Greek art of antiquity holds a rich historical significance and includes the full gamut of sculptures, paintings, pottery, sculptures, coin designs and gem engravings. One such archaeological statue that has attracted the attention of millions of people around the world is venus de milo, a luminous, beautiful, white, female statue housed in the Louvre Museum. Depicting the mythological Greek goddess Aphrodite, this semi-nude effigy is a masterpiece of paramount proportions. This 6 feet 8 inches tall standing statue is also considered to be a depiction of Venus, the Greek goddess of love and beauty.
Historical significance of Venus de Milo
The statue was discovered on the Greek island of Melos (Milos) on 8 April 1820 by a young farmer named Yorgos Kantrotas. The effigy was dug up in two pieces, while several other ruins of the statue were found nearby which were later reassembled. The first fragment discovered was of her upper torso with a classical S-curve, while the second fragment was her legs and hips wrapped in wrapped clothing.
This larger-than-life dreamy masterpiece is said to have been created by Alexandros of Antioch, a renowned Greek sculptor of the Hellenistic era, who is also known for creating many other ancient sculptures, including the statue of Alexander the Great. The luminous female statue of Venus de Milo was gifted by the Marquis de Rivière to Louis XVIII, who later handed it over to the Louvre Museum in 1821 for public display. Today the sculpture is considered a timeless masterpiece of the Louvre and will continue to fascinate millions for centuries to come.
Some interesting facts about Venus de Milo
Here are some interesting facts about the famous sculpture that we bet you didn’t know and that are worth adding to your knowledge base.
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venus de milo with drawers
In 1936, a Spanish surrealist named Salvador Dalí painted a half-size plaster replica of the famous Venus de Milo by incorporating drawers into the statue’s left knee, stomach, abdomen, breast, and forehead. Dalí’s transformation of the mannequin into a living piece of furniture was inspired by the works of Sigmund Freud.
This ancient semi-nude Grecian statue is believed to depict Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty. However, some sculptors and scholars argue that this marble statue, created by Alexandros of Antioch, represents the sea goddess Amphitrite.
mysterious missing arm
Some modern art historians believe that the missing arms of the Venus de Milo may have been broken off during a raid off the coast of Melos by French and Turkish sailors in 1820. While some critics still argue that the statue’s missing arms were never discovered, others claim that a left hand holding an apple was found along with other fragments of the statue in 1820.
the incomplete statue was looted
Historians claim that the presence of piercings around her wrists, ears and head indicate that the goddess was once adorned with jewellery. But, when the statue was excavated by Yorgos Kentarotas on the Greek island of Melos he found no jewellery, leading to speculation that all the jewels had been looted or were still undiscovered.
Other famous things to see in the Louvre Museum
Here are some other fascinating pieces of artwork that you should not miss on your day trip to the famous Louvre Museum:
1. Mona Lisa Painting
One of the Louvre’s most visited and admired paintings, the Mona Lisa is the most valuable and iconic painting in the world. Mona Lisa of the famous Italian artist Leonardo da Vinci will mesmerize you with its artistic charm and mysterious look. Set against an imaginary background, the painting depicts the woman sitting with her arms folded and looking at every viewer with an enigmatic smile.
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2. Winged Victory of Samothrace
This stunning 18-foot marble statue represents the Greek goddess of victory named Nike. It was discovered in 1863 by French archaeologist Charles Champoiseau. This masterpiece of Hellenistic art with its missing arms and head is one of the Louvre’s top attractions.
3. Coronation of Napoleon
Another priceless masterpiece of the Louvre Museum, The Coronation of Napoleon is a grand canvas 33 feet wide and 20 feet tall. This monumental oil painting was one of the finest works of Jacques-Louis David, who took almost 3 years to complete this masterpiece (from 1804 to 1807). The painting depicts the coronation of Napoleon I which took place at Notre-Dame de Paris.
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4. Great Sphinx of Tennis
If you are a big fan of Egyptian antiquities, be sure to visit The Great Sphinx of Tanis, found in Room 338, Crypt of the Sphinx. One of the Louvre’s top attractions, this sphinx with the head of a king and the body of a lion is one of the largest sphinx artifacts found outside of Egypt. This colossal statue, found among the ruins of the Temple of Amun at Tanis in 1825, weighs approximately 26 tons.
Venus De Milo Restaurant
The Louvre Museum has around 15 luxurious restaurants and cafés to satiate your hunger after a tiring session of exploring this huge world-famous museum. Some of the best restaurants to relax and enjoy some snacks are listed below:
At Bistrot Benoît, you can taste mouth-watering French cuisine, including delicious négalle cassette, frog quenelle, veal blanquette, rum baba and authentic pate en crotte seasoned with thyme.
Place: Hall Napoleon, under the pyramid
Time: Open daily (except Tuesday) and breakfast is served between 9 am to 11:30 am while lunch timings are from 11:30 am to 5 pm. Restaurant remains open until 9:45 pm on Wednesdays and Fridays
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2. Café Marli
Located in the heart of the museum, this authentic cafeteria is perfect for relaxing and enjoying the views of the pyramids. Apart from serving great tasting dishes, the café also lets you enjoy some refreshing cocktails.
Place: Napoleon’s Court
Time: Open daily (except Tuesday) from 8 am to 2 pm
3. Café Richelieu-Angelina
A luxurious restaurant that serves sandwiches and salads in addition to Angelina’s delicious pastries such as Mont-Blanc, crispy vanilla eclairs, macaroons and more. In this restaurant, have the opportunity to discover a delicious menu and an excellent setting where the terrace overlooks the Cour Napoleon and the Pyramids.
Place: Richelieu Wing, first floor, between the Napoleon III apartments and the decorative arts galleries
Time: Open daily (except Tuesday) from 10 am to 4:45 pm and on Wednesday and Friday until 6:30 pm. In July and August, the café is open until 8:30 pm.
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Best time to visit Venus de Milo
If you want to visit the museum in peace, consider visiting after 3 pm when it is less crowded. The museum remains closed on Tuesdays while on all other days except Wednesday and Friday it remains open from 9 AM to 6 PM, for passionate art lovers the museum remains open till 9:45 PM to know more. Must purchase an entrance ticket worth 15 euros per person.
Comment – The best season to visit the Louvre Museum (and Paris) is spring starting in February, March and April.
How to reach Venus de Milo (Louvre Museum)
If you prefer to travel by bus, make note of these bus numbers 95, 21, 27, 69, 72, and 76. Buses are easily available in the city to reach any part of the city.
You can also reach the museum by car via Avenue du General Lemonnier. You can park your car in the underground parking lot of the Carrousel du Louvre (chargeable). If you want to explore this beautiful city alone, car rentals are available in Paris. However, it can be a bit expensive. If you are a couple or a solo traveller, you can also rent a Vespa or a bike.
The nearest metro stations to the museum are Palais Royal – Musée du Louvre (lines 1 and 7), Louvre-Rivoli (line 1), Tuileries (line 1), and Pont-Neuf (line 7). This is the best and economical way to reach the museum.
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If you are planning a trip to Paris, be sure to visit the Louvre Historical Museum for a mesmerizing experience. The stunning Venus de Milo will definitely mesmerize you with her stunning S-curves and dazzling beauty.
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