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Historical novels from the 2nd für das 21st century


Mittwoch, 8. April 2015

Who was the golden man from ancient Emona?

This specimen is known as "the Emonian". With a height of 1.45 m it is an almost life-size,  gold-plated statue that was found on a cemetery to the north of the Roman city of Emona, modern Ljubljana in Slovenia. Probably it was originally poised on top of a pillar.

The original statue is on display in the Narodni Muzej or National Museum of Ljubljana, a copy, elevated on a high statue, may be found on Zvezdni Trg, the Star Square, in the old centre of the city.

The identity of the depicted person is not known as no inscription has been found with the statue. Various noble families of equestrian rank are attested in Emona that had close ties to the ancient port of Aquileia further west, at the Adriatic Sea: One of them may have been able to afford a grave monument of such splendour.

In our novel series "Romanike" we have for narrative purposes attributed the Emonian to the noble House of Caesernii that is attested in Emona by several contemporary inscriptions (Charis is serving them as a kitchen-maiden). Some of the most prominent members of this equestrian family included the brothers Caesernius Macedo and Caesernius Statianus who were councellors of emperor Hadrian. For that reason, the Caesernii may plausibly have been wealthy enough to commission a statue like the Emonian.

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