Gregoriano Profano Museum

Gregoriano Profano Museum

The Museo Gregoriano Profano, also known as the Profane Gregorian Museum, is one of the Vatican Museums located in Rome, Italy. This museum houses a collection of ancient artworks and artifacts, spanning from the 1st to the 4th century AD. The museum was established in 1854 by Pope Pius IX and was named after his predecessor Pope Gregory XVI. The collection in the Profane Gregorian Museum includes a vast array of ancient artworks, such as sarcophagi, statues, busts, mosaics, and frescoes, as well as decorative objects like lamps, vases, and jewelry. Many of these artifacts were discovered in the ruins of ancient Roman villas, tombs, and public buildings, while others were donated by private collectors and foreign archaeological expeditions.

The museum is divided into several sections, each dedicated to a different aspect of ancient Roman life. The first section displays artworks related to daily life, such as kitchen utensils, toiletries, and writing tools. The second section is dedicated to Roman religion, showcasing statues of gods and goddesses, and religious objects such as votive offerings and cult objects. The third section is devoted to Roman art and architecture, displaying a variety of sculptures, reliefs, and architectural fragments from ancient Rome.

The fourth section of the museum is dedicated to the Roman army, displaying weapons, armor, and military decorations. The fifth section showcases ancient Roman coins and medals, providing a glimpse into the economic and political life of the ancient Romans. Finally, the sixth section is dedicated to ancient Near Eastern art, displaying artifacts from the Babylonian, Assyrian, and Persian civilizations. The Museo Gregoriano Profano is a fascinating museum that offers visitors a chance to explore ancient Roman art and culture. With its impressive collection of artifacts, the museum provides a unique insight into the lives of ancient Romans and their cultural achievements.

Explore Gregoriano Profano Museum

Marble from the Parthenon

The Profane Gregorian Museum has a collection of marbles from the Parthenon in Athens, Greece. The collection is made up of fragments from the frieze, metopes, and pediments of the Parthenon. These marbles were brought to Rome in the early 19th century by the famous archaeologist and art collector, Giovanni Battista Lusieri, who sold them to Pope Pius VII.

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Athena and Marsyas

The sculpture of Athena and Marsyas is one of the most famous works in the Museo Gregoriano Profano. This Roman copy of a Greek original depicts the goddess Athena with Marsyas, a satyr who was flayed alive for challenging Apollo to a musical contest. The sculpture shows Athena holding a flute and Marsyas tied to a tree, with his skin hanging from a branch.

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Asàrotos òikos mosaic

The Asàrotos òikos mosaic is a unique and intriguing piece in the Museo Gregoriano Profano. It is a Roman floor mosaic depicting a scene of cleaning a dining room, but what makes it unusual is that the image shows a servant cleaning up the remains of a banquet, including vomit. This depiction of a not-so-glorious aspect of ancient Roman dining habits makes the mosaic a fascinating artifact.

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The Chiaramonti Niobid

The Museo Gregoriano Profano has a collection of ancient sculptures that were found in the Vatican Gardens in the 18th century. Among these sculptures is the Chiaramonti Niobid, a Roman copy of a Greek original depicting the figure of Niobe mourning the loss of her children. This sculpture is known for its exceptional craftsmanship and is considered to be one of the most important works of Roman sculpture.

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Julius Caesar

The Profane Gregorian Museum has a number of artifacts related to Julius Caesar, including coins, busts, and a life-size statue. One of the most interesting pieces in the collection is a bronze bust of Julius Caesar, which is believed to be a contemporary portrait made during his lifetime.

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Reliefs from the Palazzo della Cancelleria

The Palazzo della Cancelleria was one of the most important palaces in Renaissance Rome, and its decoration included a number of ancient Roman reliefs. These reliefs were removed from the palace in the 18th century and are now on display in the Museo Gregoriano Profano. The reliefs depict scenes from mythology and everyday life, and provide a valuable insight into the decorative tastes of Renaissance Rome.

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Mausoleum of the Haterii

The Mausoleum of the Haterii is a Roman funerary monument that was discovered in the 16th century. The monument is decorated with stucco reliefs depicting scenes from everyday life, as well as mythological figures. The reliefs are now on display in the Profane Gregorian Museum and provide a valuable insight into the funerary practices of ancient Rome.

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Mosaic from the Bath of Caracalla

The Museo Gregoriano Profano has a collection of mosaics from the Roman baths, including a particularly impressive mosaic from the Baths of Caracalla. The mosaic depicts a scene of a hunt, with figures on horseback and wild animals, and is considered to be one of the finest examples of ancient Roman mosaic work.

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Other Artifacts

The Profane Gregorian Museum also has a collection of other artifacts, including ancient Roman pottery, jewelry, and coins. One particularly interesting piece in the collection is a glass cup with a portrait of the Roman Emperor Hadrian. The cup features an intricate design and was made in the 2nd century AD.

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FAQs Of Gregoriano Profano Museum

What is the Museo Gregoriano Profano?

The Museo Gregoriano Profano is a museum located in Vatican City, dedicated to the display of ancient sculptures, mosaics, and other artifacts from the pagan world. It is a part of the Vatican Museums and was founded by Pope Gregory XVI in 1844.

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What are some of the most famous exhibits at the Profane Gregorian Museum?

The museum houses a vast collection of ancient Greek and Roman sculptures, including the celebrated "Athena and Marsyas" sculpture, which depicts the goddess Athena flaying the satyr Marsyas. Other notable pieces include the "Asàrotos òikos" mosaic, which depicts a servant cleaning a chamber pot, the "Chiaramonti Niobid," a sculpture of a dying Niobid, and the "Mausoleum of the Haterii," a monumental tomb with intricate carvings.

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Who founded the Museo Gregoriano Profano?

The Profane Gregorian Museum was founded by Pope Gregory XVI in 1844. The pope was an avid collector of ancient art and artifacts, and he established the museum as a way to showcase the Vatican's extensive collection of ancient sculptures, mosaics, and other objects.

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Can visitors take photographs inside the Profane Gregorian Museum?

Photography is generally not allowed inside the Profane Gregorian Museum, although there may be some exceptions for certain exhibits or events. Visitors should check with museum staff before taking any photographs or videos.

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How can I visit the Museo Gregoriano Profano?

The Museo Gregoriano Profano is located within the Vatican Museums complex in Vatican City. Visitors can enter the Vatican Museums through the main entrance on Viale Vaticano or through the entrance on the Piazza del Risorgimento. Tickets can be purchased in advance online or in person at the museum. It is recommended to book tickets in advance to avoid long lines.

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