Linking Lucifer to Diana

Question: Could you explain the connection linking Lucifer to the Roman Goddess Diana, and as the father of Aradia?

Ah, a simple question--which involves a most complex answer. First you must start with Leland's Aradia.

One of the key texts in the history of Wicca is Charles Lelandís Aradia, or the Gospel of Witches, 1899.

Here is a link to Chapter III in Charles G. Leland's Aradia, or the Gospel of Witches, (1899) which tells that story.

Assuming you have now read that text, you will notice that the prinicple charaters in the tale are: the Moon Goddess, Diana, the Sun God, Lucifer, and their daughter, Aradia, the divine witch.

TRIADIC RELATIONSHIP OF MOTHER, FATHER, AND CHILD: Examples include the Egyptian Isis-Osiris-Horus; the Greek/Roman Demeter-Zeus-Dionysius or Demeter-Zeus-Persephone; the Italian Diana-Lucifer-Aradia [emphasis added]; and the Celtic Rhiannon-Pwyll-Pryderi.
--Ed Fitch, Magical Rites from the Crystal Well, 1984, p 11.
The story also reflects a union of opposites: light/darkness, night/day. This tale also seems to have a touch of influence from the 13th century Italian Cathars, a dualist heretical Christian sect.

Leland claimed he had collected some obscure Italian folklore involing stregoneria and a religion involving "Diana, the goddess of the pagans," and published it. It may be true; yet it would be much easier today if Leland had just used the Italian spelling of Lucifero rather than Lucifer. In which case, it would have been fairly simple to speculate that Lucifero, in the context of Leland's text, meant a little known Italian name of a Sun deity.

This link for a Crescent Cakes recipe illustrates one instance in which the story of Aradia in Chapter III as well as in Chapter II and Chapter I sometimes cropped up into random bits of modern Wiccan lore.

The truth be told, the Sun God name Lucifer is not often used among Wiccans. Assuming you have now read that particular story attached to the recipe, you will note that this is a 20th century retelling of the same story from Leland's 19th century Aradia, or the Gospel of Witches. Likewise you will note the three principle characters are now the Moon Goddess Diana, the Sun God Phoebus Apollo, and their daughter Aradia. Thus, this story, which is attached to the recipe, also reflects the divine Triadic Relationship of the Mother, Father, and Child. In this 20th century retelling, the father of the divine witch child,Aradia, is the Greco-Roman Sun God, Phoebus Apollo.

Question: Lucifer is the Roman sun god? I thought Phoebus Apollo was the god of the sun.

Another simple question which involves a most complex answer, necessary to complete my answer to the first Question.

Apollon was the Greek Sun God. He was also the God of medicine and prophecy. His Greek epithet, Phoibos, which meant "bright" or "shining" was used both as an epithet and a name of Apollon.

Apollon had numerous titles. For example, Apollon Pythios was his name at his oracular shrine in the Greek city of Phocis, at Delphi, where his priestess was known as the Phoebad or Pythia.

Apollon's Latin name in Rome was Phoebus Apollo. Phoebus was the Latin spelling of the Greek epithet, Phoibos.

In the 5th century bce, the Romans had adopted Phoebus Apollo into their pantheon, hoping that this God's influence would avert a plague.

In general Roman religious practice, Apollo displaced any deities with solar connections. His name, Phoebus, meaning "bright" or "shining," refered to the healing rays of the Sun and likewise symbolized Apollo's power as a healing God.

The Romans honored Apollo as a God of medicine, music, prophecy, and the Sun. He was said to be the son of Latona and Jupiter. During the Roman empire, Apollo's shrine at Delphi in Greece was consulted by many people, including eminent Romans.

Sol was the Latin word used in Rome for the celestial body, the Sun. It is not clear if Sol was an early Roman deity personifying the Sun--or if the early Romans actually recognized primarily one Sun God. Some ancient cultures had different names attached to the various celestial phenomena at different seasons and times of day.

In fact, the Romans apparently had several deities with solar or light-bringing attributes. Some scholars of ancient Roman religion have even speculated that the Roman Diana may have once been a deity of both the Moon and Sun. One of Diana's tittles was Diana Luciferia.

Mythology is full of variant names

Helios or Eelios was the Greek Titan of the Sun, but was also honored as a solar deity in parts of Greece.

Helios' sister was Selene the Greek Titaness of the Moon. His other sister was Eos the Greek Goddess of the Dawn. Helios and Apollon were sometimes identified with each other.

