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Terminus

by Micha F. Lindemans
The Roman deity protecting the boundaries between the fields. Actually, the stone that marked the border was thought to be a sacred object with divine powers. Each year, on February 23, the feast of the Terminalia was held. At this ceremony people poured sacrificial blood over the stone and placed wreaths of flowers to renew the powers of the stone. Later, people began to regard the stone as a god.

The god Jupiter, who also protected the borders as Jupiter Terminus or Terminalus, was closely connected with Terminus. Legend has it that Terminus was the only god who did not give way to Jupiter when he moved into his temple on the Capitol. In this temple, a boundary stone was worshipped as the stone of Terminus. It was also believed that a curse was placed on anyone who would remove a boundary stone (Livius I, 55,3)


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