Goddess who protects children when they leave
the parents' home for the first time.
Goddess of abundance and good fortune. Her attribute
is a cornucopia ("horn of plenty") with which she distributes grain and money.
Goddess who guides children back home after leaving
the parents house for the first time.
God of Honest Deals and Fair Transactions.
God of the Southwest wind.
Goddess who feeds unborn children.
Goddess of Secrecy and protector of Rome. She was
shown with a bandaged mouth and a finger to her lips as if imploring silence. Her festival is December 21.
Goddess of Healing and Witchcraft.
Goddess of the New Year provider of food. Her
festival is March 15 and she is honored at the full moon.
Goddess of the Future.
God of the North Wind.
Goddess of Witches in the Tuscany region of Italy.
She is the daughter of Diana and her brother Lucifer (moon and sun) and came to earth to teach the witches her mother's magic.
Goddess of the Dawn.
God of the South Wind.
God of Wine and Intoxication.
Goddess of War and Battles, her worship was popular
among Roman soldiers. She accompanied Mars in battle, and was either his wife or sister. Her festivals are celebrated on March
24 (the Dies Sanguinis, the Day of Blood) and June 3. Bellona's attribute is a sword and she is depicted wearing a helmet
and armed with a spear and a torch.
The 'good goddess', she was the protector of women
and the matron of both fertility and virginity in females. She was especially revered by matrons. Also a goddess of healing.
Her festival is on May 1, the nights of May 3-4, and December 3. Her day is Wednesday. Bona Dea was portrayed sitting on a
throne, holding a cornucopia. The snake is her attribute, a symbol of healing.
Goddess of horses and cattle. Equated with the
Celtic goddess Epona, whose worship was carried to Rome by the army after invading Gaul.
Goddesses of Wells and Springs. In Rome, they
were worshipped in a sacred forest at the Porta Capena.
Goddess of Birth.
Goddess of Thresholds, especially doors and thereby
the home, and of children against evil spirits. Sacred tree the hawthorn.
Goddess of Childbirth and Prophecy. Festivals
on January 11 and 15. A triple Goddess with her two sisters: Porrima 'Looking Forward'; and Postvorta 'Looking Back'. Inventor
of the arts and sciences as well as the Roman Alphabet.
Goddess of door handles. Festival day June 1.
She was made offerings of pork and white beans. Also the goddess of the bodily organs, especially the heart.
Goddess of Corn, Agriculture and Grain. Festivals:
February 2, April 1 and 11-19, Auguse 23, September 1, October 4-5, November 8, and December 3. Her days are Wednesday and
Friday. Her plants are snowdrop, lily, and narcissus. Her gem is peridot.
Goddess of Marriage.
Goddess of Mercy and Clemency.
Goddess of Drains and Sewers which drained refuse
under the city of Rome. Her temple was near the Forum, the area drained by the Cloaca Maxima, Romes largest sewer.
God of the Sky and the Heavens. The personification
of the sky. His wife is Terra.
Goddess of Concord. She is pictured seated, wearing
a long, flowing robe and holding a sacrificial bowl in her left hand and a cornucopia in her right. Her temple was the meeting
place of the Roman Senate.
God of Harvesting the crops.
God Grain Storage. His animal is the mule. His
festivals are on August 21 and December 15. God of Secret Consuls.
God of Harvesting Crops.
Goddess of Wealth and Plenty. She is pictured
with a cornucopia.
Goddess who watches over infants in their cribs
and lulls them to sleep.
Goddess of infants.
God of Love. Venus' son. He is seen as either
a winged infant with a bow and arrow, or as a youth with his lover Psyche.
Goddess of the Dead and the Earth. The silent
Goddess of childbirth. With Nona and Morta she
forms the Parcae (the three Fates).
Gods of Profit.
Goddess of the Brooms used to purify a ritual
Goddess of Women in Labor and the Patron of midwives.
The Goddess of the Moon, Fertility, Nature and
Childbirth. Mother with Lucifer, her brother, of Aradia, Goddess of Witches. Her festivals are May 26-31 and August 15. On
August 13 Diana is invoked to protect the harvest from storms. Her day is Monday. Her gems are: quartz, moonstone, and pearl.
Her plants are damiana, almond, mugwort, hazel, moonwort, ranunculus, mandrake and banyan. Her perfumes are jasmine and ginseng
along with all sweet smelling roots, camphor, and aloes. Her magical weapon is the bow and arrow. She is worshipped on mountain
tops and in sacred forests. She is the patron of the working class and slaves. She is often pictured as a hunter who is acompanied
by a deer.
God of the Underworld and Treasure in the form
of gems and metals of the earth.
Goddess of Discipline.
Goddess of Discord and Strife who preceeded the
chariot of Mars into battle.
God of Oaths of Honor.
Goddess of Poverty. She is the personification
of poverty. Virgil mentions her as a demon of the underworld.
Goddess of Openess, Friendliness and Generosity.
She is the personification of these qualities.
Pre-Roman god of Spain and Portugal who was adopted
by the Romans. The God of Health and Welfare.
God whose name means good ending. He insured success
in business and a good harvest.
God who taught children their first word. An offering
was made to him on this occasion.
Goddess of Fame and Rumor. She spread rumors through
all the heavens and earth. Sort of the National Enquirer of her day.
Goddess of the Earth, Mother Goddess and Fertility
Goddess. Daughter or wife of Faunus. Usually identified with Bona Dea.
God of the Wilds and Fertility. He is the protector
of cattle also referred to as Lupercus. He is the giver of oracles. The wolfskin, wreath, and a goblet are his attributes.
His festivals are Lupercalia on February 15 and Faunalia on December 5.
Goddess protectress of Herds of Livestock.
God of the West Wind. The herald of spring.
Goddess protectress against fevers.
