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Ancient Temple to Mithras Discovered in France October 10, 2010

Posted by The Wayward Wiccan in : Witchy News , trackback

Just at the end of last month, archeologists have discovered a third-century sanctuary dedicated to the Indo-Iranian god Mithras near Angers, France. The discovery consists of a small, rectangular chapel, in which it is believed that worshippers celebrated the god and offered him sacrifices.  The “tauroctony”, a typical bas-relief of the god Mithras wearing his Phrygian cap shows and slaughtering a bull, is also present in the sanctuary.

Wondering why the bull slaughtering? According to one legend, one day the god Mithras was ordered by the Sun to sacrifice a white bull. He obeyed the order, but as he slaughtered the bull, a miracle took place. The animal turned into the moon and Mithras’s cloak became the night sky. In the places where the bull’s blood fell, flowers grew and from its tail stalks of grains were sprouted. The god himself ascended to the light and the legend says that he spent the rest of eternity alongside the Sun.

Other discovered objects were oil lamps, a bronze 4th century crucifix fibula, fragments of a chandelier containing Nubian terracotta figures, and about 200 coins. There were also large quantities of cockerel bone (a popular dish at the cultic banquets) both inside and outside the ancient sanctuary.

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