Defining the Ritual, Analyzing Society: The social significance of material culture in pre-Roman cult places of Latium Vetus.

van Loon, T., 2017, [Groningen]: Rijksuniversiteit Groningen. 419 p.

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)Academic

Copy link to clipboard


  • Tanja van Loon
Based on the abundant presence of votive deposits in the ancient world and beyond, there can be no doubt that the dedication of votive objects constituted a significant part of cultic activity. As far as the study of votive deposits concerns, there isn’t an overall template that can be used which embodies the multifarious nature of this type of context. The here presented study focuses on the common ground within votive deposits: the ritual objects.
The application of a holistic approach to the cult place of Laghetto del Monsignore (Lazio, Central-Italy) - combining both in-depth quantitative and qualitative analysis of the complete body of evidence of the votive deposit, and a micro- and macro-regional contextual analysis - proved fruitful for our understanding of the different functions of the ritual objects in the case study at hand.
The study of the ritual objects indicated various types of ritual practice that seem to continue throughout the life span of the cult place (c. 950 to 400 BC), including the use of full-sized vessels in sacrificial meals, the use of miniature vessels (and probably also full-sized vessels) as containers for offers, and different types of ritual objects that were dedicated as votive gifts. Additionally, short-lived ritual practices were identified, which could be associated with elite related banqueting ceremonies.
Furthermore, the material-based approach allowed to improve our understanding of the function of the sanctuary, how it was embedded in its local community and contributed to a broader comprehension of contemporaneous societal dynamics.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Attema, Peter, Supervisor
  • Nijboer, Albertus, Co-supervisor
  • Guidi, A., Assessment committee, External person
  • Gnade, Marijke, Assessment committee, External person
  • Burgers, Gert-Jan, Assessment committee
Award date22-Jun-2017
Place of Publication[Groningen]
Print ISBNs978-90-367-9919-5
Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-9918-8
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Download statistics

No data available

ID: 42730261