Goddess of Success. She is the personification
Goddess of Freedom and Good Harvest. She was often
worshipped by slaves to achive their freedom. Her festival is November 15.
Goddess of Faithfulness and Good Faith. She was
invoked during the signing of treaties and the treaties are kept in her temple.
Goddess of Spring and the blooming flowers. Her
festival Floralia, is April 28 - May 1.
God of Fountains, Wells and Springs. His festival
is on October 13. He is the son of Janus and Juturna.
Goddess of Bread Baking and Ovens.
Goddess of Fate. Patroness of bath houses and
once-married matrons. Shown with a wheel, sphere, a ships rudder, or a cornucopia. Sometimes she is pictured with wings.
Goddess of Lightning.
Goddesses of Vengance. Live in the underworld
and torment wrongdoers. Equivalent to the Greek Erinyes.
Goddess of Thieves.
God of Morality and Military Honor. Pictured as
a young warrior carrying a spear and a cornucopia.
Goddess of Jealousy.
The God of Gates, Doors, Beginnings and Endings.
He is usually pictured as a double-faced god, one face looking in either direction and holding a key in his right hand. He
represents beginnings, boundaries, times of change, and transitions. He was worshipped at the beginning of the harvest, the
beginning of planting, at marriages, at births; in short at all times of transition or the start of things. The month of January
is named after him.
Queen of the Gods. Jupiters wife and sister, sister
to Neptune and Pluto, daughter of Saturn, mother of Juventas, Mars, and Vulcan. Protectress of the Roman state. She was the
guardian of the Empire's finances and considered the Matron Goddess of all Rome. The Matronalia, her major festival is March
1-2. Her other festival, on July 7-8, was called Nonae Caprotinae ("The Nones of the Wild Fig"). In addition, other festivals
to Juno took place on January 1, February 1-2, March 7, June 1-2, and November 13. Her tree is the olive. Her animals the
eagle and peacock. Her perfume galbanum. The month of June was named after her.
Ruler of the Gods. He is the god of Sky, Lightning
and Thunder. He is the son of Saturn and brother of Neptune, Pluto and Juno, who is also his wife. His attribute is the lightning
bolt and his symbol the eagle, who is also his messenger. He was also considered the Patron god of Rome, and his temple was
the official place of state business and sacrifices.
Goddess of Justice. Often pictured blindfolded,
holding a set of scales and a sword or scepter.
Goddess of Lakes, Wells and Springs. Her festivals
are January 11 and August 23. Also the wife of Janus.
Goddess of youth.
God of Agriculture.
Guardian spirits of the house and fields. Possibly
a remnant of ancestor worship, these spirits were protectors of individual Roman families, who had shrines to their Lares
in their homes.
Goddess of Unlawful Gain and Trickery. The patron
of thieves, con artists and frauds.
Old Italian God of Fertility and Nature. The festival
day for Liber and his wife Libera is on March 17. He was later believed to be a counterpart of Dionysus.
Fertility Goddess. Wife of Liber. Later equated
God of Generousity.
Goddess of Freedom. Pictured as a female figure
with a pileus (a felt cap, worn by slaves when they were set free), a wreath of laurels and a spear.
Goddess Funerals. Her temple contained all of
the necessary impliments for funeral services. A piece of money had to be brought to her temple whenever anyone died. Later
equated with Proserpina.
Goddess of thresholds.
God of the Morning Star, the planet venus, and
the son of Aurora. Dianas brother and with her produced Aradia.
Goddess of Childbirth and Midwifery. She who brings
children into light". Later equated with Juno.
Goddess of the Moon. Later identified with Diana
and the Greek Selene.
Goddess of Fertility and Spring. Probably the
goddess for whom the month of May is named. Often equated with Fauna and Ops.
Goddess of Honor and Reverence. Wife of Vulcan.
Goddess of the Dead. Guardian with Mantus of the
Underworld. Referred to as the mother of ghosts. Her name means insanity and she is the personification of madness.
God of War. one of the most important of Roman
deities. He was originally a god of the earth, spring, and fertility. He is the son of Jupiter and Juno, and may be the father
of Romulus and Remus.
Goddess of the Dawn, Harbors and the Sea. Patron
of newborn babies. Her festival day is June 11.
Goddess of Wine and Health. Her name means healer.
Her festival is the Meditrinalia on October 11.
Goddess of Poisonous Vapors from the earth. She
was worshipped especially in volcanic areas and swamps.
Goddess and Protector of Bees. Her name comes
from the word for honey.
Goddess of Menstruation.
Goddess of the Mind and Consciousness. Her festival
is May 8.
God of Trade, Profit, Merchants and Travellers.
His main festival, the Mercuralia, was celebrated on May 15 and on this day the merchants sprinkled their heads and their
merchandise with water from his well near the Porta Capena. The symbols of Mercury are the caduceus (a staff with two intertwined
snakes) and a purse (a symbol of his connection with commerce). Pictured dressed in a wide cloak, wearing winged sandals and
a winged hat. He was eventually identified with the Greek Hermes.
God of Agriculture and Mowing.
Goddess of Wisdom, Learning, the Arts, Sciences,
Medicine, Dyeing, Trade, and of War. Wife of Jupiter. protectress of commerce, industry and education. Honored at the spring
equinox with her main festival, March 19 - 23, called the Quinquatria. On June 13 the minor Quinquatrus was observed. Her
gem is the ruby. Her plants the tiger lily, and geranium. Her animals the ram and owl. Her perfume is dragons blood. She is
often equated with the Greek Athena and the Etruscan Menrva.
Goddess of Prosperity.
God of death. Equivalent of the Greek Thanatos.
Goddess of death and one of the three Parcae.
Goddess of Silence. She is the personification
God of Fertility. Invoked by women seeking to
become pregnant. Portrayed as a phallus.
Goddess of Funerals.
Goddess of Destiny. Similar to the Greek Ananke.
