Tag Archive: sulis


"Oak King" by Tara Upchurch

“Oak King” by Tara Upchurch

“The Holly King is gone, and the Oak King reigns –
Yule is the time of the old winter gods!
Hail to Baldr! To Saturn! To Odin!
Hail to Amaterasu! To Demeter!
Hail to Ra! To Horus!
Hail to Frigga, Minerva, Sulis and Cailleach Bheur!
It is their season, and high in the heavens,
may they grant us their blessings this winter day.” ~ Patti Wigington

"Winter's goddess" by *frenchfox

“Winter’s goddess” by *frenchfox

 

 

 

 

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/yulethelongestnight/qt/YuleOldGodsPray.htm

So, I’m very thankful – it’s been a very successful week, both spiritually and mundanely…well, except for this morning when I had to be up at 4:30AM to drive my husband to the airport (Army stuff).  But, then again, I’m thankful for that now that I think about it because this school he is going to and the orders we will receive when he completes it has stopped him from being deployed to Afghanistan…so yes, I can say that I’m thankful for that.

Anyways, spiritually – I’ve made a very long-awaited connection with Epona.  As I’ve stated in comments under my Epona entry, I’ve always loved and had a strong connection with horses.  Equine Science was my first college major until I’d gotten into a car accident on my way to college one early icy morning on my way to the horse barn to groom and take care of the horse that I was responsible for, Briar.  Despite having to be up at 5AM every morning to get to the horse barn, it was well worth it to me as I loved EVERYTHING about it.  I loved the smells, the sounds of the horses whinnying and snorting, and most especially grooming her.  That was when I was at peace in my “happy place” – spending that one on one time with her rubbing, brushing and picking hooves.  I also loved riding – the freedom from all my cares that came with it was amazing…

“Rhiannon” by Amanda Walsh

In my younger days, when confronted, being “cut down” or if someone tried to discourage me from doing something I had set my mind to, I remember “feeling” like a wild horse saying, “I will not be broken!”  Stubborn…very stubborn (if truth be told, I still am).  I’ve felt a faint connection with Epona for several years now; with Her name popping into my head for no apparent reason and calling out to Her when feeling weak, hurt and vulnerable.  For the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling Her energy grow stronger and stronger as She made Her way into my life and really made Her presence known.  Perhaps that began when during our last Druid study group several weeks ago, I pulled the Horse card from the Druid Animal Oracle deck after focusing on the question, “What do I need to focus on today?”  I’ve also felt a spark with Rigantona and Rhiannon, even Macha; but more so with Epona.  Maybe because Her energy just feels so much “older” and primal to me than Rhiannon, Rigantona and Macha.

“Epona the Horse Goddess” by Gene Avery North

It’s been extremely healing, opening up a whole new sense of deeper love, understanding, forgiveness and acceptance that I was afraid that I’d never come to know.  I had a friend a long time ago that said, “Pony medicine is good medicine – healing medicine,” and as far as I’m concerned, he was right on the money!  I’m not sure what finally sealed the deal completed this connection – perhaps when it was when I was riding one of the horses with my daughter at the Renaissance Festival last Sunday – I have no idea.  All I know is that She’s here and I’m so thankful for Her warm, loving and peaceful presence I feel when my anger or feelings of discontent and frustration flare up.  I can “see” Her: a milk-white mare with big soft brown eyes just staring at me and feel Her comforting warmth.

I’ve also decided to try to work with Her as a Gatekeeper, which I understand is usually a male deity.  However, I feel She would make a perfect Gatekeeper as She is associated with protection, keys, the Otherworld and Underworld, being a psychopomptravel, shape-shifting, dreams, the Feminine and magic – just to name a few of Her associations.  As I have more of a Dianic nature, it just feels right.

