Prima Porta

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When was it dated?
Probably around 20BC but some theories suggest Tiberius had it made in AD14 when Augustus died
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Breast plate - eagles
Depicts Parthians handing back lost standards to Tiberius in 20BC - eagles were lost by Crassus at Carrhae in 53BC and Marc Antony in 40 and 36BC
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How does it represent Tiberius
As a tyrannical figure - a leader of the Empire
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Breast plate - gods
Depicts a number of gods including, Caelus (the sky god), Aurora, and Apollo (Augustus' patron) - creates strong links to his claimed patronage
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Sphinx on shoulder pads
Represents the defeat of Cleopatra in 31BC - Battle of Actium "Egypt I added to the Roman Empire"
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Cupid on his right leg
Augustus claimed to have patronage to Venus, mother of Cupid - creates strong links from the Julian family to the gods
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What is Augustus depicted as?
A god - he has no shoes on - Augustus never wanted to be depicted as a god, which could mean the theory that Tiberius had it made, holds some grounding
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Original design
2M tall, and may have been painted - several Roman copies in marble still exist
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Where was it found?
Found in Livia's house - never meant for public viewing? Suetonius represents him as being very modest, and it is not a modest sculpture
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Breast plate - eagles

Back

Depicts Parthians handing back lost standards to Tiberius in 20BC - eagles were lost by Crassus at Carrhae in 53BC and Marc Antony in 40 and 36BC

Card 3

Front

How does it represent Tiberius

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

Breast plate - gods

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Sphinx on shoulder pads

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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