God of the Woods.
God of the Sea. Brother of Jupiter, Pluto and
Juno. The God and patron of Horses and Horse Racing as Neptune Equester. Neptunalia was celebrated on July 23. The trident
is Neptune's attribute. Similar to the Greek Poseidon.
Goddess of Pregnancy. She was called upon in the
ninth month of pregnancy when it was time for the child to be born. One of the Parcae with the Goddesses Morta and Decima,
the Roman Fates.
Personification of the night.
Goddess of the ninth day, on which the newborn
child was given a name.
God of ploughing.
God of harrowing.
Goddess of the Fertile Earth, Abundance, Sowing,
Harvest and Wealth. The sister and wife of Saturn. One of her festivals is on August 10, another festival was the Opalia,
which was observed on December 9. The Opeconsiva, on August 25 is her primary festival, but is participated in only by her
priests and the Vestal Virgins.
Goddess of parents who lost their children. She
could grant them more and parents prayed to her for this purpose.
God of Death and the Underworld. Also a god of
oaths and punisher of perjurers.
Goddess of Shepherds and Flocks.Her festival was
the Palilia, on April 21.
Goddesses of Fate. Similar to the Greek Moirae.
The Goddesses Nona, Morta and Decima make up the group. The three Parcae are also called Tria Fata.
Goddess of Peace. Her festivals are January 3
and 30 and July 4. Her attributes are the olive branch, a cornucopia, and a scepter.
Gods of the storeroom and the household. The were
worshipped at the hearth and given a part of each meal.
God of Agriculture. Had the gift of prophecy.
Goddess of Piety and a sense of duty to the state
and the Gods.
God of the Underworld. The son of Saturn, brother
to Jupiter and Neptune. Pluto's wife was Proserpina, whom he captured. Black sheep were given as sacrifices to Pluto. Equivalent
to the Greek Hades.
Goddess of Punishment.
Goddess of Fruit Trees and Orchards. Her attribute
is the pruning knife.
God of Ports and Harbors. He is the guardian of
storehouses and locked doors. His attribute is a key. The Portunalia were observed on August 17, and on this festival keys
were thrown into the fire to safeguard them against misfortune.
God of Plenty.
Goddess of the Past.
God of Gardens, Viniculture, Sailors and Fishermen.
He is a fertility god, shown wearing a long robe that exposes an unusually large and erect phallus.
Goddess of women in labor. She who oversaw the
position of the fetus in the womb.
Wife of Pluto, identical to Persephone.
Goddess of Forethought.
Goddess of Modesty and Chastity.
Goddess of the pruning of vines and trees.
Italian god whose origins are uncertain and worship
is not well-known. His consort is Hora. He was usually depicted as a bearded man who wears clothing that is part clerical
and part military. His sacred plant is the myrtle. His festival, the Quirinalia, was celebrated on February 17.
Italian Goddess of Motherhood.
Goddess of Corn.
God who protected corn from diseases. His festival,
the Robigalia, took place on April 25.
Personified Goddess of the City of Rome. She is
portrayed as a helmeted woman sitting on a throne, holding a spear and a sword. Resting against her throne is a shield.
Goddess of Nursing Mothers, both human and animal.
Goddess of Health and Prosperity. Her attribute
was a snake or a bowl and her festival was celebrated on March 30. Equivalent to the Greek Hygieia.
God of Oaths and good faith. He is also called
Semo Sancus Dius Fidus.
God of Weeding and Hoeing.
God of Agriculture and the sowing of seeds. Married
to Ops. The father of Jupiter, Ceres, Juno and many others. Saturnalia began on December 17 and lasted for seven days. During
this festival, businesses closed and gifts were exchanged. Saturday is named after him. Equivalent to the Greek Cronus.
Goddess of Security and Stability.
Goddess of Sowing.
God of Forests, Groves, Wild Places and Boundaries.
A fertility God associated with flocks and herds. His attributes are a pruning knife and a bough from a pine tree. Equated
with the Greek Pan.
God of the sun. The same as the Greek Helios.
Later worshipped as the God of the State, Sol Invictus, who had been imported from Syria.
God of Sleep. The same as the Greek Hypnos.
God of Luck.
Goddess of Hope. Shown as a young woman holding
a cornucopia and a flower.
Goddess who guards against fires. Sometimes equated
Goddess who incites passion in women. Equated
with the Greek Semele.
Goddess of Strength and Vigor. Worshiped at new
Goddess Persuasion, especially in matters of love.
A member of Venus's retinue.
God of Weeding.
God of Night Thunder. His festival is June 20.
(Jupiter was the god of thunder during the day.)
Goddess of the Earth. Fordicidia, held on April
15 was her festival. Like the Greek Gaia.
Goddesses of Storms.
God of the Boundaries between Fields. His sacred
object was the boundary stone, which was cleansed and given sacrifices of blood and flower garlands during an annual festival
on February 23 to renew the stone's energy.
Mother Earth - Goddess of Fertility and the Earth.
Fordicidia on April 15 her main festival, with another June 1-3. She watched over marriage, producing children, and the fertility
of the soil.
Goddess of the Crossroads. She is portrayed with
three faces and sometimes equated with the Greek Hecate.
Sabean Goddess of Agriculture. She was worshipped
in the sacred forest.
One of the oldest gods, he is the God of Healing.
Veiovis is portrayed as a young man, holding a bunch of arrows (or lightning bolts) in his hand, and is accompanied by a goat.
Probably based on the Etruscan god Veive, and equated later with the Greek Asclepius.
Originally a Goddess of Gardens and Vinyards,
Venus became the major deity of love and beauty after the influx of Greek deities. On August 18 the Vinalia Rustica was observed.
