Statue fragment may depict tween Nero

There is no doubt in mind that if Nero was alive today he’d be shacking up with Paris Hilton, starring in the next Twilight movie and be wrapping up filming on the second season of his reality show on MTV, Caesar of Love.

Let’s be honest, Nero was a world class douche.  In fact the people of Rome hated him so much that after his death they made a point of destroying all memorabilia of him.  We didn’t even do that with Bush and everyone hates him!

Regardless, imagine the excitement when a fragment from a statue found at the site of a Roman villa is believed to be what remains of only one of three in the world depicting the Emperor Nero.

Part of the statue’s head was discovered when Fishbourne Roman Palace, near Chichester, West Sussex, was first excavated in the 1960s but was previously thought to be a likeness of a child who once lived there.

However, archaeologists who created a 3D profile of the head using laser scanning techniques on the remaining fragment now believe it to have been a statue of Nero as a teenager after he was named as heir to the throne.

Fishbourne Roman Palace director Christine Medlock said the discovery was “fantastic news” and led to the question of whether Nero had personal links to the villa.

The two other existing Nero statues are preserved in the Museo Nazionale d’Antichita in Parma and the Musee du Louvre in Paris, both of which are said to match the features of the head found at Fishbourne.

Archaeologist Dr Miles Russell, who conducted the research, said: “The scan has given us a more complete picture of the missing parts of the face which confirms our theory that this is a depiction of Nero.
“This is exciting as it indicates that there may have been links between the Chichester area and one of the most famous Roman emperors of all time.”

Fishbourne Roman Palace is one of the most important Roman villa sites in the country and features more than 20 mosaic floors, the largest collection in Britain.


*No, tween is not a misspelling.


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