Apollon was identified with the sun-god Helios by a few early Greek poets and philosophers. However, it was really only the Latin poets, such as Ovid, Virgil and Seneca, who truly conflated the gods. Even in poets like Ovid, however, it is worth noting that the sun-god is often titled "Phoebus," but never directly referred to as "Apollo." Further, the same poets who mention Phoebus the sun, often call him "Hyperionides" (the son of Hyperion), and "Titan" (the Titan god) in the same passage. The name "Apollo," on the other hand, is used almost exclusively for non-solar references, i.e. Apollon as the god of music, oracles and poetry.
--Aaron J. Atsma, Equated with Apollon, Theoi Project, 2000 - 2011.

Helius was a Latin version of the Greek name for the Sun deity, Helios.

Yet in the second century ce, the Roman mythologist "Pseudo-Hyginus" identified these three (Helios, Selene, Eos) as Sol (Sun), Luna (Moon), and Aurora (Dawn).

In Metamorphoses by the Roman poet, Ovid, Ovid stated the divine witch, Circe, was the daugher of the Moon (Luna) and the Sun (Helius) and Circe's prayers and chants were used to eclipse the Moon's "pale face" and "veil her father's orb in thirsty clouds."

Thus, Ovid's Metamorphoses contained an example in Roman mythology of the divine Triadic Relationship of Mother (Luna the Moon) and Father (Helius the Sun) and Child (Circe divine witch child).

Question: Who was Lucifer in ancient Rome if Sol or Phoebus Apollo/Helius was the sun? What is the connection linking Lucifer to the ancient Roman Goddess Diana, and as the father of Aradia?

In ancient Greece, the brightest object in the pre-dawn sky was known as Phosphoros, the "light bringer." In Latin, this same planet was known as Lucifer, which also means the "light bringer."

Some things about the name(s)...

The Italian name, Lucifero literally means "bearer of light", (in Italian: Portatore di luce) as it is derived from the equivalent Latin lucifer, consisting of lux (light) and ferre (to carry)--very similar to the corresponding Greek Phosphoros (phos = "light," pherein = "to carry"). Thus one of the names of the planet, Venus, in Latin is Lucifer.

Mythology is full of variant names--particularly in multilingual cultures.

Eosphoros was the Greek personification of the Morning Star. Hesperos was the Greek personification of the Evening Star. Eosphoros and Hesperos were originally regarded as two distinct divinities who were brothers-- even though they were both linked to the planet Venus as the Morning and Evening Star.

By the way, the Evening Star was also known in classical Greek mythology, as Hesperos; Hesperos was the son of the Greek Goddess of the dawn, Eos. Eos was assimilated with the Roman Goddess of the dawn, Aurora.

As Romans absorbed more and more aspects of Greek culture, Greek literature, and Greek mythology into their own culture the more they absorbed Greek names and identified them with names of deities they all ready had.

To recap Greek mythology involving the Morning Star: The planet, Venus, as the "morning star" was called in Greek either Eosphoros, or Phosphoros. The planet, Venus, as the "evening star" was called in Greek either Hesperos or Vesper. They are all personifications of the same planet, Venus.

The Roman name, Lucifer, was apparently a Latin name personifying a male light-bringing deity. He may have originally been associated with the rising Sun (dawn) or the Morning Star (the planet Venus) which heralds the dawn. Thus, the Roman Lucifer was identified with the Greek Eosphoros, or Phosphoros who personified the morning appearence of the planet, Venus.

Question: Isn't the goddess Venus the personification of the planet, Venus?

Good question.

The Greeks eventually accepted the Babylonian cosmology that there were "seven celestial bodies," Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, which the Babylonians identified with the seven Great Gods. These Babylonian deities, Sin, Nebo, Ishtar, Shammas, Nergal, Marduk, and Ninib, ruled over the "seven celestial bodies." These "seven celestial bodies," were five planets in our Solar System, plus the Moon and Sun. [These same "seven celestial bodies" are all heavenly objects which can be seen with the naked human eye.]

Once the Greeks accepted this Babylonian cosmology, they dedicated the "celestial body" of the bright planet, Venus, to Aphrodite, the Greek Goddess of beauty and likewise dedicated the other six "celestial bodies" to other powerful Greek deities. Thus in Greek tradition, the "seven celestial bodies" were ruled by Selene, Hermes, Aphrodite, Helios, Ares, Zeus, and Chronos.

In Roman tradition, the rulers of the "seven celestial bodies" were Luna, Mercury, Apollo/Helius (Sol), Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn. Thus, the Romans renamed the "seven celestial bodies" after their Roman deities: Luna, Mercury, Sol, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn.

The Roman Goddess of beauty and love, Venus, rules over the "celestial body" of the bright and beautiful planet, Venus. Some people also viewed this Roman Goddess of beauty as one of the ancient personifications of the planet, Venus, in her aspect as Queen of Heaven.

