Talk:Di indigetes

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Where does Aradia come in? Can someone provide evidence that Aradia was worshipped in Classical Roman religion?

And what about Trivia, the three faced Goddess of the Crossroads, is she included in this category?Lily20 (talk) 19:47, 9 December 2008 (UTC)


Livy tells us that Juno was a Veian goddess who was formally introduced into the Roman pantheon when Veii was conquered, thus, she was an Etruscan deity originally. Does she really belong in this list?

Mon Vier

I do not believe that most contemporary mythologists agree with Livy's assessment, and I know there are at least a fair number of sources that list Juno as one of the earlier Roman gods (hence why Iuno is believed by many authorities to be of Indo-European derivation); see the Juno (mythology) page. However, I can't see any reason whatsoever that such information can't be included on the page. The worst thing this page can do is make POVed, Original-Research, arbitrary decisions about exactly which gods do or don't belong on the page behind the scenes. What we should do instead is provide sources supporting each individual included on the list (and sources contradicting such assessments too, where they exist), and explain when there's a disagreement over where a god originates. As it stands, this page is currently almost entirely useless: its inconsistent (at the top it claims that Ops is one of the indigetes, but Ops isn't actually on the list!), completely unreferenced, and totally unexplained. In addition to adding references, clarifying exactly what an "indigetes" is (the current explanation at the top of the page is both poor and biased, reflecting only one interpretation of the original meaning) and explaining when there's disagreement between reputable sources over a deity rather than just deciding where to include or exclude the entry. Additionally, a major problem with this page is the lack of description for each entry, making the list useless to anyone who doesn't want to waste hours visiting each individual entry, in most cases just to find a basic, simplistic stub. A much more efficient would be one more like that used in Etruscan mythology, the Latin di indigetes page, etc., where instead of having hundreds of isolated stub islets, we centralize the information on a single, organized list and only have distinct articles for the really noteworthy Di indigetes—the ones who have a genuine chance of ever expanding beyond stubhood, like Angerona. I've been experimenting with a few possible formats for such a table recently, on User:Silence/Deae (it's almost entirely lacking the end-information, but it should give the right idea). -Silence 11:50, 17 March 2006 (UTC)

Is this original?[edit]

Was this classification used by the Romans or is it a later ellaboration by Wissowa?

It's a Latin term. How they used it I don;t think we know. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 16:59, 13 April 2007 (UTC)


I have removed a redlink for Jana (mythology). If evidence of this person (a doublet of Janus?) show up, please write her article. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 16:59, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

Roman gods who adopted Greek myths but were originally personifications[edit]

We have Jupiter/Jove, who adopted Zeus' mythology on the list. Why are Vulcan, Venus, Saturnus etc. omitted? They are widely believed to have indigenous Latin or at least pre-Greek roots (the name etymologies are not loans of their Greek equivalent in any event, even if they share similar Indo-European language roots). Nagelfar 01:16, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

I'm going to be bold on this one. Nagelfar 16:35, 7 July 2007 (UTC)
I'm uncertain what this article is actually trying to do. Indiges is a Latin epithet applied by ancient sources to various deities; one would expect the article to discuss possible meanings of the term and perhaps to list gods who receive the epithet. However, this article starts by asserting Wissowa's explanation of the term, then states that this is no longer widely accepted but that his classification of native vs. imported divinities "remains useful". It proceeds to give what you seem, reasonably enough, to be taking as a list of native divinities, though it doesn't actually say that this is what's being listed.
I don't want to criticise your attempt to expand this into a list of "indigenous deities", but in my opinion, if we need such a list, it belongs on a different page and should be rewritten from scratch with references to modern scholars to avoid original research. If we include a list of deities here, it should be those identified by ancient sources (or possibly by modern scholars) as di indigetes. EALacey 17:51, 7 July 2007 (UTC)
Well, I think maybe this one page could cover the list in every respect (historically attested to by the term "di indigetes", modern derivation as "indigenous", and those under Wissowa's definition) grouping each one as such. I don't think a separate page for each consideration could stand on its own, they'd probably be merged in some respect. If others had a definitive source for these three differences, maybe they could help by contributing information. Nagelfar 19:33, 7 July 2007 (UTC)


I added Neptune, but I wonder if the word itself is Etruscan from Nethuns or if they have a common origin. Maybe it should be removed. Also, Mercurius may not have been an old latin god, but that isn't saying he wasn't indigenous as a newer personification of several older gods. I think I will add mercury as a "newer" indigenous deity. Nagelfar 17:16, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

After some reflection it seems if we remove Neptune, we'd by the same logic have to remove Vertumnus & probably some others. Though this might be what has to be done. Nagelfar 19:37, 7 July 2007 (UTC)


Poena was adopted from Greek Mythology and her name is etymologically Greek. See here: -- (talk) 05:39, 19 November 2007 (UTC)

Mutinus Mutunus[edit]

Mutinus Mutunus (and maybe some others) redirect to their clearly non-indigenous adopted mythology under the names of foreign deities and myths rather than the direct Roman personification before being equated to the myths of folklores from abroad. Nagelfar (talk) 09:31, 20 December 2008 (UTC)


I think this article should try and make clear the term has been used in different ways and means different things.

