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Koehler November 29, 2009
As you walk about the streets of modern day Rome, you will see many amazing things, things such as the ancient forum or the old temples of the gods, many of which turned into catholic churches. You may even see a statue or two of forgotten Roman officials. However, one does not realize the secrets that this ancient city holds. What may seem to be a tourist haven from above may hold shocking surprises below its ancient rubble. When one enters a church, such as the Church of Santa Prisca, one may find something they did not expect within a catholic church, or should I say below a catholic church. In such places as this, one needs only to ask to gain entrance to the lower underground to see what was Ancient Rome. As you descend a staircase to reach your destination, you come to an entrance way adorned by what seems to be two figures: one holding what appears to be a torch up, the other holding his torch downwards. As you enter you notice that if not for artificial light, you would not see anything within this dark cave of sorts. You look around and see stone benches on each side, possibly primitive pews for a service, with what looks to be a stone altar in the middle of the dark room. The walls have Latin inscriptions written upon them and with what little knowledge you have from your undergraduate Latin courses, you are able to make out some of the inscriptions. They seem to speak of someone shedding eternal blood . You put the pieces together and figure that it s an ancient, secret area of ritual for the ancient Christians. You look around more, but something
at the back of the room seems to catch your eye, creating some surprise and possibly conflict with your original thoughts. Upon the back wall, you see paintings of a man in different scenes. In one he is causing water to gush from a rock, while in another he is being born from a rock. Finally, your eyes catch a strange scene in which the man is sacrificing a bull surrounded by a dog, a snake, and a scorpion. This seems to puzzle you because in all your Christian studies, there were never stories of Jesus being born from a rock, or Jesus killing a bull. You look closer at the fresco of the sacrifice and see the name Mithras with other titles along with it. It is most certain that many people have encountered this scene at least once when they have traversed through Rome, but not very many are given an explanation or granted a better understanding of this strange deity who lives in caves underneath Rome, Ostia, and other areas of the Roman frontier. Through my help and studies, I will help to explain this misunderstood god s origins, Roman popularity, religious rivalry s, and subsequent downfall. Let me take you through a Mithraeum that spans from about the late 1st century AD, to the late 4th century AD.
Part I: Mithras, Savior Born from a Rock
We find Mithras origins far back before the Roman Empire was created. Archaeological evidence shows us that the Persians had been worshipping this sun god from around the time of 5th century BC, but he was praised under a slightly different name. The Persians worshipped a supreme sun god whom they called
Mitra in their prayers.1However, the Roman cult that gained its popularity in the 2nd century AD up until about the 4th century seems to be strictly a western cult. We only find the Mithraic caves in the Roman Empire provinces and not within areas such as the Parthian Empire or Syria. Although, we do find Persian concepts within Mithraism (one of the grades or ranks is called Persian ; nama means hail in Persian) and the myths from the east seem to have effected the main portion of the Mithraic cult, the Tauroctony.2 However, this should not surprise anyone, because of how the eastern religion reached the Italian peoples. Plutarch gives us some evidence to possibly the earliest know reference to Mithraic contact with an Italian official. He states in his account of Pompey, that when Pompey took his fleet against Mithradates VI in 67 BCE, he conquered the Cilician pirates who allied with Mithradates. He took many of these pirates back as prisoners and it was in their captivity in Rome that they planted the seeds of Mithraism. Plutarch states that these Cilician pirates celebrated secret rites and mysteries devoted to Mithras, which are still celebrated today .3 Plutarch lived in the years 46-120 AD, so it is definitely probable that the Mithraic mysteries that he speaks of relate to the Roman cult. We even find coins
Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 6 2 Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 279. 3 Marvin W. Meyer, The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook (New York, New York: Harper and Row, 1987). Pg. 205. 3
minted in the mid-third century in Tarsus the capitol of Cilicia, that show Mithras killing the primordial bull (figure 1).4 From this main time onward, the Mithraist cult seemed to not be very popular and instead stood in the shadow of the imperial cult. However, soon this warrior of light and virtue would rise in popularity among the Roman population, especially within the military. Part II: Mithras, the True Soldier of Rome
Of course, it may seem confusing that a Persian deity could possibly gain appeal from the Roman population, seeing that the Persians were seen as one of the main enemies of the ancient world. Yet so many Roman citizens pledged their life to Mithras. Why though? How did Mithras gain so much appeal amongst the people, even so much as to rival with Christianity? The answer, as always, is a very complex one and so we must first tackle the demographics of this cult. Where was he worshipped in the Empire, and who worshipped him? To find these answers, we must first take a look at the frontiers of the Empire. Our earliest evidence of a mithraeum comes from the Danube river area around the city of Carnuntum. It was here around 100 AD, that we find a mithraeum created by a Marcus Aurelius Decimus, a legionnaire or centurion from the Germanian troops.5It is no surprise then that our first group of Mithraists has to be found within the military. However, we can judge from the amount of mithraea Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 4-5. 5 Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 241. 4
found north of Rome, in comparison to the amount found in Syria or Parthia, that the cult had the majority of its members from the Gallic and Germanian troops near the Rhine and Danube rivers.6 At these legionary camps in the north, we find inscriptions for prefects, troopers, centurions, and even legates, all Mithraists. Turcan even states that some records show that a certain Marcus Valerius Maximianus commanded legions that were comprised of mainly Mithraists.7But why would these soldiers give their praise to a Persian deity? What about Mithras would have appealed to them? In order to find these answers we must look at Mithras himself and the stories about him. Mithras was said to be the great warrior of virtue and truth , and was the conqueror of evil. When he had slain the cosmic bull (a metaphor for chaos), he restored order to the world and made it prosperous by its eternal blood . Every Mithraist was to look to Mithras as an icon to follow in their lives. He was the Light of the World and the Prince of Peace . For the soldiers, he was a sign of the warrior you must be in order to be victorious in battle. To have him on your side would ensure victory. When a Mithraist reached the rank of Miles or soldier, he was literally inducted as a Legionnaire for Mithras. Each of the Mithraists swore to defend against evil and lead a life of purity, a life of celibacy.8 These oaths were not very difficult for a soldier to make since a soldier was supposed to be celibate while on campaign, and of course, every soldier had to have seen themselves defending Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 26-27. 7 Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 243. 8 Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 289. 5
the Empire against evil. Also, it was found that being a Mithraist might even raise your rank among the troops. The cult only allowed men to know their mysteries . However there are some inscriptions for sacrifice found in mithraeums in Rome that show women attended Mithraic rituals.9Therefore, it was even more appealing when you could join your brothers in arms and be brothers in Mithras as well. This soon lead Mithraic popularity to rise and soon it attracted the attention of the Emperor himself. We have several instances in which the emperor was involved with some Mithraic happenings. Commodus, the son of Marcus Aurelius and emperor of Rome from 180-192 AD, was said to have been an unworthy follower of Mithras since he committed a real murder rather than a fake murder.10 It was also found that certain mithraeums around the empire carried inscriptions dating to Marcus Aurelius and Commodus that ask Mithras to protect the health