A second festival, that of the Veneralia, was celebrated on April 1 in honor of Venus Verticordia, who later became the protector
against vice. On April 23 a festival, the Vinalia Priora, celebrated the opening of one of her temples. Other festivals to
her were held on: March 10; April 15, 21, 28; May 23-24; June 19; July 19; and October 9. Her day is Thursday. Her gems are
the emerald, turquoise, topaz, and cat's eye. Her plants are the rose, myrtle, clover, mallow and sunflower. Her animals are
the lynx, sparrow, dove, swan, bull, and lion. Her perfumes are benzoin, rose, red sandalwood, sandalwood, storax and olibanum.
She is equivalent to the Greek Aphrodite.
Goddess of truth.
God of the changing seasons and the ripening of
fruits and grains. He is the patron of fruit trees.
Goddess of the Fire (both sacred and domestic)
and the Hearth. Daughter of Saturn and Ops. Her sacred animal was the ass. Patroness of bakers. Her chief festival was the
Vestalia on June 7. Other festivals were on: February 13; March 1; April 28; May 15; and June 9, 15, 24. Her gem is the black
diamond. Her plants are orchis root, thistle and indian hemp. Her animals were the ass and the goat. Her perfumes are musk,
civet and Saturnian perfumes. One of the most-worshipped Roman deities. She is equated to the Greek Hestia.
Goddess of Victory. Originally a protectress of
fields and woods who became Goddess of Romes military success. Equivalent to the Greek Nike.
God of Courage and Military Prowess.
God who gave life to children in the womb.
Goddess who Protects the Nursery.
God of Fire, Blacksmiths and Craftsmanship. His
forge is located beneath Mount Etna. It is here that he, together with his helpers, forges weapons for Gods and heroes. Closely
associated with Bona Dea with whom he shared the Volcanalia, observed on August 23. Equated with the Greek Hephaestus.
God of the East Wind.
Slavic gods and goddesses
•Bannik(BAHN-neek) Bath house spirit. Slavic
bathhouses were like saunas with an inner steaming room and an outer room for changing. They were dark and frightening and
like many scary places, were considered perfect for divinations.They were also the place most often used for child-bearing.
No newborn was left there long, though, lest the fairies whould steal him. No Christian icons were allowed in the bath house,
neither, as they may offend the it's true occupant - the Bannik. It was customary in some places to offer every third firing
of the sauna, or sometimes the fourth to the Bannik. One did not want to disturb him while bathing, though, or he might just
throw hot water on them. Other times he would use his sharp claws to flay his victim alive. Besides a firing of the sauna,
he liked offerings of soap, fir branches, and a water. The Bannik usually takes on the appearance of a member or friend of
the family; so if you ever see someone you know in the bathroom, and find out later that they weren't there.......
•Bereginy - Bóginki in Polish (boo-GIN-kee) Traditionally "covens" of old women performed the rituals and sacrifices for
these river bank nymphs. Bóginki means "little Goddess". They were said to steal human babies and leave behind changelings
called Odmience in Polish, Oborotni in Russian.
These spirits were the original spirits
of life and predate the sky deities. They are the forerunners of the Rusalki.
•Domovoi - Domowije in Polish (doh-moh-VEE-yeh) Male house spirits from "domu" -home.
The Domovik usually lives in the attic, behind the stove, under the threshhold or in the stables or cattle barn. He is thought
to be responsible for all domestic prosperity and tranquility and finish chores when family members forget. He will howl and
moan to warn of approaching trouble, and pull hair to warn a woman in danger of abuse from a man. He can be heard laughing
if good times are ahead, and if you hear him strumming a comb, there is a wedding in the future. The Domovoi should be fed
nightly or he may cause trouble, much like a poltiergeist. Usually, if neglected, he will simply leave. To attract a domovoi,
put on your finest clothing, go outside and say "Dedushka Dobrokhot (grandfather well-wisher), come live with us and tend
Special care was taken to only obtain
pets and farm animals in the Domovoi's favorite color. Each new horse was introduced formally to the Domovoi for the spirit
took especially good care of the animals he liked but tormented the ones he didn't.
When a new house was built, the owner
would put a piece of bread down before the stove went in, to attract the domovoi. When a person moved, the coals from the
stove were taken with them and the formal invitation "Domovoi, Domovoi, don't stay here. Come with our family" was recited
to ensure that the Domovoi came along to the new home. Salted bread, wrapped in a white cloth will appease the domovoi as
will putting clean white linen in his favorite room - an invitation to eat with the family. You can also hang your old shoes
in the yard to brighten the Domovik's mood. The domovik usually resembles a male head of household, living or dead. This supports
the belief that the Domovik is a remnant from the times of ancestral worship. He can be seen if you view him through a harrow
or horse collar. Otherwise, if he shows himself, it is usually to warn of death. He, like the Banshee, can be heard weeping
when death approaches a member of the household.
• Eretik - (EH-reh-teek), erestun, eretica, eretnik. "heretic" This later term for the
upyr is due to the belief that heretics returned from the dead as evil spirits. This belief was considered responsible for
the brutality and hysteria surrounding the medieval Russian campaign against heretics. The eretik usually returns from the
grave to devour people, the eretsun is usually a living vampire created when the soul of a sorceror possesses and revives
the body of one on the brink of death. The eretica usually causes one to wither by the power of her eye. The eyes of the dead,
in Slavic belief, could lure one into the grave. That is why it was so important to close the eyes of the newly deceased.
• Kikimora(kee-kee-MOHR-ah) or Shishimora female house spirit who usually lives in the cellar or behind
the stove. She comes out at night to spin and will look after the housework and the chickens if the home is well tended. If
the household is a sloppy one she will wine, whistle and tickle the children at night. She is sometimes married to the domovik.
To appease an angry Kikimora, you should wash all your pots and pans in a fern tea. She appears as an average woman with hair
down (Slavic women always kept their heads covered) or sometimes with chicken feet. She would occasionally appear, spinning,
to one about to die.