Namely the di indigetes as Jupiter Indiges, Sol Indiges of Lanuvium, the Dii Indigetes of Arpinum and Preneste, those of the formula of the devotion in Livy: these are the secret patrons of their hometowns, whose name could not be pronounced: Festus p.94 L Indigetes, dii quorum nomina vulgari non licet. Servius ad Aen. II, 351 Romani celatum esse volureunt in cuius dei tutela urbs Roma sit et iure Pontificum cautum est ne suis nominbus dii romani appellantur ne exaugurari possint. Ie they were kept secret because it was feared they could be evocated (taken away) by foreigners.

Another thing are the indigitamenta of say Tellus, Terra, Ops, Ceres, Maia, Maiestas, Bona Dea each with their extended families of minor gods. It may have looked like a tree graph.Aldrasto11 (talk) 05:44, 18 May 2010 (UTC)


The author(s) of this article do not quote any authority to support their list of indigetes. Could this point be made explixt?Aldrasto11 (talk) 05:34, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Yes, what is the source for the list of names given here as indigetes? Cynwolfe (talk) 13:51, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
According to this source, Wissowa listed 33 indigetes. Since Wissowa's dichotomy of indigetes and novensiles no longer holds the sway it once did, this raises the question of whether or how his list should be included. Otherwise, this source asserts that we don't know the list, that it's conjectural. If you think it's worth giving Wissowa's list in the interest of representing the history of scholarship on this point, I'll delete the current list and replace it with W's list, clearly identifying it as his list, not that of an ancient source. If there are other lists offered by scholars, we can deal with those perhaps in relation to W's: "So-and-so omits [certain deities], but adds [certain others]." Is that feasible? Cynwolfe (talk) 15:53, 27 May 2010 (UTC)
I now have doubts about the usefulness of a list as such. I'm going to tag the list in the article. I have Wissowa on file, and he in fact doesn't produce a list as such; the list imagined by the source above would have to be compiled or pulled from W's article, which discusses rather than lists (as I should've suspected). The approach you outline in the previous section, Aldrasto, seems better: taking each ancient source one by one. Cynwolfe (talk) 16:27, 27 May 2010 (UTC)

Giving Wissowa's list as usch is useful. I said that there are two (at least ) different things meant by the word. Indigitamentum means simply to create a name inside or from another. The idea of the agonalia is interesting.Aldrasto11 (talk) 14:10, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

Wissowa's article is available in full online, if you'd like to get started culling a list. I probably won't have much time over the next few days, as it's a holiday weekend in the U.S. Cynwolfe (talk) 14:23, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

Here are some relevant texts:

Livy I 2,6: secundum inde proelium Latinis, Aeneae etiam ultimum operum mortalium fuit. Situs est, quemcumque eum dici ius fasque est, super Numicum flumen; Iovem Indigetem appellant.

Serv. Ad Aen. XII 259: Aeneas tamen appellatus est Iuppiter Indiges.

Dion. Hal. I 64: Inscription reads: "God Father chtonios who regulates the waters of the Numicus".

Plin. NH II 56: oppidum Laurentum locus Solis Indigetis, amnis Numicius.

Dion. Hal. I 55: there is a place which the locals call Sanctuary of the Sun, with two altars at the East and the West, erected by Aeneas for the miracle of the spring...

Serv. Ad Aen. VII 678: Preneste has its own Indigetes and pontiffs

Verg. Georg. I 498: Dii patrii Indigetes et Romule Vestaque mater.

Ovid Met. XV 862: Di Indigetes genitorque Quirine.

Si. It. IX 278 Di Indigetes Faunusque satorque Quirinus.

Lucan. I 556 mentions the Indigetes along with the Lares.

