This week I’m going to be rallying against my deeply Celtic roots in the name of being clever and interesting (let’s face it, ‘J’ is a bloody hard letter.) So I’m going to be giving you a very brief glimpse into the goddess Juno.
Juno is a Roman goddess, she’s one of the most famous and complex Roman goddesses; seen as the patron deity of Rome and the Roman Empire she is also closely associated with war and often compared to the Greek Goddess Hera.
As well as this Juno is also seen as a ‘Queen’ amongst deities and has some association to children and childbirth- though this is something that is highly contested by many scholars. It is generally felt that the roles of looking after children is given to deities associated with the moon. (Also, always female deities… clearly the Ancients didn’t understand concepts such as ‘paternity leave’.)
It has been argued a little that she could be a type of triple goddess; representing fertility, sovereignty and war, however this is kind of sketchy.
She is the daughter of Saturn and sister (and wife) to the god Jupiter. As well as this she is the mother of mars and Vulcan.
Juno also has a strong connection to Janus, the two faced god, they work together as a pair to help bring forth each new month. She gives her strength and vitality in order to help ease the passage.
Another interesting fact about Juno is that she is the goddess of marriage (actually, this is the most obvious fact about Juno and something that I completely forgot to mention at the start of the post… yeah) and has the month of June named after her. Because of this is it considered lucky to marry in June.
Shakespeare himself also seems to have been a fan of the goddess as she is mentioned in two of his works; first she makes a brief appearance in ‘The Tempest’, conjured up by Prospero, she is then also referred to several times during ‘Anthony and Cleopatra.’