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Recovered bust 'not Nero's mother' says art superintendent

19/10/2012

'Head not imperial, not from Vesuvius area'

Recovered bust 'not Nero's mother' says art superintendent

Rome, October 19 - A bust thought to be looted from Pompeii and recovered by Police does not depict the mother of Roman Emperor Nero, the art superintendent of Parma said Friday. "The head, that perhaps was part of an offering statue...cannot in any way be identified as that of Agrippina Minor or any female member of the imperial family," said a statement from the superintendent's office. On Thursday police in northern Italy announced that they had recovered the bust and, citing the Parma superintendent's office, said it "probably depicts the face of Agrippina Minor, that is Giulia Agrippina Augusta, the mother of Emperor Nero". The superintendency denies ever saying that. And, while it confirmed that the piece likely dates to between 100 BC and 50 AD, it disagreed with police reports that it was stolen from the area of Pompeii and Herculaneum, which were destroyed by the eruption of Mt Vesuvius in 79 AD. "Upon first analysis, it appears difficult to say that the bust is compatible with works in the area of Vesuvius," said the statement, saying it more likely came from the area bordering the modern-day regions of Lazio and Campania.