List of Marbles discovered by Gavin Hamilton in the ruins near Rome since 1769

After AD 1775

Charles Townley records the finds from a remarkable series of excavations

During the eighteenth century, visitors on the Grand Tour marvelled at the displays of classical sculpture as they travelled through Italy. Many of the more important sculptures were in the Museo Vaticano in Rome. However, new discoveries were being made from excavations in and around the city. Some visitors managed to bring home examples as souvenirs of the Grand Tour, and a few were able to acquire larger collections.

These excavations were often financed by British visitors or by agents acting on their behalf. Gavin Hamilton (1723-98) was one such agent, best known for his excavations in Lazio, Italy. He obtained statues, busts and reliefs for the Museo Clementino in Rome and for several important collections in England. Hamilton was a regular agent for Charles Townley, and provided him with many fine sculptures for his collection. The collection is now on display in The British Museum.

In this list from the Townley Archive at The British Museum, Charles Townley records details of the marble sculptures discovered by Hamilton in the ruins around Rome since 1769. It was sewn into a booklet around 1799.

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More information


B.F. Cook, The Townley Marbles (London, The British Museum Press, 1985)

A. Wilton and I. Bignamini (eds.), Grand Tour: the lure of Italy (London, Tate Gallery Publishing, 1996)


Height: 370.000 mm
Width: 230.000 mm

Museum number

Archives TY 14/94


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