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Cult of Vediovis


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Statue of Vediovis (ca. 80 AD) from his temple on the Capitol (now in the Musei Capitolini)

From Dr Erin Warford (referenced below)

As Stefan Weinstock (referenced below, at p. 8) observed, evidence of the cult of Vediovis:

  1. “... appeared relatively late in Rome: two temples were built for him at the beginning of the 2nd century BC:

  2. one on the island in the Tiber, with a festival on 1st January; and

  3. the other on the Capitol , with a festival on 7th March.

  4. ...  This evidence is reliable, but does not reveal more than that Vediovis was considered to be an indigenous god [by this time, who could therefore] receive a temple inside the pomerium.”

The evidence in question come the three of the surviving calendar-based fasti:

  1. 1st January:

  2. fasti Antiates Maiores (84-55 BC): Aescula(pio) Co[r]o(ndini) Vedioue

  3. fasti Magistrorum vici (late 1st century BC): Aesc(ulapio) [Ved(ioui)]; and

  4. fasti Praenestini (6-9 AD): [Aescu]lapio Vedioui in insula.

  5. 7th March:

  6. fasti Antiates Maiores : Vedi(ove)/ in Ca[p]itol(io); and

  7. fasti Praenestini: ‘Ved]iovi Arcis Vediovis inter duo/ lucos

  8. The second of these records two temples of Vediovis on the Capitoline Hill, both of which were dedicated on 7th March:

  9. -one on the Arx (Citadel); and

  10. -one inter duo lucos (between two sacred groves) in the dip between the Arx and the Capitol proper (the site of the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus), on the traditional site of Romulus’ Asylum (a place of refuge for exiles and fugitives from the territory surrounding his newly-founded city).

However, as we shall see, other surviving evidence has to be taken into account before reaching such clear-cut conclusions.

Furius’ Temple on the Tiber Island


Possible location of the temples on the Tiber Island: adapted from A. Carandini (referenced below)

Putative ‘Sacellum Iovis Iurarii’ (on basis of CIL VI 40896a) =  later site of the church of San Giovanni Calibita,

Putative temples of Faunus and Vediovis to the west have presumably been located on the basis of Vitruvius (below)

(The second ‘Aedes Fauni’ on the south of the island seems to be a mistake: this is shown as ‘Semo Sancus’ at Table 247)

Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 323) listed all six of the temples on the Tiber Island that are recorded in one or more of the surviving calendar-based fasti:

  1. As we have seen, temples of Aesculapius, Corondini (?) and Vediovis  shared the dies natalis of 1st January.

  2. The only records of other temples in these sources were for:

  3. 13th February:

  4. -fasti via Principi Amedeo (27 BC-13 AD): Fauno [i]n insula

  5. 8th December:

  6. -fasti Antiates Maiores:  Tiberino Gaiae

  7. -fasti Amiternini (after 20 AD): Tiberino in Insula

None of these temples can be securely located on the island, although circumstantial evidence places the venerable Temple of Asculapius at its southern tip.  Furthermore, the temples of Corondini (?), Tiberinus and Gaia and are  quite obscure.  However:

  1. the temple of Aesculapius is well known from literary and epigraphic sources;

  2. there is a body of literary evidence for the temples Vediovis and Faunus, albeit that (as we shall see) it is difficult to interpret; and

  3. there is epigraphic evidence from the site of the church on San Giovanni Calibita (marked as ‘Sacellum Iovis Iurarii’ on the map above) for:

  4. a ‘monumentom’ of some kind dedicated to Jupiter Jurarius, probably in the 2nd half of the 2nd century BC; and

  5. another structure that also probably dates to this period, which was associated with the family of Caius Servilius, who (as we shall see) dedicated Furius’ temple on the island as duovir in 194 BC.

Literary Sources for Furius’ Temple on the Island

Livy

Livy noted that an unusually large number of temples were dedicated in 194 BC and listed four:

  1. “Several temples were dedicated in [Rome] in that year:

  2. one to Juno Matuta in the Forum Holitorium ... ;

  3. [one] to Faunus ... ;

  4. ... [one] to Fortuna Primigenia on the Quirinal hill ... ; and

  5. ... on the Tiber Island, ... a temple to Jupiter [that Furius had vowed in 200 BC]”, (‘History of  Rome’, 34: 53: 3-7).

Clearly, our immediate concern here is with the last of these temples.  Livy gave a fairly full account of the circumstances that led to its dedication:

  1. In 200 BC, immediately after Hannibal had finally been expelled from peninsular Italy, an army of Gallic  and Ligurian tribes suddenly attacked the Latin colonies of Placentia and Cremona in Cisalpine Gaul.  They took Placentia, but the praetor Lucius Furius Purpurio arrived with the consular army in time to defend Cremona.  At a crucial moment in the ensuing battle, he:

  2. “...  ... vowed a temple deo Iovi [see below], should he rout the enemy on that day”, (‘History of Rome’, 31: 21: 12);

  3. In 194 BC :

  4. “... the duovir Caius Servilius saw to the dedication on the Tiber Island of a temple to Iove (Jupiter), which had been vowed [in 200 BC] during the Gallic War by the praetor Lucius Furius Purpurio, who had subsequently contracted out its construction  as consul [in 196 BC]”, (‘History of  Rome, 34: 53: 5-6).

In his commentary on  the first of these passages, John Briscoe (referenced below, 1973, at p. 113) noted  that:

  1. “... ‘deo Iovi’ [as transmitted in the surviving manuscripts actually] makes little sense.”

He noted that a 17th century historian, Henri de Valois, had proposed the emendation to ‘Diiovi’.  This emendation is commonly applied in English translations (as in the translation by Evan Sage (1935) used in the link above).  However, Briscoe argued that ‘Diiovi’:

  1. “... is not otherwise attested, and  it seems to me that we should ... return to:

  2. the ‘Vediovi’ [put forward by Rudolf] Merkel ... [in 1841]; or

  3. the ‘Veoivi’ [put forward by Otto] Roßbach ... [in 1917].”

John Yardley (referenced below) followed this suggestion in his translation of 2000. 

Briscoe pointed out that:

  1. “... there is no such MSS authority for reading Vediovis or Veiovis [in the second passage], and it is best to keep ‘Iovis’ [here].”

He acknowledged that, if Livy had indeed identified the deity in the first passage as the putative ‘Vediovis’, then he was clearly mistaken in the second passage: in his opinion:

  1. “Livy could well have been inconsistent ... :  [this putative] error is far less striking than the conflict between [34: 53: 7 and 35: 41: 8, discussed below] ... and, in any case, Jupiter and Veiovis are very closely connected.”

He referred here to the fact that  ‘ve-iovis’ is usually taken to refer to the ‘young Jove/ Jupiter’. 

Eric Orlin (referenced below, 1997, at p 145 and note 120) listed a number of errors in Livy 34: 53: 3-7 (including, for example, the fact that he confused the temples of Juno Sospita and Mater Matuta to give Juno Matuta).  He did not mention the putative confusion between Vediovis and Jupiter in 34: 53: 5, but he noted (at pp. 184-5, note 78) that he accepted Briscoe’s emendation. So too did Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 140 and note 170).