of the emperor. The emperors loved the god Mithras for the main reasoning that it helped the troops to basically be better troops in battle. It especially became popular when the Severans and other militaristic emperors came to power in Rome. When Septimius Severus brought his Gallic troops from Pannonia down to Rome to take power from Julianus, there was a good chance he had already been initiated into the mysteries of Mithras. Soon after he came to power in 193 AD, he allowed the Roman military to own land where they were stationed. This would allow many more soldiers to create mithraeums if they owned the land. One of the final times when we see imperial popularity of Mithras comes in 307 AD when
Ibid. , 298. Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 243. 6
the emperors Diocletian, Galerius, and Licinius restored a Mithraic cavern, granted the title fantor imperii sui to the god Mithras. This title states, protector of their imperial power a clear devotion, or even, a last chance for these emperors to restore the old pagan ways.11Several emperors like Aurelian and Licinius held worship for the god Sol Invictus , whose personage was close (if not even the same deity) and the two sun gods were seen as one in the same.12 Of course, with the emperors showing increased attention to cults such as that of Mithras, many of the Roman citizens began to flock to worship these very cults. Within Italy we find about one third of the Mithraic population and predominately within Rome and its port city of Ostia.13 It can be understood why the soldiers and emperors appreciated the worship of Mithras; but why did these Roman citizens worship Mithras? What about the cult seemed to appeal to them? Evidence that has been found within the mithraeums has shown several reasons for an appeal to the normal Roman citizen. First, one of the Roman mithraeums held several heads of other deities including Sarapis, Venus, Fortuna, and Dionysus. It appears that Mithraists were allowed to worship other Roman deities along with Mithras. Several inscriptions even evoke prayer upon deities such as Pales and Helios as well.14 The fact that during Pales festival, the Parilia, in which cattle were purified by running through a Ibid. , 244. Ramsay MacMullen, Paganism in the Roman Empire (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983). Pg. 127. 13 Ibid. , 119. Pales was the Roman god of shepherds and his festival was the Parilia 14 Marvin W. Meyer, The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook (New York, New York: Harper and Row, 1987). Pg. 207.
fire, may have something to do with the cult of Mithras in which praise for the sacrifice of the cosmic bull was common within the mithraeums.15There are even images from the Santa Prisca mithraeum that show Mithras shaking hands with the sun god Helios and another scene in which Mithras and Helios feast on the sacrificial bull (figures 2-3). Clearly, the Mithraic cult was appealing to the polytheistic Roman citizens. The second appeal to the Roman citizens was that of the mithraeum, the cavern of the Mithraists. Every one of the mithraeums were built deep underground and were not made public, as other cults were. Many saw the secretive cult as interesting and even more; the mithraeums of Rome were counted as some of the most decorated mithraeums of Mithraism. Many people would be drawn to the design of a beautiful secret cult that promised salvation through its warrior of truth and good. The other area of the mithraeum that impressed many of the Romans was the Tauroctony. As I have said earlier, the Tauroctony (figure 4) was a main centerpiece for the mystery cult. It showed the god Mithras sacrificing the cosmic bull of heaven. Beneath the bull are three animals trying to help take down the bull: a dog, a snake, and a scorpion. Each one of these images within the Tauroctony has a different meaning behind them. Scholars believe that they correspond with a certain astrological constellation: Canis Major for the dog, Hydra for the snake, Scorpio for the scorpion, Taurus for the bull, and Perseus or Leo may represent Mithras.16 Many of the Romans found astrology to be fascinating for centuries and may have been Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 175. 16 Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 286. 8
