Mircea Eliade "From Primitives to Zen": AN OFFERING FOR JUPITER BEFORE THE SOWING


(Cato, 'On Agriculture,' 132)

Marcus Porcius Cato's work on agriculture, written about 160 B.C., is full of references to archaic and traditional rites, customs, and religious views..

The offering is to be made in this way: Offer to Jupiter Dapalis a cup of wine of whatever size you wish. Observe the day as a holiday (feria) for the oxen, their drivers, and those who make the offering. When you make the offering, say as follows: 'Jupiter Dapalis, since it is due and proper (oportet) that a cup of wine be offered thee, in my home among my family, for thy sacred feast; for that reason, be thou honoured by this feast that is offered thee.' Wash your hands, and then take the wine and say: 'Jupiter Dapalis, be thou honoured by this feast that is offered thee and be thou honoured by the wine that is placed before thee.' If you wish, make an offering to Vesta. The feast of Jupiter consists of roasted meat and an urn of wine. Present it to Jupiter religiously, in the proper form (Jovi caste profanato sua contagione). After the offering is made, plant millet, panic grass, garlic, and lentils.


Translation by Frederick C. Grant, in his Ancient Roman Religion, Library of Religion paperbook series (New York, 1957), P. 34

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