“Green Goddess of Beltane” by ArwensGrace

I’ve thought a lot about the Goddesses that I feel connected to and noticed a pattern.  First off, Brighid – Celtic, who goes by many names depending on the region or tribe you’re looking at (i.e. Brìde in Scotland, Brigindū in GaulBrigantia in Great Britain, etc.).  Nemetona – Celtic, worshiped in eastern Gaul.  Sulis – Celtic, another Gaulish Goddess worshiped at the thermal spring of Bath (with associations with Brighid).  And now Epona – another Gaulish Goddess worshiped throughout the Celtic and even Roman world.  I also have an interest in Artio a Celtic/Gaulish bear Goddess, worshiped notably at Bern (Switzerland) and Abnoba, another Gaulish Goddess who was worshipped in the Black Forest and surrounding areas with connections to Diana (another favorite Goddess of mine).  Do you see a pattern?  They’re all Celtic Goddesses, yes, but more specifically, they’re all Gaulish.  I think I’ve found my pantheon 🙂

This kind of surprised me as I had expected it to be more of an Irish pantheon, but the feeling of connectedness just isn’t as strong as it is with the Gaulish pantheon.  Perhaps because of my Ancestors?  I will freely admit that yes, I am a mutt – Sicilian, Polish and Czechoslovakian on my father’s side and Irish, German, Polish, English, French and Dutch on my mother’s side.  Now, I know that there are people who say that ancestry doesn’t have too much of an influence on what deities call to you, and I agree with that; however, I feel that sometimes, it does.

Onto a different topic now…

I’ve just now discovered a very yummy and acceptable offering to the Shining Ones – Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey.  It caught my eye one day as I was walking through the PX looking for a bottle of whiskey to use for my offerings, especially after our very successful garage sale we’ve been running all this past week.  I felt a collective acceptance from the Shining Ones as we gave offerings of thanks for our blessings we had received.

That then inspired my husband…mead making.  Eventually, when he retires from the military, we would really like to live a self-sustainable life.  My aunt and uncle are beekeepers and sell their own honey.  I one day want to learn this skill and sell honey and make soaps and skincare products.  My husband sees an opportunity to make and sell mead as well.  Perhaps some Divine Inspiration?  🙂  Who knows…we’ll see where this dream takes us…

Goddess Nemetona

“Mother Nature” by Rozairo

“Nemetona’s themes are wishes, protection, joy, fairies, magic, luck and nature. Her symbols are Hawthorn trees (or trees in general).  In Romano-Celtic regions, Nemetona guards groves of trees with a special protective presence that marks the area as a sacred site. Within this space, the soul is hushed and calm, becoming one with nature and the Goddess. Nemetona’s name means ‘shrine’ giving new depth of meaning to William Cullen Bryant’s poetic phrase ‘the groves were God’s first temples.’

Bawming the Thorn‘ is a ritual that takes place around this time of year in Appleton, England. It is an occasion for the community to gather together and decorate a hawthorn tree in the center of town. Local people believe this was a spot of ancient Pagan worship, which is highly likely since hawthorns are sacred to both witches and fairy-kind. In magic traditions, carrying a hawthorn ensures happiness and promotes good luck (not to mention bearing a bit of Nemetona with you). Wherever the oak, ash and thorn grow together is a very magical spot filled with Nemetona’s power and one that will be visited regularly by fairies!”

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

“Queen of Forest” by maillevin

Patricia Monaghan tells us that Nemetona was “the British ‘Goddess of the sacred grove’ as one of the divinities worshiped at Bath, where Sul was honored as patron of the thermal springs.  Nemetona was depicted as a seated queen holding a scepter, surrounded by three hooded figures and a ram” (p. 228).

I found what Sora Nalani wrote to be very informative and inspiring: “A Continental Deity revered during Roman times; Her name may be cognate with the Irish Valkyrie Nemain, and in fact the Romans seem to have regarded Her as having some connection with Mars.” [1]

“Nemetona is a very ancient Goddess of the Celts, specifically those in Gaul (what is now France). As well, She is thought to have been the eponymous deity of the Nemetes, a group of Germano-Celtic people living by the Rhine in an area now called Trier in Germany. The Celts, in general, did not build temples, but rather practiced their spirituality in sacred groves and Nemetona personifies this belief in the sacred land. Her name literally means ‘sacred space’, from the Celtic root ‘nemeto’ which means ‘sacred area’. She is related to the druidic concept of nemeton, the designation of sacred spiritual space.

