From Ancient Egypt, Ancient India, Ancient Greece, and Ancient Rome to the present, statues have been associated with what people in the past chose to celebrate and commemorate. The truth is, ancient statues are hundreds and thousands of years old and they have all gone through bad experiences and conditions. Below are some theories to your question.
As the time flew, is it normal that natural causes like corrosion to affect the statues and it’s the main reason why the nose is missing but also a part of the face/body. But that is even true? Most of these statues were indoors where they were not much affected by wind and rain
Statues, lives after death
Especially Ancient Egypt was known for having strict religious beliefs, and they believed that people’s life force, was transferred to their statues when they died. The Egyptians strongly believed that the nose itself was the source of life for the deceased. In those days, people who went to rob the tombs were breaking the statue’s nose because they thought they won’t be able to breathe and was the only way to kill them once and for all. But, the nose wasn’t the only thing targeted, other parts of the statues such as the head or arms were also damaged.
Defacing is also a potential cause of the missing noses on ancient statues. The dynasties that came before the current one were seen as inferior, so most leaders would have the status of previous leaders, pharaohs, or rulers defaced. In the Ancient world, to solidify their superiority, defamation was a common move.
Other causes can be attributed to human errors where the statues were mishandled, kicked, or knocked over. Parts of statues that stick out, such as noses, arms, heads, and others are always the first parts to break off.
Facts about Ancient Statues
- The oldest confirmed statuettes in the world are The Löwenmensch and the Venus of Hohle Fels, both from Germany. The scientists predicted that the statues dating to 35,000-40,000 years ago.
- Since marble and bronze were so easy to get, many of the statues were made of these materials.
- The Venus de Milo is an ancient Greek sculpture from the Hellenistic period, and its one of the most famous works of ancient world.
- The Nefertiti Bust never had the left eye.
Read more: Why are so many headless statues?