Sunday, November 24, 2013

Medieval Discovery of Roman Girl

Some of our greatest archaeological finds have happened by accident, revealing wonders from the past. 
Such a thing could also happen in the Middle Ages, such as when the perfectly preserved body of a girl was discovered along the Via Appia just outside of Rome. The discovery took place in April of 1485.
The name of this girl, however, would continue to remain a mystery, as any inscriptions from this site had long since disappeared. One rumour that was spread around was that this was the body of Cicero’s daughter Tulliola. Another said that had an inscription had been found, saying ’Here lies Julia Prisca Secunda. She lived twenty-six years and one month. She has committed no fault, except to die.’ Everyone did agree that this girl must have been famous and wealthy. In his diary, Antonio di Vaseli, who also saw and marvelled at the body, explained she “must be an illustrious one, because none but a noble and wealthy person could afford to be buried in such a costly sarcophagus thus filled with precious ointments.”

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