Skip to comments.Archaeologist Discovers Lost Arms of Venus De Milo
Posted on 11/13/2002 2:02:19 PM PST by Rodney King
By SAM HAYES
MELOS, Greece The missing arms of the Venus de Milo were discovered last week in a cellar in Southern Croatia and it turns out shes got hideous man-hands!
We rushed the arms to the Louvre in Paris and matched them up to the statue. They were a perfect fit, says art historian Ovidio Bartoli.
Then we did some carbon-dating and we confirmed that these are the real deal.
Word of the discovery has created an uproar in the art world.
Its hard to believe someone so talented in anatomy would have such trouble keeping the fingers in proportion, notes Campbell Hauser, the archaeologist who discovered the statues freakish limbs. Instead of looking like the hands of a goddess, they look like those of a plumber!
Art critics and historians are up in arms over this shocking find. Debate rages over whether or not the missing limbs should be restored. Leading the argument against restoration is art historian Ovidio Bartoli of the Ludvian Museum of National Art.
The misshapen appendages are an abomination, declares Bartoli. Im certain the artist removed the arms himself after he saw how they came out. He knew he would have a beautiful sculpture, if not for those awful ham- hands.
On the other side of the debate is art critic Guisseppi Vesper, who says, These arms are a historical find, one that should be fully restored.
Bartoli disagrees. Restoring this work of art to its original form would be a travesty. It would be like filling in the crack in the Liberty Bell.
No one knows who sculpted the Venus de Milo, or exactly when it was carved. It was found by a peasant on an Aegean island in a basement.
Over the years, art advisors have proposed adding arms holding apples, lamps and clothes and even arms that pointed in different directions.
But Frances King Louis VIII decided that the Venus de Milo was perfect just the way she was.
An executive board at the Louvre will decide their fate next week.
Vesper calls it an insult to the memory of the artist to not reattach the arms to the statue. I am confident this is what he wouldve wanted, the art critic says.
He adds, When it comes time to fight this battle in court, I will have a team of lawyers by my side. I will not face this challenge un-armed . . . and neither should the Venus de Milo.
One of my very favorite publications.
Very cool. Carbon dating a marble statue. This is the kind of real science we should be pissing away money for...
I believe a geologist might be able to determine if one piece of marble matched another piece, but I doubt carbon dating would help.
If they were able to prove that one of the hands originally held a lamp, they'd have to rename it the Hillary de Milo, of course.
You beat me to it.