Finally, Briscoe (as above) suggested that Vitruvius and Ovid made the same mistake in the passages that I discuss below.

Vitruvius

Vitruvius recorded that:

  1. “An example of the prostylos [temple type] exists in aede Iovis et Fauni (in the Temple of Jupiter and Faunus) on the Tiber Island”, (‘On Architecture’, 3: 2: 3).

Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 141) noted that Vitruvius’ record:

  1. “... is strange: [according to Vitruvius], [the cults of] Jupiter and Faunus seem to be housed in the same aedes.  The mistake is not in doubt:

  2. Livy’s notice about the construction of the Temple of Faunus [see below] is clear; and

  3. the god Faunus in insula [see below] is mentioned alone in the fasti via Principi Amedeo on the [13th] of February” (my translation).

She therefore concluded that that Vitruvius was referring to two architecturally-related  temples on the island.   She also pointed out that the evidence of the surviving calendar-based fasti supports the suggestion of Briscoe (whom she cited at note 573) that Vitruvius (like Livy and Ovid) had mistaken Vediovis for Iove/ Jupiter.

Ovid

Ovid’s fasti record only two temples on the Tiber island with this dies natalis 1st January, neither of which was dedicated to Vediovis:

  1. “On [1st January], ... the [Tiber] island ... received [Aesculapius, whose cult was brought to Rome from Epidaurus in Greece in 292 BC]  and] Jupiter ... [Thus], a single place  holds them both, and the temples of the mighty grandfather [Jupiter] and his grandson [Aesculapius] are joined together“, (‘Fasti’ 1: 289-94, based on the translation of James Frazer, revised by G. P. Goold, referenced below).

Once again, both Briscoe and  Moreau, in the passages discussed above, hypothesised that Ovid (like Livy and Vitruvius) had mistaken Vediovis for Iove/ Jupiter.  Moreau suggested (at pp. 141-2) that the putative error of Ovid and Vitruvius might well have originated withLivy himself or from his source.

Literary Sources: Analysis and Conclusions

In combination, these three ‘discordant’ sources point to a Temple of Jupiter on the Tiber island that:

  1. had been:

  2. vowed by Lucius Furius Purpurio as praetor in 200 BC, during the battle in Cisalpine Gaul in which he triumphed;

  3. begun by the same man, as consul in 196 BC; and

  4. dedicated in 194 BC by Caius Servilius, one of the duoviri who had been appointed in that year for the purpose  of dedicating temples (Livy);

  5. had its dies natalis on 1st January (Ovid); and

  6. was architecturally related to  a nearby Temple of Faunus (Vitruvius), which had its dies natalis on 13th February (fasti via Principi Amedeo)

However, as noted above, the calendar-based fasti identify six temples that were located on the island, with three dies natales between them:

  1. 1st January: Aeculapius, Corondini (?) and Vediovis;

  2. 13th February: Faunus; and

  3. 8th December: Tiberinus and Gaia.

None of these sources (as they survive) recorded a temple to Jupiter on the island.

It is possible to reconcile these apparently discordant sources if we hypothesise that:

  1. Livy was mistaken in identifying the god to whom the temple on the Tiber Island was dedicated in 194 BC as Jupiter rather than Vediovis (with John Briscoe, referenced below, 1973, at p. 113); and

  2. the putative errors of Vitruvius and Ovid in the respective passages discussed above originated with either Livy or his source (with Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at pp. 141-2).

On this basis, we might reasonably agree with Stephan Weinstock (referenced below, at p. 8) that the cult of Vediovis arrived in Rome when  his temple of the Tiber Island was dedicated at the beginning of the 2nd century BC (or, to be precise, 1st January, 194 BC).

However, we must first look at the relevant architectural and epigraphic evidence before coming to a firmer conclusion.

Epigraphic Evidence for Religious Buildings on the Tiber Island

Jupiter Jurarius (CIL VI 0379)

According to Maurice Besnier (referenced below, at p. 281):

  1. “In March 1854, men who were working in the basement of the church of San Giovanni Calibita on the Tiber Island and adjoining buildings noticed the remains of a mosaic pavement several meters below

  2. the current level of the island: small white cubes in phalomino, embedded in the cement ... contained several words:

  3. C-VOLCACI C-F HAR· DE -STIPE IOVI I'VRARIC////////////////}NIMENTOM”.

Seth Bernard (referenced below, at p  392) also recorded the circumstances in which this inscription was discovered:

  1. “In 1854, an opus signinum floor was discovered [in the cloister of San Giovanni Calibita]: it was recorded but then immediately covered or destroyed  ... ; it contained a tessellated inscription recording the dedication by a haruspex, C. Volcacius C.f. ...”

Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 160) recorded that:

  1. “[This] now-lost inscription was found to the east of the temple, towards the river”, (my translation).

She noted (at p. 161)  that:

  1. “In the absence of a precise archaeological context, the text has been dated [largely on palaeographic grounds] to the 2nd half of the 2nd century BC ...”, (my translation).

The correct completion and precise meaning of the inscription is open to debate. 

  1. Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 161) observed that:

  2. “The restitution

  3. [Ex sententia] C(aii) Volcaci C(aii) f(ilii) har(uspicis) de stipe Ioui Iurario

  4. [factum m]onimentom

  5. is the most commonly accepted” (my translation).

  6. She commented that:

  7. “The phrase de stipe Iupiter Iurario seems to indicate an ‘official’ financing from the funds of a sanctuary” (my translation).

  8. Eric Warmington (referenced below, at pp. 84-5] suggested:

  9. C. Volcaci. C. f. har. de stipe Iovi Iurario [dedit ob m]onimentom

  10. Caius Volcacius, a [haruspex], ... gave this, for a memorial [??] to Jupiter [Jurario];

  11. from the offertory

Tyler Andrew Denton recently analysed the conception, use, and referents of the term monumentum in Livy.  He noted (at pp. 43-4) that, while Livy used this noun in various ways:

  1. “Most often,... monumenta are structures or other architectural works constructed for a commemorative purpose.  Some of the most common forms of monumenta are temples, shrines, basilicas, palaces, tombs, statues, porticoes, columns, arches and other constructions meant to have a set and permanent location.  ... Issues arise, however, with the range of individuals involved in the creation of the monumentum: it is often difficult to tell whether they are] dedicatee, dedicator, craftsman, or restorer ... Even when [a monumentum is dedicated] to a god, the person or persons who dedicated, paid for or built it often had their names attached alongside the god’s, and the monumentum could easily be [more closely] associated ... with the person behind its construction than [with] the deity being venerated.”

At note 86, he cited the inscription under discussion here as an example of a dedication by:

  1. “... a very minor public figure ...:

  2. Volcaci. C. f. har. de stipe Iovi Iurario [dedit ob m]onimentom

  3. Caius Volcacius, a [haruspex] ... provided for this out of his allotment as a memorial,

  4. to Jupiter [Jurarius]

  5. Volcacius’ name takes primacy of place and serves as a bracket of the inscription along with [that of the dedicatee], [Jupiter Jurarius]”.

Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at pp. 161) noted that a dedication by a haruspex (a priest who practiced divination, usually from the entrails of sacrificed animals) is unusual, and suggested (at p. 162) that:

  1. “His intervention in the construction of the ‘monumentum’ would mean that an event that ... would have required reading by a haruspex occurred on the island, next to the temple of Veiouis. ... [Since] the epithet Iurarius was probably derived from the verb iurare (to swear, to swear an oath) ... the inscription would mark the memory of the observance of an oath or, possibly, an atonement for an oath that had not been respected.  ... [If so, then Caius] Volcacius might well have intervened in  his [capacity as haruspex]’, (my translation).

Maurice Besnier (referenced below, at p. 285) pointed out that a second inscription that refers to Jupiter Jurarius was discovered in the vicinity of Brescia in 1885.  Hélène Moreau (referenced below, at p. 161 and not 573) noted that this inscription (AE 1898, 131 = ILS 3037) is the only other surviving record of tis cult: it was discovered in Cividate Camuno (Roman Civitas Camunnorum), and is now in the Museo Romano de Brescia.  She gave the text as:

IOM| IVR|LGS

I(oui) O(ptimo) M(aximo)| Iur(ario)| L(ucius) G(---) S(---).

Neither Besnier nor Moreau hazarded a guess as to its date or its archeological context.  Besnier  argued that:

  1. “... city  in which this inscription was found is significant: Brescia, the ancient [Gallic city that the Romans called] Brixia, ... [was] not far from [the Latin colony of] Cremona, ....[where Lucius Furius Purpurio] vowed that, if he was victorious,  he would build a temple to Jupiter. ... The inscription of 1888 indicates that Jupiter Jurarius (or, better, a Gaulish god whose names were translated into Latin as Jupiter Jurarius ) was honoured at Brixia.  The inscription of 1854 proves that [Furius’] temple on the Tiber island had been dedicated to precisely this Jupiter lurarius.   In accordance with ancient ideas, [Furius] had made his vow to the god of Brixia and of the [Gallic] Cenomani (that is,  to the god of the enemy) ... : therefore, in the eyes of the Romans,  Jupiter Jurarius was peregrinus deus (a foreign god”, (my translation).

It seems to me that this is unlikely: according to Cassius Dio, this region remained independent of Rome until 16 BC, when:

  1. “... the Camunni and Vennii, Alpine tribes, took up arms against the Romans, but were conquered and subdued by Publius Silius”, (‘Roman History’, 54: 20 : 1).

Thus, this second record of Jupiter Jurarius probably has no bearing on the present discussion.

Gens Servilia (CIL VI 40896a)

William Bruce (referenced below, at pp.64-5) recorded that:

  1. “In 1994, during construction work underneath the church of [San Giovanni Calibita] and the Fatebenefratelli hospital [on the island], the foundations of [a temple] came to light, 4.30 meters below present ground level. ...  Although the results of the excavation are still awaiting publication, much can be learned from a preliminary inspection of the ruins.  ... the temple was not aligned with the axis of the island ... but with the pathway that ran between the two island bridges from east to west.  (Its back was to the east, at the edge of the water.)  An even more important finding concerns an inscribed mosaic floor running along the length of the temple.”

Seth Bernard (referenced below, at p  392) analysed this inscription (CIL VI 40896a), which he reproduced as:

C(aius) Serveili M(arci) f(ilius) pr(aetor

[- - -? C(aius), M(arcus), P(ublius)?] (vac. 3?) Serveilieis C(ai) f(ilii) (vac. 3)

faciendum coeraverunt eidemque

He pointed out that the men named here belonged to:

  1. “... the gens Servilia, as also did the C. Servilius, who was the IIvir responsible for [the dedication of Furius’  temple on the Tiber island in 194 BC].  Because the [IIvir] was Caius Servilius Geminus, [son of Caius] ... he cannot be the same as the [praetor] in this inscription, who is specified as ... [the son of Marcus].  Instead, Alföldi  ...  suggested that the author of the mosaic (and the structure [to which it related]) was C. Servilius M.f. Vata, who had three sons (hence filii), rather than the moneyer C. Servilius M.f., who is not known to have had any male offspring.  This would place the inscription shortly after 125/20 BC, when we know that Servilius Vata would have reached the requisite age of 40 to hold the praetorship.”

It is entirely possible that the gens Servilia retained a proprietary interest over a temple her because it had been dedicated by the duovir Caius Servlius in 194 BC.  If so, then the temple that Furius vowed and commissioned [in 200 and 296 BC respectively] and Servilius dedicated was located on the later site of San Giovanni Calibita. 

Epigraphic Evidence: Analysis and Conclusions

The combined evidence of  (CIL VI 0379) and  (CIL VI 40896a) led Seth Bernard to designate the archeological site under San Giovanni Calibita as the Aedes Iove in insula of Livy 34: 53: 7), Vitruvius and Ovid.   He acknowledged the problem with the literary sources but concluded (at p. 392) that:

  1. “Only the fasti Praenestini list sacrifices to Veiovis in insulam,  ... the weight of the evidence is on the side of Jupiter himself rather than his anti- or young self, [Vediovis]”.

This ignores the evidence of the earliest of our surviving sources, the fasti Antiates, which is consistent with that of the the fasti Praenestini.  Furthermore, Bernard himself noted (at pp. 392-3) that:

  1. “... the structure relating to the mosaic [containing the Servilian inscription] is probably not the [Aedes Iove in insula] itself, because this ... inscription refers to praetorian construction rather than aedilician or censorial repair ... A plan of the structures associated with the mosaic has not yet been published: ... to the eye, the area where the mosaic was discovered appears more like a temple precinct than a temple building itself ... This is problematic, since Vitruvius [cited this temple] as an example of prostyle in antis, and we would expect a more typical temple structure.  ... The whole situation remains confusing, ... [although] the eventual publication [of the archeological examination of 1994] will no doubt bring much needed clarity.” 

Furius’ Temple on the Tiber Island: Analysis and Conclusions

Some scholars believe that Furius. temple on the Tiber Island was probably dedicated to Jupiter Jurarius: thus Penelope Davies (referenced below, at p. 83):

  1. “... while fighting the Gauls in 200 BC, Lucius Furius Purpurio likely vowed a temple to Jupiter Jurarius ...”

She cited (at note 90):

  1. “A 2nd century mosaic pavement inscription [CIL VI 0379 that was]  ... found in 1854 under rooms annexed to San Giovanni Calibita ... [which] refers to a monument to Iove Iurarius and may have been part of a shrine or temple.”

She acknowledged (at p. 155 and note 52) that there is a problem in interpreting the unpublished archeological evidence relating to the Servilian inscription (CIL VI 40896a), but she nonetheless concluded that the project to which it belonged:

  1. “... was possibly a restoration of the Temple of Jupiter Jurarius ... after 125 BC.”

