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Quirinus

by Micha F. Lindemans
An old Roman deity whose origin is uncertain, and there is also little known about his cult. He was worshipped by the Sabines, an old Italian people who lived north-east of Rome. They had a fortified settlement near Rome, the Quirinal, which was named after their god. Later, when Rome expanded, this settlement was absorbed by the city, and Quirinus became, together with Jupiter and Mars, the god of the state. The Quirinalis, one of the Roman hills, was named after him. His consort is Hora.

He was usually depicted as a bearded man who wears clothing that is part clerical and part military. His sacred plant is the myrtle. His festival, the Quirinalia, was celebrated on February 17. Romulus was also identified with Quirinus, especially in the late-Roman era (Virgil I, 292).


Article details:

  • Pronunciation:
    kwir'-in-uhs

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