Nemetona was worshipped primarily in what is now France and Germany, but Her worship extended into England, where there is an altar dedicated to Her in Bath. Her name survives through many place names including Augustonemeton (France), Nemetacum/Nemetocerna Atrebatum (Northern France), Nemetobriga, Nemetodurum (modern Vernantes), Nemetatae (A tribe in Northern Spain), Nemetostatio (England), Vernenetum and Medionemeton (both in England).

Loucetios Celtic God of light

Inscriptions found have shown that the Romans afflicated Nemetona with Mars. In Trier and Altrip, in Germany, inscriptions have been found pairing Her with Mars specifically and in Bath with Loucetios Mars. It is well know that as the Romans spread through the Celtic world that they paired their deities with the local deities, finding commonalities. Loucetios was a storm god, the divine mate of Nemetona, whose name means ‘bright’ or ‘shining one’. It is thought that he may be the original form of Lleu/Lugh, the Welsh god of light. With Lugh figuring as a ‘divine warrior’ in many myths, it makes a certain sense that the Romans would equate Loucetios with their god of war, Mars. Still, the fit is awkward and does little to retain the original power and meaning of both Nemetona and Her consort. As is often the case with the Roman deity overlays, it seems as if there was some breakdown of communication as the Romans tried to fit their war hungry gods over the more shamanistic gods of the Celts.”

Sora Nalani goes on to say: “At first I had found the fit of Nemetona and that of Mars to be almost ridiculous, it just didn’t seem as if it could be. But when I found a pairing of her with the Brythonic God, Mars Rigonemetis ‘King of the sacred grove’, a new picture began to form in my mind, one of a year King associated with the sacred Goddess whose tendrils of energy were inseparable from the land. It is very possible that Rigonemetis was the guardian of the sacred grove, the guardian of the sacred mother and wellspring of life; Nemetona. I then read that the Celtic ‘Mars’ was a god of protection and healing, along with agriculture in addition to the war-like aspects. Even Loucetios, a lightening god, is associated with sacred groves, as the druids associated lightening with sacred trees, in particular oaks. It is very possible the Loucetios would have been associated with ‘drunemeton‘: the sacred oak grove.

It seems a cruel twist of fate that some think She survives on as Nemhain, the Irish Goddess of battle frenzy . While the path from Goddess of the groves to the Goddess of the battlefield is not so farfetched through Her association with Her divine consort who inevitable was linked with Mars, the god of war, the pairing of Nemetona and Nemhain seems little more than a construct of similarity in names rather than an real evolution of Goddess worship.

I could not find many images of Nemetona but in the surviving iconography, She is pictured seated, holding a scepter surrounded by 3 hooded figures and a ram. This portrayal feels more Roman than it does Celtic, it seems more likely to me that her presence would have been found in the spiraling knotwork and the labyrinth iconology of the Celts.

“Nemetona” by Selina Fenech

Nemetona is a difficult Goddess to wrap my mind around. She is somewhat nebulous in my mind, partially because She seems inextricably linked with the land. She is the sacred grove and it is Her. She is sacred space, whether that is found within the majestic trees of a grove or if it is held simply within one’s heart. She is holy breath, the sanctuaries we create, not out of stone and mortar, but out of love and reverence. She is a sacred link between ourselves and the living planet. But in my mind, not in an all-consuming way, such as a deity like Gaia, but in a very personal , intimate way, our link to the land our feet walk on, to the trees our ears hear singing in the wind and the leaves that season with us. She is the animation of the living space around us, a reminder to create that which is sacred within and carry it through all our trials and journeys. She is the circle unto herself and we are within Her circle, found within our relationship with our most intimate and immediate environments. She is the wholeness within each single leaf on the plant that sits beside you, or the moving cells of your body, and the embodiment of all personal spiritual cycles. Simply put, she is sacred space.” [2]

Other names: Nemetonia, Nemetialis

 

 

Sources:

Joelle’s Sacred Grove, “Celtic Gods and Goddesses“.

