Inv. Scu 1072
The Lateran was the original home to the Papal art collection before the building of the Vatican Palace during the Renaissance. Alongside the head was the fragment of a bronze hand and partial forearm, as well as a globe, all apparently parts of the same statue.
Twelfth century sources also document the presence of a golden crown worn on the head, which is now lost. It is not known whether the statue stood upright or was in a sitting position.
Scholars estimate that the statue stood between 10 and 12 meters high and believe it was created through the lost wax technique. Twelfth century sources also document the presence of a golden crown worn on the head, which is now lost.
While it has long been believed that the head represents the Emperor Constantine (306-337), it is possible that the man represented is actually his successor Constantius II (337-361). Representations of the two share many iconographic and physical similarities that make it impossible to absolutely declare the identity of the head.
The work dates to the early 4th century A.D.
Numerous medieval texts record the presence of this portrait at the Piazza of the Lateran .
The head, a masterpiece of ancient bronze work, was moved to the Capital in 1471 as part of the donation of Sixtus IV.
This donation, which included statues like the famous bronze She-Wolf, can be seen as the origins of the Capitoline Museums.