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Roman Religion

8646 - St Petersburg - Hermitage - Jupiter2

The Romans worshiped many different gods and goddesses.
They were all part of one big family but they each looked after a different part of life:
  • Jupiter was the king of the gods;
  • Juno was the queen of the gods;
  • Mars was the god of war;
  • Venus was the god of love;
  • Minerva was the goddess of wisdom;
  • Diana was the goddess of hunting and the moon;
  • Neptune was the god of the sea;
  • Mercury was the messenger of the gods;
  • Pluto was the god of the underworld;
  • Vesta was the goddess of the fire and the hearth;
  • Vulcan was the god of fire and volcanoes;
  • Janus was the god of: doorways, beginnings and the new year.
To keep the gods happy, Romans would make offerings of: food, flowers or money at special buildings called temples. Sometimes a priest would kill an animal like a bull or sheep as a sacrifice.


Many families would have shrines in the homes to particular gods so that they could pray to them for good luck and protection.

Roman people also looked for messages sent by the gods - especially before starting something important like setting off on a journey or declaring war. Messages could be read: in the weather, in mysterious events like eclipses and in animals.