The Thorvaldsens Museum Archives

Comment on 24.10.1800

A caduceus is a staff entwined by two snakes and crowned with wings. The staff is an attribute of the allegorical figure of Peace but is best known as one of the properties of Mercury. In antiquity the staff was the characteristic of the messenger and ensured a free and safe passage.
The caduceus must not be confused with the rod of Asclepius, which is entwined by one snake and symbolizes medicine.

Last updated 19.02.2015