•Leszi, Leshii (LESH-ee) "Forest lord". From "les" - forest. He often appeared as a
peasant, either without a belt or with shoes on the wrong feet. Sometimes he was said to have wings and a tail and be covered
in black hair. Many assigned him goat's hooves and horns like Pan. He is usually attributed with green eyes. He could change
his size from that of a blade of grass to that of the highest tree. Usually he carried a club to show his rulership over the
forest creatures. The Leszi could take the shape of a familiar person and lead you astray with the sound of their voice. Once
in his domain, he might tickle his victim to death. He could also become a hare, wolf, bear, raven, pig, horse, rooster, flaming
fir tree or even a mushroom. The Leshi is fond of trees and is said to be heard weeping when one is cut down. He is the protector
of the forest and all it's creatures. His favorite animal is the wolf - the king of the beasts in Slavic folklore. He is also
said to be often seen in the company of bears.
Upon entering a forest, one always
uttered a protective spell or prayer lest they run into him. If he got hold of a child, he might replace it with one of his
own - who would grow up stupid, with a voracious appetite. If the child returned it would ever afterward be a useless tramp.
When the Leshii got his hands on an adult, the adult would return sometimes mute and covered with moss, othertimes unable
to concentrate and would act oddly for the rest of their lives.
The Leshii likes offerings of kasha,
suet, blini, bread & salt. He is also perfectly happy with a cookie or candy left on a stump or log. To protect yourself
against the leshii, you can: turn all your clothing backward and also the collar on your horse, chant "Sheep's mug, sheep's
wool" or if you encounter him, get him to laugh. When the leshy could be coaxed to befriend a human, the human often had to
make a pact, never again wear a cross or take the eucharist. In return, the Leshy would teach the human the secrets of magic.
He is, after all, the Green Man.
In myth and art, the Leshy is often
associated with the psychotropic mushroom Amanita Muscaria. This may connect him in some way to Shamanic mind-altering techniques.
•Musail The forest tsar, king of the forest spirits. He was associated with the Rowan
•Ovinnik - (Oh-VEEN-neek) Russian Barn spirit from "Ovin" - threshing barn. The Slavic
threshing barn was a 2 story building with a furnace entrenched in earth on the first floor and the second floor for drying
the grain. It was ruled by the Ovinnik who appeared as a huge disheveled black cat with burning eyes. You could sometimes
hear him laughing or barking like a dog from the corner of the barn in which he lived. Offerings of blini or the last sheaf
were left to him.If angered, he was known to burn down the barn, usually with it's owner or owner's children in it.
•Polewik, Polevoi (poh-LEH-veek) Field spirit from "pole" - field. He appears as a deformed
dwarf with grass for hair and two differently colored eyes. He usually wears either all white or all black and appears at
or sunset. He will lead astray people who wander in the fields, and if they
fall asleep there, give them diseases or ride over them with his horse. If a person falls asleep drunk while on the job, the
Polewik might kill them. To appease the Polewik you must put two eggs and a rooster too old to crow in a ditch when no one
•Poludnica - Psezpolnica in Serbian (poh-wood-NEET-sah) Lady Midday, from "Poluden" - . She may appear as a 12-yr old girl, a beautiful woman or an old hag but is only seen
at the hottest part of a summer's day. She is known to steal children or lead them astray in the fields and Russian mothers
threaten their children with "Be good or the Poludnica will get you. She sometimes pulls the hair of farm workers or attacks
women who have just given birth and wander out at noontime. She carries a scythe and will stop people in the field to either
ask difficult questions or engage them in conversation. If the person fails to answer a question or tries to change the subject
of the conversation, the Poludnica will strike them with illness or cut off their head (Poland).
The Wends, German Slavs, called her pscipolnitsa and pictured her as carrying shears, a symbol of death. When not in the fields
or streets, the Poludnica was said to float on the winds. Marija Gimbutas calls her "sunstroke" personified. It is thought
that the Poludnica was the explanation for the dangers of working in the heat
and remained a part of more recent legend because of her usefulness in scaring children away from valuable crops.
• Poluvirica - (Poh-woo-vee-REET-sa) "female half-believer". This forest spirit probably
had an earlier name but was later called poluvirica due to the belief that non-Christians returned after death as various
home and forest spirits. She appears naked, with a long face, long hanging breasts and three braids of hair down her back.
She is usually seen carrying a child.
• Rarog - (RAH-rook) Polish, Rarich - Ukranian, Rarach - Czech. This same word for whirlwind may be a late bastardization
of the name Swarog. A falcon, hawk or fiery dwarf who turns himself into a whirlwind. From Lusitania to the Urals it was customary to throw a knife into a whirlwind to kill the demon residing within
this century, Blugarians, Pomeranians and Russians were still being observed casting themselves face down before a whirlwind
to ward off illness and misfortune. Russians whould do so shouting "a belt around your neck" in order to strangle the rarog.
•Rusalka (roo-SAHW-kah) Female water Spirit. These souls of unbabtized babies or drowned
maidens became beautiful pale girls with long flowing hair. They wear white or are sometimes naked, usually with poppies in
their hair. They lived in the waters during the winter, but moved to the forests and fields during Rusal'naia week (hence
the name) where they could often be seen perched in trees.
A danger to humans, the Rusalki may
lead cattle astray, steal children, fall upon people from the treetops and tickle them to death or kidnap young lads to take
as lovers. They love to come out in the moonlight to sing and dance the khorovod (circle dance). If they find someone bathing
near where they dance, often, they will drown them. Tying ribbons to trees in which they were known to perch is one way to
appease them. Linens and scarves, as well as eggs were also left as offerings.
Before these nature spirits were
associated with the souls of the "unclean" dead, it is believed they were the spirits who brought moisture to forest and field.
