BELLONA, the goddess of war among the Romans, daughter of Phorcys and Ceto. She was called by the Greeks Enyo, and is often confounded with Minerva. She was anciently called Duellona, and was the sister of Mars, or, according to some, his daughter or his wife. She prepared his chariot when he was going to war, and drove his steeds through the tumult of the battle with a bloody scourge, her hair dishevelled and a torch in her hand. The Romans paid great adoration to her; but she was held in the highest veneration by the Cap padocians, chiefly at Comana, where she had above 3,000 priests styled Bellonarii. In the Samnitc War of 296 B.C., the consul, Appius Claudius, vowed a temple to Bellona, which was erected on the Campus Martins, near the Porta Carmentalis. In it the senators gave audience to foreign ambassadors and to generals re turned from war who claimed a triumph, which claims would be void did they enter the city. At the gate was a small column, called the °column of war,)) against which they threw a spear whenever war was declared. The priests of this goddess consecrated themselves by mak ing great incisions in their bodies, and par ticularly in the thigh, from which they received the blood in their hands to offer as a sacrifice to the goddess. In their wild enthusiasm they often predicted bloodshed and wars, the defeat of enemies or the besieging of towns. Consult Fowler. (Roman Festivals) (London 1899).
BELLOT, Joseph Rene, French naval officer and Arctic explorer: b. Paris 1826; d. 21 March 1853. At the age of 16 he entered the Naval Academy at Brest, and two years afterward received a commission as eleve de marine on board the Berceau. He was pro moted, for bravery in the French expedition against Tamatave in 1845, to the rank of eleve of the first class, and also created a chevalier of the Legion of Honor, though not yet 20 years old. On his return to France in 1847 he
was made a sub-lieutenant, and shortly after a two-years' voyage to South America in the Triomphante he volunteered his services on the Royal Albert schooner, fitted out by Lady Franldin, in June 1851, to search for her hus band, Sir John Franklin. During this expedi tion he reached with a sledge party the strait now known by his name. The expedition failed in its main object, but an interesting journal of it, kept by Bellot, was published after his death. In June 1853, he sailed again on board the Phcenix, under command of Captain Inglefield, on a new Arctic expedition, the principal object of which was to convey dispatches to Sir Ed ward Belcher, then commanding H.M.S. Assist ance in the Polar seas. Arrived in Erebus and Terror Bay, where lay the North Star, whose commander, Captain Pullen, was absent on a journey of discovery, Captain Inglefield set out in search of him; but in his absence it became desirable to get the despatches conveyed to Sir Edward Belcher—a duty which Lieu tenant Bellot undertook to perform by crossing the ice. Having set out with four sailors, a canoe and a sledge, the party got separated in a gale of wind on 18 August, and Bellot, with two others, drifted away on a piece of ice. With the view of ascertaining the direction the ice was taking, he crossed over to the opposite side of the hummock and was never more seen. A handsome granite obelisk was erected to his memory in front of Greenwich Hospital, and a provision was made for his sisters. Consult his (Journal d'un voyage aux mers polaires,' edited with a brief biographical notice (Paris 1854).