Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has unveiled South America’s revolutionary icon Simon Bolivar’s 3-D image, who died in 1830 after leading the fight against Spanish colonial rule in the region. Constructed based on scans of the 19th century hero’s skull.
Two years after exhuming the remains of Latin America liberator Simon Bolivar, Venezuela released a new 3-D portrait of the man and said arsenic and blister beetle venom may have hastened Simon Bolivar’s death.
South America’s founding father got a unique present for his 229th birthday : a new face and a fresh autopsy of Simon Bolivar. Using forensic techniques and computerized scans of Bolivar’s skull, Venezuelan researchers created a lifelike portrait of Latin American independence hero Simon Bolivar.
Simon Bolivar has long been revered in Latin America, where he helped free Venezuela, Colombia, Peru and Bolivia from the Spanish. But during his 13 years in the presidency, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has helped turn the Venezuelan-born Simon Bolivar into a cult figure.
Liberator Simon Bolivar gets revamped face and death certificate to his 229th birthday
Hugo Chavez, a big admirer of the Venezuelan-born national hero Simon Bolivar said : ‘ Bolivar is the fight that does not end, he is born every day in ourselves, in his people, in the children, in the fight for life and for social justice. He was, is and will be one of the greats of humanity, a true giant of the human cause. ‘
Among Hugo Chavez’s first acts as president in 1999 was to push through a constitution that changed the country’s name to The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. El Libertador’s image is plastered in government offices and Hugo Chavez rarely gives a speech where his name isn’t dropped.
President Hugo Chavez’s fascination with Simon Bolivar / Chavez unveils Bolivar’s 3-D face image
While computer modeling software played a key role in the reconstruction, Barcelona’s VisualForensic laboratory also manually added in details – like estimations of the former leader Simon Bolivar’s skin color, tissue thickness and bone density.
The new portraits come 2 years after state television showed Simon Bolivar’s skeletal remains in a dramatic ceremony. With the national anthem playing in the background, a group of scientists wearing white coats rolled up a black cloth, revealing a skeleton on the table. The broadcast then faded to black, showing Hugo Chavez singing along to the national anthem.
Most historical accounts say tuberculosis killed Simon Bolivar, who died in 1830 at the age of 47. But Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, who often mentions Simon Bolivar in speeches and describes him as a personal hero, ordered investigators to exhume the body of the former military leader and determine whether he was murdered.
Venezuelan government has confirmed an investigation into what caused Simon Bolivar’s death is continued.