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Nantosuelta


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Gaulish ravengoddess whose worship is recorded in several locations, including Britain. Her iconography is puzzling. In her left hand she carries a saucer or patera, evidently used for sacrifice on an altar; in some instances the saucer is replaced by a small pot, which may be an evocation of the great Celtic cauldron. In her left hand she carries what looks like a small house set at the end of a long pole. While the patera and house-on-pole may imply prosperity, well-being, and domesticity, her constant association with the carrion-eating raven evokes sombre associations with death. Her usual cult-partner is Sucellus [L, the good striker]. See Salomon Reinach, ‘Sucellus et Nantosvelta’, Revue Celtique, 17 (1896), 45–9; E. Linckenheld, ‘Sucellus et Nantosuelta’, Revue de l'Histoire des Religions, 99 (1929), 40–92; Miranda J. Green, Symbol and Image in Celtic Religious Art (London and New York, 1989), 27, 42–3, 49.

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