Statue of Mars

Contributed by Yorkshire Museum

This life-size homage to the Roman God of War is thought to be the best example of a Roman statue ever found in Britain. Wearing full armour and carrying a sword and shield, the fourth century statue will be the centre piece for the new exhibition.

The god of war was very popular with the Roman army and it's no surprise that was found in York, with its legionary fortress and garrison of some 5,000 soldiers.

The whole statue, like all Roman stonework, would have been painted and could well have appeared quite life-like. His feet are missing, it is likely they were left behind when he was pulled from his base. This was done quite carefully as there is no other damage. Perhaps his power still worried those who pulled down the temple.

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