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Ritual and religion

Figurine of Dionysius

Roman Period

A Figurine of Dionysius, found in armourers' hearth with Cupid and Prispus figurines during the 1939 excavation. Dionysus was known to the Romans as Bacchus, the God of wine and wine-making. His name has subsequently become synonmous with euphoria and alcoholic excess.


Originally  6" long when discovered, the figurine was suffering acutely from bronze disease when it brought by Prof Birley from Durham to Dumfries in the last week of September 1947. After prolonged caustic-soda and zinc treatment it emerged 3" long, having lost its arms and lower legs in the process, but the back of the figure, hair and ribbon, and buttocks are in excellent condition.


The figurine was produced in Italy during the 2nd cent, and it is assumed that due to the quality of workmanship it had been earmarked as scrap for melting down.

Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
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RCAHMS site record:
Carzield Roman Fort
BIRLEY, Eric ; RICHMOND, I A "The Roman Fort at Carzield". TDGNHAS. Third series. Volume 22, 1942. pp 156 = 163.

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