Imperial Pantheon

Imperial Pantheon

Name Portfolio Rank Alignment Favoured Weapon Domains
Jupiter Leadership, authority, fatherhood, sky, thunder
Apollo truth and prophecy; medicine, healing, and plague; music, poetry, and the arts
Carmenta childbirth, prophecy
Ceres The harvest
Diana the hunt, virginity, and childbirth
Falacer ?Sky, ?Patron of Falerii tribe
Flora Flowers
Furrina Springs (thieves?)
Janus Beginnings and endings, doors
Juno Queen of the Gods and goddess of matrimony
Liber male fertility, viniculture and (plebian) freedom
Libera female fertility, viniculture and (plebian) freedom
Luna The Moon
Mars War
Mercurius Messengers, trade, guide of the dead
Minerva wisdom, war, the arts, industries and trades
Neptune rivers, springs, waters, seas, fertility, horses
Orcus underworld and punisher of broken oaths
Palatua Guardian of the Palatine Hill
Pomona Fruit trees, gardens and orchards
Portunes Keys, doors, livestock
Quirinus War, the Roman people, the Roman state
Saturn Harvest and agriculture
Sol The sun
Tellus Earth, earthquakes, productivity of farmland, marriage, motherhood, pregnant women, pregnant animals
Vulcan Forge, fire, and blacksmiths
Venus love, beauty, sexuality, and gardens
Vesta hearth, the Roman state, and the sacred fire
Volturnus Water

Extra Notes

Flamen Di Selecti (Varro) Dii Consentes
Jupiter Jupiter Jupiter
Mars Mars Mars
Quirinus Quirinus
Ceres Ceres Ceres
Vulcan Vulcan Vulcan
Mercurius Mercurius
Apollo Apollo
Neptune Neptune
(Tellus) Tellus
Juno Juno
Diana Diana
Minerva Minerva
Venus Venus
Vesta Vesta
  • Archaic Triad: Jupiter, Mars, Quirinus.
  • Capitoline Triad: Jupiter, Juno, Minerva[2]
  • Plebeian or Aventine Triad: Ceres, Liber, Libera, dating to 493 BC.[3]
  • Varro uses the name Dii Consentes for the 12 deities, six male-female pairs, whose gilded images stood in the forum, assumed to be the deities of the lectisternium.

Extras: Faunus, Priappus, Bona Dea, Ops
* The Flamen Dialis oversaw the cult of Jupiter, the sky deity and ruler of the gods.
* The Flamen Martialis oversaw the cult of Mars, the god of war, leading public rites on the days sacred to Mars. The sacred spears of Mars were ritually shaken by the Flamen Martialis when the legions were preparing for war.
* The Flamen Quirinalis oversaw the cult of Quirinus, who presided over organized Roman social life and was related to the peaceful aspect of Mars. The Flamen Quirinalis led public rites on the days sacred to Quirinus.
* Flamen Carmentalis, the flamen for Carmentis
* Flamen Cerialis, for Ceres
* Flamen Falacer, for Falacer
* Flamen Floralis, for Flora
* Flamen Furrialis, for Furrina
* Flamen Palatualis, for Palatua
* Flamen Pomonalis, for Pomona
* Flamen Portunalis, for Portunes
* Flamen Volcanalis, for Vulcan
* Flamen Volturnalis, for Volturnus

Imperial Theology

The myths of ancient Rome do not have the same extensive body of stories that, say, the myths of ancient Greece has. Roman gods did not become embroiled in intrigue, treachery and lust. Roman deities are - they have particular form and function, a specific place in the running of the Universe. The petty human emotions that are displayed by the Olympian gods were only grafted on to the gods of the Empire late in its history.

Even when the image of the deities became more "human", they continued to uphold the ideals of Roman society - decorum, honour and fidelity. Consequently, many of the "associations" made between Greek and Roman gods are inappropriate - although they may share spheres of influence, Zeus is Zeus and Jupiter is Jupiter.

The Creation Of Rome

The story of the Creation of Rome begin with Aeneas, son of the goddess Venus and of prince Anchises, second cousin to King Priam of Troy. While Aeneas was a young man, Paris kidnapped Helen, and the combined Greek forces converged on Troy for retribution. Aeneas became a lieutenant of the Trojan hero Hector, and during the war fought bravely in many battles. Sadly, through the treachery of Ulysses, Troy fell to the Greeks. Aeneas was one of the few who was not killed in battle or enslaved when the city fell. Commanded by the gods to flee, Aeneas rescued the Lares and Penates, the statues of the household gods of Troy, and made his way to safety with his father and his son Ascanius. Aeneas' wife Creusa was killed in the Greek pillaging.

