Antinous was the companion of the Roman Emperor Hadrian, a Bithynian youth renowned for his beauty. When he drowned in the Nile, either by accident, suicide or as sacrifice, Hadrian dedicated himself to the boy's deification, commissioning countless likenesses and temples to his worship. Antinous' face thus became one of the most recognisable and well preserved likenesses of the period, and in the Victorian age he was adopted by a homosexual intellectual elite as a figure of both boyish beauty and pederastic devotion.