previous next

CHAMALIÈRES Puy-de-Dôme, France.

Gallo-Roman settlement just outside Clermont-Ferrand (Augustonemetum).

The most important discovery made here was of a large collection of Gallo-Roman carved wooden ex-votos near a mineral water spring, known today as La Source des Roches. The spring itself shows no signs of engineering, even of a rough kind. The ex-votos, originally stacked vertically or placed on their bases around the two drainage basins, had fallen into the basins, almost filling them. Coins and pottery found in this deposit show that it was used over a period from the end of Gallic independence, at the earliest, to the reign of Augustus' first successors, at the latest.

Over 5000 wooden ex-votos have been found, but no stone or bronze offerings. Essentially they consist of lifesize representations of legs and arms, lower sections of the body, either naked or draped, and anatomical splints. Particularly noteworthy are some statuettes of pilgrims, busts and heads of men and women (the Classical influence is noticeable here), and some badly damaged painted plaques. The carvings can be seen in the Musée Bargoin in Clermont-Ferrand.


C. Vatin, Gallia 27 (1969) 320-301; id., “Ex-voto de bois gallo-romains à Chamalières,” RA (1969) 103-14I; id., “Wooden sculpture from galloroman Auvergne,” Antiquity 46 (1972) 39-42I; J. C. Poursat, Gallia 31 (1973) 439-44I.


hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: