Rome skull belongs to Pliny the Elder

Experts claim skull from Pompeii belongs to Roman admiral.

A mysterious skull preserved at Rome's Accademia di Arte Sanitaria belongs to Roman military leader Pliny the Elder, experts have claimed.

However while scientists say that the skull, which was discovered at Pompeii 100 years ago, belongs "in all likelihood" to Pliny the Elder, the accompanying jawbone found does not correspond.

The claim, which follows two years of research and scientific tests, would seem to represent the first positive identification of the remains of a high-ranking figure from ancient Rome.

However the fact that the jawbone does not appear to correspond to the skull has baffled experts.

Pliny the Elder died leading a rescue mission to Pompeii after the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, in what is considered history's first large-scale rescue operation.

The study into the skull was coordinated by art historian and journalist Andrea Cionci in collaboration with experts from Italy's National Research Council (CNR), Rome's Sapienza University and the universities of Florence and Macerata.

Who was Pliny the Elder?

Born Gaius Plinius Secundus in 23 AD, Pliny the Elder was a friend of Emperor Vespasian and, in addition to being a celebrated naval and army commander of the early Roman empire, he was an author, naturalist and philosopher. Pliny the Elder also wrote one of the world's earliest encyclopedias, Naturalis Historia.

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Rome skull belongs to Pliny the Elder

Lungotevere in Sassia, 3, 00186 Roma RM, Italy

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