In an essay on the subject A. Grenier, arguing in a way I find flawed as far as the nature of the Indigetes is concerned, nevertheless makes a noteworthy remark, namely that the Indigetes are never invoked along with the Penates (Publici Pop. Romani), neither in the poets quoted here above nor in the formula of the devotio of Decius Mus. On the other hand they are associated with the gods of the oath eg in the table of Bantia: Iuranto per Iovem deosque Penates. As the Penates are also connected originally to Lavinium (Varro LL V 144: Lavinium ibi dii Penates nostri) and the consuls offered there a sacrifice to Iuppiter Indiges upon taking office it becomes apparent they are inherently identical. The Indigetes are the secret patrons of Rome brought by Aeneas from Troy whose real name must not be revealed. (Festus p. 94 L: Indigetes dii quorum nomina vulgari non licet. Serv. Ad Aen.: inde est quod Romani celatum esse voluerunt in cuius dei tutela urbs Roma sit et iure pontificum cautum est ne suis nominbus dii romani appellantur ne exaugurari possint).

Now all these quotes tally with Macrobius III 4, 6:

"De dis quoque Romanorum propriis i.e. Penatibus...Nigidius de dis libro nono decimo requirit num di Penates sint Troianorum Apollo et Neptunus qui muros eis fecisse dicuntur et num eos in Italiam Aeneas advexerit. Corn. Labeo de dis Penatibus eadem existimat. Hanc opinionem sequitur Maro cum dicit:

Sic fatus meritos aris mactabat honores

Taurum Neptuno taurum tibi pulcher Apollo.

Varro Human. secundo Dardanum refert deos Penates ex Samothrace in Phrygiam et Aeneam ex Phrygia in Italim detulisse. Qui sint di penates in libro memorato Varro non exprimit: sed qui diligentius eruunt veritatem Penates esse dixerunt per quos penitus spiramus per quos habemus corpus per quos rationem animi possidemus: esse medium aethera Iovem, Iunonem imium aera cum terra et Minervam summum aetheris cacumen: et argumento utuntur quod Traquinius, Demarati Corinthii f. Samoth. religionibus imbutus uno templo ac sub eodem tecto numina memorata coniunxit. Cassius Hemina dicit Samothracas does eosdemque Romanorum Penates, proprie dicit theous megalous, theous chreestous, theous dynatous...

Eodem nomine appellavit et Vestam quam de numero Penatium aut certe comitem eorum manifestum est adeo ut et consules et praetores seu dictatores, cum adeunt magistratum, Lavinii rem divinam faciant Penatibus pariter et Vestae.


Addidit Hyginus in libro quem de dis penatibus scripsit vocari eos theous patrooious...

In conclusion it is apparent that the Indigetes are nothing else than the Penates.

Compare Varro LL V 58: Terra en. et Caelum ut Samothracum initia docent, sunt dei magni, et hi quos dixi multis nominibus, non quas Samothracia ante portas statuit duas virilis species aeneas de imagini, neque ut vulgus putat, hi Samothraces dii, qui Castor et Pollux, sed hi mas et femina et hi quos augurum libri scriptos habent sic "divi qui potes" pro illo quod Sam. "theoedynatoe".Aldrasto11 (talk) 06:45, 12 June 2010 (UTC)

Grenier also quotes Johannes Lydus Mens. IV 155 concerning the Agonalia of Dec. 11 as connected to Helioi Genarcheei ie Sol Indiges.

Dumezil too relates the passage by Dion. Hal. I 68, 1 in which he describes the temple and the statues of the Penates Publici. The statues looked of archaic facture and represented two youngsters seated, similar to the Dioskures. Dumezil reminds that Varro Lingua Lat. V 58 says they are not the true Penates.

Below on Etruscan religion he identifies the Penates as Cilen on the Piacenza Liver. In a note he also refers to the 4 kinds of Penates of Etruscan religion mentionesd by Nigidius Figulus and preserved by Arnobius:

1) Jovis;

2) Neptuni;

3) Inferorum;

4) Hominum mortalium.

Again this is in accord with Macrobius quoted above.Aldrasto11 (talk) 12:08, 12 June 2010 (UTC)

I read on a few pages more of the book by R. Aittila and I think his hypothesis is quite good and BTW tallies with my interpretation of Indiges=Penates as given by Macrobius: ago as in agonalia hints to the action of driving something forth perhaps from within or from a certain position. Particularly to the point his citation of the medical use of verb indigo and of incitus.Aldrasto11 (talk) 13:59, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

I read all the passage by R. Antilla and it stands as a very well grouded analysis and argumentation in favour of the hypothesis by Grenier. Indiges is nothing else that the driving force of all life , Trieb, which has not by chance being applied tio the divinsed ancestors of Rome. Indigitamenta brings the same meaning as the evocation of god by man with force of the words of the sacred formulae and their epithets.Aldrasto11 (talk) 03:22, 10 July 2010 (UTC)

