Gaius Stern, a former visiting professor at St. Thomas, will present “The Lady Vanishes! Roman Imperial Daughters in Politics and Art” at 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, in Murray Herrick Campus Center, Room 204.
This lecture examines one of the finest surviving works of Ancient Roman Art, the Ara Pacis Augustae, built 13-10 BC, which celebrates the beginning of the Pax Romana after a long spell of civil wars. The regime of the first emperor Augustus and his partner in power Marcus Agrippa march in a Thanksgiving to the gods to express appreciation and offer a sacrifice to the gods for Rome’s new prosperity.
Members of their immediate family participate, but the monument is damaged and scholars dispute the identity of several figures. Some of Agrippa’s five daughters of varying age and two sons (both of whom Augustus adopted) can no longer be found on the surviving panels, and one has been restored as a man by a sculptor in 1770.
This paper will discuss them all and propose that the inclusion sends a different message about peace
than would images of soldiers.