Marcus Aurelius and the legend of the owl

Marcus Aurelius

I'm going to tell you something less know about the bronze statue of Maurcus Aurelius in Rome at Capitoline Hill in the Piazza del Campidoglio. Popular legend has it that theThe owl will sing heralding the end of the world and will fly away when all the equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius "will be covered in gold", ie will return in gold. From this legend here comes the way to say, no longer used, "be covered in gold as Marcurelio" or "be at the end."

 The statue of Marcus Aurelius is in gilded bronze, and here and there still remains some traces of gilding. The owl is right there, between the horse's ears, even though in reality it is not an owl, but only the tuft of mane. When they made the copy of the equestrian statue to be exhibited in Piazza del Campidoglio, the superstitious could fear that the twin of Marcus Aurelius could shine in his new gilding and then "discover into gold" and to fulfill the prophecy. This did not happen because the gold could only be obtained using mercury, highly polluting substance. So the idea was scrapped, and the owl is still there ...