"Driving force" makes a lot of sense. Could you give a more specific citation for Grenier? I'd like to find out more about this. Cynwolfe (talk) 16:02, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

The identification of the Indigetes with the Penates needs qualifying. In fact I suppose the Penates are certainly included within the Indigetes but this does not necessarily mean that all the Indigetes could or should reduced to Penates.Aldrasto11 (talk) 04:30, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Preneste offers some further insight into the true nature and meaning of di indigetes. There they are two brothers called Digidii or Depidii (Servius Aen. 7, 768; Schol. Ver. Aen. 7, 681); Solinus 2, 9 calls them Digitorum. Now they are supposed to be the uncles of Caeculus the founder hero of the city. Their sister was impregnated by a spark from the hearth supposed to be god Volcanus. All this is similar to Vesta and the Penates of Troy and the theories on the Lar familiaris in Rome. Compare also the legend of Vulcan who impregnated Servius Tullius's mother as a phallus appeared in his temple fire (Ovid Fast. VI). So they are always connected with fire.

However the main relvant feature of these figures is that they are always twins and as Dumezil notes this cannot be unless the inherent nature of such gods implies this kind of double structure. Varro 's an Macrobius's quotations above also point clearly to the theoi dunatoi of Samothrace. Koch 's work pointed already to the duplicity of the festival of Sol Indiges of Dec. 11th (Agonalia Indiges) with the correspondent one of June 11th devoted to Mater Matuta, the Matralia. Clearly they both represent two critical and interrelated points in the calendar. They are the two divine ancestors, the Forefathers of the stirps. Their dialectic opposition contains the two opposite principles of life in a reverse order /disposition.Aldrasto11 (talk) 03:09, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

I find Sol Indiges particularly mysterious and intriguing, and hope one day to find time to learn more about him. Thank you for your notes. Cynwolfe (talk) 03:30, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Is the inscritption from Alatri mentioned in the article available? Perhaps in the article cited in the refernces? This is not clear. I doubt an inscriptions would list all these deities (Fucinus, Fiscellus, Summanus, Tempestutes) as Indigetes, probably they are listed together with the indigetes, whose name is secret or mentioned as a single epithet. This is what happens everywhere else. It would be very in teresting to be able to read this inscription.Aldrasto11 (talk) 06:08, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Remarks on some relevant details[edit]

As I pointed out in the body of the article indiges seems to have been translated or interpreted as chthonios by Greek writers (Dion. Hal. and Iohannes Lydus de Ostentis 2-3). This would brig to a breakthrough in the understanding of the concept itself. Indiges would mean the divine principle that has become the force that drives life on earth. Connexions with the Etruscan concept of Penates and the mysteric and orphic traditions are obvious.

Anttilla remarked a correspondence in the formation of archaic words related to the agricultural cycle and indiges: merges/mergitis, seges/segetis.

To these one can add *veges/vegetis which has given adj. vegetus lively, from vegere to quicken, arouse (hence vegetare to quicken, enliven; vegetable fit for life, full of life). Also vigere to be lively, vigilare, vigil awake, a watching Cf. Skeat 's Etym. dict. All such formations are allied to vigor energy, liveliness.Aldrasto11 (talk) 04:13, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

Permanent link to list.[edit]

Old revision containing a list of "indigenous" Roman deities. Nagelfar (talk) 12:43, 4 November 2011 (UTC)

This list was unsourced; there is no scholarly agreement that the gods known as indigetes were the collective "indigenous" gods of the Romans; and even if one follows Wissowa without qualification, as noted above his article lists only 33 indigetes. So it seems rather to be a list of gods who had Latin or other Italic names. Those using the list for reconstructivist or other devotional reasons should be aware of what it is. Cynwolfe (talk) 15:17, 4 November 2011 (UTC)
For instance the deified Aeneas, who in the Roman tradition was emphatically an immigrant, was called Indiges. This is one of the reasons to doubt the title meant "indigenous." Cynwolfe (talk) 15:18, 4 November 2011 (UTC)

"we do not know the list of the di indigetes."[edit]

Despite this; that is one source and not an "end all", but to accomplish a truly NPOV, being wikipedia, we whom are interesting in the authenticity and elucidation of this specific page should at least have other scholars who have given their enumerations of what would be an inclusive list from among those they specifically believe to be within the scope of the di indigetes and why they have a rationale as such for them being so. This is WP after all, it shouldn't have the issue shut down because one authority says the question is unverifiable. Nagelfar (talk) 21:49, 6 May 2016 (UTC)