Thief Uncovers Ancient Roman Tomb

Tue, 01/18/2011 - 14:09

A bust of the Roman Emperor Caligula

Italian police have uncovered a long lost tomb thanks to a robbery gone awry.

Caligula’s Tomb was discovered when a would-be tomb raider was caught trying to make away with a large statue. The robber was apprehended while loading a sculpture of the infamous Roman Emperor onto a boat for a watery getaway.

The criminal was intercepted by archaeological police, south of Rome, on Lake Nemi. The location tipped police off to the possible origins of the statue- Caligula was known to have had a villa and a floating temple on Lake Nemi.

The statue, which is worth an estimated 1 million Euro, is already exciting archaeologists. Many of Caligula’s monuments were destroyed after his death, and researchers are thrilled with the chance to learn more about the notorious leader.

Caligula ruled Rome from 37 AD to 41. As Emperor, he was widely regarded as being completely insane. He is remembered for reportedly sleeping with his sisters and trying to officially appoint his horse as a consul, the highest elected office in the Roman Republic. The discovery of his final resting place could shed more light ancient antics of the legendary ruler.