Offerings to Egyptian Goddess Isis Discovered in Italy's Pompeii

© Wikipedia / Giacomo Brogi / Pompei - Tempio d'Iside, 1870The Temple of Isis in Pompeii
The Temple of Isis in Pompeii - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 01.05.2023
The temple in honor of the Egyptian Goddess Isis in Pompeii, modern-day Italy, was built in the late second century BC and turns out to have witnessed not only an earthquake in 62 AD but the city's ultimate demise in 79, when it was buried by Vesuvius' eruption.
Italian scientists have discovered burnt animal remains which appear to be sacrifices to the Goddess Isis during excavations in Pompeii, according to an article published in the International Journal of Osteoarcheology.
The excavations commenced in 2017 when archeologists laid three trenches near the temple. In one, they discovered the remains of an exedra (semi-circular deep niche), which had been replaced by an edicule (small temple) after the devastating earthquake of 62 AD.
Researchers found pottery, plant and animal remains at the site, which appear to be related to ritual practices dedicated to Isis.

Isis is considered one of the most famous goddesses of antiquity, embodying the Egyptian ideal of femininity and motherhood. The Egyptians worshipped her as the wife of Osiris and the mother of Horus. In the fourth century BC with the advent of Hellenism, the cult of Isis began to spread throughout the Mediterranean, and then, along with the Romans, even further. As early as 1912 evidence of the worship of this goddess was found in the UK - then archaeologists excavated a Roman jug in London with the inscription Londini ad fanum Isidis.

Chiara Assunta Corbino of the Archaeological Park of Pompeii revealed that the faunal remains found near the Temple of Isis are comprised of 215 bones and teeth, as well as 25 fragments of eggshells.
The vast majority of the finds turned out to be remains of chickens, pigeons, geese and doves with chickens predominating in this collection. Scientists noticed traces of fire on 74 bones and the nature of these traces indicated that at least some of the bones had fallen into the fire of pine cones when it had been still covered with meat.
According to the researchers, the discoveries made represent sacrifices to the Goddess Isis and the collection confirms that chickens were widely used in such practices.
Moreover, the scientists noted that the bones of geese, pigeons and doves were present among the finds for a reason. The former seem to be associated with the cult of Isis herself. However, pigeons and doves could have been used as offerings because of their symbolic meaning - these birds were associated with a sense of attachment and also linked with female deities.

'Pimp My Ride' Roman Style

Speaking of other archaeological discoveries in the famous Roman city, Pompeii Archaeological Park said in a press release this Saturday that specialists have restored, through casting techniques, a well-preserved large four-wheeled ceremonial chariot with luxurious bronze paneling and silver ornaments. The chariot was discovered in 2019 during excavations at a villa in Civita Giuliana, north of Pompeii.
The four-wheeled ceremonial chariot was discovered almost intact in the portico in front of the stable with the remains of the three equids. It had iron components, bronze and silver decorations, with erotic depictions, mineralized wooden remains, and imprints of organic elements (from the ropes to the remains of vegetable decorations).
According to the Archeological Park's authorities, it was recognized as a pilentum, a chariot used by the Roman nobility for ceremonies and, specifically, to escort the bride to her new house.
This carriage is said to be a real unique discovery for Italy, not only in terms of the level of preservation but also because it was used to accompany celebrations, parades and various processions, instead of daily needs or agriculture.
The chariot can now finally appear in its original form at the exhibition "Moment and Eternity. Between Us and the Ancients," at the National Roman Museum in the country's capital of Rome until July 30.