•Treasurers pozemne vile - "earth spirits". I have not seen the Slavic name for these creatures
anywhere - but in Polish the word for gnome is "karzelek" (kar-ZEH-lek) which these creatures most resemble. Called pchuvushi
by the gypsies, they live in mines and underground workings and are the guardians of precious metals, gems & crystals.
They are most often helpful toward miners and will lead them to rich veins of ore, protect them from danger and lead them
back when they are lost. To evil persons or those who insult them they can be deadly and have been known to send tunnels crashing
down upon them or push them into dark chasms. Whistling, hurling rocks into dark chasms and uncovering one's head are actions
considered offensive to the Treasurer. He will, however, warn the offender once before taking action. Small insults warrant
a pelting with handfuls of soil. Larger insults are usually repayed with a beating with the Treasurer's cudgel or the forfeit
of all the metals mined that day.
They sometimes appear as small naked
children, as human miners, as glimmers of light or as salt people. Most often, though, they appear as adults of smaller stature,
usually about 2 - 3 feet in height, carrying mining lanterns.
•Wampyr , Upyr Vampires have featured in the legends of all Eastern Europe. The Kashubian region on the Baltic coast of Poland shows records of an exceptionally
high belief in Vampires. As recently as the 20th century,attempts were made in Puck and Kartuzy to exhume vampires and render
them harmless. People of high facial colour or an excitable nature were supposed to cool slowly on death,retaining a red complexion
and flexible limbs, hence the expression "Czerwony jak wieszczy",red as a vampire. Vampires are the souls of the dead. Their
physical body does not usually leave the grave. Their victims are their own family members whom they visit, one at time to
drain their life's force. When that family member is dead, they move onto the next. In this manner was evidence of vampire
activity discovered. Members of a single family would begin to die, one by one. If the Wampyr had no relatives,they would
pull on the church bell,signalling death for all that heard it.
a vampire was detected, the first family members to pass on in the string of deaths were exhumed. If one was found to be in
extraordinarily good shape, various remedies could be used against them: They might be cut up and their bones re-arranged.
A crucifix was often placed under the tongue and sometimes a fishing net or a bag of sand was placed in the coffin. Only one
grain of sand could be removed each year,or one knot undone,keeping the vampire away for a very long time.
to Dion Fortune - a brilliant occultist - the "soul body" lives on for about 3 days after the death of the physical body,
then it dies also, forcing the remaining essence of the person to go on. If the person is knowledged in the occult, they may
choose to remain on earth by latching onto a human victim who is weak or morally corrupt. Through this victim they absorb
the life's energy of others. Taking blood is one method of doing this. They cannot take the life's force of their victim,
as he would die, so they possess him and force him to take the blood of others. ...just something to think about.
were originally spirits of death and predate the sky gods.
of the information on Polish vampirism was e-mailed to me, the author was unknown - so no credit could be given)
•Wila, Vily, Vile, Veles in Lithuanian (VEE-lah) Female fairy-like spirits who live in the wilderness
and sometimes clouds. They were believed to be the spirits of women who had been frivolous in their lifetimes and now floated
between here and the afterlife. They sometimes appear as the swans, snakes, horses, falcons, or wolves that they can shapeshift
into but usually appear as beautiful maidens, naked or dressed in white with long flowing hair. It is said that if even one
of these hairs is plucked, the Wila will die, or be forced to change back to her true shape.A human may gain the control of
a Wila by stealing feathers from her wings.Once she gets them back, however, she will disappear.
The voices of the Wila are as beautiful
as they, and one who hears them loses all thoughts of food, drink or sleep, sometimes for days. Despite their feminine charms,
however, the Wila are fierce warriors. The earth is said to shake when they do battle. They have healing and prophetic powers
and are sometimes willing to help mankind. Other times they lure young men to dance with them, which according to their mood
can be a very good orvery bad thing for the lad. They ride on horses or deer when they hunt with their bows and arrows and
will kill any man who defies them or breaks his word. Fairy rings of deep thick grass are left where they have danced which
should never be trod upon (bad luck).
Offerings for Wila consist of round
cakes, ribbons, fresh fruits and vegetables or flowers left at sacred trees and wells and at fairy caves.
•The Vodonoi - Wódjanoj in Polish (vohd-YAH-noy) Male water spirits from "Woda" - water.
Master shape-shifters, they sometimes appear as old men with long green or white beards, sometimes as creatures with huge
toes, claws, horns, a tail and burning eyes in a human face. At times they look like fat old bald men and other times like
mossy looking fish or flying tree trunks. If he takes on human form, you will know him by the water oozing from the left side
of his coat. Vodonoi are said to live in underwater palaces made from the treasures from sunken ships and often marry Russalki.
They are usually malicious and are
believed to lie in wait for human victims and drag them under the water to their death. Dark marks on the bodies' of drowning
victims were thought to be bruises from their struggle with the Vodonoi. Retrieving a drowned body was thought to anger the
Vodonoi who wanted to keep their spoils. A Vodonik may be appeased by pouring butter into the water or offering him your first
fish. To employ the Vodonoi's aid in fishing, throw a pinch of tobacco into the water and say loudly "Here's your tobacco,
Lord Vodonik, now give me a fish".
• Zaltys The world serpent who lay coiled at the roots of the great world tree. He was
the arch enemy of Perun, at whom Perun seemed to aim much of his lightening.
Giver God from "dati" - to give.The sun personified - may be the same as Khors.
This son of Swiantowid emerged from his Eastern palace every morning in a two wheeled, diamond chariot, pulled by twelve fire-breathing
horses with manes of gold. He would travel across the heavens each day through his twelve kingdoms (zodiac signs?). Some believed
that he emerged each day as a beautiful infant and would age until his death as an old man in the West. Dazhdbóg was also
a god of justice who sat seated on a purple throne surrounded by his seven judges (the planets?) The morning and evening stars,
seven messengers who fly across the heavens with fiery tails(comets) and sometimes, Mjestjas, his bald uncle - the moon. In
some legends, Mjesyas is his wife. He has many children who, according to legend, live among the stars
and the Russian people, who call themselves "Dazhdbog's grandchildren."
