“Goddess” by ~helushia

“Carna’s themes are health, kinship, change and opportunity. Her symbols are beans and pork. Carna presides over all matters of physical and spiritual health, well-being and wholeness. Carna is also the patroness of the hinge, meaning She can help us open or close any doors in our life.*

Romans traditionally gathered with their family on this day, offering Carna beans and pork to thank her for continued good health. This translates into a meal of pork, beans and bacon with spelt to internalize Her well-being. If you’re a vegetarian, just stick with the beans.

To get Carna’s assistance in getting an opportunity to open up, try this bit of sympathetic magic: Take any bean and go to your door. Stand before the door and say,

‘Carna, help this magic begin; my future turns on your hinge.
Open the way, starting today!’

Open the door as you say ‘open the way’, and put the bean outside in a safe place to draw Carna’s opportunities to you.

To permanently close a chapter in your life, just alter the spell a bit. This time begin with the door open saying,

‘Carna, help me leave the past behind;
by this spell this situation bind.
Away it goes, the door is closed!’

Put the bean outside the door and close it as you say ‘the door is closed,’ leaving the problem outside your life.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Goddess of Health” by prismadragonfly

“Carna is a protective Roman Goddess, who brings strength of the physical body. Her name is related to the Latin caro, ‘flesh’, and She protects and keeps healthy the vital organs, especially the lungs, liver and heart. At Her festival it was traditional to serve a soup made from bacon and beans; She is also the Goddess who helps the body derive nourishment from food, and to convert it to physical health and strength.

Her festival on the 1st of June was called the Fabrariae Calendae (the ‘Calends of the Beans’, fabae being ‘beans’—which I guess makes ‘fava bean’ redundant), from the offerings made. As mentioned above, the traditional food of the day was a dish of beans and bacon with spelt (a grain which is related to wheat), believed to be an especially strengthening dish, which is quite true, as they all contain a lot of protein. Eating this dish on this day was said to protect one’s internal organs and bring health for the following year. The poet Ovid, though he confuses Her with the Goddess Cardea, says that the association of these simple foods with this Goddess proves Her great antiquity. These offerings were made in a sacred grove in which Carna was said to live, down by the Tiber river, and which was dedicated to the otherwise unknown God Alernus (or Helernus).

Carna had a sanctuary on the Caelian Hill, the most south-eastern of the seven hills, traditionally vowed by L. Junius Brutus, the very first consul (whose surname means “Idiot”, by the by) on the 1st of June at the very beginning of the Roman Republic, which is usually said to have been around 510 BCE. This sanctuary or temple may have stood for a good 700 years, as it is mentioned in the writings of Tertullian, a 3rd century Christian who was trained as a lawyer. However, he calls Her a Hinge-Goddess (that is, Cardea), so perhaps he had the wrong Goddess (and wrong shrine) too.

* Carna is still confused with Cardea, the Goddess of Door-hinges, which is Ovid‘s fault; they are not related at all, merely having similar names. The story I’ve given under Cardea, where She protects a child from vampires with whitethorn, was told of Carna by Ovid; though he hopelessly mixes Them up, the Goddess in the tale does offer the vital organs of a pig as substitute for those of the child attacked by the vampire, so perhaps Carna was meant after all, as the vital organs are Her subject.

Also called: Carnea, Dea Carna.” [1]


Took, Thalia. The Obscure Goddess Online Directory, “Carna“.

Suggested Links:

Her Cyclopedia, “Cardea“.

Monaghan, Patricia. Encyclopedia of Goddesses and Heroines, “Carna“.

MXTODIS123. An Inner Journey: The Moon, Mythology, and You, “Festival of Carna: June 1“.

Piscinus. Patheos, “Cardea: Blessing the Doorway“.

Took, Thalia. The Obscure Goddess Online Directory, “Cardea“.

Wikipedia, “Cardea“.