Lararium of the Romans
The belief in the Lares is a specific peculiarity of the Roman religion. They are the patron gods or guardians of a place ( Lares Loci for a specific place, Lares Publici for whole places) or of a family ( Lares Familiares ). In the private cult of the family they played a very important role as patron gods, as spirits of the ancestors and as symbols for the whole household.
The Roman Lararium
The lares were worshipped by the Romans at a specially made, special household altar, the Lararium. At first, the lararium was almost always located in the representation area, the atrium, of the house, and only later in history was it moved to more private areas. In fact, it can probably be assumed that there was a lararium in every Roman house. It was not until the imperial period that the lararium received its present name; before that, this institution was called sacracrium or even aedicula.
- Height ca. 27cm
- width ca.21cm
- depth ca. 11cm
- high quality alabaster plaster
- antique patination
The shape of the lararium
Larariums did not always have to be made of marble or limestone and have the form of small altars or shrines, they could also - as is often the case - be merely painted on the wall. Richer families, however, usually had a more elaborately designed lararium, often in the form of a higher pedestal, on the upper half of which is indicated a small temple architecture in the form of two columns supporting an architrave with pediment. Sometimes there is another notch in the back wall between the columns, a niche in which small cult images of the personified lares, but also of other gods were placed and probably small incense offerings were burned.
A Lararium from the Roman Shop
The replica of the lararium from our museum store is a high quality ceramic casting with antique patina, made after an original lararium, which is now in private hands. The particularly well-preserved and detailed specimen measures approximately 27 x 21 x 11 centimeters and offers space inside to place any decorative items.
Combine this standable and hangable piece of jewelry with other treasures of our store, such as our incense or our statuettes.
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