God of war. Same root name
as Jarilo - youth and springtime. The historian, Herbord, equated him with Mars. His sacred
symbol seems to have been the shield. When his temple at Wolgast was destroyed in 1128, those entering it in search of idols
found only a gigantic shield. Afraid of the crowds gathering outside, Bishop Otto's men took the shield to hide behind as
they exited. On sight of moving shield the people threw themselves upon the ground thinking that it was the god himself.
Dzarowit is thought to be one of four seasonal
aspects of Swiantowid, the aspect ruling Springtime and looking toward the West. He may be related to
Jarilo; In Dzarowit's name his priests proclaimed "I am your god who covers the plains with grass and the forests with leaves.
The produce of the fields and woods, the young of the cattle and all things that serve man's needs are in my power."
pass through the village, and the clouds across the sky. We go quicker, and the clouds go quicker, But the clouds have overtaken
us and have bedewed the fields. We go through the village, and the clouds across the sky, and see, a ring drops from the clouds.
W.R.Ralston p.227-229 Afterwards, the girl dances and spins while the woman douse her with water. This practice is thought
to convince the heavenly women, clouds, to rain upon the earth, represented by the greenery.
Another version of this myth has
her palace and lover destroyed by her own sea father who disapproved of her romance with a mere mortal. Durning storms it
is said one may still here her lamenting over the loss of her lover.(Poland)
Lada is the Slavic goddess of love and beauty. In Russia, when a couple is happily married, it is said they "live in lada", in love. Lad is also a word
meaning "peace, union, harmony" as in the proverb "When a husband and wife have lad, they don't require klad (Treasure)" -
Ralston, p.105. She is said to reside in the underworld, vrij, until the Vernal Equinox, Maslenica, when she returns, bringing
the lark and springtime with her. Like Jarilo, Lada is often portrayed as a goddess who is born and dies yearly. Her sacred
tree is the lime/linden, supposedly because its leaves are shaped like hearts. As a Slavonian love song goes:
the bee is drawn by the linden-bloom (or lime-perfume), My heart is drawn by thee." - Leland, p.138
story has her married to Swarog who without her could not have created the world. Other sources give her a brother/lover named
Lado which would make them divine twins such as Freya and Frey. There is also some mention of her two sons, Lel & Polel,
and occasionally that of a daughter, Liuli.
fear thee not, O wolf! The god with the sunny curls will not let thee apporach. Lado, O Sun-Lado." - W.R.Ralston, p.105
of Lada, Lado is compared to Frey and considered a solar deity by some. In one old chronicle, Lado is called "The God of marriage,
of mirth, of pleasure and of general happiness" to who those about to marry offered sacrifice to ensure a good union.
Zemlia, Mother Earth, giving suck from bountiful breasts to countless children. When the peasants spoke of Matushka Zemlia,
their eyes, usually dull and expressionless, were flooded with love, like the eyes of children who see their mother at a distance."
- Shmarya Levin
Mother Earth, seems to have never been personified as other Earth Goddesses were (given human form), but worshipped in her
natural form. She may, however, be the same Goddess as Mokosh. Along with the ancestral worship shown in the belief in household
spirits, Earth worship was most adamantly clung to despite the Christianizing of the Slavic world. She had absolute sanctity
and no one was allowed to strike her or begin farming until her birthgiving time at Maslenica. Memorial day and Assumption
day (sorry - I have no dates as of yet) were her name days so no plowing or digging could be done then. Anyone spitting on
the Earth had to beg her forgiveness.
disputes were settled by calling her to witness the justice of the claims. Oaths and marriages were confirmed by swallowing
a clump of earth or holding it on the head. Boundaries were measured while walking them with a clump of earth on the head.
Villages were protected from cattle plague & epidemic by plowing a furrow around them to release Mother Earth's power.
If no priest was present, sins were confessed to the earth and into the 20th century survived the custom of begging the Earth's
forgiveness prior to death.
worship was transferred to the cult of Mary and is why she is such a central part of Slavic Christianity. Unlike other nature
deities, Mata Syra Zemlja was never personified as a Goddess with human features.
the early 1900's to save their village from plague of cholera the older women circled the village at quietly getting the
younger women to come out. Without the men's knowledge, they chose nine maidens and three widows who were led out of the village
and undressed down to their shifts. The maidens let their hair down, white shawls covered the heads of the widows. They armed
themselves with ploughs and items of frightening appearance such as animal skulls.The maidens took up scythes and the entire
procession marched around the village, howling and shrieking, while ploughing a deep furrow to release the spirits of the
Earth. Any man who came upon the procession was felled by the maidens "without mercy".
Her name means "moisture" and she may be the personified version
of Mati Syra Ziemlja (Moist Mother Earth). Images of her survive to this day in Russianembroidery with arms raised, flanked
by two horsemen. She is usually describedas having a large head & long arms. In Onolets, she was believed to walk abroad
or spin wool at night and if a sheep mysteriously lost it's hair, it meant that Mokosh had sheared them.
Mokosh is associated with weaving,
spinning, and perhaps that is why she is seen as the Goddess of fate. She is also seen as a Goddess of fertility and bounty.
Some sources say she rules over occult knowledge and divination. She is also sometimes referred to as wife of Swarog which
would then create a marriage of "heaven" and "earth". Rybakov called her the Great Mother Goddess of the Slavs.
