A 1,800-Year-Old Ancient Roman Statue Of A “Beautiful Roman Lady” Was Discovered During A Construction Project At A 16th-Century Mansion In England, But Her Identity Remains Unknown

Shelli Jensen - - illustrative purposes only

An ancient Roman statue of a woman dating back around 1,800 years ago has been discovered on the property of a stately country house in England. Last year, a digger driver unearthed the marble head of the statue during the construction of a parking lot.

The construction project took place at Burghley House, a 16th-century mansion located near the county of Lincolnshire. Two weeks later, a marble bust from the same statue was found close to the site of the first discovery.

The items were delivered to Jon Culverhouse, a curator at Burghley House, before being sent to a professional conservator, who cleaned, assessed, and pieced the statue back together. It depicted the figure of a “beautiful Roman lady.”

After all the dirt and grime were wiped away, the features of the woman could be seen clearly. The identity of the woman is currently unknown.

Experts determined that the statue likely dated back to the first or second centuries. They also noted that an iron dowel appeared to have been added to the statue, allowing it to be fixed to a pedestal.

According to Culverhouse, the adaptation was typical of the items that Italian dealers in antiquities sold to wealthy aristocrats traveling in Italy during the 18th century.

It is believed that the ninth Earl of Exeter, Brownlow Cecil, brought the sculpture back to Burghley after one of his two tours to Italy in the 1760s. Brownlow Cecil was born in 1725 and died in 1793.

He inherited his title in 1754 and was also a British Peer and Member of Parliament. He came into ownership of the Burghley House sometime in the 18th century. In addition, the earl was an avid collector of fine art and frequently traveled on tours to acquire such works.

These journeys were referred to as a “Grand Tour,” which was a trip that lasted for multiple years and was taken by upper-class young men from northern England, especially England, between the 17th and 19th centuries.

Shelli Jensen – – illustrative purposes only

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