Ceremony held today for Vota Publica

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Ceremony held today for Vota Publica

Postby Publius Iunius Brutus » Mon Jan 02, 2017 6:36 am

Salvete Omnes!

Today on the Kalends of Ianuarius on the first day of the new year of L. Curtio L. Aurelio cos. and at my home altar I conducted the following ceremony for Vota Publica.

In the book, Festivals and Ceremonies of the Roman Republic it describes today as follows:

In early times consuls entered office at various dates, but at least from 153 BCE 1 January became the fixed date. Ovid hails the happy day, a day worthy to be kept holy. The consul's first duty was to observe the auspices: the phrase 'auspicari magistratum' was the equivalent of entering a magistracy. The consuls were to sacrifice on the Capitol later in the day, they possibly took the auspices there in the early morning. Then each consul then received formal visits (salutatio) from senators, friends and clients. Thereafter, preceded by his lictors marching in single file, he set out in solemn procession, escorted by his supporters, the senators behind and the Equites in front. The processions of the two consuls then presumably met in the Forum, and together they began to climb up the Capitoline hill and the procession was probably joined by the sacrificial animals. Then in the confined space before the temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus the consuls took their seats on their official chairs (sella curulis). Then each in turn sacrificed to the god a white bull, in payment of vows for the safety of the State made a year before by the previous consuls; new vows (vota publica) were then made by the incoming consuls. Thereafter the senior consul performed their first address to the Senate on the Capitol. With this business completed, the consuls were escorted home by the whole Senate and a solemn but cheerful day ended.


Today is a transcript of the ceremony conducted on behalf of our community and spiritual nation:
I. Purificatio

The head is to be covered (capite velato) as this is a Roman rite

[light incense coals]

[Frankincense is burnt to purify the ritual space]

[Wash both hands in clean water and thoroughly dry. While doing this speak the following words.]

May this water cleanse my body of impurities, as lead is changed to gold. May this water cleanse my body of impurities, as the rain cleanses the air. Purify my mind. Purify my body. Purify my heart. It is so.

[Sprinkle clean water on the altar]

II. Praefatio

Depart, oh depart those not here to make the profanus sacer! All remaining your attention! Silence, hold your tounges, this ceremony begins.

Mater Vesta, also known as the perpetual guardian of the hearth, family, and community, queen of perennial fire, protector of the Roman people! Vesta, or unless you prefer some other name, I pray and beseech you to attend this Vota Publica (make adoratio). Upon this Vota Publica may your favor be present and in doing so allow for good greetings and offerings to be made to you and those Gods and Goddesses which it is good to call upon. In doing so, may you allow pious smoke rise to the heavens. By this act remind me of the noble virtues. Mater Vesta, to you my voice lifts in praise as by this rite and through your benevolence, I am allowed to approach you. As your sacred flame in the past demonstrated your divine good faith, allow your sovereignty to reign over the fire before us. As you attended to the Roman people of old, attend to your Roman people of the present. Queen of perennial fire, on this Vota Publica and if it is your will, grant your aid to the newly elected Consules, Praetores, and Aediles who assume office today. Similarly, smile upon all magistrates and servants of your Roman people. For all these causes, be present and kindle the flames before us! For your kind support, I shall offer WINE in hopes that it is pleasing to you.

{light lamps / candels / burners}

Pater Ianus, from whom all things proceed, biformed God, heavenly gatekeeper, good creator, the God of good beginnings and the years gliding by in silence, who alone among the immortal celestials sees his own back! Ianus, or unless you prefer some other name, I pray and beseech you to attend this Vota Publica (make adoratio). With your kind favor open the way forward and aid our task at hand. Ianus, on this Vota Publica and first day of a new year, facilitate communication with yourself, and Father Iupiter and all the Gods and Goddesses for which it is pious to recognize. Ianus, as you allowed Rome to rise to great heights, allow your Roman people of the present to have good beginnings. As you enabled pious contact with the divine in the past, now allow such contact in the present and future. With a nod open your gleaming gates onto peaceful precincts and favor the newly elected Consules, Praetores, and Aediles who assume office today. Similarly, smile upon all magistrates and servants of your Roman people on this Vota Publica and first day of a new year. Towards these ends be increased by this offering of WINE made before you now.

