Mars was a very important god to the Romans. The Son of Juno, he was the father of Romulus (Rome's founder). His earliest form was a god of the spring and agriculture, responsible for vegetation, fertility and cattle. His major festival was the Quinquartrus, five days of celebrations during the spring equinox, in both his and Minerva's honor.
Mars soon evolved into a god of war, with many of his agricultural duties turned over to Ceres and Liber, although every May 29th festivals of the Ambarvalia celebrated him as an agricultural god, with a pig, ram and bull sacrificed to him.
On coins, Mars is traditionally shown as a grown man, bearded and either naked or wearing armour, and holding weapons.
If you entered this page from a coin description, use the back button to return to that position.
Copyright © 2000 R & T Enterprises Ltd.