In November 2019 there was disappointment in Bullas when it emerged that a 2,000-year-old sculpture of the goddess Venus which was found on 3rd May 1867 at the Roman villa of Los Cantos in the municipality was to be added on long-term loan to the collection of the Murcia Archaeological Museum in the regional capital, after an agreement was reached with the national archaeological museum in Madrid, but the new year has brought good news for the town as it has been decided that with the decision that the figure will be displayed, at least temporarily, in the local Museo del Vino, or wine museum.
The news follows a meeting between the Mayoress of Bullas, María Dolores Muñoz, and the head of the Cultural Items department in the regional government of Murcia, Rafael Gómez Carrasco, during which it was agreed that during 2020 various activities will be carried out including an exhibition related to the Romans in Bullas.
The “Venus of Bullas” was discovered by agricultural workers at the villa of Los Cantos, and is assumed to have been one of a collection of statues in the gardens of the property. Unfortunately it is incomplete, existing only from the belly down, but it is clear that the figure was meant to be viewed front-on.
Venus, the goddess of love and beauty, was revered by the Romans to the extent that Julius Caesar claimed to be descended from her. This led to her image passing from the official pantheon of the Roman gods to public places and private homes, as was the case in Bullas, where the remains discovered suggest that the Villa de los Cantos was at its peak in the second century AD.
The statue was taken to Madrid in 1894 and was exhibited at the national archaeological museum for many years, but in recent decades has been relegated to storage and until last year had not been seen in the Region of Murcia since the 19th century.
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