Archäologische Staatssammlung München


The treasure trove of Weissenburg, the Roman Biriciana, with almost 150 individual items (statuettes, silver votive objects, vessels, parts of parade armour, iron tools), is one of the most important deposit finds north of the Alps. It was discovered by chance in 1979 during gardening work. Many of the objects come from a cult context, presumably from a sanctuary. They were once buried, probably in a crate, during the turmoil of the period between AD 233 and 250. Among the 16 bronze statuettes of Roman gods, genii and heroes, there is a statuette of Hercules, the conqueror of all dangers and emergencies. This type of bearded Hercules is found in many representations of the Roman period. Its model is a fifth-century BC Greek work of art mixed with numerous later traits as well as with typical Roman features by adding the attributes. His weapon is the club, while from the first of his victorious deeds comes the fur of the Nemean Lion. The apples of the Hesperides he gained with the help of Atlas. The poplar wreath in the hair refers to the realm of the dead. According to the myth, Hercules had braided the wreath on the way back from the realm of the dead. A small boar belongs with the statuette, since Hercules had killed the dangerous Erymanthian Boar. The boar was the usual sacrificial animal for Hercules. The style means that the statuette can be attributed to a provincial workshop of AD 150-200.


Archäologische Staatssammlung München

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