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Tales beyond belief

Discover the legends and myths and religious beliefs surrounding Trivia, the Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads. Her name is derived from the Latin word 'Trivia' meaning "three ways" from 'tri' meaning three and 'via' meaning way or road. In Latin, ‘trivialis’ appertained to the crossroads where three roads met, which came to be known, in towns, as the ‘trivium’, or the public place.

As the guardian of roads she watched over the public paths and roads and protected travellers. She was also recognized in three aspects as part of a triad of goddesses consisting of Trivia, Luna the moon goddess and Diana the goddess of the hunt.

Trivia, the minor Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads
The Roman crossroads were often game paths and popular places for hunters to spread their nets and traps, in the hope of catching small animals. Travelling at night was dangerous for all the normal reasons, but added to this, humans could also be caught in the hunter's traps only guided by the deceptive light of the moon. Crossroads, in the symbolic term, were also seen as points of danger where the path of life split representing the moment of decision in strange surroundings and unknown circumstances. An effigy of Trivia was placed on crossroads where votive offerings were left. The goddess Trivia would be called upon for help, protection and guidance when danger threatened. As a triple divinity Trivia is represented in art as having three female bodies, all young and beautiful, and united together. There is considerable confusion regarding Trivia who is often linked with Hecate (Greek goddess) or Hekate the Roman goddess.

The Worship of Trivia, the Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads
The Romans were highly practical and believed that their gods and goddesses controlled everything in their lives and therefore every occupation and task had its presiding Roman goddess or god. Trivia the Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads was worshipped in the same way as any other Roman divinity with prayers and making vows, dedicating altars, sacrificing animals, birds and offerings of milk, honey, grain, fruit, cakes, flowers,  perfumes and wine. White animals were sacrificed to the goddesses of the upper world whereas black victims to the deities of the Underworld. The sex of a sacrificial animal had to correspond to the sex of the goddess to whom it was offered. The blood sacrifices made to Trivia would therefore have been a ewe, cow or heifer, sow, hen or other female birds and conducted outside a temple.

Gods and Deities
Roman Goddesses
Roman Gods and Deities

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