Something more about the name, Lucifero or Luciferia.

Apparently the worship of Lucifero as a deity was related to the planet, Venus--or perhaps to generally bringing physical light.

Nevertheless, there were also cults in the ancient Roman religion (in Italian: Religione Romana) dedicated to deities called Lucifere: Juno Lucia and Diana Luciferia.

Diana Lucifera was also depicted on many Roman coins, some coins dating back during the Roman Republic. These two Goddesses were also known as "light-bearers."

In some forrns of Stregheria and other Italian practices....

In some forrns of Stregheria, Dianus or Lucifero is a God of la vecchia religione; as the brother, son, and consort of the Goddess, Diana, he is Lord of Light and Morning (in Italian: Signore della Luce e del Mattino).

Some stregoni, on the other hand, instead practice with the ancient Italian spirits, or numen. One person who practices stregoneria (Italian sorcery) explained that she honored the Numen of Diana and the Numan of Lucifer.

Another American-Italian practitioner, Vincent Russo, explained that in his spiritual path , "I use Lucifero as a title rather than in reference to a specific divinity. We often work with Diana Lucifera and Apollo Lucifero (the light bringers). Although each is a "light bringer," each brings a specific type of light (sun light, moon light) that have different characteristics from each other. Apollo Lucifero brings the ray of sunlight (Intelligence and clear thought) while Diana Lucifera brings Lunar shafts of power (Illumination and intuition) also called Diana's Dart(s)." (private corresspondence)

Stregheria practitioner and teacher Raven Grimassi wrote in an article, Lucifer in Italian Witchcraft for Cauldron magazine that his private family lore included a story in which the Evening Star made love to the Moon. Grimassi explained that Lucifero, also known as Lucibello, was tied to the fireflies (in Italian lucciole) who flitted across the fields of spiked wheat on late June evenings.

In one story Lucifer is known as Lucifero, and is seen as the brightest star in the night sky. The "star" is known today as the planet Venus. In the old tale, Lucifer moves to join with the crescent moon, which is the goddess Diana Lucifera. This is represented by Venus positioned near the crescent moon at night. Diana is impregnated by Lucifer, and she later births stars to replace those that have fallen to earth. The stars are the offspring of Lucifer and Diana Lucifera. Raven Grimassi Lucifer in Italian Witchcraft, The Cauldron No. 145, August 2012.
According to Grimassi, "Lucifero is the star seeder, the light of renewal, Lucibello is the renewer of light at the mating of fireflies in the wheat fields on the summer solstice."

Other practitioners have something like the following explanation: Lucifero, or in Latin Lucifer, is the ancient name of a minor Roman deity, orginally identified with the Greek Eosphoros. The name of Eosphoros means "dawn-bringer," and he was the God of the Dawn--like the Roman Goddess, Aurora, brought the dawn. The name Lucifero is also similar to Phosphoros who likewise was associated with the Morning Star. Indeed, the Greek God Apollo had as one of his epithets, Phosphoros. It was only much later, in the Catholic era that the name "Lucifer" became associated with the Christian's Satan (in Italian: Satana).

Inkubus Sukkubus's song, "Aradia"

The lyrics of this song by the musical group Youtube: Aradia by Inkubus Sukkubus

Aradia is a Goddess, daughter of the Moon and Sun. The Moon is the Italian "Diana," known to the ancient Romans as the "Goddess of the Moon." The Sun is "Lucifer," known to the ancient Romans as "Apollo," and also known as "Lucetius," "Luciferio," or "Lucibello." As in many cosmologies, the Moon and Sun are sister and brother, as well as being married. Hense the song lyrics state Diana bore "Aradia, daughter of incest," by her brother the Sun. As befits a Goddess of the Moon, Diana was the patroness of magic and witches. Folklore states after she gave birth to Aradia, Diana sent her daughter to earth to teach the art of magic to the oppressed women and men that they might improve their lot against the powerful lords. Charles G. Leland wrote about Aradia in Aradia or the Gospel of Witches in 1899.
Question: But isn't Lucifer the archangel who fell from grace and is known Chistianity as the devil?

If we are going to dicuss Lucifer in Judeao-Christian lore we should start with quoting the King James Version of Judeao-Christian biblical scripture. The Christian story of Lucifer Falling from the Heavens is based on Isaiah 14:12-15 KJV and is taken out of context. This is the only verse in the King James Version that the name, Lucifer, is used.

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
--Isaiah 14:12-15 KJV
This passage has been linked with an archangel who fell from grace wand was thus cast down from the heavens.