However, it seems to me that since:

  1. neither of  these two inscriptions can be securely associated with a temple of the kind suggested by Vitruvius; and

  2. both of them probably post-date the dedication of Furius’ temple in 194 BC by some 50 years;

they cannot support Davies’ hypothesis that Furius vowed this temple to the otherwise unknown Jupiter Jurarius in 200 BC.

Other scholars follow John Briscoe (above) in assuming that Livy mistook Vediovis for Jupiter, followed by Vitruvius and Ovid: thus, Eric Orlin (referenced below, 1997, at p 185 and note 76):

  1. “According to Livy, [Furius] vowed a temple [to Vediovis] in battle against the Gauls while serving as praetor in 200 BC; this temple was dedicated on the Tiber island by the duovir C. Servilius in 194 BC.”

Furius’ Temple on the Capitol


Location of the Temple of Vediovis on the Capitol and Romulus’ Asylum

Adapted from Reina Erin Callier (referenced below, at p. 296)

According to Livy:

  1. “Two temples to Jupiter were dedicated in 192 BC on the Capitol; Lucius Furius Purpurio had vowed  [both of them]: one while praetor in the Gallic war; and the other while consul.  The dedication was performed by the duovir Quintus Marcius Ralla”, (‘History of Rome’, 35: 41: 8).

Livy is in error here (as John Briscoe pointed out - see above):

  1. As we have seen, the temple to Jupiter/ Vediovis that Furius had vowed as praetor in 200 BC was on the Tiber Island; he contracted for it as consul in 196 BC, and the duovir Caius Servilius dedicated it in 194 BC.  Thus, the temple that Furius vowed at praetor (in 200 BC) was:

  2. on the Tiber Island rather than on the Capitol; and

  3. dedicated (probably to Vediovis) in 194, not in 192 BC.

  4. That means that, as consul in 196 BC, Furius vowed a second temple to ‘Jupiter’, this time on the Capitol.  This was the temple that the duovir Quintus Marcius Ralla dedicated in 192 BC.

There is a considerable body of evidence that indicates that this second temple was also dedicated to Vediovis:

  1. Ovid recorded the dies natalis of this second temple:

  2. “The Nones [7th] of March have only one mark in the calendar, because ... , on that day, the temple of Veiovis was consecrated inter duos lucos (between two sacred groves)s.  When Romulus surrounded the grove with a high stone wall, [he established a refuge for fugitives - see below)”, (‘Fasti’ 3: 429, based on the translation of James Frazer, revised by G. P. Goold, referenced below).

  3. Vitruvius (‘On Architecture’, 4: 8: 4) also located a temple of Veiovis inter duos lucos’ (between the two sacred groves on the Capitol). 

  4. Furthermore:

  5. the fasti Praenestini record that the 7th March was dedicated:

  6. “To Vediovis on the Capitol and Vediovis between the two groves”; while

  7. the fasti Antiates Maiores have it dedicated simply:

  8. “To Vediovis on the Capitol”

Thus, we can reasonably assume that (like the temple on the Tiber Island) this temple was dedicated to Vediovis.

Lucius Furius Purpurio

Vediovis first appears in our surviving sources in the material set out above on the temples that Lucius Furius Purpurio vowed to him in 200 and 196 BC.  We might therefore wonder why, in this short space of time, he chose to dedicate two temples that apparently introduced this minor and probably obscure deity to to Rome .

Reasons for Two Temples

Furius first came to prominence as Praetor for Gaul in 200 BC, when (as noted above) he scored an important victory there over an alliance of Gallic and Ligurian tribes.  Livy recorded that:

  1. “The enemy had been routed and slaughtered, their camp captured and plundered, the siege of [the Cremona] raised, the prisoners from the other colony [Placentia] recovered and restored to their friends, and the war finished in a single battle.  Not only had men rejoiced at that victory, but also a three-day period of thanksgiving had been decreed to the immortal gods, because the praetor Lucius Furius had conducted affairs ... well and successfully.  [Indeed, it seems that it was the] will of fate that Gallic wars ... [should be] entrusted to the Furii”, (‘History of Rome’, 31: 48: 11-12).

However, not everyone was so delighted with Furius’ success in 200 BC: the consul, Caius Aurelius Cotta:

  1. “... having arrived in his province and found the campaign finished, made no secret of his anger at the praetor for having fought in his absence.  Sending him accordingly to Etruria, he himself led the legions into the enemy's country, and, laying it waste, carried on the war with more booty than glory.  Lucius Furius (partly because there was nothing for him to do in Etruria and partly because he was ambitious for a triumph over the Gauls, which he thought he could more easily obtain in the absence of the angry and jealous consul) unexpectedly appeared in Rome, summoned the Senate in the Temple of Bellona, gave an account of his achievements, and asked that he be allowed to enter the city in triumph”, (‘History of Rome’, 31: 47: 4-7).

Corey Brennan (referenced below, at p. 198) noted that Furius’ actions gave rise to:

  1. “... a heated debate in the Senate.  Two points are said to have been at issue:

  2. ... whether a praetor was entitled to a triumph when he was borrowing a consul’s army; and

  3. ... the propriety of Furius’ leaving his military provincia [Etruria] without the permission of the Senate.”

In the end, Furius’ request was reluctantly granted and  became the first praetor in Roman history to be awarded a triumph.  Livy’s comment on the fact that the Furii seemed fated to protect the Romans from the Gauls, which alluded to:

  1. the famous (if unhistorical) victory of Marcus Furius Camillus at the Allia in ca. 390 BC in the aftermath of the Gallic sack of Rome; and

  2. subsequent Gallic victories won by Lucius Furius Camillus in 349 BC and Publius Furius Philo in 223 BC;

might well have originated in the case that Furius, as praetor, argued for this unprecedented honour.  Brennan noted (at pp. 199-200) that this presumptuous behaviour seems to have had repercussion for Furius:

  1. “It would seem that [his] consulship was shunted off [until 196 BC, by which time] the row over the circumstances in which he had gained his triumph had subsided.  There is a good possibility that, ... as consul in 196 BC, [he] was turned down in a request for a second triumph, [this time over the Ligurians].  Many in the Senate must have thought that [he] was fortunate enough to have managed to triumph as praetor in 200 BC.” 

Eric Orlin (referenced below, 1997, at pp. 184-7) described the political climate of this period, as the Senate attempted to curb the ever-increasing clamour for triumphs and the associated vowing of temples on the battlefield.  We might reasonably assume that Furius made up for the refusal of a second triumph by:

  1. contracting for the construction of the temple on the Tiber island that he had vowed to Vediovis as praetor; and

  2. claiming publicly that his success as consul in Liguria had followed a vow to build a second temple to Vediovis, this time on the Capitol (probably as part of an unsuccessful request for a second triumph).

This might explain the fact that he vowed to temples to Vediovis in quick succession.

