The Temple of Bacchus

El Capricho park, Madrid, Spain

The Temple of Bacchus is located on a hill at the El Capricho park in Madrid, Spain. It was created between 1786 and 1788 by José de la Ballina and stands on a podium of five stone steps, which highlight its monumental presence.

It is located in the highest part of the Garden, is oval in form, and consists of twelve fluted columns, with bases and capitals of white stone combine that form the temple. It is said it once had a domed cover but this disappeared sometime in the 18th century.

The temple is striking in that it is not dedicated to Venus or her son Cupid, as was common in most temples of the 18th century. Instead it houses a marble statue of Bacchus the deity used the Masonic celebrations and known as the god of the grape-harvest, winemaking, fertility, ritual madness, religious ecstasy, and theatre in ancient Greek religion and myth.

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