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Mars

Roman Colosseum

'The Roman Colosseum'

The Roman God Mars
The way of the Romans was to adopt various elements from other cultures and civilisations. This included the Roman religion which was highly influenced by the Ancient Greek religion and gave the Greek God names the equivalent Roman names. The Roman priests then adopted the mythology or stories about the Gods and Goddesses and evolved a Roman Gods Family tree detailing how each of the Roman Gods and Goddesses, like Mars, were related.

Greek and Roman religion and mythology therefore become closely entwined.

Mythology surrounding Mars
The mythology and information about the Roman God Mars

  • Name: Mars
  • A major deity and one of the 12 Olympian Gods
  • Jurisdiction: He was described as being the Roman God of war
  • Mythology: Mythical Family Tree or Relatives: Mars was believed to be the God of War. Mars was the son of Jupiter and Juno
  • Depiction / Description / Symbol: a vulture, a wolf and he often carried a bloody spear.
  • Name of equivalent Greek God : Ares
  • March 23 a festival called Tubilustrium was held in honor of Mars
  • Sacrifices to Mars - During sacrifices to the Roman gods the sex of the victim had to correspond to the sex of the god to whom it was offered. White animals were given to the gods of the upper world whereas black victims to the gods of the underworld

Roman Festivals consecrated to Mars
Practically the whole month of March was consecrated to Mars, the God of War. The god Mars was also associated with the growth of vegetation. His special festivals (Feriae Marti) in March were of a warlike character: on the 9th of March the priests (Salii) began the ancient custom of carrying his sacred shields (ancilia) round the town from one ordained resting-place to another. The Salii priests wore the full war-dress (trabea and tunica picta ) and performed a sacred dance and song round the city accompanied by war trumpets. On the 19th, Quinquatrus, the sacred shields of Mars were solemnly purified, and on the 23rd March the same ceremony was performed with the war-trumpets. His altar was in the Campus Martius, outside the city-walls and horse races were celebrated in his honor. The races of the war-horse were called Equirria on March 14 and February 27, and the great race was run on the Ides of October.

Myths about the Roman God Mars
12 Olympian Gods
Roman Colosseum
Roman Gods

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