THE ROMANS

RELIGION 3

GODS, GODDESSES & SPIRITS

 

Overview

Annotated list of gods, goddesses, and spirits worshipped by the Romans

 

  • Annona Mythical personification of the annual food supply
  • Apollo (Greek) God of healing and prophecy . Pictures:
  • Asclepius (Greek) God of healing
  • Attis (Phrygian) Beloved of Cybele
  • Bacchus (Greek as Dionysus) God of wine. Picture
  • Bellona Goddess of war
  • Bona Dea “Good Goddess”: unnamed spirit whose rites were attended only by women
  • Cardea Household goddess of door hinges
  • Castor & Pollux (Greek: also as Dioscuri) Two legendary heroes
  • Ceres (Identified with Greek Demeter) Goddess of agriculture
  • Consus God of the granary
  • Cybele (Phrygian) See Magna Mater
  • Diana (Identified with Greek Artemis) Goddess of light; also unity of peoples. Pictures:
  • Dis (Greek as Pluto) God of the underworld
  • Faunus (Identified with Greek Pan) God of fertility
  • Flora Goddess of fertility and flowers
  • Forculus Household god of doors
  • Fortuna (also Fors, Fors Fortuna) Goddess of good luck
  • Genius Protecting spirit. Picture:
  • Hercules (Greek) God of victory and commercial enterprises
  • Hermes See Mercury
  • Isis (Egyptian) Goddess of the earth
  • Janus God of doorways. Picture
  • Juno (Identified with Greek Hera) Goddess of women. Picture above.
  • Jupiter (also Jove: identified with Greek Zeus) God of the heavens. Picture
  • Juturna Goddess of fountains
  • Lar (plural Lares) Spirit of the household
  • Larvae (or Lemures) Mischievous spirits of the dead
  • Liber God of fertility and vine-growing (=Bacchus)
  • Libitina Goddess of the dead
  • Limentinus Household god of the threshold
  • Magna Mater (Phrygian as Cybele) “Great Mother”, goddess of nature
  • Manes Spirits of the dead
  • Mars God of war

Mars by Velasquez

Mars, painted by Velasquez (1599-1660). (VRoma: Prado Museum, Madrid: Susan Bonvallet)

  • Mercury (Identified with Greek Hermes) God of merchants
  • Minerva (Identified with Greek Athena) Goddess of crafts and industry
  • Mithras (Persian) God of light
  • Neptune (Greek Poseidon) God of the sea
  • Nundina Presiding goddess at the purification and naming of children
  • Ops God of the wealth of the harvest
  • Osiris (Egyptian) Consort of Isis
  • Pales God/goddess of shepherds
  • Penates Household spirits of the store cupboard
  • Picumnus & Pilumnus Agricultural gods associated with childbirth
  • Pomona Goddess of fruit
  • Portunus God of harbours
  • Priapus God of fertility in gardens and flocks

Priapus

Painting of Priapus, symbolizing abundance, over door of vestibule of House of the Vettii, Pompeii. (VRoma: Barbara McManus)

  • Quirinus State god under whose name Romulus was worshipped
  • Robigus God of mildew
  • Sabazius (Phrygian) God of vegetation
  • Salus God of health
  • Saturn (Identified with Greek Cronos) God of sowing
  • Serapis (Egyptian) God of the sky
  • Silvanus God of the woods and fields
  • Sol God of the sun
  • Tellus Goddess of the earth
  • Terminus God of property boundaries
  • Venus (Identified with Greek Aphrodite) Goddess of love
  • Vertumnus (also Vortumnus) God of orchards
  • Vesta (Identified with Greek Hestia) Goddess of the hearth.
  • Volturnus God of the river Tiber
  • Vulcan God of fire

Venus by Titian

“Venus of Urbino”, painting by Titian (d. 1576). (VRoma: Uffizi Museum, Florence: Barbara McManus)

Jupiter

Seated bronze statuette of Jupiter, with thunderbolt. (VRoma: Louvre, Paris: Barbara McManus)

Juno

Statue of Juno, consort of Jupiter, with sceptre. (VRoma: Vatican Museums, Rome: Lisanne Marshall)

Apollo pictures 1, 2, 3

Diana pictures 1 , 2

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