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‘They had no idea it was Caligula’: bronze bust of Roman emperor found after 200 years

Still Waters

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A bronze bust of the “mad and bad” Roman emperor Caligula has been found 200 years after it disappeared – and 2,000 years since it was cast. It had been gifted in the mid-18th century to Horace Walpole, the writer, aesthete and Whig politician, who designed his own gothic home, Strawberry Hill, in Twickenham, south-west London.

After his death in 1797, the 13cm (5in) high bust had several owners, and was even thought, in the 19th century, to be of Alexander the Great rather than Caligula. Now, after 10 years of detective work, Dr Silvia Davoli, a curator at Strawberry Hill, has rediscovered the bust and had it confirmed by top experts as of Caligula.


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That was certainly NOT Alexander the Great. Not with that Roman pumpkin head. 

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