For years, said Walda, an antique bronze statue of the emperor had stood in Green Square, now Martyrs’ Square. “It witnessed all the major events there from the era of the kings, to the Italian period, to the Gaddafi period,” he said. In the late 1970s, as things got tougher under the dictator, the statue started to get used as a way of cloaking and depersonalising subversion. “Septimius Severus became the mouthpiece for opposition,” explained Walda. “People would ask each other, ‘What’s Septimius Severus saying today? So Gaddafi decided to topple him.” The statue was duly removed from Green Square.
(Via The Guardian.)