Relief in white limestone (dolomite) (H. 0.68 Br. 0.60 D. 0.10). Yorkshire
Philosophical Society. Found in York "in digging the foundation of a large house
in Mickelgate" (Browning) in 1747.
Browning, Gent. Mag., 102; Stukeley in Phil. Trans. XLVI, 1750,214; Pal.
Brit. III (frontispiece); Camden, Britannia (ed. Gough), III, Pl. III fig. 8 and
p. 62; Wellbeloved, Eburacum, 80ff and Pl. IX, fig. 1; MMM II 391f No. 270
and fig. 309; Hinks in Bruton, Fort Manch., Pl. 16.
A weathered representation of Mithras tauroctone in the usual attitude and
attire. No animals. On either side a torchbearer. Next to Mithras' head the bust
of Sol (l) in radiate crown, and of Luna (r) in crescent.
Under the bullkilling are three other scenes side by side:
1) Standing person lays his hands upon a person, who squats before him and
extends his hands towards the former's thighs (Mithras and Sol).
2) Two persons side by side reclining at table on a couch, which, judging by
parallel stripes, is covered with a piece of cloth or buIl's hide (Sol and Mithras at
3) Sol in a chariot, drawn by one horse, helps Mithras ascend.
From Wellbeloved, p.80:
This Mithraic group was found in the year 1747, at the depth of ten feet below the surface, by some workmen, who were engaged in digging a cellar in Micklegate, opposite to St. Martin's Church. Mr. Drake, to whom it was immediately shown, "being at a loss," as he candidly confessed, "what to make of it, but judging it some representation of a heathen sacrifice or game, sent to his friend, Dr. Stukeley, as just a drawing of it as could be taken;" whose explanation of it was afterwards communicated by Mr. Drake to the Philosophical Society, and published in the Transactions of the Society for the years 1743-1750, Vol. X. p. 1311. This curious relic came, whether by gift or purchase the author knows not, into the possession of Mrs. Sandercock, of York, by whom it was bequeathed, with other property, to the late Dr. Robert Cappe, youngest son of the late Rev. Newcome Cappe; and after his death was presented, by the advice of the author, (the Yorkshire Philosophical Society not being then in existence,) to the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral, who placed it in the vestibule of the Minster library.