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N.S. Gill

Festival for a Tiber God

By August 27, 2013

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Flamen in Apex
Flamen in Apex
© NYPL Digital Gallery

On this day in ancient Rome, the Romans celebrated the Volturnalia, a festival for an obscure god thought to have been a Tiber River god and the father of the two-faced god of beginnings Janus' wife, Juturna. Possibly the name changed from Volturnus to Tiberinus when the river acquired a new function for the people living by it, according to Bessie Rebecca Burchett in Janus in Roman Life and Cult (1912), citing material from Varro (116- 27 B.C.) and the Christian Arnobius of Sicca (fl. during Diocletian's reign).


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