The modern history of the Bronzes begins on August 16th, 1972, when, after an episode that has had implications that have not yet been completely clarified, two bronze statues were found, apparently without any modern findings in the surrounding area, at the site of the Porto Forticchio di Riace Marina.
Two millennia at the bottom of the sea, a heritage of humanity is waiting to be discovered at the MARC (Archaeological National Museum) of Reggio Calabria
After the recovery, the statues were sent for a first restoration, which was carried out between 1975 and 1980 in Florence. This intervention had two objectives: to clean and preserve the external surfaces. The removal of the fused land was carried out in a restoration laboratory located in the Reggio Museum from 1992-1995. The last restoration was finally concluded between 2010 and 2013. The two statues, named “A” and “B”, later renamed in Reggio as “il giovane” (“the young”) and “il Vecchio” (“the old”), are respectively 1.98 and 1.97 metres high. Their original weight of 400 kg has now decreased to about 160 kg thanks to the removal of the fused land. Today, they are on display to the public at the Archaeological Museum of Reggio Calabria.
DID YOU KNOW THAT…?
Regarding their dating, the place where they were made, and whom the Riace Bronzes represent, there are twelve scientifically recognized hypotheses from scholars all over the world … all of which contrast with one another. This increases the fascination with and mystery around the two heroes even more!
Treasures at the bottom of the sea
The Ioanian and the Tyrrehenian Calabrian seas continue to preserve other treasures besides archaeological ones. The depths of these wonderful masses of water, praised since the time of The Odyssey, are the natural environment in which elements of the amazing marine flora and fauna thrive. Watch the video.
Not just Bronzes
The entire city of Reggio, and the province, are an open-air archaeological park. From the remains on the Falcomatà waterfront, to the excavations of the ancient Locri, the landscape offers many paths that lead towards the discovery of the territory during various historical periods through archaeological findings, monuments, and documentary evidence.