The Romans had, up to the end of the Republic, accepted only one official apotheosis; the god Quirinus, whatever his original meaning, having been identified with Romulus.
Apotheosis after his death, being in the hands of the senate, did not at once cease, even when Christianity was officially adopted.
Boissier, La Religion romaine; Renier, Inscriptions d'Algiers, 2510.) The Greek term Apotheosis, probably a coinage of the Hellenistic epoch, becomes more nearly technical for the deification of dead emperors.
54), Apocolocyntosis (" pumpkinification"), is evidence that, as early as Seneca's lifetime, apotheosis was in use for the recognition of a departed emperor as a god.