In 2000, excavations revealed parts of a temple dedicated to the ancient Egyptian goddess of Isis and the oriental deity of Mater Magna. The sanctuary is thought to have been a place of worship well into the 3rd century CE and gives visitors a unique insight into the religious cults of the Romans.
Apart from the more than 300 oil lamps found around the temple, excavations also brought to light many offerings such as dates, figs, pine nuts, and cereal grains that were burnt on the altars. Chicken bones testify of animal sacrifices at the temple. Among the recovered statuettes are a pair of lovers entwined in a tight embrace, a Venus figure, a bull with a sacrificial blindfold, and a bronze representation of Mercury holding a drawstring purse.
The foundations of the Isis and Mater Magna temple were discovered by chance during excavation work for a new shopping arcade. The stones, walls, and artefacts were removed and carefully stored for three years until 2003, when the temple was reconstructed at the Taberna Archeologica close to its original site.
This excellent display speaks to all senses, as visitors travel back in time to the world of the Romans, learning about their cults and beliefs.
The site is maintained by Initiative Römisches Mainz (IRM).