Mystery of head could be revealed at art lectures

MYSTERY The Bosham Head
MYSTERY The Bosham Head
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THE mystery behind a huge stone object known as the Bosham Head, could be revealed in a talk by an academic.

Dr Miles Russell, a senior lecturer in prehistoric and Roman archaeology from Bournemouth University, believes the object, known as the Bosham Head, could be a bust of the Roman Emperor Nero.

Little is known about the 26st stone head, which is on display at the Novium Museum, Chichester. It was found many years ago in a flower bed in the vicarage garden at Bosham.

Emperor Nero came to Britain at the age of 14 and ruled the Roman Empire from 54 to 68 AD. Depictions of him are rare as he was regarded as a cruel leader and portraits of him were destroyed.

Dr Russell has been researching the head as part of his work on monumental sculpture. His lecture – Finding Nero (and other Roman Emperors) – is at The Novium on Thursday, October 24 from 6.30-8pm.

The lecture is one of three entitled ‘Ancient Roman Art – powerful, political or just pretty?’. The others are:

n An Introduction to Roman Art on Thursday, October 10 from 6.30pm to 8pm

n Chichester’s Roman ruler and his people: a kingdom and its artistic legacy with Professor Martin Henig of Oxford University on October 17, from 6.30pm to 8pm.

Tickets cost £12 or £30 for all three lectures. Booking is essential.

Anooshka Rawden, The Novium’s collections officer, says: ‘As one of the first major Roman towns on the south coast, Chichester has left a fascinating artistic legacy, possibly acting as a blueprint for urban development in Roman Britain.

To book tickets or for information contact The Novium, Tower Street, Chichester on email at or call 01243 775888.