Many people have heard this quote and may not even know where in the KJV it can be found. Thus they have not read the whole passage.

Yet expand reading from Isaiah and include Isaiah 14:3-6, it becomes obvious that the text is condemning a human king of Babylon.

And it shall come to pass in the day that the LORD shall give thee [Israelite war captives] rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from the hard bondage wherein thou wast made to serve, That thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased! The LORD hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of the rulers. He who smote the people in wrath with a continual stroke, he that ruled the nations in anger, is persecuted, and none hindereth.
--Isaiah 14:3-6 KJV
It is very clear that this mortal kng is going to die. All the king's pomp and music will be brought down into the grave. The king of Babylon will brought down to the realm of the dead [aka in Hebrew sheol translated as "hell" in the KJV] to the depths of the pit of a grave. Maggots will be spread out beneath him and the worms cover him.

When the king is finally dead, people will ask, "Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble, the man who overthrew the world's cities and made the world a wilderness, and who would not let his war captives return home?" Read Isaiah 14:15-17 KJV:

Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?
--Isaiah 14:15-17 KJV
You may want to read the same verses as translated in another version of the bible: Isaiah 14 in the New International Version (aka NIV) rather than the King James Version (aka KJV). The translation is somewhat different.

The "morning star" in Isaiah 14:12 refers to the planet Venus as a metaphor referring to a king of Babylon. The light of God, the "Most High," will out-shine, blot out, and cast down the light of this mortal king just as the light of the sun will out-shine, blot out, and cast down the light of the planet Venus as the "morning star."

The word lucifer is taken from the Latin Vulgate, the Roman Catholic version of the bible. The quotes below are taken from Latin-English Study Bible, Vulgate Editionis Anno 2009, Latin Vulgate text, English translation (CPDV), and translation commentary; Ronald L. Conte Jr., translator and editor.

How is it that you have fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, who used to rise like the sun? How is it that you have fallen to the earth, you who wounded the peoples? And you said in your heart: 'I will climb up to heaven. I will exalt my throne above the stars of God. I will be enthroned upon the mountain of the covenant, on the northern parts. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds. I will be like the Most High.' Yet truly, you shall be dragged down to Hell, into the depths of the pit.
--Isaiah 14:12-15 English Translation of Latin Vulgate from www.sacredbible.org

Quomodo cecidisti de caelo Lucifer, qui mane oriebaris? Corruisti in terram, qui vulnerabas gentes? Qui dicebas in corde tuo: In cślum conscendam, super astra Dei exaltabo solium meum, sedebo in monte testamenti, in lateribus Aquilonis, Ascendam super altitudinem nubium, similis ero Altissimo.Verumtamen ad infernum detraheris in profundum laci:
--Isaias 14:12-15

Interestingly this English translation of the Vulgate identifies "Lucifer" with the Sun rather than the planet Venus as the Morning Star: "Lucifer, who used to rise like the sun." Of course the entire passage again makes clear this is a metaphore for a very human king who is ultimately mortal.
ter of despots, which struck the people in wrath with an incurable wound, which subjugated the nations in fury, which persecuted with cruelty. ....
Everyone will respond and will say to you: "Now you are wounded, just as we were; you have become like us. Your arrogance has been dragged down to Hell. Your body has fallen dead. The moths will be strewn beneath you, and the worms will be your covering. How is it that you have fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, who used to rise like the sun? How is it that you have fallen to the earth, you who wounded the peoples? And you said in your heart: 'I will climb up to heaven. I will exalt my throne above the stars of God. I will be enthroned upon the mountain of the covenant, on the northern parts. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds. I will be like the Most High.' Yet truly, you shall be dragged down to Hell, into the depths of the pit.Those who see you, will lean toward you, and will gaze upon you, saying: 'Could this be the man who disturbed the earth, who shook kingdoms, who made the world into a desert and destroyed its cities, who would not even open a prison for his prisoners?'" All the kings of the nations throughout the whole world have slept in glory, each man in his own house. But you have been rejected from your grave, like a useless polluted plant, and you have been bound up with those who were slain by the sword, and who descended to the bottom of the pit, like a rotting carcass. You will not be associated with them, even in the grave. For you have destroyed your own land; you have slain your own people. The offspring of the wicked ones will not be called upon for eternity
Isaiah 14:5-6, 10-20 English Translation of Latin Vulgate from www.sacredbible.org
Once again, you may want to read the passage in context Isaiah 14

"Fallen Lucifer" in Jewish lore.ear in Jewish lore. Of course--the name Lucifer isn't Hebrew, it's Latin.

