Woerden Elagabal Inscription: dedication to the Syrian sun god Elagabal, remarkable because it is quite old and was found outside Syria.
His reign was from 218 to 222, and it is often assumed that he was responsible for the spread of the cult to other parts of the world. However, there is an interesting inscription in the City Museum of Woerden (Netherlands), that proves that the cult of the Syrian sun god was already known on the other side of the empire more than half a century before the reign of Heliogabalus.
It was erected by a soldier who may have been born somewhere along the Danube, but who may as well have been a native from the Low Countries. Here is the text:
Pro Salute Imperatoris Caesaris Titi Aelii HAdriani Antonini Avgusti Pii
BALO ET MINERvae
BASSVS Signifer COHortis III
For the good health of the emperor caesar Titus Aelius Hadrianus
Antoninus Augustus Pius,
to the sun Elaga-
bal and Minerva
has Lucius Terentius
Bassus, standard bearer of the third
unit of Breuci [erected this altar].