Neptune
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Neptune

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Ancient Roman Gods and Goddesses for kids - Neptune

The myths and legends surrounding Neptune, the Roman god of the seas and water   

Ancient Gods

Neptune
Discover the legends and myths and religious beliefs surrounding Neptune, the Roman god of the seas and water. Neptune was the god of springs, lakes and rivers before becoming a god of the sea and was the god of earthquakes and often referred to as the 'Earth-shaker'. Neptune descended from the ancient line of primordial sea gods and was the son of Saturnus and Ops who were both from the race of Titans. Neptune was also the patron god of horse racing as he was believed to have been the creator of the horse. The Greek counterpart of this ancient Roman deity was Poseidon. Additional, intriguing information about ancient gods and goddesses is also available via:

 

Who was Neptune?
Neptune was the Roman god of the seas and water. He was designated as the god of springs, lakes and rivers before becoming a god of the sea and venerated by the Romans as the father of all living beings on Earth through the fertilising power of rainwater.  He was represented in art as a god of the sea, with black or dark hair wearing garments of an azure or sea-green color and seated in a large shell chariot drawn by whales, horses or sea-horses. He is always pictured with with his trident in his hand and is usually attended by sea gods and sea goddesses and a retinue of Tritons and sea-nymphs. On ancient some coins and medals he is depicted mounted on the beak of a ship as a clear indication that he presided over the seas. Neptune was also the patron of horse racing, and was believed by the ancients to have been the creator of the horse. A temple dedicated to him was situated near the Circus Flaminius which was a Roman racetrack. The Circus Flaminius was the venue for horse races with one rider and his horse going around the turning posts, unlike the Circus Maximus which was the venue for chariot races in Rome.

Picture of Poseidon (Roman counterpart Neptune)

Picture of Neptune (Greek counterpart Poseidon)

Facts about Neptune
The following facts and profile provides a fast overview of Neptune:

Neptune Profile & Fact File

Roman Name: Neptune

Role & Function: The function of Neptune is described as being the god of the seas, springs, lakes and rivers
Status: Major God and one of the 'Dei Consentes', the Council of Gods.
Symbols: His symbols include the horse, the trident, the dolphin and the bull
Gender: Male
Greek Counterpart: The Greek name for this god was Poseidon
Name of Wife: Amphitrite the Queen of the sea, the daughter of Nereus and Doris
Name of Father: Saturnus (Saturn)
Name of Mother: Ops (Opis)
Name of siblings: Brothers & sisters: Jupiter, Pluto, Vesta, Juno and Ceres
Names of Children: The merman Triton, Proteus and the sea Nymphs Rhode and Benthesicyme

Neptune and the Roman Gods Family Tree and Genealogy
The Roman gods family tree provides an instant overview of the genealogy and the family connections and relationships between the main deities, including Neptune, who feature in the legends and mythology of the ancient Romans. The Primeval gods and deities, the Titans and the Roman Olympians.

Roman Gods Family Tree & Genealogy

Children of Neptune
The children of Neptune are most commonly named as Triton, Proteus, Rhode and Benthesicyme. However according to some ancient myths and legends he was also the father of:

  • Ephialtes a giant son
  • Halirrhothius a son of Neptune who was slain by Mars
  • Otus a giant son of Neptune who was slain by Diana and Apollo
  • Polyphemus a Giant son of Neptune blinded by Ulysses
 

Grecian God

Grecian Goddess

 

Facts about Neptune in Roman Mythology
Discover interesting information and facts about Neptune, the Roman god of the seas and water. The facts about Neptune provides a list detailing fascinating additional info to increase your knowledge about Neptune in Roman Mythology and history.
 

History and Mythical Facts about Neptune

Fact 1 about Neptune: He was the son of Saturnus and Ops, the brother of Jupiter, Pluto, Vesta, Juno and Ceres and the husband of Amphitrite
Fact 2 about Neptune: Neptune was worshipped by the Romans as the god of horses, under the name Neptunus Equester
Fact 3 about Neptune: He delayed the return of Odysseus from the Trojan War by causing his boat to be shipwrecked.
Fact 4 about Neptune: The Neptunalia was the festival that took place in honor of Neptune on July 23. It was one of the 'dies comitiales' when committees of Roman citizens could vote on civil or criminal matters
Fact 5 about Neptune: Neptunalia was a water-related festival held in honor of the god.
Fact 6 about Neptune: During sacrifices to the Roman gods, at festivals like Neptunalia, 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.
Fact 7 about Neptune: He ravished Medusa, a beautiful priestess on the floor of a temple dedicated to the goddess Minerva. The poor girl was then changed into the mythical creature called Medusa, a monstrous mythical creature called a Gorgon
Fact 8 about Neptune: In earlier times the Roman god Portunes or Fortunus who was thanked for naval victories
Fact 9 about Neptune: Neptune had two temples in Rome. One temple was located near the the Circus Flaminius, the Roman racetrack. The second temple was called the the Basilica Neptuni was located on the Campus Martius and was built by Agrippa in honour of the naval victory of Actium
Fact 10 about Neptune: The planet Neptune was named after the Roman god, as its deep blue gas clouds gave the early astronomers the impression of great oceans and seas.

Picture of Neptune used for advertising in 1866

Picture of Neptune used for advertising in 1866

Neptune (Greek Counterpart was Poseidon)
The Romans habitually assimilated various elements from other cultures and civilisations, including the gods and goddesses that were worshipped by the Greeks and other nations. When the Roman Empire conquered the Greeks in 146BC many of the Greek gods and goddesses were adopted by the Romans.  The Romans simply changed the Greek gods names to Latin equivalents. The Greek counterpart of Neptune was Poseidon. The Roman religion significantly differed from the Greeks in that it was officially endorsed by the state and exerted influence over the government of Rome. Politicians took the offices of influential priests, called pontiffs, to gain control of the popular worship, Roman gods and goddesses like Neptune were worshipped at every public event, including the gladiatorial games, where blood sacrifices were made to the gods. In ancient Rome, the pantheon of 12 major gods, including Neptune, were called the 'Dei Consentes' meaning the Council of Gods.

 

Neptune

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  • Neptune, the Roman god of the seas and water

Roman Gods and Goddesses

 

The Symbols of Neptune
The Roman god of the sea was often illustrated with pictures, mosaics and images representing his symbols. He was often depicted seated on his sea shell chariot drawn by mythical creatures called Hippocamps, which were the horses of the sea with the head and fore-parts of a horse and the tail of a fish.

The Roman god Neptune in his shell chariot drawn by Hippocamps (Horses of the sea)

The symbols of Neptune, the Roman god of the sea were:

  • The Symbol of the Trident
    • The trident of power represented his ability to control water. The trident were made by the Cyclopes before the war between the Olympians and Titans.
  • The Symbol of the Horse
    • The symbol of the horse is because Neptune was believed to have created the first horse. The horses that pulled his sea shell chariot were called Hippocamps
  • The Symbol of the Dolphin
    • The symbol of the dolphin was sacred to Poseidon, dolphins as they reflected his ability to move in and out of water
  • The Symbol of the Bull
    • The symbol of the bull is associated with the god due to the mythology of the Cretan Bull

Facts about Neptune - Roman Sea Gods Family Tree
The following Roman Sea Gods family tree provides and overview of the lineage and genealogy of Neptune.

Sea Gods Family Tree and Genealogy

 

 

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