This website does readability filtering of other pages. All styles, scripts, forms and ads are stripped. If you want your website excluded or have other feedback, use this form.

Bacchus, Roman Religion and Mythology (Photo Archive)

Bacchus

God of wine and pleasure Roman Religion and Mythology / Lexicon

Take me to the pictures! (one photo in photo gallery)

Bacchus in a painting from Pompeii

Bacchus, or Dionysus in Greek, was the god of wine and of mystic ecstasy.

The cult of Bacchus was a mystery cult, and many elements were disclosed only to initiates, so little is known about the exact content of the cult and the rituals, but they appear to have been very complex. The rituals and celebrations are known under the name Bacchanalia.

The cult originated in Asia Minor, from where it spread through Thrace, Greece and Magna Graecia in S. Italy, where it was widespread. It soon enjoyed high popularity among the Romans, until a point where more conservative parts of the Roman elite saw it as a problem.

The Roman senate banned the cult in 186 BCE and many sanctuaries were destroyed, but the senate was unable to suppress the cult completely. It continued and is testified in art until the 2nd and 3rd centuries CE.

The wall paintings in the Villa of Mysteries in Pompeii probably depicts an initiation ritual into the cult of Bacchus. Images of the cult seem to have been common in wall paintings, in mosaics and on sarcophagi.

Photo gallery of one picture for "Bacchus"

Prints of the photographs are available — read more here.

The pictures above are taken in the following locations:

This page is linked under the names "Bacchus", "Dionysus", "Dionysos", "Bacchanalia", "Bacchic" and "Liber Pater".

Copyright © 2003 René Seindal, last changed 2003-08-06

Site Search Quicklinks Site Highlights · · · Copyright © 1999-2019 René Seindal · · · Venice Kayak - guided kayak tours in Venice, Italy