Roman fresco showing priest of Egyptian goddess Isis
Roman fresco showing a priest of the Egyptian goddess Isis reading from papyrus. The object was discovered in the temple of Isis in Pompeii; dated to the 1st century CE.
Isis was the Egyptian goddess of fertility, the protector of families. One of the incarnations of the Great Mother; later identified with the Greek Demeter. From Egypt, the cult of the goddess spread to all the Greek colonies and throughout the Mediterranean basin, mainly in coastal cities, where she was venerated as the patroness of seafarers and merchants, nicknamed Pelagia, which means “Sea”.