too deeply by a farmer in Tarquinia and who was the first to dictate to the principes Etruriae the disciplina etrusca, or rather the foundations of the Etruscan religion, subsequently codified in sacred books.
Considering the high quality of the statue and the fact that the bulla or amulet it wears was an attribute of high-ranking youths during puberty, it would in any case have been dedicated by an eminent personage to an urban shrine in ancient Tarquinia.