Dedication of Furius’ Temples to Vediovis

Unfortunately, the surviving sources do not indicate whether or not Furius had a particular devotion to Vediovis.  In any case, if Orlin is correct in suggesting that the Senate took a proprietorial interest in the dedications of 194-1 BC, it is possible Furius did indeed (as Livy suggested) vow temples to Jupiter, and that the Senate played a part in the eventual choice of a dedication to Vediovis as the young Jupiter.  I return to this possibility below, after having explored how Vediovis might have been understood in Rome at that time.

Origins and Nature of the Cult of Vediovis

Cult Statue in Furius’ Temple on the Capitol

The earliest indication of the nature of the cult of Vediovis in Rome comes from later descriptions of the original cult statue of him in Furius’ temple on the Capiitol.  Pliny the Elder recorded its existence in a passage that dealt with the durability of various kinds of wood, in which he referred to:

  1. “... the statue of Vejovis ... , made of cypress, [which is] still preserved in the Capitol, [in the temple in which] it was consecrated in [193/2 BC]”, (‘Natural History’, 16: 79).

It is likely that this statue was destroyed soon after Pliny’s death in 79 BC: Christer Henriksén (referenced below, at p. 410) observed that the Emperor Domitian rebuilt a number of temples on the Capitol:

  1. “... the temples of Iuppiter Tonans and Veiovis ([which had presumably been] damaged in the fire of 80 AD); the temple of Iuppiter Optimus Maximus (which had been rebuilt by Vespasian .. in 69 BC but had burned down again in 80 BC); and probably also the temple of Jono Moneta on the Arx.”


Ovid (who was writing in the Augustan period] seems to have used the evidence of this statue to explain the nature of Vediovis to the readers of his Fasti: having recorded the dies natalis of this temple (as quoted above), he continued:

  1. “[So] that the strangeness of the name [Veiovis] may not prove a stumbling-block, ...[let me tell you]  who that god is, and why he is so called.  He is the young Jupiter: look on his youthful face; look then on his hand, [which] holds no thunderbolts: Jupiter assumed the thunderbolts [only] after the giants dared attempt to win the sky; at first he was unarmed.  ... A she-goat [Amalthiea] also stands [beside is image]; the Cretan nymphs are said to have fed the god; it was the she-goat that gave her milk to the infant Jove [on Mount Ida]. Now I [must] to explain the name.  Countrymen call stunted spelt vegrandia, and what is little they call vesca.  If that is the meaning of the[prefix ‘ve-’], may I not suspect that the shrine of Veiovis is the shrine of the little Jupiter ?“, (‘Fasti’ 3: 429-48, based on the translation of James Frazer, revised by G. P. Goold, referenced below).

This was followed by Festus (519 L, search on ‘Vescoli’), for whom the prefix ‘ve-’ signified small, and Vediovis was the young Jove.

Numismatic Evidence (?)


Silver denarii with obverses depicting a young deity holding a thunderbolt

Issued by: Lucius Caesius in 112-1 BC (RRC 298/1)

                        

Silver denarii with obverses depicting a young deity with a thunderbolt below, issued by:

  C. Gargonius; ? Ogul[nius]; and M. Virgilus in 86 BC (RRC 350a)          Manius Fonteius in 85 BC (RRC 353)

  

Silver denarii with obverses depicting a young deity holding a thunderbolt

Issued by: Caius Licinius Macer in 84 BC ( RRC 354/1)

In 112 or 111 BC, the otherwise unknown Lucius Caesius issued a silver denarius (illustrated here at the upper left), the obverse of which depicted the head and shoulders of a young god seen from behind.  According to Michael Crawford (referenced below, at p. 312), the monogram behind his head should probably be read as ‘Ap’, identifying him as Apollo.  Crawford argued that:

  1. “... since the object in his [right] hand is clearly a thunderbolt, the type perhaps results from the assimilation of Apollo with Jupiter  ...”

This hypothesis is based on the reasonable observation that Apollo, unlike Jupiter, is usually depicted as a youthful figure; and he is generally equipped with arrows rather than thunderbolts. 

Crawford considered but rejected the hypothesis that this deity resulted from the assimilation of Apollo with Vediovis, citing the testimony of Ovid (above) that the image of Vediovis in his temple on the Capitol depicted him as the young Jupiter in the period before he had assumed the thunderbolt.  James Luce (referenced below, at pp. 25-6) agreed:

  1. “... the identification [of this deity] with Veiovis cannot stand. ... The evidence of Ovid ... rules this out absolutely. Ovid says that, although Veiovis is the young Jupiter, ‘he carries no thunderbolt’.”

Both Crawford and Luce also pointed to the mush later testimony of Aulus Gellius (below), that Vediovis carried arrows.


However, Peter Wiseman (referenced below, at p. 76) argued that:

  1. “... amid all the many conflicting interpretations of [Vediovis - see below], it would be quite arbitrary to [privilege] Ovid’s ‘no thunderbolts’ as being uniquely authentic.”

It seems to me that Ovid might well have accurately represented the form of the cypress statue as it existed in the Augustan period, but that that does not mean that:

  1. this statue was still in its original form in Ovid’s time; and/ or

  2. was the only canonical image of Vediovis that was available to Lucius Caesius in 112/1 BC. 

Wiseman reasonably argued that:

  1. “The most economical explanation of [this coin type] ... is that [Caesius] ... accepted the identification of Veiovis as Apollo, and of his weapon as a thunderbolt [rather than Apollo’s usual arrows].”

In other words, the image on the obverse of RRC 298/1 might well contain the earliest surviving image of the Roman version of Vediovis.

Crawford catalogued three other coins (illustrated above) that had obverses that similarly depicted the head of an Apollo-like god with thunderbolts, all of which were issued in the period 86-4 BC:

  1. in the first two (RRC 350a and RRC 353), the thunderbolts were below the head on the obverse; while

  2. in the third (RRC 354/1), the moneyer Caius Livinius Macer had revived the obverse of Lucius Caesius.

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Howard Scullard (referenced below, at p. 57) recorded that:

  1. “During excavations of this temple in 1939, a marble statue [illustrated here at the top of the page] was found: a male figure of the Apolline type, with a cloak hanging over the left arm, although the arms and head were missing.  This must have replaced the earlier wooden statue, which may have been destroyed in the fire of 80 AD.”

This was almost certainly the source for the the musings on Vediovis of Aulus Gellius, whose work ‘Attic Nights’ was probably published shortly before his death in ca. 169 AD:

  1. “... the explanation of [the names of Diovis and Vediovis is] this: the ancient Latins derived Iovis from iuvare (help), and called that same god ‘father’ ... : [thus], Iovispater is the full and complete form, which becomes Iupiter  ... Jove also was called Diespiter, the father of day and of light, ... [so] Jove is [also] called Diovis ...  they applied a name of the contrary meaning to that god who lacked the power to help, but [was endowed with] the force to do harm: ...  they called him Vediovis ... [The prefix ‘Ve-’ here] ...  has a privative or negative force ...  It is for this reason that the statue of the god Vediovis in the temple [dedicated to him on the Capitol] holds arrows, which ... are devised to inflict harm.  For that reason, it has often been said that that god is Apollo; and a she-goat is s ‘immolaturque ritu humano (sacrificed to him in a manner described here as ‘in humano ritu’), and a representation of that animal stands near his statue”, (‘Attic Nights’, 5: 12: 3-12).

Howard Scullard (referenced below, search on Veiovis) suggested that the phrase  in humano ritu’:

  1. “... might imply that the goat was a surrogate for human sacrifice or was an offering to Vediovis regarded as  a chthonic deity, but more probably it refers to an offering for a (dead) man in contrast to an offering to the gods.  However, the whole matter may be a mistake: Gellius may have deduced the sacrifice of a goat from the animal accompanying the statue: [however], an attribute does not necessarily involve it being an object of sacrifice.”

The locks of curly hair on the shoulders of this figure suggest that he was portrayed as a young man, but it is no longer possible to tell whether other aspects of the original iconography (i.e., the hand holding arrows and the nearby goat - see below) were replicated.



Macrobius must have had a different source for his assumption that Vediovis was a god of the underworld who could be called on to undermine enemies in battle: thus he wrote that enemy

  1. “... cities and armies are devoted to destruction with the following words, which only dictators and generals are able to use for the purpose:

  2. Dis pater, Veiovis, Manes, or by whatever other name it is right to call you: may you all fill ... Carthage, and ... those who will bear arms and missiles against our legions and army with the urge to flee, with dread, with panic; ...’”, (‘Saturnalia’, 3: 9: 10, translated by Robert Kaster, referenced below).

It seems to me that it might have been this aspect of Vediovis that had commented him to Lucius Furius Purpurio, although this is obviously only speculation.

From the material presented above, we might reasonably assume that Furius’ temple vows of 200 and 196 BC marked the introduction of the cult of Vediovis to Rome. Unfortunately, none of the surviving sources shed light on the earlier history of this cult, which leaves us asking, with Howard Scullard (referenced below, at p. 56):

  1. “... who was Vediovis ?

As he pointed out, all we know of the origins of this god comes from the etymology of his name, which:

  1. “... appears with the same variations as Iovis , [but] with the particle ‘ve-’ prefixed  ... The meaning of ‘ve-’ is ambiguous because it can be either privative or diminutive [i.e., it can mean ‘not Jove’ or ‘young Jove’].”

However, as Cicero warned, reliance on etymology in order  to discern divine origins is:

  1. “... a dangerous practice: [anyone trying to do so] will be in difficulties with a great many names.  [For example], what will [he] make of Veiovis ... ?”, (‘Nature of the Gods’, 3: 62, translated by Harris Rackham, referenced below).

The answer to Cicero’s question is that scholars have confidently endowed Vediovis with a plethora of different and potentially conflicting origins and characteristics, as will be evident in what follows.

Eric Olin (referenced below, 2010, at p. 181) asserted that:

  1. “... although the identity of Vediovis and his potential relationship to Jupiter remain problematic , there is little doubt that [he] was worshipped from a very early date in Italy.” 

In this context, at note 69, he cited Howard Scullard (as above, pp 56-8):

  1. “... who discusses ... the evidence for Iron Age worship of the God”

Scullard himself, at p. 57, first cited Varro, who included Vediovis in a list of Sabine gods that thad been introduced to Rome in the regal period:

  1. “There is also the scent of the speech of the Sabines about the altars that were dedicated at Rome by the vow of King Tatius: for, as the Annals tell, he vowed [inter alia], the altar of] ... Vediovis ...”, (‘On the Latin Language’, 5: 74, translated by Roland Kent, referenced below).

Arthur Frothingham (referenced below, at p. 381) observed that Varro:

  1. “... quotes from the Annals a list of the Sabine gods worshipped in primitive Rome ... [that includes Vediovis].  The source for such a list is probably not earlier than the 3rd century BC and while of no particular value in proving a Sabine origin, is an interesting confirmation of the primitive character of the god [as perceived at that time].”

I am not aware of the reason for Frothingham’s assertion that the Annals referenced by Varro are probably not earlier than the 3rd century BC but, if he is correct, then Varro’s testimony could throw some light on how Vediovis was perceived at that time when his cult arrived at Rome.  However, Stefan Weinstock (referenced below, at p. 8, note  2) argued that:

  1. “... Varro’s assertion of the Sabine origin of many gods  is open to doubt and cannot be confirmed in the present case [i.e. the case of Vediovis] from other sources.”

Scullard nevertheless argued (at p. 57)  that Varro’s etymology;

  1. “... certainly should not be contemptuously rejected out of hand as is often done.  For even if Vediovis was not a Sabine deity, his Italic origin may be very early: under his temple on the Capitol [see below]  a ritually buried deposit of ex -votos included ... imposto ware of the 7th century BC.

However, these ancient objects cannot  be securely connected with either Vediovis or the temple that was dedicated to him here in 192 BC. 

Howard Scullard (as above) also noted that, outside Rome, the cult of Vediovis:

  1. “... is attested only at Bovillae, where an altar, set up ca. 100 BC, was dedicated to 'father Vediovis by the gens Iulia in accordance with the laws of Alba’.  This reference takes us back to the Iron Age.”

However (again), the inscription (CIL XIV 2387) refers to the private cult of the Roman gens Julia at Bovillae and, while the member of this family who commissioned the altar certainly wanted to convey an impression of its ancient origins, this might well have been disingenuous.  In my view, all we can really say is that the inscription  from Bovillae (which is discussed further below) tells us nothing about either:

  1. how the Romans conceived of Vediovis in the first decade of the 2nd century BC; or

  2. why Lucius Furius Purpurio apparently vowed two temples to him in Rome (one on the Tiber Island under discussion here and another on the Capitol discussed below) at that time. 

J

Origins of the Cult of Vediovis

Ovid

As noted above, Ovid’s Fasti included only one event for 7th March:

  1. “[So] that the strangeness of the name [Veiovis] may not prove a stumbling-block, ... learn who that god is and why he is so called.  He is the young Jupiter: look on [the] youthful face [of his statue]; look then on his hand, [which] holds no thunderbolts: Jupiter assumed the thunderbolts [only] after the giants dared attempt to win the sky; at first he was unarmed.  ... A she-goat also stands [beside the statue]; ...  it was the she-goat that gave her milk to the infant Jove”, (‘Fasti’ 3: 429-48, based on the translation of James Frazer, revised by G. P. Goold, referenced below).

Ovid recorded the day of the anniversary of the dedication of this second temple:

  1. “The Nones [7th] of March have only one mark in the calendar, because ... , on that day, the temple of Veiovis was consecrated in front of the two groves.  When Romulus surrounded the grove with a high stone wall, [he established a refuge for fugitives  (see below)]. ... [So] that the strangeness of the name [Veiovis] may not present a stumbling-block, ... learn who that god is and why he is so called:

  2. [Veiovis] is the young Jupiter: look on his youthful face [in his cult statue - see below]; look then on his hand, [which] holds no thunderbolts: at first Jupiter was unarmed: he assumed the thunderbolts [only] after the giants had dared attempt to win the sky; ... A she-goat also stands [beside the image of Veiovis]; ... it was the she-goat [Amaltheia] that gave her milk to the infant Jove [on Mount Ida]. 

