Bacchus

Bacchus was the god of the grape-harvest, winemaking and wine, fertility, ritual madness and religious ecstasy in Roman religion.

Symbols: Grapevine, ivy
Parents: Jupiter
Consort: Ariadne
Festivals: Bacchanalia
Greek equivalent: Dionysus

Dionysos Louvre Ma87 n2.jpg
Statue of Bacchus, 2nd c. AD, Louvre.

The mystery cult of Bacchus was brought to Rome from the Greek culture of southern Italy or by way of Greek-influenced Etruria. It was established around 200 BC in the Aventine grove of Stimula by a priestess from Campania, near the temple where Liber Pater had a State-sanctioned, popular cult. Liber was a native Roman god of wine and fertility, and Bacchus and Liber were often equated with each other.

Bust of Bacchus from the temple of Liber Pater, 1st c. AD.