Baths of Diocletian - A Sanctuary of Ariccia

A sanctuary dedicated to Demeter and Kore, divine personifications of the generative forces of the earth. Demeter (middle) has a chitone and cloak sitting on a wide and decorated throne. The goddess is richly ornated with a diadem and with ears of corn crown and jewellery. She is holding in her hand some ears of corn which is a typical attribute of the divinity.

(museum info card)

Rome, June 2015

Baths of Diocletian - A mother’s sorrow

A sepulchral slab dedicated to Octavia Arbuscula by her mother Tuccia Urbana. Her daughter had lived twenty-three years and ten months. The text contains in the upper part the dedication, in the lower part a poem engraved on two writing columns. In the deceaced’s composition, after recording her young age, it turns offering words of consolation to her parents and sister and above all it asks her mother not to torment herself for the rest of her days crying for her sorrow because it did not only happen to her but even to great kings.” (museum info card)

Given her young age, it’squite possible that she died in childbirth. At least I’ve undestood that maternal death rate in childbirth was rather high in ancient Rome.   

Rome, June 2015