This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Origins Of Roman Religion And Its Progress

3385 words - 14 pages

The Origins of Roman Religion and Its Progress


Throughout the ages, beliefs have changed, advanced, and occasionally
begun. In the time of Ancient Rome, the people began observing one
religion; that which was similar to the Greeks; the pantheon. Through
the Roman Empire, the worship of twelve central deities was observed
carefully. The Romans themselves began all the beliefs contained
within the worship. This was of great importance to the Roman people,
and helped the empire to expand through its strong religious centre.

"The presence of the gods gives the past a certain dignity, and if any
nation deserves to be ...view middle of the document...

Many of their festival days remain in our society today; floralia (May
Day), lupercalia (Valentine's Day), All Fool's Day (April Fool's Day)
and Saturnalia (Christmas). As in our present society, we come
together on Christmas Day to listen to the Queen's Speech or such
like, in Ancient Rome the citizens would all stand and watch the
festivals pass through the forum or a similar place.

The Roman Forum where festivals would have taken place.

The layout of Roman religion

The majority of worship took place in the many temples in the centre
of Rome, an idea taken from the Etruscans. These people also
instigated the production of statues of the gods and goddesses within
and around the temples. The temples were, in effect, the stage for
religious activity. Here citizens would come to worship, pray in times
of personal crisis and atone of their sins. In times of national and
empirical crisis, the temples would also be used to perform animal
sacrifices. These were also performed on festival days.

Roman religion was, in some ways, very similar to the social ladder of
Rome itself. At the head was the emperor, who would eventually become
a deity after his death. Below him would come the Pontifex Maximus, or
the chief priest. Julius Caesar held this position at one time, which
was very helpful to his political career. The Pontifex Maximus had
power over the Vestal Virgins and the sixteen priests below them.

The Vestal Virgins held a great deal of power within the religious
structure, as their primary function was to keep alight the sacred
flame in the Temple of Vesta. They still managed to remain at the
centre of the Roman life, as was pointed out by one Roman citizen;

"If the gods did not hear the Vestal Virgins' prayers, the state would
not survive."


To become a Vestal Virgin was obviously an important undertaking. One
Roman man closely linked with the Virgins tells us of how strictly
they were chosen;

"A girl cannot be chosen under six or more than ten years old; her
father and mother must be alive; she must have no speech impediment,
hearing defect or other physical weakness, and her father must not
have surrendered his legal control over her."

Aulus Gellius

The undertaking of this role was very important to the chosen few.
Although the minimum period of service was thirty years, many Virgins
remained so for the duration of their lives. Junica Torquata in
particular served for a full sixty-four years of her life. It was
unsurprising that the majority of Virgins kept their oaths, as the
punishment for betrayal was very high. Also, the man with whom the
Virgin was with would be buried alive in a tomb of concrete!

The formation of the Vestal Virgins may come as a surprise to many
people. The gender issue is prominent here, as it is with the use...

Other Papers Like The Origins Of Roman Religion And Its Progress

The Values and Goals of Roman Nobility

1181 words - 5 pages at war, the renown of successful campaigners would spread amongst the public and these men, riding on the back of their celebrated acclaim, would inevitably present for civil office upon the completion of their military duties. The Roman Republic was held together primarily by the stabilising influence exerted by the senate, and its overriding emphasis on the Roman family structure as a founding platform by which political and social protocols

Changes in Technological Progress and Its Contribution to Economic Growth

604 words - 3 pages Week 8: Current Event Four Changes in Technological Progress and its Contribution to Economic Growth This paper addresses this question by looking at how the behavior of labor productivity grew at a significantly faster rate in the late 90's. The New Economy hypothesis to be examined is whether investment in IT caused the acceleration in productivity. The evidence suggests a growing

The Origins of Vernacular Language

865 words - 4 pages The Origins of Vernacular Language Bryan K Hairston AIU Online Abstract In this paper the term vernacular can be defined as using a language that is native to a country, rather than an art, music, and literature, or storybook language. The vernacular language is considered as the family of modern romance languages. The vernacular languages are known for usage in Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese. The Origins of Vernacular

The Origins of Hip-Hop

2764 words - 12 pages Stephany Canela 07.13.2010 Prof. Johnson LEH 301 Edited The Origins of Hip-Hop Hip-hop is a musical art form created by African-Americans in the mid seventies. Its origin came from a young generation of African-Americans in the South Bronx, who created a beautiful, prideful expression of music, art and dance from a backdrop of poverty. To them at the time, hip-hop was their only voice, as they were invisible. Once hip-hop

