Esquiline Venus, beautiful without a doubt

She is Venus, perhaps. Or perhaps she is Cleopatra.

She is the goddess of beauty and love, captured in the moment she ties her hair before an ablution – inspired by the iconographic model of Venus Anadyomene replicated by so many artists, from Botticelli to Picasso, who instead rises from the sea and holds her tresses to dry them.

But Venus did not wear sandals, and the snake wrapped around that vase seems an obvious reference to a different icon of beauty: the legendary Egyptian queen who charmed both Caesar and Mark Anthony, and who died from the bite of an asp.

This marble statue from the 1st century BC – known as the Esquiline Venus, and now part of the collection of Rome’s Capitoline Museums – was found on the Esquiline Hill in 1874 (near what is now Piazza Vittorio Emanuele), in an underground space of the Horti Lamiani.

Whomever she may be, she is beautiful – and there is no doubt about that.

Esquiline Venus, beautiful without a doubt

Rome
Piazza del Campidoglio, 1
+39 06 0608

WEEKLY POSTCARD

Most Read

The Great War Museum: history at high altitude

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloOn the top of the Marmolada, at 3,000 meters of altitude, you’ll find the Marmolada Great War...

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli: neo-gothic inspiration

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli is located in Sassari’s central Piazza d’Italia. It was built by will of Giuseppe Giordano Apostoli in 1877, in...

Move To The Top takes you to the roof of the Dolomites

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle Nebiolo On 4 July 2020, the cableway to Malga Ciapèla will re-open. Its short,...

Tenute La Montina, the realm of Franciacorta

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloTenute La Montina is located in Monticelli Brusati (BS), in the north-east of Franciacorta, next to an ample...