Feronia’s Feast: Where the wild & the cultivated meet

Feronia’s Feast: Where the wild & the cultivated meet November 13, 2015

In ancient Rome Feronia’s festival was celebrated on the Ides of November, which in all likelihood was originally the day of the full moon, but eventually was settled on November 13th, or to be slightly more accurate in the Roman versions of November 13th. Close enough, I figure…

Here we get one of the profusion of our annual harvest festivals. Feronia was a goddess in central Italy absorbed in time into the Roman pantheon. She was mostly honored in hopes that the next year’s harvest would be fruitful, as such a goddess of fertility, health, and abundance. She also had an association with wildlife, and the comparative philologist Georges Dumezil opined while actually originally a goddess of wilderness, she is honored specifically in how the forces of nature can be put to use for the benefit of humanity.

Her shrines tended to be placed at the edges where cultivation and the wild met.

Me, I’m particularly fond of liminal places.

And, I think, that’s the feast we might best hang onto Feronia’s festival, a celebration of the edges, of the boundaries, of those places of the ambiguous, where we do not really know in which direction it might all go.

And wonder awaits…

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