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One of 15 priests in ancient Rome, each of whom was devoted to the service of a specific god. The most important were those who served Jupiter, Mars, and Quirinus. Chosen from the patrician class and supervised by the pontifex maximus (chief priest), they offered daily sacrifices and led strictly regulated lives. Their wives assisted them and were also bound by ritual regulations. In imperial times a group of flamines were devoted to the worship of deified emperors.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on flamen, visit Britannica.com.