Ermafrodito hall wpe37.jpg (783 byte)

This room is situated on the Ground Floor of the Museum

Hermaphrodite who lies down languidly across an unmade bed, is responsible for the name of this smalž but valuable room. In the time of Cardinal Borghese, the villa preserved the old statue of an hermaphrodite. The pedestal had the shape of a bed and was made by Bernini. Cardinal Scipione hid the statue from his guests because he did not want to upset them with the view of ambiguous sexuality. He kept the statue in a wooden cupboard which he seldom opened.ermafrodita1.jpg (11780 byte)
This statue was taken to the Louvre Museum in 1807. lt was then replaced by this present "Hermaphrodite", dated lst century b.C., which is a roman copy of an original greek statue made by Policle in the 2nd century b.C., discovered and restored by Vincenzo Pacetti. In front of the statue one can see a red porphyry basin, which had been in Castel San’Angelo untiž 1779.

The floor of this room has a beautiful, roman mosaic which portrays fishing while the ceiling, painted by Nicola Bonvicini in 1782 depicts some episodes of the myth of hermaphrodite, including the beautiful Hermes' and Aphrodite's son union with the body of the nymph, desperately in love with him. The Fantastic Landscapes were painted by the Flemish painter Paul Bril. Among the old sculptures in this room, the most valuable are Aphrodite's Head (100 a.C.) and Agrippina's Portrait (37-41 a.C.).

For information and reservation: