Stars, Myths and Rituals in Etruscan Rome

  • Leonardo Magini

Part of the Space and Society book series (SPSO)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxi
  2. Leonardo Magini
    Pages 9-13
  3. Leonardo Magini
    Pages 15-18
  4. Leonardo Magini
    Pages 25-26
  5. Leonardo Magini
    Pages 33-43
  6. Leonardo Magini
    Pages 151-152
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 153-181

About this book


This book offers a detailed and fascinating picture of the astonishing astronomical knowledge on which the Roman calendar, traditionally attributed to the king Numa Pompilius (reign 715-673 BC), was based. This knowledge, of Mesopotamian origins, related mainly to the planetary movements and to the occurrence of eclipses in the solar system. The author explains the Numan year and cycle and illustrates clearly how astronomical phenomena exerted a powerful influence over both public and private life. A series of concise chapters examines the dates of the Roman festivals, describes the related rites and myths, and places the festivals in relation to the planetary movements and astronomical events. Special reference is made to the movements of the moon and Venus, their relation to the language of myth, and the particular significance that Venus was considered to have for female fertility. The book clearly demonstrates the depth of astronomical knowledge reflected in the Roman religious calendar and the designated festive days. It will appeal both to learned connoisseurs and to amateurs with a particular interest in the subject.


Astro Myths Classical Science History Female Fertility History of Astronomy History of the Calendar Italy History Astronomy Movements of the Moon and Venus Numan Year Roman Calendar Roman Society Rome History Astronomy

Authors and affiliations

  • Leonardo Magini
    • 1
  1. 1.Societa' Italiana di ArcheoastronomiaFiumicinoItaly

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Physics and Astronomy
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-07265-4
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-07266-1
  • Series Print ISSN 2199-3882
  • Series Online ISSN 2199-3890
  • Buy this book on publisher's site