Grannus

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In classical Celtic polytheism, Grannus (also Granus Mogounus Amarcolitanus) was a deity associated with spas, healing thermal and mineral springs, and the sun. He was regularly identified with Apollo as Apollo Grannus. He was worshipped chiefly in Upper Germany and northern Gaul, not infrequently in conjunction with Sirona, Mars and other deities.

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Centres of worship

One of the god’s most famous cult centres was at Aquae Granni (now Aachen, Germany). Aachen means ‘water’ in Old High German, a calque of the Roman name of "Aquae Granni".[1] The town’s hot springs with temperatures between 45 °C and 75 °C lay in the somewhat inhospitably marshy area around Aachen's basin-shaped valley region.[1] Aachen first became a curative centre in Hallstatt times.[1] The Roman Emperor Caracalla (188 AD to 217 AD) visited the shrine of ‘the Celtic healing-god’ Grannus during the war with Germany in about 215.

Many more of Grannus’ centres of worship lay in present-day Germany: inscriptions to the god have been uncovered at Alzey, Arnheim, Augsburg, Baumberg, Bonn, Ennetach, Erp, Faimingen, Neuenstadt am Kocher, Rheinzabern, Speier, Trier, Bitburg and Unterfinningen.[2] Yet Germany is by no means the only area where the cult of this widespread Celtic deity occurs: this god’s name is also recorded on inscriptions in France at Grand in the Vosges, Horbourg-Wihr in the Haut-Rhin, Limoges in Haute-Vienne and at Monthelon in Saône-et-Loire.[2] There are also findings in Scotland at Inveresk, in Spain at Astorga, in Italy at Rome, in Sweden at Fycklinge, in Austria at Lendorf, in England at Thetford, in Hungary at O-Szöny and in Romania at Alba Iulia and Bretea Română.[2]

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