The goddess Minerva sits on a throne. To the left of it is her round shield, which she holds with her left hand. She is dressed in a thin undergarment and a cloak that covers her upper body and shoulders. She has pushed the Corinthian helmet back over her head. The long hair is tied together in a knot at the nape of the neck. The aegis is emblazoned on her chest as a symbol of her divine power.

In ancient mythology, the aegis refers to a golden goatskin that Jupiter and Minerva used to summon thunderstorms. When they shook the fur, it hurled thunderous lightning bolts. The winged head of the terrible Medusa, whose sight petrified people, also looms large on the Aegis.