Tarutius

related topics
{son, year, death}
{god, call, give}
{day, year, event}
{woman, child, man}
{area, community, home}
{game, team, player}

In Roman mythology, Tarutius or Tarrutius was a wealthy merchant married to Acca Larentia. According to Plutarch's Life of Romulus, the keeper of the Temple of Hercules challenged the hero to a game of dice with Hercules to receive a night with a beautiful woman and a fine spread and the god to provide the temple keeper with a valuable gift if the keeper was successful.

As Hercules won the contest, the keeper procured the services of Acca Larentia for the night and provided a fine supper. In the morning, Hercules suggested that she approach the first man she met on leaving the temple. Tarutius was the man who she met and the couple ended up marrying. Tarutius was a wealthy, older man with a large estate and is often believed to be an Etruscan.

Tarutius died shortly after their marriage with the couple not having any children. Acca Larentia inherited the estate and when she disappeared, her will was found devoting the estate to Rome. This version is considered to be the basis for the full legal entitlement of areas claimed by Rome.

Augustine of Hippo referred to the legend in his book The City of God as an example of how the pagan gods are supposed to have delighted in human sensual pleasures. In St. Augustine's version, Tarutius is held to be a younger man who Acca Larentia meets after spending the night with Hercules in a dream. Tarutius is held to have had kept Acca Larentia as his mistress for many years, leaving his estate to her on his death. She in turn leaves the estate to her in her will which is found when she mysteriously disappears.

References

  • Pierre Grimal, The Dictionary of Classical Mythology Blackwell Publishing, Malden Massachusetts, 1996 page 3
  • Plutarch's Life of Romulus
  • St Augustine of Hippo, The City of God, Penguin Classics London 1973 page 240

Full article ▸

related documents
Jocasta
Anaxagoras (mythology)
Anchises
Nicolas Chauvin
Súaltam
Thyestes
Connla
Matholwch
Gildor Inglorion
Briseis
Gendun Drup, 1st Dalai Lama
Eteocles
Shapur III
Deichtine
Terah
Agelaus
Paikea
Melchiorre Murenu
Celebrían
Emperor Kimmei
Gorgophone
Finwë
Helenus
Celebrimbor
Alcestis
Smerdis of Persia
Efnysien
Elros
Eurystheus
Alcinous