16th century church chronicles contain
a question posed to women parishoners "Did you not go to Mokosz?" It was believed that if Mokosz were pleased with the women's
offerings, she would help the women with their laundry. This helps to support some people's theory that Mokosz was actually
a water Goddess. As a wandering goddess, she is thought to be tied into the fertility of the earth and rain is sometimes called
Mokosz has survived in the legends
of Mokosha - minor female spirits who punish women for spinning on Friday, Mokosh sacred day. Her worship was transfered to
that of St. Paraskeva-Friday.
Mokosh' Feast Day - Mokosh was honored
on the Friday between Oct 25 and Nov 1. She was given offerings of vegetables and vegetables seem to have been the focal point
of the day. One reference fixes this date on Oct 28.
God of thunder from "per, perk or perg" - to strike.
He is described as a rugged man with a copper beard. He rides in a chariot pulled by a he-goat and carries a mighty axe, or
strely, sometimes a hammer. This axe is hurled at evil people and spirits and will always return to his hand., and of oak.
The word strela can mean either axe or arrow, i.e. bolt and strela are hung on hourses to protect them from storms, restore
milk to cows, ease labor and grant good luck to newborns and newlyweds.
His lighting bolts were believed
to pass through the earth to a certain depth and return gradually to the surface in a specific period of time - usually 7
yrs 40days. People, rocks and trees struck by lightening are considered to be sacred for the heavenly fire remains inside
them. In 1652 a Lithuanian man was recorded to have eaten the ashes of a leather saddle burned by lightening. He believed
his action would save him from illness and give him oracular powers and the ability to conjur fire.
All big trees were sacred to Perun,
but he especially loved the oak. There are records of oaks being fenced in as sacred to him. Sacrifices to him usually consisted
of a rooster, but on special occasions, bear, bull or he-goat might be killed. The sacrificed animal was then communally eaten
as they were seen to be imbued with the power of their patron God. Eating the god's animal to absorb the god's essence is
similar to and predates the ritual of Holy Communion.
Perun's arch enemy was the zaltys, a great
serpent curled at the base of the world tree. Somehow, this also put him on Weles' blacklist and worship of these two gods had to be kept separate.
to Perun tended to be octagonal and on high ground. An idol of him set outside the castle
of Vladmir was said to have a silver head and gold moustache - in some accounts,
gold mouth. When Vladmir tore down the idol, it was tied to a horses tail and dragged to the Dnieper.
Amid much weeping it was then tossed in as men with poles made sure that he was not washed ashore or pulled out. It eventually
floated down river and was blown onto a sandbank still known as Perun's bank. Perun's holy day is Thursday, his feast day
is the 20th of July.
survived as a sort of Slavic penate, household god. His worship was at the center of the older ancestor cults. Rodenica survived
as a mother-daughter team of glowing white fairies who visited children at their birth and determined each baby's fate.
God of Rugen, may be the same as Ruevit. His temple at Garz consisted of a large wooden structure with an inner room which had
four posts and a roof and was decorated with purple hangings. His oak statue had seven heads (faces, probably) and seven swords
in his girdle, an eighth in his hand.
was concerned only with heavenly affairs and left the earthly ones to his son. Unfortunately for his children, Perun was a
much stronger war god and took over the role as chief deity of the warrior classes.
may be the "divine light" of God which in turn produced both the Celestial & Terrestrial fires.
From "svent" - strong, or perhaps "sventu"
- Iranian for holy. God of war and protector of fields. His gender is not fixed as male, though, for his statue in Galica,
Poland had 2 male sides and 2 female sides. Swiantowid had his own white
horse only ridden by the high priest. He was believed to accompany anyone who went to war seated upon it. Before a war, the
horse was led down a row of crossed spears. If he walked the row without catching a hoof on a spear it was a good omen.
His temple at Arkona was described
thus: One door, a red roof and strong walls ornamented in relief with all kinds of roughly painted carvings. The outer walls
were made of vertical wooden posts enclosing an area more than 20m square. Inside was decorated with ornaments, purple items
and animal horns. An inner room consisting of a roof supported by four columns and hung with purple rugs contained a sunken
base for a huge idol of the god. The idol held a drinking horn in his right hand. Mead was poured into it at harvest, the
higher the level reached, the better next year's crop was purported to be. Swiatowid may be an aspect of or Western Slavonic
version of Swarog.
The Slavic Horned lord,
ruled horned animals, wealth and the underworld. He is believed to have survived from the time of a common Indo-European pantheon.
He was also a god of trade and oaths were sworn in his name. Weles is also the God of poets and bards and is often associated
with magick. He was later associated with St. Blas, guardian of cattle.
Kiev, his statue was not among those on the hill outside the palace but was instead, erected in the marketplace. This is
supposedly because he and Perun are great enemies and couldn't be worshipped together.
These daughters of Dazhdbog are the Auroras of dawn and dusk, and sometimes have a third sister, (perhaps, Polunocnica). They are
the Guardians of the God or hound, which is chained to the constellation, Ursa Major. Like the Fenris wolf of the Norse mythos,
this creature will destroy the world if it ever breaks free.
morning, Zorya Utrenyaya opens the gates of Dazhdbog's Eastern palace so he may ride across the sky. In the evening, Zorya
Vechernyaya closes the gates after her father's daily ride is finished. Their other two sisters, Zezhda Dennitsa and Vechernyaya
Zezhda, the morning star and evening star are the caretakers of their father's horses and are sometimes considered to be the
same two goddesses. These Goddesses, associated with Venus, are sometimes merged into one warrior Goddess, Zorya, who hides
and protects warriors with her veil (see her prayer on the Slavic Magick page.)
& Goddesses An - God of the Heavens Enki - Lord of Water and Wisdom Enlil - God of Air and Storms Ereshkigal
- Goddess of Darkness, Gloom and Death Inanna - Goddess of Love and War Ki - Goddess of the Earth Nammu - Goddess
of the Sea Ninhursag - Goddess of the Earth, Fertility Utu - Sun God, God of Justice