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The Temple of Saturn: the most ancient location for the best day in Rome

IMG-20130903-WA0001 The Temple of Saturn: the most ancient location for the best day in Rome

The Temple of Saturn - located in the Roman Forum - was the repository for the State treasury, known as the Aerarium Populi Romani (fromaes, bronze).
According to Roman mythology, Saturn was associated with agriculture and was thought to be the original source of Rome's wealth.
Indeed, Saturn was most worshipped god during the Golden Age, when human beings effortlessly prospered and benefited from the spontaneous bounty of the earth and lived in a state of social egalitarianism. For all these reasons the god continued to be associated with wealth and prosperity.

On December 17, the Romans celebrated the festival in honour of the deity Saturn, with a sacrifice at the Temple and a public banquet, followed by private gift-giving, continual partying, and acarnival atmosphere that overturnedRoman social norms:gambling was permitted, and masters served theirslaves.
Therevelries of Saturnalia were supposed to reflect the conditions of the lost mythical age. Although some features characterizing this festivity could not be considered so desirable, it still was an awaited day. As proof of that, even Catullo, one of the most famous Roman poet, referred to this festivity as the optimum dierum – i.e. the best day!


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