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Tales beyond belief

Discover the legends and myths and religious beliefs surrounding Cupid, the Roman god of erotic love and beauty. His mother was
Venus, the daughter of Jupiter and Dione and the wife of Vulcan, although the father of Cupid was Mercury. His name derives from the Latin word 'Cupido' meaning "desire, love".

He was the constant companion of Venus and, armed with bow and arrows, he shot the darts of desire into the hearts of both gods and men.Cupid is often depicted in art as a 'putto' which is a naked, podgy human baby boy, often having wings. The Greek counterpart of this ancient Roman deity was Eros.

Who was Cupid?
Cupid was the Roman god of erotic love and beauty. According to ancient Roman mythology and legend, Cupid had two different types of arrows which explains this Roman god's association with both romantic and erotic love. Anyone hit by one of Cupid's arrow did not die but fell in love. The Golden Arrow signified true love and the Leaden Arrow represented wanton and sensual passion. According to ancient mythology and legend his mother, Venus, complained to Themis, one of the Titans, that her son grew no bigger than a child. She that it was because he was a solitary child and that if he had a brother he would soon start to grow. A brother to Cupid, called Anteros, was born and Cupid was then seen to increase rapidly in size and strength.

Facts about Cupid
The following facts and profile provides a fast overview of Cupid:

Roman Name: Cupid
Role & Function: The function of Cupid is described as being the god of erotic love and beauty
Status: A minor Roman god
Symbols: Bow and arrow and lyre. He is also associated with roses, torches and doves which have all become symbols of love
Gender: Male
Greek Counterpart: The Greek name for this god was Eros
Name of Wife: Unmarried but his lover was Psyche with whom he had a daughter called Voluptus
Name of Father: Mars
Name of Mother: Venus

Facts about Cupid in Roman Mythology
Discover interesting information and facts about Cupid, the Roman god of erotic love and beauty.

  • His mother was Venus, the daughter of Jupiter and Dione, the wife of Vulcan although the father of Cupid was Mars

  • His golden arrows had dove feathers as flights which aroused love, or leaden arrows which had owl feathers that caused indifference

  • Psyche was loved by Cupid, the emblem of the soul

  • The Romans also called the god Amor and Cupido

  • He was sometimes viewed as callous and careless but generally he was seen as beneficial, due of the happiness he imparted to couples

  • In some myths he was depicted as mischievous in his matchmaking, but this mischief was often directed by his mother, Venus.

  • His daughter called Voluptus was the spirit of pleasure, desire, and enjoyment

  • He has become synonymous with Valentine's day and is commonly represented with symbols of love such as arrows, hearts and doves

Cupid (Greek Counterpart was Eros)
The Romans habitually assimilated various elements from other cultures and civilisations, including the gods and goddesses that were worshipped by the Greeks and other nations. When the Roman Empire conquered the Greeks in 146BC many of the Greek gods and goddesses were adopted by the Romans.  The Romans simply changed the Greek gods names to Latin equivalents. The Greek counterpart of Cupid was Eros. The Roman religion significantly differed from the Greeks in that it was officially endorsed by the state and exerted influence over the government of Rome. Politicians took the offices of influential priests, called pontiffs, to gain control of the popular worship, Roman gods and goddesses were worshipped at every public event, including the gladiatorial games, where blood sacrifices were made to the gods.

Cupid and the Roman Gods Family Tree and Genealogy
The Roman gods family tree provides an instant overview of the genealogy and the family connections and relationships between the main deities, including Cupid, who feature in the legends and mythology of the ancient Romans. The Primeval gods and deities, the Titans and the Roman Olympians. The first appearance of a god called Cupid was long before the emergence of this small Olympian god. A god called Cupid appeared in the first dynasty of the primordial gods as the god of procreation, He was descended from Chaos and Nox and was responsible for the union between Terra and Uranus.

Gods and Deities
Roman Gods and Goddesses

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