More on the Santa Prisca Mithraeum

The inscription painted on crumbling stucco in the Mithraeum under Santa Prisca has provoked much discussion.

Fig.69: "et nos servasti eternali sanguine fuso" - or is it?

This image comes from Martin Vermaseren, The excavations in the Mithraeum of the Church of Santa Prisca in Rome, p.215 in the Google preview.  It’s a diagram, not a plate; although apparently plate LXVIII shows it.

These are lines 13-15 of the inscription.  The restored reading is:

Primus et hic aries astrictius ordine currit;
Et nos servasti eternali sanguine fuso;
Offero ut fiant numina magna Mithre.

On p.222 Vermaseren asks:

Finally there is the question whether the three lines of verse on this section of the wall (of which line 15 is the last) are related. … This is not at all certain, although it cannot be excluded.

It takes little effort to see that line. 14, “Et nos servasti eternali sanguine fuso” is indeed a restoration, rather than simply reading the text.  Unfortunately Vermaserens discussion of the line on p.217-8 is not online.

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