Shrine to Augustus

After a wildfire in 1998, excavators found a Temple at Omrit, apparently built by Herod as a Shrine to Augustus. Herod ingratiated himself to Augustus by building monuments and temples in the emperor’s honor. Temples dedicated to the emperor in the early Roman period (20 BCE-120 CE) were part of an empire-wide phenomenon known as “the emperor cult.” This Roman imperial institution played a pivotal role in spreading imperial propaganda and encouraging allegiance to the emperor, who was portrayed as a god, or imbued with the spirit of a deity.

J. Andrew Overman, Jack Olive and Michael Nelson, “Discovering Herod’s Shrine to Augustus,” BAR 29-02, Mar-Apr 2003.