fluence on the health of the infant.
In confecrating thefe Heathen Temples to the
Popifh worfhip, that the change might be the
lefs offenfive, and the old fuperfiitien as little
fhocked as pofTible, they generally obferved
fome refemblance of quality and character in the
Saint, whom they fubftituted to the old Deity :
'' If in converting the profane worfhip of
" the Gentiles (fays the Defcriher of modern
" Rome [«]) to the pure and facred worfhip
[a] Si nel revoltare il profano culto de Gentili nel facro
e vero, offerv^rono i fedeli qualche proportione, qui la ri-
A Letter from Rome. 121
" of the Church, the faithful ufe to follow fome
" ufe and proportion, they have certainly hit
*' upon it 'here, in dedicating to the Madonna^
" or holy Virgin, the Temple formerly facred
" to the Bona Dca, or good Goddefs." But
they have more frequently on thefe occafions
had regard rather to ^fimilitude of name between
the old and new Idol. Thus in a place formerly
facred to Apollo, there now ftands the Church
of Apollinaris ; built there, as they tell U9, [x]
that the profane name of that Deity, might be
converted into i)\t glorious name of this Martyr:
and where there anciently flood a Temple of
Mars, they have ereded a Church to Martina^
with this infcription :
Martyrii gejians virgo Martina coronam,
EjeUo hinc Martis numine, Templa tenet.
Af^ri hence expell'd ; Martina, m arty r'd maid.
Claims now the worfhip, which to him was paid.
In another place, I have taken notice of an
Altar eroded to St. Baccho [>] •, and in their
trovarono aflai conveniente nel dedicare a Maria Vergine
un Tempio, ch'era della bona dea — Rom. Mod. Gior. ii.
Rion. di Ripa x.
[at] La Chiefa di S. ApolUnari fu fabbricata in quello
luogo d'Chriftiani; affinche il profano nome d'ApolIine
fuffe convertito nel fanto nome di quefto gloriofo Martire.
Ibid. Gio. iii. zi.
0] Ibid. Gior. vi. 37.
122 A Letter frcm Rome.
ftorles of their Saints^ have obferved the names
of ^iirinus^ Romula 13 Redempta^ Concordia^
Nympha^ Mercurius \z]: which, though they
may, for any thing that I know, have been the
genuin names of Ckrijlian Martyrs, yet cannot
but give occafion to fufpeft, that fome of them
at leall have been formed out of a corruption
of the old names -, and that the adding of a mo-
dern termination, or Italianizing the old ?iame
of a Deity, has given exiftence to fome of their
prefent Saints : thus the corruption of the word
SoraSfe (the old name of a mountain mentioned
by Horace [