Ides ritual (Nova Roma)

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This is a modern ritual for Cultores of the Religio Romana to perform on the Ides of each month.

You may find information on the Ides in Roma Antiqua here: Ides


This ritual is performed in clean clothing; if possible, a clean tunica and toga are best, even better if they are white. The toga should be draped in capite velato, so as to veil the performer from any and all ill omens that might present themselves in the course of the ritual.

  • Wash both hands in clean water and pray:
May this water cast out all impurities from my substance as from lead to gold.
  • Place both hands upon your head and pray:
Purify my mind.
  • Bring the arms down to your sides with hands in gesture to your body and pray:
Purify my body.
  • Place both hands on the chest, over the heart and pray:
Purify my heart.
  • Take a moment to focus and become fully present and affirm:
It is so.

The Ritual

  • Approach the Lararium in capite velato, adoratio, and ignite the lucerna, then pray:
Be Thou well, Mother Vesta. May Your flames always guide us to the Gods.
  • Ignite the turibulum and burn some incense, with the right hand over the heart, pray:
Mother Vesta, may all be well this morning/day in the House of __Family and/or Gens Name__.
  • Pray with both hands manu supina: (Carmen Salii in Varro Lingua Latina 7.26)
Arise Father Janus, God of Good Beginnings. Arise, Good Creator. Arise, Janus the Gatekeeper.
  • Burn incense in the turibulum and pray manu supina:
Janus, Opener of the Way, may this incense find favor with You that the final days of __Month__ may be propitious to all of Nova Roma.
  • Offer a spelt cake sprinkled with salt and pray:
May You be honored by this cake that You may be kind and favorable to the citizens of Nova Roma.
  • Adoratio while praying: (Silius Italicus Punica 7.78-85)
Be Thou well Father Jupiter, be present O Best and Greatest King of the Gods. Your sons and daughters of Nova Roma bring forth venerable gifts on this day, the Ides of ________. May You find favor with Nova Roma, that You may look kindly and favorably upon our families and households. May Your blessings of health, good fortune and happiness be with us always!
  • Pour a libation and offer a spelt cake with a prayer: (Cato, De Agricultura 132)
Jupiter Pater, may You be strengthened by this libation, may You be honored by the small portion of our _______.
Jupiter Optimus Maximus, in offering you this cake I pray good prayers that You will be gracious and merciful to me and family, my house and household.
  • Honor the Family Gods with some incense and pray:
(adoratio) Hail Lar Familiaris! May You tend to the family You have established. (Ennius Annales I.141)
(adoratio) Be ye well, Divine Penates, may You always safeguard our home. (Plautus Merc ator 834-5)
(anoint with olive oil) Be Thou well Genius/Iuno of the Pater/Materfamilias, may You guide us always.
  • Hang a garland across the altar and/or crown the statues of the Lares with flowers and pray: (Plautus)
With this garland and with this crown I venerate the Lares of our family; may our house have Your blessings of good fortune, happiness and prosperity.
  • Make an offering of bread drizzled with olive oil and pray:
With this offering of bread and oil, may our family and house be blessed with health and long life.
  • Pour a libation of wine to the Lares and pray:
May this wine find favor with You venerable Lares.
  • Adoratio while praying: (Afranius Fabula Togata fr. 11).
I pray by the Gods that everything will be made fortunate.
  • Burn some incense while praying manu supina: (Plautus Rudens 1338-49)
Be well ye Immortal Gods, if I have done anything to violate this rite may You kindly receive this incense in expiation of my mortal error.
  • Adoratio to the altar and announce:
It is done.

Other Info

You will find above, in parenthetical notations, the primary sources of directly quoted or otherwise inspired prayers.

This Ides ritual is ab mani Titi Iuli Neronis,

MMDCCLX a.u.c.

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