Cult Places and Cult Personnel in the Roman Empire: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Cult Places and Cult Personnel in the Roman Empire

1st Edition

By Duncan Fishwick


392 pages

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Hardback: 9781472414731
pub: 2014-02-28
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The twenty-one studies assembled in this volume focus on the apparatus and practitioners of religions in the western Roman empire, the enclaves, temples, altars and monuments that served the cults of a wide range of divinities through the medium of priests and worshippers. Discussion focuses on the analysis or reconstruction of the centres at which devotees gathered and draws on the full range of available evidence. While literary authorities remain of primary concern, these are for the most part overshadowed by other categories of evidence, in particular archaeology, epigraphy, numismatics and iconography, sources in some cases confirmed by the latest geophysical techniques - electrical resistivity tomography or ground-probing radar. The material is conveniently presented by geographical area, using modern rather than Latin terminology: Rome, Italy, Britain, Gaul, Spain, Hungary, along with a broader section that covers the empire in general. The titles of the various articles speak for themselves but readers may find the preface of interest in so far as it sets out my ideas on the use of ancient evidence and the pitfalls of some of the approaches favoured by modern scholars. Together with the wide range of individual papers the preface makes the book of interest to all students of the Roman empire as well as those specifically concerned with the history of religions.

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface; Part 1 Rome: On the temple of Divus Augustus; The statue of Julius Casar in the Pantheon; A Temple of Vesta on the Palatine?; Iconography and ideology: the statue group in the temple of Mars Ultor; Agrippa and the Ara Providentiae at Rome. Part 2 Italy: L. Munatius Hilarianus and the inscription of the Artemisii; The inscription of Mamia again: the cult of the Genius Augusti and the temple of the Imperial Cult on the forum of Pompeii. Part 3 Britain: The provincial centre at Camulodunum: towards an historical context. Part 4 Gaul: A priest of the Three Gauls at Valentia; L’autel des Trois Gaules: le témoignage des monnaies; The dedication of the Ara Trium Galliarum; The federal priesthood of M. Bucc[ … again; Our first high priest: a Gallic knight at Athens. Part 5 Spain: ‘Provincial forum’ and ‘municipal forum’: fiction or fact?; The 'Temple of Augustus’ at Tarraco; Two priesthoods of Lusitania; A new forum at Corduba; L. Cornelius L. f. Bocchus and the office of [curator templi Divi] Augusti. Part 6 Hungary: The sacred area at Gorsium (Pannonia Inferior). Part 7 Varia: Coins as evidence: some phantom temples; The later careers of provincial priests in the western Roman Empire; Indexes.

About the Author

Duncan Fishwick is Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at the University of Alberta, Canada.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

For further information about contributing to the series please contact Michael Greenwood at

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Ancient / General
RELIGION / History