Most of what we know about this object comes from observations in March 1996, when it approached to within about 10 million kilometers (about 26 Earth-Moon distances), its closest approach until 2271. Bacchus is about 1.1 by 0.5 kilometers and is has a bifurcated shape. It rotates once every 14.9 hours. It is unusually bright at both optical and radar wavelengths. Bacchus is named for the god of wine and merriment, the son of Jupiter and Semele. Bacchus was honored in various festivals, such as the Bacchanalia, characterized by drink and debauchery.