Thursday, May 04, 2017

Mithras temple uncovered in southeast Turkey?

ARCHAEOLOGY: 1,700-year-old temple reveals ancient religion in east Anatolia (Daily Sabah). The report is that a 4th century CE temple of Mithras has been uncovered. There isn't a lot of detail about how they reached that conclusion. Mithraism was an ancient mystery religion that was in some competition with Christianity in the early centuries CE.

There is another report in Hurriyet Daily News: Underground Mithras temple discovered in Diyarbakır. This one has more details, but also some obvious errors. It can't decide whether the temple is 1700 years old or 700. The proper term for a temple of Mithras is a Mithraeum, not a "Mithraea." And Mithras was a god, not a goddess. So be cautious with the information in the article.

The discovery of this new Mithraeum is at the Zerzevan Castle in the Diyarbakır province in southeast Turkey. The discovery of an ancient Christian chapel there, which had Aramaic inscriptions on its walls, was reported back in 2015. Background here.

Past PaleoJudaica posts involving Mithras and Mithraism are here, here, here, here, and here.