  3. Now I am called on to explain the name [Veiovis].  Countrymen call stunted spelt vegrandia [puny] and small things vesca. [thin].  If that is the meaning of the [prefix ‘ve-’], may I not suspect that the shrine of Veiovis is the shrine of the little Jupiter ?“, (‘Fasti’ 3: 429-48, based on the translation of James Frazer, revised by G. P. Goold, referenced below).


Aulus Gellius

According to Aulus Gellius:

  1. “... names of deities appear: Diovis and Vediovis appear in ancient [Roman] prayers.  Furthermore, there is also a temple of Vediovis at Rome, between the Citadel and the Capitolium. ... The statue of the god Vediovis, which is in the temple of which I spoke above, holds arrows, which, as everyone knows, are devised to inflict harm.   For that reason it has often been said that that god is Apollo; and a she-goat is sacrificed to him ‘in humano ritu’ [by a human rite] and a representation of that animal stands near his statue”, (‘Attic Nights’, 5: 12: 1-12).







Altar of Vediovis at Bovillae


Front and back of the inscribed altar from Bovillae (CIL XIV 2387)

Adapted from S. Weinstock (referenced below, at p. 8)

Vediovis is documented in an inscription (CIL XIV 2387) on an altar that was discovered at Bovillae (see below).  It reads:

Vediovei Patrei/ genteiles Iuliei/ Ved〚- - -〛 aara (front)

leege Albana dicata (back)

Mary Beard and her colleagues (referenced below, at p. 17) translated this as:

‘Members of the Julian clan to Father Vediovis/ Altar for Vediovis/ Dedicated by Alban Law’;

and observed that it records:

  1. “... the Julii, acting as a clan, record a dedication or sacrifice to the god Vediovis.” 

The altar would have been used for private, family rites of the kind recorded by Festus:

  1. “[While] public rituals are those that are for the populus ..., private rituals are those that are for individual men, families, gentes”, (‘de verborum significatu’, 284L, translated by Christopher Smith (2006) referenced below, at p. 44, note 111).

We know from Macrobius that a number of patrician families, including the Julii, had their own domestic cults:

  1. “There are ...  religious festivals that belong to specific clans, like Claudian or Aemilian or Julian or Cornelian festivals and any others that a given clan keeps as a consequence of its own domestic observances”, (‘Saturnalia’, 1: 16: 7, translated by Robert Kaster, referenced below).

Thus, the likelihood is that the private Julian festival recorded by Macrobius was dedicated to Vediovis and celebrated at this altar, which would have been on their property.  The dating of the inscription is not straightforward: as Stephen Smith (referenced below,at p. 147) observed:

  1. “By naming the gens or clan, rather than an individual, [the inscription] suggests timeless continuity, [and this] prevents it from being dated precisely.  Its script pretends to be old by following the pseudo-archaic spelling conventions proposed by the grammarian Lucius Accius, which were popular from around 132 to 74 BC.  [The] lettering [is] of approximately the same period, and so the altar is usually dated to around 100 BC .”

The EAGLE database (see the CIL link) dates it to the period 150-75 BC.

The altar was found in 1826 at Frattocchie, a district of the comune di Marino in Lazio (some 20 km southeast Rome) on the estate of Vincenzo Colonna, and is now in the garden of Palazzo Colonna, Rome.  (See Andrea Pancotti, referenced below, for details of the excavations).  This was the site of ancient Bovillae, on via Appia and below the Alban hills.  According to the EAGLE database, the inscription was found ‘in an external corner of the scena of the theatre, wedged between the floor of large stones'.  It had clearly been reused, but we might reasonably assume that its original location was nearby.   Thus, the gens Julia probably owned an estate at Bovillae in ca. 100 BC and were, at that time, intent on laying claim to a longstanding presence in the area.  This is significant because:

  1. according to the now-unknown author of the ‘Origo Gentis Romanae’:

  2. “While ... Latinus Silvius was ruling [Alba Longa, the ancient capital of Latium], the colonies of Praeneste, Tiber, Gabii, Tusculum, Cora, Pometia, Labici, Crustumium, Cameria, Bovillae, and other cities on every side were sent forth”, (‘OGR’, 17: 6); and

  3. there is epigraphic evidence that ,from at least the 1st century AD (see, for example, CIL VI 1851), the people of Bovillae referred to themselves as Albani Longani Bovillenses, thereby implying that they had replaced Alba Longa after its destruction (according to tradition) in 658 BC.

Thus, evidence of an apparently ancient Julian cult here would support the claim of the Julii to descent from Ascanius, son of Aeneas, the founder and first king of Alba Longa.


Vediovis, Ascanius and the Julii

Ernst Badian (referenced below, at pp. 14-15)

  1. “The altar [at Bovillae] has had a disastrous effect in modern scholarship, reinforced by the family propaganda of Augustus and Tiberius (see below).  It has led to the identification of Bovillae as the place of origin of the Julii ... A dose of reality [is needed:

  2. ... there is no [known] conjunction between the Julii and Vediovis outside this text ... ; [and]

  3. there is no [surviving] record of any contact between the Julii and Bovillae before this inscription, and indeed no record, literary or epigraphic, after it down to Augustus (see below).

  4. The gens, of course, had had many centuries in which to show an interest in Bovillae but, apart from this text and monument, no such interest appears, not even by Caesar ..., who proudly proclaimed his ancestry on suitable occasions ... We must look for a different explanation, bearing directly on this text.”

Badian suggested that:

  1. “The sudden emphasis [in ca. 100 BC] on the family legend tracing their descent to Alba Longa and ultimately [via Ascanius and Aeneas] to Venus, serves as a political manifesto.  Vediovis presumably had no structure dedicated to him at Bovillae (unlike at Rome, where several had long existed [see above]), but there was probably an area sacred to him, which gave the Julii their opportunity.  An altar could be used as the vehicle for a suitable inscription: it was much cheaper than a temple and seems not to have needed public authorisation.  By the time the Julii were firmly established among leading [Roman] families, with consulships in 91 and 90), they had no further need of Bovillae.  Interest was resumed only by Augustus, under whom ludi at Bovillae were founded, and by Tiberius, who built a sacrarium to the gens Iulia there ... : Augustus and Tiberius, of course, had a special interest in ‘proving’ their Julian descent.”

