Prayer to Iuppiter

(From Cato, De Agricultura)

There are many occasions that a person might offer a sacrifice to Iuppiter. Such sacrifices may take the form of incense, wine and sacred flour (as in the daps, or "sacred meal" celebrated by individual gentes), or even an ox. The following formula would be used on an everyday basis, by the paterfamilias or materfamilias of a gens, as a general offering to Iuppiter. Before the sacrifice is made, the following is spoken to consecrate it to Iuppiter:

"Iuppiter, te hoc ferto obmovendo bonas preces precor, uti sies volens propitius mihi liberisque meis domo familiaeque meae mactus hoc ferto."

(Which, translated, means "Iuppiter, in making this offering to you, I pray with good prayers that you watch over me and all my household; may this offering be a comfort to you.")

The sacrifice is then offered to Iuppiter. The usual form for such offerings is burning, allowing the smoke to travel to the heavens and thus to the God Himself.

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