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The Arval Brethren were one of eldest of the many priestly colleges of the religion of the Ancient Roman state, tending to the cult of dea Dia, a nature-goddess, and of the ancestors so as to ensure a good harvest. During the reign of the emperor Augustus, the college was used as a tool of imperial unity and control. The term ‘arval’ comes from ‘arvum’, which means ‘a ploughed field’, and reflects their agricultural origin. View All Posts