Roman mythology is exciting for both children and adults, as it is full of knowledge and entertainment. Unlike other religions, the Roman one was polytheistic, which means that there were many gods they worshiped. They had many deities of their own, but many others were incorporated, either from Greek mythology or from the territories they were conquering.
In ancient Rome a sophisticated religious system developed with temples, priests, rites and gods dating back to the founding of its civilization. What at first was a somewhat primitive religion was modified and added to new gods that make up Roman mythology as we know it today. Next, in a HOWTO, we will explain what are the main roman gods and its meaning.
- Jupiter, main Roman god
- Pluto, god of the underworld
- Juno, the queen of the gods
- Minerva, goddess of wisdom
- Apollo, god of music
- Diana, daughter of Jupiter
- Neptune, god of the seas
- Mars, the god of war
- Venus, goddess of love and beauty
- Mercury, god of commerce
- Vesta, goddess of the hearth and fidelity
- Fortuna, Roman goddess of luck
- Ceres, goddess of agriculture
- Bacchus, god of wine
Jupiter, main Roman god
If we talk about the Roman gods and their names, we have to start with Jupiter. The Jupiter of ancient Rome is the equivalent of what Zeus was in Greece, with some Etruscan and native elements. It is about the son of Saturn, who with the help of his brothers dethroned his father, thus becoming “King of gods and men”. Jupiter was the highest Roman divinity and as king of the Gods he divided the universe between himself and his brothers; The sky was reserved for himself, the sea was given to Neptune, and Pluto was left with the subterranean world.
Roman Jupiter and its meaning
Jupiter is usually represented by his three attributes: the eagle, the scepter, and the lightning bolt. The element of lightning is of special relevance, because if we look at the etymology of its name, we see that Iuppiter, the Latin translation of Jupiter, comes from the roots dyu -light and piter, that is, father. So the name Jupiter means nothing other than The Father of Light.
Pluto, god of the underworld
If you want to know the equivalents between the Roman and Greek gods, you must bear in mind that Pluto would be the Greek Hades (although he is considered less evil). Son of Saturn and Ops, and brother of Jupiter and Neptune, Pluto is the God of the underworld, which is why he is considered the hardest and most feared of the Gods by men. Despite this, it should be noted that later he was also considered a benefactor and dispenser of wealth.
Pluto and its meaning
Pluto is almost always depicted with a stern look and a thick beard. It usually carries a dog fur helmet which, according to legend, made him invisible. It is common to see their representations accompanied by cypress trees, symbol of melancholy and pain.
Juno, the queen of the gods
Juno is the Roman adaptation of the Greek Goddess Hera. Juno was Jupiter’s sister, but she became his official wife, a union from which other Roman gods such as Vulcan and Mars emerged.
Due to the countless infidelities of Jupiter, Juno forged a great reputation for being jealous, vindictive and enraged. This anger, as explained in the mythology of ancient Rome, led her to attack and attack many of Jupiter’s lovers and children.
Juno and its meaning
This incessant fight for the love of her husband made Juno a goddess much loved by the population, as she became the protector of married women, the patron of the home, of births and honor. In her images she is depicted as a majestic matron.
Minerva, goddess of wisdom
Minerva is the Roman adaptation of the Greek Athena. Its connection with the city of Piraeus is total, since the myth tells that creating the olive tree for the city offered the inhabitants prosperity and security. Minerva plays a fundamental role in understanding the deities of ancient Rome; is the Diosade wisdom, science, arts and techniques of war. Although at first she had an Etruscan origin, whose attributes made her the patron saint of artisans, over time she adapted the personality and powers of the Greek goddess Athena.
Minerva and its meaning
According to Roman mythology, Minerva was the daughter of Jupiter and Metis, who was the goddess of prudence. For fear of engendering someone more powerful than himself who might dethrone him, Jupiter devoured Metis, although the consequence of this was a terrible pain in the temples.
Jupiter asked Vulcan to open his head with an ax to end the terrible pain, and when he did, from Jupiter’s head came Minerva, already adult and armed. Eventually this Roman Goddess became the favorite daughter of the king of the gods.
Apollo, god of music
Son of Jupiter and Latona, he is one of the few gods that makes the journey from Greece to Rome without changing his name and preserving all his attributes (although it is worth mentioning that he is also known in Rome as Phoebus, although less common). Like her sister Diana, she is very skilled with bow and arrows, weapons with which, according to mythology, he managed to defeat the python. Its importance within the gods lies in the fact that it was in charge of dissuading or convincing the other gods to punish the acts of mortals.
Apollo and its meaning
If Apollo was venerated for something, it was for being the god of music, poetry, eloquence and the arts in general. His main attributes were the bow and the lyre, with which he was able to inspire musicians and poets.
Diana, daughter of Jupiter
Diana is the Roman adaptation of the Greek goddess Artemis. She is the twin sister of Apollo, that is, daughter of Jupiter and Latona. She lives in the woods, of which she is a goddess, and is dedicated to hunting with bow and arrows accompanied almost always by nymphs. She was also used to pray as a goddess of the night and the hells, which is why it is often identified with the moon.
Diana and her meaning
By concession of her father Jupiter, Diana remained forever a virgin and young, which would explain why she was always revered as Goddess chastity.
Neptune, god of the seas
Neptune is the Roman equivalent of the Greek Poseidon. He is the older brother of Jupiter and between them two and Pluto, the third brother, they dethroned their father from power, later dividing the universe. Neptune was left with the sea, which made him god of seas, storms and winds. He is often represented as an angry and moody god, even violent. From their fits of rage are born the storms, the waves and the earthquakes, so it used to be the protagonist of the prayers of sailors and boatmen.
Neptune and its meaning
At first, Neptune was considered only God of rain and clouds, however, in 399 BC the cult of Poseidon was imported to Italic lands from the Greek colonies. Since then, the previous god of rain was added the power over the waters and the entire aquatic kingdom.
Mars, the god of war
Mars could go through a Roman adaptation of Ares, although the reality is that there are differences between the two deities. Mars is the son of Jupiter and Juno, and although it has come to the present day as the God of War, the truth is that it was also harvest and vegetations.
Like many other Roman gods, he had a very complex personality and a dual nature: on the one hand he was a warrior god, but on the other he protected the people from threats and made sure that the fields bear fruit.
Mars and its meaning
Mars was the father of Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome according to legend. That is why in the capital of the empire he was honored as the most important God, second only to Jupiter. Being the father of its founders, Mars was considered the father of all Romans.
Venus, goddess of love and beauty
Venus is another daughter of Jupiter, a deity who in Greek tradition is known as Aphrodite. We are facing another very important Roman goddess, because not only is she considered goddess of love and beauty, but also the great Goddess of fertility.
Venus and its meaning
In addition to her own merits and feats, Venus is very important in the world of the Roman gods because of the children she had. On the one hand there is Cupid, in charge of launching the arrows of love, and on the other Aeneas, the father of the Romans (who was not a founder like Romulus and Remus). Due to her offspring, Venus is considered the Mother goddess of the romans.
Mercury, god of commerce
Mercury is the equivalent of what Hermes was in Greek mythology. He is another of the sons of Jupiter and was in charge of making messenger among the rest of the gods. In turn, it was he who led the souls of the dead to hell, which is why he was considered the God of transportation and travelers.
Mercury and its meaning
The name Mercury is related to the word market, which is why it is considered the God of commercial exchanges, business and Commerce. The element that best …