Latin name: Aries
Other names: Belier
Rams were the first animals to be sacrificed on alters
Rams were the first animals to be sacrificed on alters, hence their Latin name aries which comes from aris, "alters".
|Sources (chronological order)|
Pliny the Elder [1st century CE] (Natural History, Book 8, 72): The wildness of rams can be curbed by drilling a hole in the horn near the ear. Female sheep will be produced if a string is tied around the right testicle of the ram; if put on the left, males will be produced.
Isidore of Seville [7th century CE] (Etymologies, Book 12, 1:11): The ram gets its name (aries) either from the Greek apo tou Areos (from Mars, god of war), or beause rams are the first to be sacrificed on alters (aris). Quoting the fifth century Christian poet Caelius Sedulius, Isidore says "Aires mactatur ad arum" (The ram is slain at the alter).