A replacement hand and penis on a pair of Roman statues has sparked the latest scandal to hit Silvio Berlusconi.
The Italian Prime Minister ordered the missing body parts be added to the marble representations of Venus and Mars at his official residence in Rome.
Experts are horrified, insisting it is tasteless and that the artworks, dating back to 175 AD, should have been left as they were.
However Mario Catalono, the premier’s personal architect, is defending what critics decry as cultural plastic surgery. He says the restoration was based on images scanned from other statues with a similar posture and position and that the offending additions are detachable.
The cost of 70,000 euros has also raised eyebrows at a time when embattled Berlusconi has ordered massive cuts to Italy’s cultural budget.