Archäologische Staatssammlung München


The treasure trove of Weißenburg, Roman Biriciana, belongs with its almost 150 objects (statuettes, silver votive offerings, vessels, parts of parade armour, iron tools) to the most important discovery of a hoard north of the Alps. It was discovered by chance while gardening in 1979. Numerous objects obviously originated in a religious context, probably from a sanctuary. They had been buried – probably once packed into a crate – during the turmoil of the period between 233 and 250. Among the 16 bronze statuettes of Roman gods, genies and heroes, the statuette of Jove, recognisable by the eagle on his stretched out right hand, is one of the most unusual and high-quality pieces. The highest-ranking god of the Roman pantheon appears in the nude with a muscular body that is only wrapped in a cloak hanging symmetrically from his shoulders. The sceptre, once in his lowered left hand, is lost. The statuette is made in a typical Roman eclectic style that combines elements of classical Greek art of the fifth century BC with those of late Antonine Roman art of c.AD170/180, such as the shape of the face, which is extremely thin and designed only to be seen from one side. The statuette originated in a centre of artistic production, in which the taste of the client or patron was educated by Greek art, i.e. in Rome or in the surrounding regions.


Archäologische Staatssammlung München

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