Epona

related topics
{god, call, give}
{language, word, form}
{car, race, vehicle}
{war, force, army}
{day, year, event}
{area, part, region}

In Gallo-Roman religion, Epona was a protector of horses, donkeys, and mules. She was particularly a goddess of fertility, as shown by her attributes of a patera, cornucopia, ears of grain and the presence of foals in some sculptures[1] suggested that the goddess and her horses were leaders of the soul in the after-life ride, with parallels in Rhiannon of the Mabinogion. Unusually for a Celtic deity, most of whom were associated with specific localities, the worship of Epona, "the sole Celtic divinity ultimately worshipped in Rome itself,"[2] was widespread in the Roman Empire between the first and third centuries CE.

Contents

Etymology of the name

Although known only from Roman contexts, the name Epona, 'Great Mare' is from the Gaulish language; it is derived from the inferred proto-Celtic *ekwos 'horse'[3] — which gives rise to modern Welsh ebol 'foal' — together with the augmentative suffix -on frequently, though not exclusively, found in theonyms (for example Sirona, Matrona, and the usual Gaulish feminine singular -a.[4] In an episode preserved in a remark of Pausanias,[5] an archaic Demeter too had also been a Great Mare, who was mounted by Poseidon in the form of a stallion and foaled Arion and the Daughter who was unnamed outside the Arcadian mysteries.[6] Demeter was venerated as a mare in Lycosoura in Arcadia into historical times.

Full article ▸

related documents
Shamash
List of kennings
Þjazi
Lapith
Xibalba
Ishtar
Guaraní mythology
Underworld
Ullr
Seid
Cretan Bull
Trophonius
Propitiation
Loki
Völuspá
Marsyas
Durin
Keres (Greek mythology)
Minyans
Eris (mythology)
Ymir
Adad
Book of Habakkuk
Nodens
Sisyphus
Joshua
Yama
Hercules
Paradise
Anu