{make offering}

Ianus, it has been done!

Mater Vesta, also known as the perpetual guardian of the hearth, family, and community, queen of perennial fire, protector of the Roman people! If it is your will to attend this ceremony on this Vota Publica, and if it is pleasing to you, be increased by this offering of WINE made before you now.

{make offering}

Vesta, it has been done!

III. Salutatio

Father Iupiter or guardian of Rome and its people, lord of the Gods and Goddesses, the holder of vows, Optimus Maximus, Saviour, Victor and unconquered protector of the nation, or Iupiter bringer of light, heavenly father, of lightning and thunder, or unless you prefer some other name, by your majesty attend to this Vota Publica.

Father Iupiter, you have long blessed the Roman people with your divine presence. You were present when King Romulus pronounced the unification of the Roman people into one. You provided King Numa insight into your divine will. You supported the earliest leaders of the ancient Roman Republic with your divine patronage. In return your dutiful clients, the Roman people, proclaimed you the first and greatest of the celestials.

Oh Iupiter, with your divine judgement the Comitia Centuriata of the modern Roman Republic nominated Lucius Curtius Philo and Lucius Aurelius Curio as Consules. In this your will was made manifest.

Towards these ends grant assistance to the newly elected Consules, Praetores, and Aediles who assume office today. Similarly, smile upon all magistrates and servants of your Roman people on this Vota Publica and first day of a new year. Father Iupiter, king of the heavens, hear the prayers and vows of our elected magistrates and support them this year! Aid them in the tasks they head if these duties further your aims and those of the Roman people who are good unto you!
Towards these ends be increased by this offering of WINE before you now, and if it pleases you.

{MAKE OFFERING}

It is done!

Similarly, may all the Gods who have raised the might of Rome and its culture to the fullest eminence of the world attend this ceremony if it should please them.

IV. Precatio

[wash hands again in pure water]

[touching the altar with the left hand say]

Father Iupiter or guardian of Rome and its people, lord of the Gods and Goddesses, the holder of vows, Optimus Maximus, Saviour, Victor and unconquered protector of the nation, or Iupiter bringer of light, heavenly father, of lightning and thunder, or unless you prefer some other name, it was traditional for our forefathers to offer you a white heffer on this day, which is dedicated to you. In recognition of this ancient tradition an offering of CINNAMON is being made as a substitute. If this is pleasing may you recognize this offering as equivalent to that made by our pious forefathers who sought your divine patronage.

Oh, Iupiter Optimus Maximus, on this day it is right to observe your divine presence and patronage. You have long blessed the Roman people with your divine presence. You were present when King Romulus pronounced the unification of the Roman people into one. You provided King Numa insight into your divine will. You supported the earliest leaders of the ancient Roman Republic with your divine patronage. In return your dutiful clients, the Roman people, proclaimed you the first and greatest of the celestials.

Oh, Father Iupiter, I recognize your divine sovereignty! Lord of the Gods and Goddesses, heavenly patron of Rome, greatest of the great, patron of the leadership of the Republic and Cultus Deorum Romanorum. Devine Iupiter, your kind benevolence, and generous patronage are recalled and honored! Your divine presence allowed Rome and its people extraordinary success, and our ancestors are honored and remembered for their deeds performed under your divine patronage.
Towards these ends, and in recognition of you, I observe this day of Vota Publica.

Father Iupiter or guardian of Rome and its people, lord of the Gods and Goddesses, the holder of vows, Optimus Maximus, Saviour, Victor and unconquered protector of the nation, or Iupiter bringer of light, heavenly father, of lightning and thunder, for these reasons, towards this aim, in recognition of your benevolence, and if it pleases you, accept this offering of CINNAMON which I have placed before you and will give unto you.

[place CINNAMON on altar]

Oh, Father Iupiter, if this offering of CINNAMON pleases you, offer your aid towards the newly elected Consules, Praetores, and Aediles who assume office today. Similarly, smile upon all magistrates and servants of your Roman people. Devine Iupiter, if you will it, hear the vows of the newly elected Consules should they choose to make such a solemn pledge.

Father Iupiter Optimus Maximus, if you are willing, assist in fulfilling this petition by the end of the Consular term that begins today, in doing so, and in observation of your benevolence and kind patronage, a sacrifice shall be offered to you within the month of Ianuarius of the next year by our community. Oh, Iupiter Optimus Maximus, make it so!

