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Images of the Goddess Victoria
Hello All,

Several sources attest to the presence in Rome of a temple dedicated to the goddess Victoria; and to the devotion of the legions to this personification of the success of Roman arms.  It is said that Roman "generals" returning from successful campaigns, and awarded a triumph or triumphal ornaments; would often be presented - at the temple - with a miniature statuette of the temple's large image of the goddess -- a victoriola.   These small images conveyed great prestige and honor upon the recipient.  

I've looked - electronically - through the collections of some 15-20 museums for a picture of a victoriola without any success.  The temple existed for some 700 or so years....and ...there must have been some number of presentations made over such a long time span.  

Has anyone seen a mention / picture of such an image?  And, where is/was it?

Many thanks for the help !!
The victriola statuette appears quite frequently on coin images - often being presented either by Victory herself or by the Genius of the Augustus. If these images are accurate, we can judge the probable size and appearance of the statuette.

Based on this, the image appears to be the usual sort of 'Winged victory on a globe', often holding a victory wreath or palm frond, that appears quite often in Greco-Roman art. There are a number of surviving statuette versions (like this one, or this one, or here), together with sculptural representations (this one from Housesteads) and painted ones (here, from Pompeii, or this one from the 3rd century vexillum in the Pushkin Museum). The 'Victory/Nike' statue was very popular in later 'classical' art as well.

Possibly the best representation (although perhaps much restored?) is this statue of Lucius Verus - close up here.
Nathan Ross
This image of the scabbard mouth of the so-called 'Sword of Tiberius' in the British Museum shows Germanicus presenting a victriola statuette to Tiberius. It probably gives a good idea of the size of the statuette:
Michael King Macdona

And do as adversaries do in law, -
Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
(The Taming of the Shrew: Act 1, Scene 2)
(08-15-2017, 12:26 PM)Renatus Wrote: This image of the scabbard mouth of the so-called 'Sword of Tiberius' in the British Museum shows Germanicus presenting a victriola statuette to Tiberius. It probably gives a good idea of the size of the statuette:

Many thanks to both Nathan Ross, and Renatus for their replies and images.   I had previously seen the scabbard images from the Tiberius sword... it seems quite amazing that this was not torn to bits for its valuable metal in antiquity.  The image of of Lucius Verus is new to me and quite wonderful - notwithstanding the restorations.

Seeing both replies; it seems that I may not have framed my question terribly accurately.  

I am very familiar with various sources - coins, carvings, and intaglios of the images of goddess Victoria.  I received a present of a quite lovely chalcedony chromium --dark green -- intaglio of the goddess from the 1st century AD; which, set me off on research around her.  

Given the story I have previously related -- about "generals" being presented with a statuette of the goddess as they sacrificed in her template at Rome; and the fact that the location of the temple is not known -- there is speculation -- nor any description of the temple, or the large image of the goddess in the temple.....  

What I am wondering is.... if any of the ...specific small presentation statuettes given in the temple to the victorious commanders have been found and validated as duplicating what the full-sized temple image of the goddess looked like?  

Spoils of war were dedicated in the temple to the goddess; which , should have made her priests (priestesses??) quite well-off.  I would assume that the presentation statuettes would be of a very high-order of craftsmanship -- ivory?  gold-washed bronze??   

So...if any single one (or more) of these small statuettes has survived; I'd like to know where it is located, are there any photos or drawings which show the specific elements of the image; for example:  wings size and orientation, palm or something else in one hand, length of gown (these seem to vary) etc.

I hope that the above gives a better explanation of what I am looking for!
To continue the theme .... the use of a 'Victory' figure as decoration on the pottery vessels we know as 'Samian' in the UK (called 'terra sigillata' in the rest of Europe) is quite common. They are generally presented as a winged figure, holding out a laurel wreath and often carrying a palm frond in the other hand.  These vessels were produced throughout the province of Gaul at all three of the traditional manufacturing areas  (La Graufesenque, Lezoux and Rheinzabern) through the first two centuries AD.
visne scire quod credam? credo orbes volantes exstare.

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