A Surface Geology Find

Stone statue of a Roman child

This statue is perhaps a funerary portrait. It depicts a child, four or five years old, wear­ing a thick cloak and holding a ball. The head is missing, suggesting that the statue had been vandalizes long ago, since the easiest and most attractive part of any statue to a thief is the head. A small pigtail suggests that the statue is of a girl.

It is 2nd century AD and was found during the rebuilding of Westminster School, in Great College Street  It is now displayed in the Museum of London. Burial within the walls of a Roman city was forbidden, so the cemeteries are found along tile approaching roads. Westminster is some distance from the old Roman City of London, so perhaps there was a hamlet at Westminster and the child could have lived there, or could have died while the family was travelling and the death commemorated later by a statue.

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Pages 14-15

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