In October 2022 Archaeologists discovered more than two dozen bronze statues in San Casciano Dei Bagni, a hilltop town in Tuscany, Italy dating back to ancient Roman times. Archaeologists have been exploring the ruins there since 2019. The finding is the most significant since the 1972 underwater discovery of the famous Riace Bronze Warriors in Italy.
They were all immersed in the ancient thermal spring of the sacred Great Bath Sanctuary of San Casciano. The warm muddy water helped the statues to be well and beautifully preserved. The bronze statues discovered are believed to have been used for water rituals.
Some of the statues depict deities while others represent various body parts and organs that may have been used as offerings to the god for medical treatment. Along with the statues, coins (bronze, silver and gold) and other artefacts have also been found.
Importance of the discovery
Such a discovery adds and opens a new chapter in history. The findings highlight the transition from Etruscan rule to the Roman Empire, which took place between the 2nd century BC and 1st century AD. The Etruscan civilization flourished mostly in central Italy for 500 years before the arrival of the Roman Empire. Etruscan has a strong influence on Roman culture.
It helps historians to know how the Tuscany region became a part of the Roman Empire. The statues also throw light on cultural and linguistic aspects as the inscriptions are in both Etruscan and Latin.
The archaeologist in charge of the excavations, Jacopo Tabolli that “the discovery will rewrite history” and is “without parallel”. “The Tuscan site houses the largest quantity of bronze statues from the Etruscan and Roman periods ever discovered in ancient Italy and is one of the most important in the entire Mediterranean region”, he added.
“This is certainly one of the most significant bronze finds ever made in the history of the ancient Mediterranean,” said Massimo Osanna, Italy’s Director General of Museums.
After the statues and other artefacts are discovered, they are taken to the laboratory for restoration. Then later, they will be returned to the planned new museum of San Casciano di Bagni for public display. The ancient bathing site will also be developed as an archaeological park.
Spectacular bronze statue find in Italy to ‘rewrite history’
Spectacular bronze statue find in Italy to ‘rewrite history’- Hindustan Times
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