Sucellos in Carnuticâ

Gaulish Druidism, Gaulish Polytheism

These are my thoughts. I have nothing to back them up but my connection to Sucellos and connecting dots of the things I see as a picture. I know many folks like hard facts to claim truths, and that is just fine. Some folks would like to find a Dêuoi name that would prove a Dêuoi in the said territory. I truly understand that, but I also understand that we do not have the luxury of finding all these names. So much was destroyed, and we are left with fragmented fragments. We must remember the names we do have of some Dêuoi are only what survives, not what was. This brings me to that deep connection of trusting my intuition and looking at the pieces as a whole that brings me to this thought that, for me, is truth.

Great devotees of Wine

There is archeological evidence that the Grapevine Vitis vinifera, also known as the common grape, was first cultivated in Gaul based on pips found all around Gaul. The grape pip changed as we started to domesticate it. Now, this does not mean that they made wine from the grapes. New winemaking styles first came to Gaul with the Phoceans’ arrival around 600 BC near Massalia. We know without a doubt that wine was essential to the Gauls. We have multiple Greek and Roman writers talking about The Gauls and their love of wine and beer. 

The love of wine helped them in creating the Barrel. Pliny the Elder says that cooperage in Europe originated with the Gauls (Coopers are craftspeople that make Barrels). Their solution for transporting wine was to fasten together stripes of wood in a cylindrical shape held together by copper bands. It is also suggested that some of these barrels are as big as houses, as Strabo mentions.

The country has wonderful pitch-works, also; and as for the wine, the quantity is indicated by the jars, for the wooden ones are larger than houses;

Strabo, Geography Book V, Chapter 1

We have found barrels with capacities of over 1,000 liters. This shows us how important wine was in the Gaulish realms. As we know that beer was also important, but we lack the evidence for its storage in barrels. 

Sucellos, as we know, is a Dêuos of wine and many other things. One could look at our archeological fragments and suggest in the coming of the barrel, he became a Dêuos of not just winemaking and agriculture but also a Dêuos of the coopers (Barrel Makers), a Patron for the coopers. In some of the iconography, which I will name a few, or we will be here all day, we have Sucellus, depicted with barrels and the tools of the cooper. In one relief from Kinheim, Germany, he is shown holding a bunch of grapes. In contrast, two barrels are seen behind him. At the same time, another statue of Sucellos, from Javols, France, shows him with barrels, vines, and an amphora, a type of two-handled jar that holds wine, milk, and other things. They are often found with ashes in graves. So this could also suggest that maybe Sucellos was a patron to potters (people who make pottery). We have one other example of a pot found with a depiction of Sucellos and an inscription. This makes perfect sense to me for Sucellos to be a patron to the cooper as well as the potters.

Let us take a quick look at the mallet of Sucellos. We have many instances of the Mallet looking like a giant mallet and serving the function of hammering. Other times we have a smaller hammer, and he is surrounded by barrels and grapes. Then we have times we see the mallet, but the mallet head is in the shape of a barrel. This, to me, is an artistic rendering of the symbolism of the mallet and the barrel, a symbol combining two or more meanings into one thing, so in this instance, a barrel mallet. As symbols are visual connections that help us in our understanding of the importance of something.

Sucellos was a Dêuos worshiped in Eastern Gaul and the Rhineland, as well as other places. This does not mean he was not worshiped in other territories of Gaul, as most of what we have is fragments left that do help us in our understanding but only paint a tiny piece of the whole picture.

The Carnutes Keg Cup

The Carnute started producing Keg cups in the 2nd century BCE. These cups have been found all around Carnuticâ ( land of the Carnutes). They are goblets made out of terracotta in the shape and style of Wine Barrels. These cups have been found in many sizes and are suggested to be made in Cenabum, modern-day Orleans, France. We have found these cups also in graves of what is thought to be warriors. Also, it seems these cups were popular among the Andes, Bituriges, and the Coriosolites, which are neighboring tribes of the Carnute.

We know wine was spread all around Gaul. We know they loved the barrel so much, they created it and made small cups in its likeness. What I am getting at is any place wine was, so was Sucellos. We know that Cenabum was a big trade center located on the Lorie and produced barrel cups that are associated with Sucellos, in my humble opinion. So making Sucellos a Deous of Carnuticâ.


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