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Nemetona”.

Nalani, Sora. Spira, “Nemetona: Goddess of the Sacred Grove“.

Suggested Links:

Druidnetwork.org, “Nemetona“.

Eagle Feather, Lavender. The Simplified Witch, “Goddess Guidance…Nemetona

Nemeton – the Sacred Grove: Home of the Celtic gods, “Nemetona: A Gaulish and Brythonic Goddess (She of the Sacred Grove)“.

The Order of the Sacred Nemeton.

Wikipedia, “Nemetona“.

Yes, I’ve decided to pick back up on the Spiritual Nomad course.  I only made it through Module 2 and will be starting on Module 3 shortly.  I needed time though – I needed time to explore, think about and accept Truths that had been revealed to me during these past several months without rushing through things just to get them done or say “I completed the course”.

A lot of really cool stuff is happening for me right now.  Yesterday, we had we had the Full Strawberry Moon, or Rose Moon.  This evening, we had the Transit of Venus.  I can feel the changes happening…I can feel healing taking place.  Yesterday, I felt as though I was starting fit the pieces together, getting on the track and doing what I’m supposed to do.  Last week, I got an invitation to come out for a “meet and greet” with a local Druid, Grey Catsidhe, with the Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship (ADF) who found me through the ADF site (though I wasn’t part of the ADF and that person subsequently disappeared off the site no sooner had she “found” me) and Witchvox. Of course, I was very excited as I have not yet gotten out and about to meet people in the “community” up here.  The Goddess must’ve thought it was time to leave my cave.

Meeting with her and the other 3 people who showed up at a local restaurant was refreshing.  You see, I had met some really awesome people in Alaska who belonged to the ADF who had a really great lasting impression on me.  They really impressed me with their beliefs, attitudes, seriousness of actually living their spirituality every day rather than being a “play-gan”, only “living” their spirituality at sabbats and festivals.  What they explained to me that the ADF believed coincided with my own beliefs and core attitude.  After listening to her talk about her beliefs and practice, it was completely inline with my friends’ attitudes and beliefs back in Alaska 3,000 miles away. I decided that night to take the plunge and join the ADF.  Yesterday I got the welcome e-mail from the ADF to set up my account.

  

I also decided reset my altar back up yesterday.  As I cleaned the altar space and took each piece out, it felt like coming home to something warm and familiar.  I felt as though I was coming home to Brighid.  She had been off in a distance lately – or maybe it was me who was distancing off in the distance from Her.  I had left “home”, was out exploring and playing with other “kids” on different playgrounds and had come to absolutely love and respect Shakti and Inanna.  I felt that I learned and made some wonderful breakthroughs with Them, (getting a greater understanding of the true nature of the Great Goddess with Shakti and personal healing with Inanna). But yesterday, I decided it was time to go home.  It felt like putting on that soft old worn-out sweatshirt, you know the one – the one that you’ve had for at least 8 or 9 years that’s been washed a thousand times.  It might have a few holes and stains on it, but feels so warm and comforting when you put it on.  That’s how I felt when I came back to Brighid’s warm and welcoming “arms” as She enfolded me with love, welcoming me home as any good and gracious mother would.  There was no jealousy, no resentment, no animosity or “I-told-you-so’s”; only a loving welcoming back to Her child.

I belong to Brighid.  There is no doubt in my heart, mind or soul.  Of course, She already knew that.  She also knows and understands that you have to let your children out to freely explore the world, gaining an understanding, wisdom and knowledge from different places before settling down so as not to have any wonderings or doubts about what might be out there.  She understands that in satisfying these curiosities, one comes to know exactly what they want and what is right for them (unlike other insanely jealous deitites that I know of who’d threaten to strike you down dead if you even so much as looked at another deity).  One is then free to use and apply that newly acquired wisdom to further themselves on their own Path.

I actually started to feel Her energies stir as I had set up my outdoor sacred space a few weeks back.  It was started with Cordelia, and then entered Sulis.  It was ever so more strongly with Sulis – who in fact, has staked Her claim on my outdoor sacred space (who also has a connection with Brighid – go figure).  She seems quite comfortable there and has no intentions of leaving.  Her energy is ALL OVER this space!  (In a good way of course.)

I also cleaned my ancestors’ altar and added a simple candle holder to burn a tealight candle everyday for them.  That felt really good and fulfilling.

I did quite a bit of healing last night under the Full Strawberry Moon – VERY sour and painful at first.  Spider (a cellar spider I think) delicately came along and stealthily landed on my leg, showing me the ways of gracefulness and understanding the ways of how the past and present are linked; how we weave ourselves into sticky situations and must use wisdom, knowledge, and grace to see our ways out – letting go of our pride in order to do so.  Strangely, I felt no fear or alarm as I calmly let her crawl onto my finger so I could release her outside.  I could actually feel her energy; it was warm, comforting, all knowing and ever so delicate.  Hopefully with her help, I can weave the life I want.

The night did however end on a sweet note – with a brief “visit” to some unknown ocean shore.  The skies were overcast and the waves a greenish-grey breaking foamy white.  Aphrodite was in the background somewhere, though I could not see Her.  Needless to say, it was a very healing and pleasant vision.

I could feel the lasting healing effects today and even as I write this now.  I hope this feeling lasts.  I hope that it’s not just the effects of the Strawberry Moon and the Transit of Venus.  I guess its up to me though, right?  I’m anxious to start my ADF path and I hope I can let go of the hurt and pain that I’ve carried with me for so many years – afraid of letting it go.  I’ve carried it for so long; it feels as though it’s a part of Me.  I’ve felt as though if I ever truly let it go, that I’d compromise myself and lose a piece of me.  But it’s time to transition…it’s time to let it all go, heal and be on my way.

Goddess Sulis

“RiverGenesis” by Jonathon Earl Bowser

“Sulis’s themes are  water, healing, sun, blessings, wishes, community and offerings. Her symbols are water, wheat cakes and fire. The Celtic Goddess Sulis oversees all sacred wells and springs, which give healing and other blessings to those who pray at them. She also has associations with the sun, which explains the ever-burning fires in Her temples.

One hundred miles outside of London, Sulis’s ancient natural springs lie as they did for over seven thousand years until they were discovered by the Romans, who used them for ritual, wish magic, socialization and healing. The Festival at Bath revels in this region’s history, especially Sulis’s hot springs, which continue to bring thousands of visitors here annually, few of whom know that the springs are ten thousand years old and part of Sulis’s spirit. To my mind this equates with enjoying time in a hot tub or sauna (perhaps you can take part of the day at a local spa).

If a spa isn’t possible, let your bathroom get really steamy from a hot-water shower, then sit inside for awhile absorbing Sulis’s cleansing power into your pores. Release you tensions and dis-ease to Her. Maybe light a candle to represent Sulis’s presence with you, and meditate as you relax. Remember, the bathroom is one of the few places you can be assured of a private moment with the Goddess, so take advantage of it!”

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

“Sulis” by Thalia Took

“The Goddess of the hot springs at Bath, England (the only hot springs in Britain), Sulis’s name come from a root meaning ‘eye’ or ‘gap’, referring both to the spring from where half a million gallons of hot water still well up every day, as well as to Her powers as seeress.

Her hot spring has been renowned for its healing powers since ancient times, and when the Romans arrived in Britain they built a bath complex around the spring, and named the place Aquae Sulis (‘the Waters of Sulis’). Pilgrims came from mainland Europe to bathe in the therapeutic waters, and references to Sulis are known from as far away as Germany.