disappointed when several of the emperors outlawed divination and astrology. With this newfound learning of astronomy, Romans would have flocked to the secret meetings and rituals. The third and final appeal found in Mithraism for the Roman people would be Mithras correlation to the god of time or Aion. Many of the ancients saw several notions in which Mithras was timeless and could guarantee possible everlasting life.17 The evidence for these notions comes from written ancient sources, and archaeological evidence as well. Many of the ancient writers saw the calculation, numerically, for the Greek name , in which the final product
came out to 365, the amount of days within a Julian year. Mithras name in Greek held the promise of being the god of the passing of years, and could control the passing of time in this way.18 There also seems to be a correlation with zodiac and the god of time as well. On a relief found in Rome (but now moved to Modena), there is an image of what is believed to be the god of time. Upon this image, there stands a winged man with cloven feet (almost like a cattle) and he bears a lion-head on his chest (Mithras was often called the lion-headed god, and one of the ranks within Mithraism was the lion ). Surrounding him is the entire zodiac, a display of the Julian year with astrological symbols (figure 5).19 There is a mithraeum in which a relief was discovered that showed the Tauroctony, but with the zodiac surrounding
Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 165. 18 Ibid. , 165. 19 Ibid. , 166. 9
the sacrifice (figure 6).20 This clearly shows that many people, including Mithraists,saw Mithras already as a god of time. Through all these different means, many Roman citizens were drawn to the Mithraic cult and its savior, Mithras. Part III: Mithras vs. Christus
From all the different cults and religions within the Empire, no other contended so well with the Mithraic cult as that of the Christians. Both cults rose in popularity against each other, and some modern scholars, such as Ernest Renan,claim if Christianity had been arrested in its growth by some fatal malady, the world would have become Mithraist .21 However, it is clear from the Christian apologist s writings that Early Christians felt threatened by this mystery cult from the caves. So many of their rituals, beliefs, and even the deity were similar that there could definitely be a rivalry between the two cults. First, Tertullian the Christian apologist, who wrote in the 3rd century, writes that the devil imitates the same rituals as the Christians. Devil seemed to be a correlationwith Mithras.22He wrote that the Mithraists performed their ritual meal as a means of celebrating the resurrection. Apparently, Mithraists spoke about eternal life, just as the Christians had done. They believed that they would be reborn by the consumption of the food and wine.23 However, the ritual meal of bread and
Ibid. , 89. Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 168. 22 Ibid. , 108. 23 Ibid. , 109.
wine was used throughout the ancient world. The Mithraists saw it as means of celebrating Mithras victory over the cosmic bull. When Mithras had slain the great bull, it was said that wheat came from its tail and wine came from its blood. Through the bull s flesh and blood, the world was saved and given prosperous nourishment.24 By eating the body and blood of Christ, Christians believed that they were saved from the judgment day that they believed would be upon them. The Mithraists would also speak their sacred texts over the ritual food, just as the Christians did.25 Tertullian also writes that the Mithraists use water as a means of purifying the initiate, just as the early Christians did with their baptisms. Finally, there is a strange similarity between the Christian s sign of the cross on the forehead and the Mithraic mark on some of the Mithraist s foreheads. Tertullian states the Christians made a sign of the cross upon their foreheads, but it was made with a thumb and made no imprint upon the skin. One can only imagine that this cross was a representation of the cross that Christ was crucified upon. However, Tertullian goes on to say that Mithras marked his soldiers with his mark . He does not explain what this mark was, but some archeological evidence may point to the Mithraic mark . Upon the Grand Ludovisi sarcophagi (figures 7), it was noted by an art historian that one of the soldiers (Most likely the commander of the troops since he is defended by the other troops and the only one to not be wearing a helmet) had a strange mark upon his forehead. Sure enough there on the soldier s
Ibid. , 110. Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 110.
