The classical appearance (Roman stola, sandals, facial expression) derives from Libertas, ancient Rome's goddess of freedom from slavery, oppression, and tyranny. Her raised right foot is on the move. This symbol of Liberty and Freedom is not standing still or at attention in the harbor, it is moving forward, as her left foot tramples broken shackles at her feet, in symbolism of the United States' wish to be free from oppression and tyranny. Since the 1940s, it has been claimed that the seven spikes on the crown epitomize the Seven Seas and seven continents.Her torch signifies enlightenment. The tablet in her hand represents knowledge and shows the date of the United States Declaration of Independence, in roman numerals, July IV, MDCCLXXVI. The general appearance of the statue’s head approximates the Roman Sun-god Apollo or the Greek Sun-god Helios as preserved on an ancient marble tablet - Apollo was represented as a solar deity, dressed in a similar robe and having on its head a "radiate crown" with the seven spiked rays of the Helios-Apollo's sun rays, like the Statue's nimbus or halo. The ancient Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, was a statue of Helios with a radiate crown. The Colossus is referred to in the 1883 sonnet The New Colossus by Emma Lazarus. Lazarus' poem was later engraved on a bronze plaque and mounted inside the Statue of Liberty in 1903.
The interior of the pedestal contains a bronze plaque inscribed with the sonnet "The New Colossus" by Emma Lazarus. It has never been engraved on the exterior of the pedestal.
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1) as a monument to political cooperation between France and
the United States;