Father Iupiter Optimus Maximus, I read now the vow(s) made by Lucius Curtius Philo and Lucius Aurelius Curio or their chosen delegates.

O, Father Iupiter Optimus Maximus, we ask that you assist in building our provinces and to bring together all Romans in unity. We ask that you provide us strength to serve with fairness, justice and wisdom in a manner which is becoming to you and all the mighty and eternal deities of Rome.

Here ends the vow made.

In recognition of these vows just read I place a copy of the words spoken before you on behalf of L. Curtius Philo and L. Aurelius Curio or their chosen delegates.

[present the vow in written form on the altar]

Oh, Iupiter Optimus Maximus, hear this vow presented upon the honor of the Consules of our community!

Father Iupiter, on this first day of a new year, we celebrate a festival day; and now new rods of office lead the way, new purple gleams, and a new weight is felt by the far-seen ivory chair. In times of old heifers, unbroken to the yoke, offer their necks to the axe, heifers that cropped the sward on the true Faliscan plains. When from your citadel you, Father Iupiter, you looked abroad on the whole globe, naught but the Roman people met your eye.

[wash hands again in pure water]

V. Immolatio

Oh, Father Iupiter Optimus Maximus, guardian of the Roman People, Lord of the Gods and Goddesses (adoratio). We offer you this CINNAMON now given up to you and towards the appeal made. Father Iupiter, be strengthened by this offering of CINNAMON presented before you now!

[burn CINNAMON]

Bless our magistrates and our Respublic! Bless the new Consules who now take up the rods of leadership upon your will!
If you will it, make it so!

VI. Redditio

I now read a prepared statement by Consules Lucius Curtius Philo and Lucius Aurelius Curio written for the occasion of this ceremony:

Honorable Senatores, we are standing on the precipice of change for all modern day Romans. In the first year of the Republic, we accomplished much. We seen the foundation of our honorable society, seen many Sacerdotes rise to the occasion, and the provinces begin to take root. But there is much left to accomplish before we are through.

In the coming year, it is our hope that the roots of the provinces flourish, spreading far and wide to find and teach those who wish to embrace the virtues and ideals set forth by our ancestors. And that those who already embrace Romanitas come together in unity, erasing the dividing lines they have built.

These are our goals for the coming year, conscript fathers. May the Gods find this path favorable.

With these words the statement provided by the Consules ends. I reflect on these words and contemplate what has transpired and the challenges ahead before Iupiter Optimus Maximus and all Gods of Rome who attend this solemn ceremony.

VII. Litatio

[Quietly contemplate the Gods and Goddesses, and watch for signs. Preferably performed while sitting.]

VIII. Piaculum

Blessed Ianus if the appeals and offerings made in this ceremony have caused unbeknownst offense, please accept my deep regret and recall my good intentions towards you.

Divine Ianus, towards these ends accept this additional offering of WINE which I place before you, as a sign of my reverence and good will towards you.

(make offering)

Blessed Iupiter if the appeals and offerings made in this ceremony have caused unbeknownst offense, please accept my deep regret and recall my good intentions towards you.

Father Iupiter, towards these ends accept this additional offering of WINE which I place before you, as a sign of my reverence and good will towards you.

(make offering)

Blessed Vesta if the appeals and offerings made in this ceremony have caused unbeknownst offense, please accept my deep regret and recall my good intentions towards you.

Mother Vesta, towards these ends accept this additional offering of WINE which I place before you, as a sign of my reverence and good will towards you.

(make offering)

Mater Vesta, or unless you prefer some other name, it is right to offer you thanks and honor as you provided your flame during this ceremony. Towards my gratitude be strengthened by this additional offering/libation of FRANKINCENSE now made before you.

[make offering]

(blow out lamp)

This ceremony is concluded! Go now satisfied that these acts performed are to honor the Gods and Goddesses and preserve the pax deorum!

(wash hands again in water and dry them)
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Re: Ceremony held today for Vota Publica

Postby Lucius Aurelius Curio » Mon Jan 02, 2017 6:54 am

Curio Sal.

Wonderful ceremony, Brute! And thank you for doing this on behalf of the Republic.

Valete Bene!

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