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p82 Aedes et Sacellum Bellonae

Articles on pp82‑84 of

Samuel Ball Platner (as completed and revised by Thomas Ashby):
A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome,
London: Oxford University Press, 1929.


Bellona, aedes: (templum, Liv. X.19; Fest. 33; Ov. Fast. VI.205): the temple of Bellona, a goddess who probably represented that characteristic of Mars which was displayed in the fierceness of battle frenzy (WR 137‑138; AR 1909, 70, 71). It was vowed by Appius Claudius Caecus in 296 B.C. (Liv. X.19.17; Plin. NH XXXV.12; Ov. Fast. VI.201‑204; CIL I2 p192 (Elog. x.) = XI.1827), and dedicated a few years later on June 3rd (Ov. Fast. VI.201). No traces, architectural or epigraphic, of the temple have been found, and its site is not known with certainty; but it was in the campus Martius, in circo Flaminio (Fast. Ven. ad III non. Iun.; CIL I2p319; Mirabil. 23; BC 1914, 383‑385), probably about half-way between the north-east corner of the circus Flaminius and the p83Petronia amnis. From it the senators heard the cries of the prisoners whom Sulla massacred in the Villa publica (Plut. Sulla 30; Sen. de clem. I.12.2; Cass. Dio, fr. 109.5), and from the open area in front of it one looked at the eastern end of the circus Flaminius (Ov. Fast. VI.205, 209). It was probably on the east side of the via Triumphalis and faced the east. For a suggestive but hardly convincing theory that this temple was at the west end of the circus Flaminius, in the Piazza Paganica, see BC 1918, 120‑126). See Addenda to Hercules Custos, aedes.

The senate met in this temple on various occasions (SC de Bacch. CIL I.581X.104; Cic. in Verr. V.41; Plut. Sulla 7; Cass. Dio L.4), and most frequently, as the temple lay outside the pomerium, to receive victorious generals on their return to Rome, and to vote upon their claims for a triumph (Liv. XXVI.21; xxviii.9, 38; XXXI.47; XXXIII.22; XXXVI.39; XXXVIII.44; XXXIX.29; XLI.6; xlii.9, 21, 28; Sall. frg. v.26; cf. BC 1908, 138). Foreign ambassadors were also received here (Liv. XXX.21, 40; XXXIII.24; XLII.36). The temple is mentioned in the second and early third century (Plut. Cic. 13; Cass. Dio LXXI.33; Hist. Aug. Sev. 22; Placidus, p14 Deuerl. = CGL V.8.22, 50.8). Near It was a Senaculum (q.v.) or place of assembly for the senators (Fest. 347), and in front of it stood the Columna Bellica (q.v.). Besides the literature already cited, see RE III.254‑255; VIII.572‑573; Rosch. I.775; HJ 552‑554; JRS 1921, 32.

Bellona Pulvinensis, aedes: a temple mentioned in three inscriptions (CIL VI.490, 2232, 2233; DE I.175), of the Cappadocian goddess Ma‑Bellona, whose worship seems to have displaced that of the Latin Bellona during the empire. This temple was probably not built before the third century, and its site is unknown. It had no connection with the pulvinar of the circus Flaminius (HJ 554; WR 349‑350; RE III.256; PBS IX.205‑213, where CIL XIII.7281, which refers to the restoration by the hastiferi (a priestly college of Bellona) Civitatis Mattiacorum of a Mons Vaticanus, is coupled with the existence of tombstones of her priests — the two last inscriptions cited — on the via Triumphalis, to support the conjecture that this temple was situated somewhere on the montes Vaticani).

Bellona Rufilia, aedes: a temple mentioned in one inscription of the empire (CIL VI.2234), evidently dedicated to the same Oriental deity who was worshipped in the temple of Bellona Pulvinensis, and probably built by some individual whose name is preserved in the epithet Rufilia. This explanation is more reasonable than that which derives the adjective from rufus, and interprets it as referring to the bloody character of the cult. The exact location of this temple is not known, but it was perhaps in Region III, as it stood 'ab Isis Serapis' (RE III.256; Rosch. I.777; WR 349).

Bellona, sacellum: a shrine of Bellona on the Capitol, which was inadvertently pulled down by the magistrates when the neighbouring temple p84of Isis and Serapis was destroyed in 48 B.C. (Cass. Dio XLII.26: Ἐννυεῖόν τι; HJ 554; WR 349; RE III.285; Pr. Myth. II.386).


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