forehead was an X (figure 8).26 Turcan does not seem to be definite about this mark being a Mithraic mark, but there are some pieces of information that this artist may have wished to put within this work that we are not picking up that make this THE Mithraic mark Tertullian wrote about. First, the sarcophagi shows a battle fought against what appear to be Gallic warriors or Germanian warriors, two groups of enemies that militaristic Mithraic soldiers would have fought. Second, the sarcophagi dates to about 249-251 AD, during which the emperor Decius reigned and issued his persecution of Christians in 250 AD. This edict declared that all peoples in the Empire needed to sacrifice to the gods, with written proof that they had done it. During this persecution, no one would wish to let anyone know that they would be a Christian, let alone a soldier of the Empire.27 Also, you may find it very interesting that the bust of Decius has a mallet mark near the top of his forehead, the same area where the sarcophagi soldier has his mark (figure 9). Perhaps a Christian wished to hide something about this mark , or was just very upset with this persecutor of Christians. The third and final reason is that the mark is an X . The Christian cross strictly looked like a T and could be death for a soldier if it was found on his head. It stands to reason that the Mithraist soldier would want their mark to be different from that of their rivals, the Christians. Crosses in the shape of an X seem to be prevalent amongst the east where the Persians first created crucifixion. Therefore, by all this reasoning, it stands that this mark could be considered the Mithraic mark of Tertullian. Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 244. 27 Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 239. 12
Now with these two cults, there must have been several differences between the two, otherwise they could be considered one in the same. There are many differences between the two found in their meeting areas, their demographics, and their leadership and sacred texts. When it comes to the meeting places of the Christians and that of the Mithraists, there was a definite difference between the two. The Christians seemed to worship publically and only went into secret when Diocletian set the great persecutions in place. Some of the Christian apologists wrote that it was suspicious for the Mithraists to hold their rituals in secret underground. Many of the Mithraists were accused of human sacrifice, which is why they held their rituals in secret. However, this was a fictitious rumor spread by the Christians to try and defame Mithraism.28 Another difference was within their initiations and rituals. As I have said before, women were not initiated into Mithraism, but were allowed to make dedications to the god Mithras. Women were seen as an anti-thesis of civilized values, which may have also tied in with the pledge of celibacy as well.29 Women were allowed to worship Christ and some were also allowed to be church leaders or deaconesses. However, celibacy was also found within Christianity, but it was for the reasoning that one should not hold on to earthly ties with the judgment day coming, rather than a moral conviction, which dealt with Mithraism. Finally, as far as we know, there are no surviving pieces of evidence that show that Mithraism had Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 239. 29 Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 298. 13
sacred texts. A surviving papyrus from Paris gives possible evidence to a Mithraic liturgy but other than that we do not have any other forms of sacred texts.30 Whereas the Christians survived, and their sacred texts were praised and copied many times. This all leads to of course sadly, the fall of one of these rivals, because one cannot survive while the other survives unfortunately. This being said, we have reached the final part of this Mithraic saga.
Part IV: Mithras, the Forgotten Sun
With the decline of Christianity by many of the emperors persecutions, Mithraism was able to rise. However, it would not be able to survive due to internal issues and external issues. The internal issues as I have stated earlier, were mainly that women were not allowed within the cult and thus would have dwindled their numbers drastically, especially in the long run. The other main internal reason was its low-scale focus on the future. With small ranges of demographics for their cult, Mithras was really only popular in areas such as Rome, Gallia, and Germania. Christianity was able to spread all over from Syria in the east to areas of Spain in the Iberian lands. When Constantine came to power, Mithraism was already dwindling from the rise of Christianity and the move of the capital to Constantinople rather than Rome. However, our decline of Mithraism begins before Constantine and brings us to what we call the Third Century Crisis .
Marvin W. Meyer, The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook (New York, New York: Harper and Row, 1987). Pg. 211. 14
Within this period of the Empire, many emperors such as Decius persecuted the Christians and soon Mithraism saw a slight rise with traditional cults being promoted. Even when Valerian exiled many of the Christians for not sacrificing, and threatened them with death for practicing their rituals in 257 AD, Mithraism could see a light of hope in survival.31 That light however was soon dimmed slightly when a humiliating tragedy befell the Empire. In 260 AD, Valerian engaged the Persian king of the Sassanid Empire in battle in what used to be Parthian lands. It was in this battle that Valerian was defeated and his armies decimated. Valerian was captured by the Sassanids and was executed after humiliation by their king. The early Christians were quick to blame the Mithraists for the defeat, seeing that their god came from the Persian lands, and soon many of the Mithraists began to see their future slowly dissipating.32 Thankfully, the Mithraists found another ray of hope in the future emperors. Emperors such as Aurelian brought a new deity from the east and the people saw that this new deity was involved with all of Aurelian s victories in the east and the north. This new deity was called Sol Invictus or Unconquered Sun . Many people soon began to correspond the sun god Mithras with this new deity, and it was not long before the two of them were fused together. This lasted till about the time of the Tetrarchy in which four men ran the Empire: Diocletian as head emperor, Maxentius, Licinius, and Constantine.