The Romans equated Sulis with their Minerva, and so She was known to them as Sulis Minerva–which is somewhat unusual, since the Romans generally used the native Celtic deity name after the Roman name. This is taken as an indication of Her importance and fame.

Though famous for healing, Sulis could curse as well as cure, and in Bath many ‘curse tablets’ have been found, asking Her to punish people suspected of wrongdoing.

She is shown here with one of the small offering-pans dedicated to Her by worshippers which were found at the site of Bath; they were usually inscribed ‘DSM’, short for the Latin Dea Sulis Minerva, ‘to the Goddess Sulis Minerva’. Her dress is the same milky greeny-grey as the water of the springs, and Her hair is the bright orange of the deposits left by the mineral-rich waters.” [1]

 

 

“Sulis” by Hrana Janto

According to Patricia Monaghan, “the ancient British Goddess of the healing waters had Her special shrine at the spa we call Bath, where Her power was strongest.  Some scholars say that She was a solar divinity, deriving Her name from the word that means ‘sun’ and ‘eye’.  This interpretation may account for the perpetual fires at Her shrines; in fact that Her springs were hot, rather than cold, is additional evidence in favor of considering Her a sun Goddess.

She was honored into historic times; the Roman occupiers called Her Minerva Medica (‘healing Minerva’); occasionally She is called Sulivia.

 

 

 

 

 

“Minerva” by Simon Vouet

In statuary and bas-reliefs, She was shown as a matronly woman in heavy garments with a hat made of a bear’s head and Her foot resting on a fat little owl.  In Bath and on the continent, She also appears in multiple form, as the tripartite Suliviae.  The latter name is also used of the pan-Celtic divinity Brigid, suggesting a connection between these figures” (p. 286 – 287).

Sulis’s name is also seen as Suliviae, Sulivia, Sul, Sulei, and Sulla.

 

 

 

 

Sources:

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Sul”.

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

 

 

Suggested Links:

Billington, S. The Concept of the Goddess, “Sulis: Healer and Avenger” (p. 33 – 36).

English, Mary. Homeopathy and Astrology to help you Heal with Mary L. English, “The Homeopathic Proving of Aquae-Sulis“.

Goddessrealm.com, “Sulis“.

Goddessschool.com, “Sulis Minerva“.

Nemeton, The Sacred Grove: Home of the Celtic gods, “Sulis“.

Roman-Britain.org, “AQUAE SVLIS“.

Shaw, Judith. Feminism and Religion, “Sulis, Celtic Sun Goddess of Healing and Prophesy“.

Spiritblogger’s Blog, “Spirit Message of the Day – Recharge, Refresh, Renew – THE GODDESS SULIS“.

Wikipedia, “Sulis“.

Goddess Sequana

Artwork by John Shannon

“Sequana’s themes are wishes, youthfulness, luck, health, and movement.  Her symbols are ducks and boats.  A Celtic river Goddess, Sequana flows in with April showers, raining good health and improved fortunes upon us. Statuary of Her shows Sequana standing in a duck-shaped boat (the duck is Her sacred animal) with open arms ready to receive our prayers.

Children in France run merrily to the Rhine River around this date to launch miniature boats with candles inside. Each boat represents life’s voyage being filled with joy. Anyone finding a boat later may make a wish as they bring it to shore. This is a charming custom that you can re-create if you have a stream, river, pond or lake nearby. Or, fill a children’s pool with water. Make a wish to Sequana  as you launch your boat. Putting the boat on the water invokes Sequana’s happiness and motivational energy for achieving a personal goal. Coax the boat toward a friend or partner on the other side so they can make a wish!

If neither of these options works out, float a rubber ducky in your bathtub and soak in Sequana’s revitalizing waters. Add to the bath pantry herbs that match your goals. For wishes add sage, for youthful energy add rosemary, for luck, allspice, for health, fennel, and for movement, ginger. No time for a bath? Make these five herbs into a tea and quaff them to internalize Sequana’s powers for the day.”