The Rise And Fall Of The Roman And Islamic Civilizations

1894 words - 8 pages villages into the city of Rome ruled by a monarchy. 509 B.C.E. the Romans overthrew the Etruscan king replacing the monarchy with a republic, in which citizens elect representatives to govern. During this time two social classes clashed for control; the patricians and the plebeians. The patricians were a wealthy upper class landowners and soldiers in the Roman army who had a monopoly of power and influence. Only those among its members could conduct

The Raid Progress of Belt Conveyors

542 words - 3 pages With the development and progress of society, the innovation of science and technology, the path of development of industrial automation, sustainable development has been gradually realized by people , energy conservation is the development the times called for. The dryer equipment occupies a pivotal position in the industrial machinery, and widely used in the cement industry, food industry, metallurgy industry industry and the other industries

The Origins of the Second World War

1660 words - 7 pages - Essay - The Origins of the Second World War Text 6 by A.J.P. Taylor Professor: Luciano Amaral Assistant: Duncan Simpson Francisca Ennes 11731 Mariana Ascenso 11677 Alan John Percivable Taylor was born in March 1906 in Birkdale, England. His parents held left-wing views, which he inherited; and were pacifists, which made them send his son to Quaker schools, as a way of protesting against the First World War. Taylor was

Chronicles of the Death Foretold and Religion

1250 words - 5 pages Chronicle of a Death Foretold: The Role of Religion The role of religion in Colombian culture and especially in Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Nobel Prize winner, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, plays a huge part in main event of the story, murder of Santiago Nassar. The society and its community groups featured in the story have close relations with Catholic religion and church. The most important part of Catholic religion is the idea of that a

Burial Practices Of The Ancient Egyptian And Greco-Roman Cultures

1547 words - 7 pages Ancient Egyptian and Greco-Roman practices of preparing the dead for the next cradle of humanity are very intriguing. These two cultures differ in a multitude of ways yet similarities can be noted in the domain of funerary services. In the realm of Egyptian afterlife, The Book of the Dead can provide one with vital information concerning ritual entombment practices and myths of the afterlife. The additional handouts I received from Timothy

Propaganda And The Roman Art

443 words - 2 pages Propaganda is the activity of spreading ideas and information with the aim of influencing the public towards specific actions using a planned employment of persuasive methods. Art played a huge role in every propagandistic matter throughout history. Among the first rulers that made extensive use of Art as a form of propaganda were the Roman emperors. They were well known for their expertise in using portraits, reliefs and monuments to influence

Fall of the Roman Republic

744 words - 3 pages , and its replacement by a government headed by two consuls, elected annually by the citizens and advised by a senate. Roman society was hierarchical. The evolution of the Constitution of the Roman Republic was heavily influenced by the struggle between the patricians, Rome's land-holding aristocracy, who traced their ancestry back to the early history of the Roman kingdom, and the plebeians, the far more numerous citizen-commoners. Over

Related Essays

The Idea Of Progress Essay

549 words - 3 pages constitute progress. Nevertheless, there are two categories of progress : material progress and humanitarian-moral progress. * The former encompasses economic, higher income and bigger GDP, scientific, and technological development. * The later includes enhanced human rights, women empowerment, the end of dictatorship, and other humanitarian objectives. * In addition to these two, other factors such as environment also compose

The Progress Of Freedom Essay

3026 words - 13 pages Does peace mean progress? Is the disappearance of war a sign of improvement or of decay? At a yet recent date learned men, their eyes to their microscopes, were teaching us that among the various kinds of living creatures they had studied, war was the rile; that where struggle ceased, life ceased; and that, since more beings came into the world than the world could feed, the destruction of the weakest was both a necessity and a condition of

Evaluate The Marxist Theory Of Religion And Its Relevance To Todays Society

1058 words - 5 pages Evaluate the Marxist theory of religion and its relevance to society today. Marxists believe that the ruling class use instruments in society to control the working class – for example religion and education. They argue that religion is created and promoted by the Ruling Class in order to pass on their dominant ideology to the working class, using it as an “instrument”. Althusser argues that the ruling class do this through physical control

Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire

908 words - 4 pages of the Empire. This extreme change in policy spread this rather new religion to every corner of the Empire. By approving Christianity, the Roman state directly forgot its religious traditions. Finally, by this time, Romans considered their emperor a god. But the Christian belief in one god — who was not the emperor. This weakened the authority and credibility of the emperor. Constantine the Great formed another change that helped speed up the