Rallying the other survivors, Aeneas built a fleet of ships and set out to find a second home. He made landfall at various locations in the Mediterranean, notably Aenea in Thrace, Pergamea in Crete, and Buthrotum in Epirus. In Buthrotum, Aeneas met Helenus, one of Priam's sons, who had the gift of prophecy. Through him, Aeneas discovered he was destined to give rise to a race both noble and courageous, a race which would not only prosper, but in time rule the entire known world. With this knowledge, Aeneas sailed across the Mediterranean for many years, having a series of adventures, but forever looking for the foretold land. During these voyages, Aeneas' father Anchises died a peaceful death.

Eventually, the fleet landed on the mainland of Italy and the quest entered a new phase. Aeneas, with the guidance of the Cumaean Sibyl, descended into the underworld through an opening at Cumae; there he spoke with the spirit of his father and had a prophetic vision of the destiny of Rome. Upon returning to the land of the living, Aeneas led the Trojans to settle in the land of Latium.

Latinus, king of the Latins, welcomed Aeneas's army of exiled Trojans and let them reorganize their life in Latium. His daughter Lavinia had been promised to Turnus, king of the Rutuli, but Latinus received a prophecy that Lavinia would be betrothed to one from another land — namely, Aeneas. Latinus heeded the prophecy, and Turnus consequently declared war on Aeneas, bringing King Mezentius of the Etruscans and Queen Amata of the Latins. Aeneas' forces, with the help of the Tuscan people and King Evander from Arcadia, prevailed. Turnus was killed and his people captured. Aeneas founded the city of Lavinium, named after his wife.

After his death, Venus asked Jupiter to make her son immortal, to which Jupiter agreed. The river god Numicus cleansed Aeneas of all his mortal parts and Venus anointed him with Ambrosia and Nectar, making him a god. Aeneas continues to be recognized as the god Jupiter Indiges.

In his turn, Aeneas' son Ascanius founded the city of Alba Longa. He became its first king, but passed the city to his half-brother Silvius (Aeneas' son to Lavinia). A long line of wise kings followed, down to King Numitor.

Numitor's brother Amulius, successfully dethroned him as the rightful king. Numitor was sent into exile, and his daughter, Rhea Silvia, was forced into becoming a Vestal Virgin. But Mars, god of war, was smitten by her, and eventually seduced her. King Amulius, her uncle, noticed that she was with child and had her imprisoned until she gave birth. Twin boys of remarkable size and beauty were born, later named Romulus and Remus. Amulius was enraged and ordered Rhea buried alive (the standard punishment for Vestal Virgins who violated their vow of celibacy) and the twins thrown into the Tiber.

Romulus and Remus were kept safe by the river deity Tiberinus. He brought the infant twins up onto the Palatine Hill. There, they were nursed by a she-wolf, Lupa, underneath a fig tree and were fed by a woodpecker named Picus. Both the wolf and the woodpecker are sacred to Mars, as is the fig tree. Rhea Silvia was also saved by Tiberinus, who made her his wife.

Romulus and Remus were then discovered by Faustulus, a shepherd for Amulius, who brought the children to his home. Faustulus and his wife, Acca Larentia, raised the boys as their own. When the twins were older, they discovered the details of their past. They slew Amulius, and restored Numitor as the rightful king of Alba Longa.

Romulus and Remus then set out to found a city of their own. They soon got into a dispute as to which of the brothers had the support of the local deities to rule the new city. In the legendary First Augury, as Romulus stood on one hill and Remus another, a circle of birds flew over Romulus, signifying that he should be king. He slew Remus and named the new city Rome.

Romulus not only created the Roman Legions and the Roman Senate, but also added citizens to his new city by abducting the women of the neighboring Sabine tribes, which resulted in the mixture of the Sabines and Romans into one people. He continued to waged wars and expanded his territory for over two decades. He conquered many of the neighboring cities, mostly Etruscan cities, and gained unequaled control over the area of Latium, Tuscany, Umbria, and Abruzzo. Although Romulus may have lost some battles along the way, he never lost a single war in which he fought.

After his final wars against the Etruscans, Romulus' grandfather Numitor died. The people of Alba Longa freely offered the crown to Romulus, believing he was the one rightful ruler of the city as the blood heir to Numitor. Romulus accepted dominion over the city, but gained much favor with the city’s populace by placing the government in the hands of the people within the city. Once a year, Romulus appointed a governor over the city, a man selected by the people of Alba Longa.

In the thirty-eighth year of his reign, Romulus left the mortal realm. One day, when he and all the people had gone to the Campus Martius, a sudden storm arose. The darkness became so great that the people quailed in terror. A mighty stroke of lightning flashed down and struck Romulus. Instead of being killed, he begun to be carried up into the heavens. Romulus called out that he was going to live with the deities, and wished his people to worship him as the god Quirinus.

In response, the Romans built a temple on the hill where Romulus had risen to heaven. That hill is called the Quirinal Hill in Romulus' honor, and the Romans continue to worship Romulus, the founder of their city, and their first king from that very spot.

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