It seems to me that Badian’s basic premise is borne out by the fact that it was apparently Lucius Furius Purpurio who had introduced the cult of Vediovis to Rome at the start of the 2nd century BC.  Furthermore, the ‘sudden emphasis’ of the Julii on their descent from Venus is also manifest in two coins that depicted Venus on the reverse that were issued (respectively) by

  1. Sextus Julius Caesar (praetor of 123 BC) in 129 BC (RRC 258/1):

  2. Lucius Julius Caesar (consul of 90 BC) in 103 BC (RRC 320/1).


Beard et al. (as above)

  1. “It seems likely that Vediovis represented, at least for the Julii, the divine form of their [alleged] founder, Iulus, for it was a Latin tradition that founders [of clans or cities] took on a new name when they were deified: so [for example]: Romulus became the god Quirinus; Aeneas (at least at Lavinium) became Indiges; and Latinus (the founder of the Latins) became Jupiter Latiaris” (my slight change of word order).

Stefan Weinstock (referenced below, pp, 8-10) presented the evidence for his assertion (at p.10) that Vediovis was a young Jupiter (rather than a form of Apollo, as other scholars suggest - see below). Like Beard et al., he concluded (at p. 10) that:

  1. “Vediovis was a youthful Jupiter [and] Iulus was [also] assumed to be [a diminutive of Jove]: the conclusion seems unavoidable that the Julii created the gentilician cult of Vediovis precisely because they believed him to be identical with [the deified] Iulus.”

Thus, we can reasonably assume that Lucius at least alluded to this family tradition at some point in his putative Libri Pontificalium







Analysis and Conclusions

Eric Orlin (referenced below, 2010, at p. 18o) outlined the political climate in which these  temples (among others) were dedicated: the Second Punic War had ended in 201 BC, and the new temple foundations at Rome in the following decades point to:

  1. “... the Roman interest in suggesting that the Roman religious community extended throughout Italy [which was now, once more, securely in Roman hands].  This period saw a burst of new temple construction that is unparalleled in any other period of Roman history 15 new temples were definitely dedicated between 194 and 173 BC ... A remarkable aspect of these new temples is how many were dedicated to important divinities from the Italian peninsular ... The inclination to focus on Italian deities was demonstrated at the very outset of this period,  ... [when]  the Romans finally dedictaed a temple [in Rome] to Juno Sospita, whom they had worshipped in common with the people of Lanuvium [in Latium] wince 338 BC [see below].  

As we shall characterised the other deities to whom temples were dedicated in this year as important Italic (as opposed to Roman) deities (although I suggest below that the evidence in this respect for Faunus and Vediovis is perhaps not as clear as Orlin claimed).






Read more: 

M. Crawford, “Roman Republican Coinage”, (2019) Cambridge

D. Miano, “Fortuna: Deity and Concept in Archaic and Republican Italy “, (2018) Oxford

P. Davies, “Architecture Politics in Republican Rome”, (2017) Cambridge

A. M. Hermans, “Latin Cults through Roman Eyes: Myth, Memory and Cult Practice in the Alban Hills: Chapter  III: Juno Sospita: Guardian of Lanuvium and Rome”, (2017), thesis from the University of Amsterdam

E. Warford, “Stuck in the Middle with You: Vediovis, God of Transitions and In-between Places”, (2017) presented at the annual meeting of the Classical Association of the Middle West and South, April 5-8, Kitchener, Ontario

R. E. Callier, “Missing Persons: Character, Context, and Ovidian Poetics”, (2015), thesis from the University of Colorado at Boulder

S. Smith, “Sacred by Design: Expressing Latin Identity through Architectural Mouldings”, (2015)  thesis from Royal Holloway, University of London

AA. VV., “Roma nel IV Secolo d.C. con Sovrapposizione dei Monumenti Successivi”, in:

  1. A. Carandini (Ed.), “Atlante di Roma Antica: Tavole fuori Testo” ”, (2012) Rome , Vol. II, Tables 18-19

H. Moreau, “Entre Deux Rive s- Entre Deux Ponts: l’ Île Tibérine de la RomeAantique: Histoire, Archéologie, Urbanisme des Origines au Vè Siècle après J.C”, (2014) thesis of Université Charles de Gaulle, Lille

S. Bernard, “Men at Work: Public Construction, Labor, and Society at Middle Republican Rome, 390-168 BC”, (2012) thesis of University of Pennsylvania

C. Henriksén, “A Commentary on Martial, Epigrams, Book 9”, (2012)  Oxford

R. A. Kaster, “Macrobius: Saturnalia: Volume II: Books 3-5”, (2011) Cambridge (MA)

A. Pancotti, “La Scoperta e l’ Interpretazione dei Resti Monumentali di Bovillae”, in”

  1. M. Valenti (Ed.), “Colli Albani: Protagonisti e Luoghi della Ricerca Archeologica nell’ Ottocento”, (2011) Frascati, at pp. 178-84

E. Orlin, “Foreign Cults in Rome: Creating a Roman Empire”, (2010) Oxford

E. Badian, “From the Julii to Caesar”, in

  1. M. Griffin (ed.), “A Companion to Julius Caesar”, (2009) Malden, MA, at pp. 11-22

G. H. Renberg, “Public and Private Places of Worship in the Cult of Aesculapius at Rome”, Memoirs of the American Academy in Rome, 51/52 (2006/2007) 87-172

C. J. Smith, “The Roman Clan”, (2006) Cambridge

W. N. Bruce, “Resurveying the Religious Topography of the Tiber Island”, ( 2004) MA Thesis, University of Florida 

T. C. Brennan, “The Praetorship in the Roman Republic”, (2000) Oxford

D. R. Shackleton Bailey, “Valerius Maximus: ‘Memorable Doings and Sayings’; Volume I, Books 1-5”, (2000) , Harvard (MA)

J. C. Yardley (translator), “Livy: Dawn of the Roman Empire’, (2000) Oxford World’s Classics

E. Orlin, “Temples, Religion and Politics in the Roman Republic”, (1997) Leiden, New York, Cologne

J. Briscoe, “A Commentary On Livy: Books 34-37”, (1981) Oxford

H. H. Scullard, “Festivals and Ceremonies of the Roman Republic, (1981) London

C. Macdonald (translator), “Cicero: In Catilinam 1-4; Pro Murena; Pro Sulla; Pro Flacco” (1976), Harvard (MA)

J. Briscoe, “A Commentary On Livy: Books 31-33”, (1973) Oxford

S. Weinstock, “Divus Julius”, (1971) Oxford

T. J. Luce, “Political Propaganda on Roman Republican Coins (ca 92-82 BC)”, Journal of Archaeology, 72:1 (1968) 25-39

E. H. Warmington (translator), “Remains of Old Latin, Volume IV: Archaic Inscriptions” ( 1940) Harvard (MA)

R. G. Kent (translator), “Varro: ‘On the Latin Language’: Volume I: Books 5-7”, (1938) Cambridge (MA)

H. Rackham (translator), “Cicero: ‘On the Nature of the Gods’”, (1933), Cambridge (MA)

J. G. Frazer (translator, revised by G. P. Goold), “Ovid: ‘Fast’”, (19331), Cambridge (MA)

A. L. Frothingham, “Vediovis, the Volcanic God: A Reconstruction”, American Journal of Philology,  38: 4 (1917) 370-91

M. M. Besnier, “Jupiter Jurarius”, Mélanges de l' École Française de Rome, 18 (1898) 281-9


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