Gods of the Month: Neptune and Furrina

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During the hot, dry month of July, Romans hold festivals for two Water Gods – Neptune on July 23, and Furrina, two days later. Both these Gods are petitioned for adequate water supplies – Neptune for watering crops and Furrina for drinking water. (Earlier in the month, Jupiter Pluvius is petitioned for rainfall.) Water is important for sustaining life.

Neptune

Often regarded as the Roman Poseidon, Neptune (Neptunus) is actually an old Italian God. Originally, He was the God of Springs, Streams, and Rivers. Because Neptune was (and is) the God of Fresh Water, his consort Salacia was (and is) the Goddess of the Surging Sea. In his oceanic form, Neptune is addressed as Neptunus Oceanus.

One thing that Neptune does have in common with Poseidon of the Greeks is that He also the God of Earthquakes. It seems for the Greek and Romans that the Water Gods causes earthquakes. Meanwhile, Volcanus (Vulcan), who has his forge in Mt. Etna, creates raging fires instead.

Furrina
Not much is known about the Goddess Furrina. She is connected to wells and underground cisterns. Therefore, Furrina can be considered the Goddess of Adequate Drinking Supplies or simply of Drinking Water. Say a prayer to Her when you drink from a public water fountain.

Salve Neptunus!                                Salve Furrina!
God of Waters                                   Goddess of Waters
Sustainer of Life                               Sustainer of Life
We pray for fresh water                 Teach us to protect the water
We pray for abundant water         Teach us to care for the water
We thank You, Neptunus!               We thank You, Furrina!

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