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

In Gallo-Roman religion, Sequana  (pronounced sek-oo-ANN-a) was the Goddess of the river Seine, particularly the springs at the source of the Seine, and the Gaulish tribe the Sequani. Her name means “the fast-flowing one” and is also seen as Sequanna, Siquanna, and Secuana.

The springs, called the Fontes Sequanae (“The Springs of Sequana”) are located in a valley in the Châtillon Plateau, to the north-west of Dijon in Burgundy, and it was here, in the 2nd or 1st century BCE, that a healing shrine was established. Her waters were believed to heal physical infirmities, especially diseases of the eye.  “As in many other cases to be river-Goddess meant that you were strongly connected to a role as healer (see also for example Sulis)” [1].

This bronze figure of the Goddess Sequana was discovered in 1937.  The statue is some eighteen inches high. Photographer: DAVID ARNOLD/National Geographic Stock

The sanctuary was later taken over the by Romans, who built two temples, a colonnaded precinct and other related structures centered on the spring and pool and continued Her worship.  Many dedications were made to Sequana at Her temple, including a large pot inscribed with Her name and filled with bronze and silver models of parts of human bodies to be cured by Her. Wooden and stone images of limbs, internal organs, heads, and complete bodies were offered to Her in the hope of a cure, as well as numerous coins and items of jewellery. Respiratory illnesses and eye diseases were common. Pilgrims were frequently depicted as carrying offerings to the Goddess, including money, fruit, or a favorite pet dog or bird.  [2] [3]

“The only surviving image of Sequana is a large bronze statue of a woman draped in a Romanesque gown and with a diadem on Her head who stands on a boat, the prow of which was shaped like the head of a duck. This statue can now be seen in the Museé Archeologique de Dijon. Though duck lore is scarce in later Celtic writing it may be, by association with Sequana as a healing water Goddess that the duck was also associated with healing cults. Indeed, inscriptions at the site thanking Sequana for Her gift of healing conclusively prove that Fontes Sequanae was a healing center and Sequana Herself was a healing Goddess.

From other surviving inscriptions it would seem that Sequana’s sanctuary was usurped by Christianity and re-dedicated to a supposed male saint, St. Sequanus so that the healing cult of the Goddess continued, only in a different guise. The Goddess is also invoked as Siquanna at Saint-Germain-la-Feuille, Côte d’Or, France.” [4]

Sources:

DameBoudicca. Pride & Sensibility, “Goddess of the week – Sequana“.

Nemeton: The Sacred Grove, Home of the Celtic gods, “Sequana: A Gaulish Goddess, also known as Secuana, Siquanna: The Fast-flowing One“.

Sabrina. Goddess A Day, “Sequana“.

Wikipedia, “Sequana“.

Suggested Links:

Dashu, Max. The Suppressed Histories Archives: real women, global vision, “Gaels and Gauls“.

Davidson, Hilda Ellis. Roles of the Northern Goddess.

An Inner Journey: The Moon, Mythology, and You, “Sequana“.

Floyde, Marilyn. Burgundytoday.com,History of Burgundy – The Celts“.

Jackson, James Warren. James Warren Jackson’s Notes from Penhook, “Sequana, Celtic River Goddess“.

Luke, Coral.  This French Life, “The Mystery of the Goddess Sequana“.

Goddess Minerva

“A Song for Athena” by Elfin-Grrl

“Minerva’s themes are earth and home.  Her symbols are owls, snakes, olive trees and geraniums.  This Etruscan/Italic Goddess blended the odd attributes of being a patroness of household tasks, including arts and crafts, and also being the patroness of protection and of war. Today She joins in pre-spring festivities by helping people prepare their lands for sowing and embracing the figurative lands of our hearts, homes and spirits with Her positive energy.