Mary Beard, John North and Simon Price, Religions of Rome: A History, Vol. 1, 2 vols. (Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998). Pg. 241. 32 Robert Turcan, The Cults of the Roman Empire (Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996). Pg. 245. 15
After Constantine had defeated Maxentius at the Milvian Bridge in 312 AD, Constantine began to institute that a new divinity had aided him in the battle. He claimed that the god of the Christians had helped him win the battle, and he slowly became the Christians new patron. In 313 AD, Constantine and Licinius legalized Christianity, but also legalized all other religions as well. There was now religious tolerance in the Empire. However, this would soon change when Constantine wished to rise above the other rulers. Diocletian had died, and he saw his opportunity against Licinius. They engaged in battle, Licinius running his banners with Mithras and Constantine running his banners with the symbol for the Christian god.33 Constantine won the battle, and the Mithraic cult now saw its decline coming to a sharp ending. Under Constantine s sons, pagan cults soon all felt a tightening noose upon their life. There was however, one last peak of hope for all the pagan cults. When Julian came to power in 361 AD, he sought to revive the traditional pagan ways of Rome. He limited the church s power within Rome and tried to strengthen the power of the pagan cults. However, in 363 AD he was killed in battle and all hope for the pagan traditions was gone. After Julian s reign, the Christians attacked mithraeums all over and took out statues of Mithras. An iconoclasm took place against the Mithraists and they would not survive this persecution. Within a decade, the cult seemed to have disappeared by means of the Christians, and their use of Roman power. By the edict of Theodosius around 380 AD outlawing all religions except Christianity and Judaism. Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 170. 16
Mithraism was a forgotten religion spoken of by the Christian apologists such as Tertullian and Justin Martyr, and by the pagan apologists who defended the already dead religions. Many of these pagan apologists asked Christian leaders how their religion differed from the pagan religions when they had a similar savior religion . The Christian apologists stated that the Devil created these other messiahs in order to stray the world until the true Messiah came. It seems that the early Christians made up this excuse to merely refute the possibility of error. Christians used tales of Jesus to show their domination over pagan religions. For instance, one will definitely look at the three kings very differently after reading these words. Early depictions of the three kings or magi coming to give praise to Jesus show the three kings with the stereotypical Phrygian cap found on mostly all depictions of Mithras (figure 10).34 The magi were considered the priests of Mithraism from the east in Persia. The Christians used this as a means of propaganda showing the true sun god, Christus.
Well we have reached the final area of our tour. Mithras was officially ended along with the other ancient religions in 380 AD, and the early Christians desecrated his sacred places. However, many apologists seemed to still go against the Christians, whether it is a sculptor from the 3rd century, or even the Christians with their depictions of the Magi. One cannot help but wonder though and play what if? history: what would this world be like if Constantine had lost against Licinius? What if Julian had not been killed in battle? What if Valerian had defeated the Sassanids? Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries , trans. Richard Gordon (New York, New York: Routledge, 2001). Pg. 169. 17
What if the Roman Empire chose the wrong Messiah ? With all the evidence in place, it s very hard to keep one s beliefs straight. However, a great man once told me that history is about fact, not truth if you want truth, philosophy is right down the hall , and with archaeology, fact is all you can find.
Illustrations Found Within
Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10
Beard, Mary, John North, and Simon Price. Religions of Rome: A History. Vol. 1. 2 vols. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998. Clauss, Manfred. The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and his Mysteries . Translated by Richard Gordon. New York, New York: Routledge, 2001. MacMullen, Ramsay. Paganism in the Roman Empire. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983. Meyer, Marvin W. The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook. New York, New York: Harper and Row, 1987. Turcan, Robert. The Cults of the Roman Empire. Cambridge, Massachusetts: WileyBlackwell, 1996.
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