Caligula ship mosaic returned to Italy

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(ANSA) – ROME, MAR 11 – A mosaic that once adorned the lost
ships that flamboyant Roman Emperor Caligula sailed on Lake Nemi
near Rome has been returned to Italy after being found four
years ago as a coffee table decoration of an Italian art dealer
in New York.
    The famed mosaic, once thought lost forever, will return to its
former home in the Museum of Roan Ships at Nemi after being
recovered by the crack art cops of the Carabinieri.
    Museum director-general Massimo Osanna said the mosaic could
once more be admired in situ, COVID restrictions permitting.
    The mosaic, made up of inlaid marble in a technique called opus
sectile, was part of the paving on the two massive ships that
Caligula used ceremonially at Nemi in the first century AD.
    The reign of the famously eccentric and bloodthirsty emperor
only lasted four years, until his assassination in 41 AD, and
the mosaic is one of the most prized products of his term.
    The ships were dug up and displayed in 1936 but almost totally
destroyed in a WWII Allied air raid, making the mosaic all the
more precious. (ANSA).


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