Questo sito o gli strumenti terzi da questo utilizzati si avvalgono di cookie necessari al funzionamento ed utili alle finalità illustrate nella cookie policy. Se vuoi saperne di più o negare il consenso a tutti o ad alcuni cookie, consulta la cookie policy. Chiudendo questo banner, scorrendo questa pagina, cliccando su un link o proseguendo la navigazione in altra maniera, acconsenti all'uso dei cookie.




  • Albadamare


    Charming Quality Accommodation, Small Luxury Hotel, Bed and Breakfast hospitality, Praiano, Amalfi Coast, Salerno Region, Campania...

  • Restaurant Eolo Amalfi

    Restaurant Eolo Amalfi

    Gatronomy Gourmet Restaurant Amalfi Neapolitan Riviera Amalficoast Salerno Campania Italy

  • Borgo San Michele Amalfi Coast

    Borgo San Michele Amalfi Coast

    Quality Exclusive Villa Accommodation Amalfi Neapolitan Riviera Amalficoast Salerno Campania Italy

  • Residence dei due Porti Sanremo

    Residence dei due Porti Sanremo

    Quality Guest House Apartments Accommodation Sanremo Liguria Italy

  • Il Borgo Restaurant Sorrento

    Il Borgo Restaurant Sorrento

    Mediterranean Gastronomy, seafood specialties, Panoramic Terrace, Sorrento Coast Sorrentine Peninsula Naples Campania Italy

you are here: Home More About The Sanctuary of Mephitis


Visit a locality browsing the menu on the left. In each Italy area you can then choose the best touristical structures we are proposing.

Most viewed in Italy

  • Santa Croce Luxury Villa - Amalfi

    As the smooth curves of a Mediterranean woman, who knows how to surprise and conquer, revealing, piece after piece, her wild and untamed nature, so the Amalfi coast hides inside its soul, delicate and virile at the same time, a sensuality that manifests...

  • Sunland Travel and Accommodation Amalfi Coast

    Sunland since 1979 is the leading tour operator for ground hanling services on Amalfi Coast, Cilento and Neapolitan Riviera. Sunland is the partner of some of the biggest tour operator world wide. Our attentive staff is at your service for: Hotel accomodation...

  • Amalfi Coast Destination Shore Excursions

    The Amalfi Coast, suspended between sea and Sky, is a land of an amazing beauty. Our wish, having the pleasure to be your driver/guide, is to share with you the traditions, art, history, landscapes and the beauty that makes this land, " The Divine Amalfi...

  • Amalfi Vacation Amalfi Coast

    Self-catering villas and apartments on the Amalfi Coast with pool, access to the sea and air conditioning. Amalfi Vacation owns and manages all the Amalfi Coast villas shown on the website. We are specialists in luxury villas and self-catering apartments...

  • Hotel Santa Caterina Amalfi

    Located on the famous AmalfiCoast drive, a few minutes from the famous town of Amalfi, the Santa Caterina enjoys a panoramic coastal setting of incomparable beauty. The history of this special resort is as impressive as its surroundings. In 1880, Giuseppe...

Print this page Send to a friend by e-mail


The Sanctuary of Mephitis

The sanctuary of the goddess Mephitis is located near Rocca San Felice, in the Ansanto valley, at a short distance from the Fredane, a tributary of the Calore river. As documented by ancient sources, among which the most important is Virgil, the sanctuary was the most venerated place of worship for the ancient Irpini people. A decisive factor in establishing the sacredness of the area was the presence of a lake of bubbling water that emanates strong fumes. The ancient population believed these exhalations to be dangerous and, therefore, linked to underworld. According to one interpretation, the very name of the goddess of fertility and death, Mephitis, signifies "she who is in between": in other words, she who puts in communication the worlds of gods, of men and of the dead. Archaeological exploration of the area was begun by V. M. Santoli (1736-1804) in the 18th century and was continued in 1950's by G. O. Onorato. the many objects unearthed from the deposit of votive offerings are now housed in the Museum of Irpinia. The preciousness of the gifts brought to the temple by the pilgrims is proof of the importance of this place of worship and of the reverence that it inspired. These gifts consist of various types of ex voto, all datable to the period from the VI century B.C to the I century AD. they include small statues of men and women in the act of praying, small bronzes, gold fibulae or brooches, small pieces of jewelry in amber, such as a necklace and three scarab amulets. Of great archaeological interest are the so-called xoana, wooden torso-shaped sculptures, that have remained in excellent state of conservation thanks to the peculiar local conditions. Among these sculptures, particular mention must be made of the great xoanon, a statue of unusual height which, in all probability, is a cult figure: its profile shaped by an ample "S" suggestive of the body structure, the figure is characterized by two lines that cross and overlap at the upper part of the torso, simulating the outline of a cloak pinned to the breast as in the ancient Italic custom. Successive archaeological excavations conducted in the 1970's by B. D'Agostino and J. Rainini has brought to light a number of structures from the Hellenistic period. these finds are the relics of an altar, a portico and other remnants of buildings that are datable up to the period of the Roman conquest. these remains testify of the persistence of the cult of Mephitis which gradually come to be superseded, then was definitively supplanted by the Christian worship of St. Felicity.

Choose language