In ancient times, this was a day to bless one’s land and borders. Gifts of corn*, honey and wine were given to the earth and its spirits to keep the property safe and fertile throughout the year. In modern times, this equates to a Minerva-centered house blessing.

Begin by putting on some spiritually uplifting music. Burn geranium-scented incense if possible; otherwise, any pantry spice will do. Take this into every room of your home, always moving clockwise to promote positive growing energy. As you get to each room, repeat this incantation:

‘Minerva, protect this sacred space
And all who live within
By your power and my will
The magic now begins!’

Wear a geranium today to commemorate Minerva and welcome Her energy into your life.”

* Corn is the name for whatever cereal grain is in common use. The Roman cereal crops were wheat and barley, and they also used millet.

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

Minerva (EtruscanMenrva) was the Roman Goddess whom Romans from the 2nd century BCE onwards equated with the Greek Goddess Athena. She was the virgin Goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, dyeing, crafts, the arts, science, and magic.  She is also believed to be the inventor of numbers and instruments.  She is often depicted with Her sacred creature, an owl usually named as the “owl of Minerva“, which symbolizes Her ties to wisdom.

Stemming from an Italic moon goddess Meneswā ‘She who measures’, the Etruscans adopted the inherited Old Latin name, Menerwā, thereby calling Her Menrva.  Menrva was part of a holy triad with Tinia and Uni, equivalent to the Roman Capitoline Triad of Jupiter-Juno-Minerva. Extrapolating from Her Roman nature, it is assumed that in Etruscan mythology, Minerva was the Goddess of wisdom, war, art, schools and commerce. She was the Etruscan counterpart to Greek Athena. Like Athena, Minerva was born from the head of Her father, Jupiter. It is possible that such a Goddess was “imported” to both Greece and Italy from beliefs originating in the Near East during the extreme antiquity. The very few extant Lemnian inscriptions suggest that the Etruscans may have originated in Asia Minor, in which case subsequent syncretism between Greek Athena and Italic Minerva may have been all the easier.

As Minerva Medica, She was the Goddess of medicine and doctors. As Minerva Achaea, She was worshipped at Luceria in Apulia where votive gifts and arms said to be those of Diomedes were preserved in Her temple.

“Athena” by InertiaK

Her worship as a Goddess of war encroached upon that of Mars. The erection of a temple to Her by Pompey out of the spoils of his Eastern conquests shows that by then She had been identified with the Greek Athena Nike, bestower of victory. Under the emperor Domitian, who claimed Her special protection, the worship of Minerva attained its greatest vogue in Rome. [1]

In Fasti III, Ovid called Her the “Goddess of a thousand works.” Minerva was worshipped throughout Italy, though only in Rome did She take on the warlike character shared by Athena. Her worship was also taken out to the empire — in Britain, for example, She was conflated with the local wisdom Goddess Sulis.

The Romans celebrated Her festival from March 19 to March 23 during the day which is called, in the neuter plural, Quinquatria, the fifth after the Ides of March, the nineteenth, an artisans’ holiday. A lesser version, the Minusculae Quinquatria, was held on the Ides of June, June 13, by the flute-players, who were particularly useful to religion.

In 207 BCE, a guild of poets and actors was formed to meet and make votive offerings at the temple of Minerva on the Aventine hill. Among others, its members included Livius Andronicus. The Aventine sanctuary of Minerva continued to be an important center of the arts for much of the middle Roman Republic.

Minerva was worshipped on the Capitoline Hill as one of the Capitoline Triad along with Jupiter and Juno, at the Temple of Minerva Medica, and at the “Delubrum Minervae” a temple founded around 50 BCE by Pompey on the site now occupied by the church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva facing the present-day Piazza della Minerva. [2]

Visit Roman Empire & Colosseum, Myths About the Roman Goddess Minerva and Theoi Greek Mythology, Athena Myths sites to read Her myths and stories.  Also see Roman Myth Index, Minerva, Roman Mythology Index.

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