Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Hail, details of Caesar!

EURSOC: "Bust Of Caesar Fished Out Of Rhône"

France's cultural minister has announced an "archaeologist's dream" - a marble bust of Julius Caesar, sculpted in the Roman's lifetime, has been found in Arles, several metres below the surface of the Rhône river.

It is thought to be the oldest portrayal of Caesar yet found, and as it dates from a period when realism was prized by sculptors and their clients, it may give the closest portrayal yet of the great man.

Caesar himself is said to have founded Arles in 46 BC; the bust is believed "undoubtedly" to date from this time. It shows Caesar aged, with visible wrinkles, though his hairline is rather more flattering, as contemporary reports claim that he was bald. Caesar was assassinated just two years after - French archaeologists believe that the bust may have been dumped in the river after news emerged of his death.

The same excavation also found a later 1.75m marble statue of Neptune and two Hellenic Greek satyrs.

Fragments of mosaics and columns were also fished from the river, in what the French ministry is calling a revelation of the richness of Arles' culture and history. (...) >>>

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