|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
In Roman mythology, Mefitis (or Mephitis; Mefite in Italian) was the personification of the poisonous gases emitted from the ground in swamps and volcanic vapors. Mephitic, derived from Mefitis, is an adjective in the English language meaning "offensive in odor"; "noxious"; and "poisonous."
A mefite is also a solfatara or fumarole (i.e., a gaseous fissure) associated with the Roman Goddess, Mefitis. The feature giving rise to this term, the Solfatara volcano, is located in Italy along the Via Appia between Rome and Brindisi. There, the ancient Romans would rest on their travels and pay homage to the goddess by performing animal sacrifices using the fissure's deadly gases. Today, it lies near the village of Rocca San Felice in the province of Avellino (Campania region). The solfatara still emits deadly volcanic gases originating from the Vesuvian volcanic system.
|This article relating to an Ancient Roman myth or legend is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|