The orginal Hebrew word in Isaiah 14:12 is helel or heylel which means "shining one" or "morning star."

The Jewish Septuagint written in the Greek language translates helel in Greek as heosphoros, meaning "the morning star" or "bringer of dawn." Heosphoros is a metaphorical reference to the planet Venus as the morning star.

What does that mean?

The term, helel, appearing in the context of an metaphore for this mortal king of Babylon, is helel ben sahar and could be translated as "O morning star, son of the dawn." Many modern translations use that translation. Another translation could be "O shining one, son of morning [dawn]."

Certainly, the opening of Isaiah 14:12 could be rendered in English as: "How you have fallen from heaven, Helel, son of Shahar..." In Hebrew, the full phrase is helel ben hahar as ben means "son." It doesn't seem to be refering to a devilish spirit. Thus it could be read as:

How you have fallen from heaven, helel ben hahar! You have been cast down to the earth, you who wounded the nations! You said in your heart, "I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High." But you are brought down to the realm of the dead, to the depths of the pit. Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: "Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble, the man who made the world a wilderness, who overthrew its cities and would not let his war captives go home? Your pomp is brought down to sheol, And the sound of your stringed instruments; the maggot is spread under you, and worms cover you."

Sheol is the Hebrew underworld, abode of the dead translated as "grave", "pit", or "abode of the dead" to which all the dead go, both the righteous and the unrighteous Mount Zaphon is what was probably indicated by "mount of assembly." It was a sacred mountain of the Canaanites where the Gods sat in assembly, which implies the Babylonian king fell just as all the idols of false gods fall. Of course the "mount of assembly" is somtimes translated as "towards the north" or "northern parts."

Rendered in Greek, Isaiah 14:12 could be read as: "How you have fallen from heaven, heosphoros [morning star which is the planet Venus], son of eos [dawn]..."

Actually I suspect this passage accurately describes a mortal being punished for the crime of hubris (hżbris). Hubris was extreme arrogance, pride, or insolence. The Greco-Roman deities frequently punished hubris against them. "The Greek concept of hubris refers to the overweening pride of humans who hold themselves up as equals to the gods." Mythology, The Danger of Arrogance and Hubris, SparkNotes LLC, 2013.

A typical warning in Greek mythology was the the story of the hero, Bellerophon, who bridled the winged Pegasus in order to assend to Olympus, the mountian of the assembly of the Gods. Almost arriving at the mountain, Pegasus suddenly bucked and kicked, refusing to land on Mount Olympus with a mortal. The winged horse cast off Bellerophon who fell to his death. Another story: the mortal, Phasthon, son of Helios, foolishly believed he could drive the chariot of the sun across the sky alone. Phasthon lost control of the powerful horses and they ran willy-nilly pulling the sun-chariot, scorching pieces of the earth to desert. Finally, Zeus, king of the Greek Gods, felled him from the sky with a thunderbolt.

It seems as though this mortal babylonian king was punished for his arrogance or pride.

How you have fallen from heaven, Eosphoros, son of Eos! You have been cast down to the dust, you who once laid low the nations!

You said in your heart, "I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; like a god, I will sit enthroned on the mount of the gods' assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Olympus; Like a god, I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High God." But you--you are brought down to the Hades, into the depths of the pit of death.

Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: "Is this the human who shook the earth with his armies and made kingdoms tremble? Is the mortal who made cities into empty deserts, who broke down the beautiful walled cities? Is the despot who would not let his war captives return home?"

I hope this long write-up of bunches of information has provided some illumination to your questions.

copyright 2013 Myth Woodling

Sources:

Aaron J. Atsma, Equated with Apollon, Theoi Project, 2000 - 2011.

Crescent Cakes recipe, collected 1991

Raven Grimassi Lucifer in Italian Witchcraft, The Cauldron No. 145, August 2012.

Isaiah 14 in the New International Version

Isaiah 14 in the Latin Vulgate

"Aradia" by Inkubus Sukkubus, 1999.

Chapter III in Charles G. Leland's Aradia, or the Gospel of Witches, (1899) see also Chapter I and Chapter II

Some Other Reading:

10th century, Canon Episcopi mentioned "Diana, goddess of the Pagans." It is often translated as "Diana, goddess of the pagans."

Aradia Essay by Raven Grimassi

Northern Star Coven, Litany of Aradia, 2006.

Myth Wooding, Understanding Leland's Aradia, 2007.

Myth Wooding, Secret Story of Aradia, 2000, 2011, Myth Woodling

Myth Wooding, Stargazing and Modern Sky Lore, 2006, 2011

Myth Woodling Dianic Mythology , 2003.


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