Art: Out of Tiberius' Cave

Four and a half centuries have passed since Roman archaeologists uncovered the famed Laocoön sculpture, a huge, powerful work of marble showing the death of a Trojan priest and his two sons (who were sentenced by Athena to be crushed by serpents because Laocoön had warned against the Trojan horse). Placed in the Vatican, the Laocoön group profoundly impressed Michelangelo, and through him shaped the art of the High Renaissance. But even the Vatican experts have long believed that their Laocoön is only a copy of the original. Last week archaeologists the world...

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