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Roman Sarcophagus with detailed relief sculptured panels with battle scenes. This large sarcophagus which was found in 1931 near the Tiburtina, in the eastern suburbs of the ancient city, shows on its front a symbolic battle, staged on two levels. This composition focuses on the progress of the Roman horseman, depicted in the guise of a universal victor, in a melee of soldiers, spears and horses; the Romans are delivering savage blows, devastating their enemies. The bloody scenes are framed by two pairs of enslaved barbarians, whose afflicted demeanour expresses the suffering which comes to those who rebel against the dominion of Rome. The dramatic animation of the combat emphasised by the deep chiaroscuro obtained by a skilful feat of carving. The low relief on the sides of the sarcophagus shows events subsequent to the encounter; on one side barbarian prisoners cross the river on the other chiefs submit to the Roman officials. The freeze on the lid, between two corner masks, celebrates the dead man and his wife, presented in the centre is the act of ‘dextarum iunctio’; on the left, the women exercises her ‘virtue’ in the house, educating her children; on the right, the, after his warlike activities, receives his 'clementia'. The faces of the principle characters remain incomplete, awaiting the carving of the features of the dead people. The decoration of the sarcophagus, inspired by many scenes on the Antonine Column, can be dated to around 180AD. The military insignia represented on the upper edge of the casket - the eagle of the Legio III Flavia and the boar of the Legio I Itlaica - enable us perhaps to identify the dead man as Aurelius Iulius Pompilius, an official of Marcus Aurelius in command of two cavalry squadron on detachment to those two legions during the war against Marcomanni (1720-175AD). National Roman Museum, Rome, Italy

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Description:

Roman Sarcophagus with detailed relief sculptured panels with battle scenes. This large sarcophagus which was found in 1931 near the Tiburtina, in the eastern suburbs of the ancient city, shows on its front a symbolic battle, staged on two levels. This composition focuses on the progress of the Roman horseman, depicted in the guise of a universal victor, in a melee of soldiers, spears and horses; the Romans are delivering savage blows, devastating their enemies. The bloody scenes are framed...
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Image No:

88705-2-5-National-Museum-Roman-Sarcophagus.tif

Image Size:

3372x4941 pixels

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No Property License. If this image is to be used for adverising a product and the image contains recognisable property you will have to approach the property owner for permission to use the photo. Editorial usage and travel advertising dont usually need a property license but please check if in doubt.

Copyright:

© Paul Williams 2019 all rights reserved

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