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Tauroctony of Monreale

On one of the capitals of the cathedral of Santa Maria Nuova in Monreale, Sicily, an unusual turbaned bull-slaying Mithras has been recorded.
Tauroctony of Monreale

Tauroctony of Monreale
Petrus Agricola 

The New Mithraeum
27 Dec 2023
Updated on Jun 2024

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Mithras, dressed in oriental garb but wearing a turban instead of his usual Phrygian cap, slays the bull. His position on the animal follows Roman convention, although reversed horizontally. He holds one of the bull’s horns with one hand, while with the other he plunges his dagger into its neck.

As in the other two medieval depictions of Mithras Tauroctonus found to date, the crow, the scorpion and the dog have been omitted. The image also lacks the snake that appears in the Santo Domingo de Silos relief.

The image of Mithras belongs to the double capital number 22 in the south


Related monuments

Tauroctony of Aula Gotica

What appears to be a representation of Mithras killing the bull appears in the 12th century frescoes of the Basilica dei Santi Quattro Coronati in Rome.

Tauroctony of Santo Domingo de Silos

Mithras slaying the bull appears as the sign of Capricorn in a zodiacal sequence on the Pórtico del Cordero of the Abbey de Santo Domingo de Silos, Burgos, Spain.