Mythology can be seen as the heart of everyday life in Ancient Greek and Roman. They regarded mythology as a part of their history and used supernatural characters such as gods, goddesses and heroes to explain phenomenon, cultural variations, religious practices and friendships. Intellect of Greek people including perfect mythology that they had shared among the members are essential factors that made the kingdom last very long. After the fall of Greek empire, Roman gained the power over the region. They appreciated the values of Greek traditions and mythology. So they maintained some Greek values however created their own legend which based upon them. As a result, there are different versions of legends which are out of the same source, same gods and goddesses as, heroes well as same places. What is different between the two versions is mainly about the names which the Roman had for the same gods and goddesses, heroes as those of the Greek. This is why ancient Greek and Roman mythologies often confused people. To make things clearer, it is important that we can see the relationship between lives of these two nations. Three values of mythology which indicate that the Greek and the Roman share in common are that they have same origin of the myth, same characteristics of deities and they share the same religious practices.
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The creation of gods and goddesses in Greek and Roman started at the same belief. Greek and Roman believed that everything they do, see or struggled was caused by deities, such as natural phenomena, passion or even warfare.
For example, sailors who had taken a trip to an island and had experienced a sudden storm. To explain this phenomenon, they had to look for someone who account for it and then they started to worship Poseidon, the lord of the sea, who they believed the storm maker to have a safe voyage. Roman, on the other hand, prayed to Neptune, the lord of the sea, to bless them a safe journey to lands that they wanted to conquer. In addition, warriors who went to war needed encouragement and inspiration so they put their minds on the goddess name Athena. She appears to be a helper for the heroes, heroines and soldiers that went to the war. Finally, she became a symbol of strategic warfare. For the Roman, they worshiped the war helper as well. They named their goddess Minerva.
As the Greek deities became versatile that can explain many indescribable situations, the Roman adopted gods and goddesses system from Greek mythology and reinterpret stories about Greek deities under the names of their Roman counterparts. Gods and goddesses that are mentioned more than any other gods are Olympian gods, the 12 deities on the Mount Olympus. In addition, The Ancient Greek and Roman gods have same fantastic abilities and characteristics but different names which are
1. Zeus, the king of all gods and the ruler of Mount Olympus, represent for the sky, weather, thunder, law, order and fate. His Roman name is Jupiter.
2. Poseidon or Neptune in Roman, the Ruler of the sea, includes rivers, floods, droughts, earthquakes and horses. He is known as the Earth Shaker or Storm Bringer
3. Hera or Juno, queen of the gods and she is the goddess of marriage and motherhood
4. Aphrodite, Goddess of love, beauty and seduction. She was depicted as the most beautiful woman. She was called Venus in Roman
5. Apollo, he was called as Apollo in Roman as well. He is a god of music, healing, plagues, prophecies, poetry, and archery.
6. Ares God of warfare, violence and courage.
7. Artemis or Diana, Goddess of the hunt, wild animals, childbirth and plague.
8. Athena or Minerva, goddess of wisdom, warfare, strategy, heroic endeavor, handicrafts and reason
9. Demeter or Ceres, Goddess of fertility, agriculture, horticulture, grain and harvest.
10. Dionysus God of wine, parties and festivals, madness, drunkenness and pleasure
11. Hephaestus or Vulcan Master blacksmith and craftsman of the gods; god of fire and the forge.
12. Hermes or Mercury, god of messenger, commercial and thieve.
Twelve deities identify exactly that Roman had shared gods and goddesses from Greek mythology because the deities in Greek have same powers and responsibilities in Roman except for one thing. The names of 12 gods were all Greek sounding, so they changed all the names to better fit their lifestyle.
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Greek and Roman have same kind of religious ceremonies, including sacrifice animals to gods and festival. People thanked and worshiped gods by giving tame animals for sacrificing. Sacrificing process is described as an agreement between god and man. If gods gave what men want they would give the life of animals to god in return. Sacrificial animals include pig, sheep, goat, cow or even human. Example of sacrificing human is when Agamemnon wanted to move his ship to pass the storm. He killed his daughter to sacrifice to Poseidon.
Furthermore, Greek and Roman have same kind of celebration which it is Anthesteria in Greek and The Liberalia in Roman. This festival was held for the honor of Dionysus (Greek) or Liber (Roman). He is the god of wine, intoxication, ecstasy and fertility. Greek and Roman celebrated this festival to worship and thank god for giving a fertile agriculture thorough the year.
Consequently, Roman religious ceremony is associated with Greek ceremony.
Since mythology of Greek and Roman has been confusing to people all the life time weather they belong to each other in some value or not. We apparently see that Greek have same elements in Roman, there are the birth of god system, power and feature of deities and ritual.