Cult relief of the Mithraic Mysteries

Illustration

Pierre A. Thomé
by Marcuc Cyron
published on 24 March 2015

Mithras looks away from the dying bull, up to the moon. Also, Mithras has a few little helpers that accompany him in taking the bull's fertility: a dog and a snake drink from the bull's blood, and a scorpion stings the bulls scrotum. A raven sits on the bull's tail that ends in ears of corn. The raven could have played the role of a mediator between Mithras and the sun god Sol invictus, with whom Mithras will share the meat of the bull. He looks down at the scene from the upper left corner.

2nd or 3rd century CE. Römisch-Germanisches Museum, Cologne, Germany.

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