Date(s) - 13/11/2029
Feronia is Sabine in origin. Her cult was widespread in central Italy, but its chief centre was at lucus Capenatis which developed into a small town named Lucus Feroniae in Etruria near Mt Soracte.
In Rome Feronia had a grove and later a temple in the Campus Martius. Her festival occurring during the Plebeian Games is possibly significant. Expiatory offerings were ordered by the Sibylline Books to Feronia in 217 BCE and his event may represent the origin of this festival. On this day freed citizens, who according to their ability are to contribute money for a gift to Feronia, while those born free (matronae) contributed to Juno Regina on the Aventine. Feronia was said to have commonly received offerings of the firstfruits
of the season.
Feronia has a special association with freedmen and the granting of freedom to slaves. In explaining her name Varro called her Libertas, linking this Goddess as a possible Sabine version of Libertas.
It is possible that slaves received the cap of freedom (pilleus) upon being freed in honor of Feronia/Libertas. This was a likely common festival upon which slaves were freed. Slaves could also take sanctuary at her altar.