Archaeological excavations have revealed that human use of the springs dates back 10,000 years.
Neolithic hunter-gatherer tribes frequented it first, followed by the Celts, who arrived in Britain about 700 BC and built the first shrine.
The Romans arrived in 43 AD and took over the Celtic shrine. “Sul” or “Sol” was a Celtic deity associated with the sun. In time, the Roman goddess Minerva became identified with the shrine, thus the name Sulis Minerva.
The main spring bubbles out of the ground at a rate of a quarter of a million gallons each day and maintains a constant temperature of 120 degrees. It was a sacred site, where man was thought to be able to communicate with the underworld and where people came to worship and seek the goddess for healing.
In my first book, one of my characters offers a sword to the gods by ritually breaking it and depositing it into a pool.
More than 12,000 coins were found at the bottom of one of the pools and proves that the custom of tossing a coin into water accompanied by a wish is a very ancient one!
I haven’t yet seen Bath for myself but I hope to one day. Hmmm, maybe a character who finds herself in ancient Bath? Could be fun.