In Latin, cardo is a door hinge or pivot. Cardea is the goddess of hinges. She controls the opening and closing of doors, literal and metaphorical. Ovid says her power is to open what is closed and close what is open. Cardea chooses whom to admit. Because of this power, she is invoked to protect children from malevolent powers. She can block their path so they can’t reach their victims. Conversely, Cardea is petitioned to open doors to good fortune, opportunity, and success.
Hinges are physically attached to doors. Janus, Lord of Doors, was so enamored with Cardea (who may or may not originally have been Carna) that he made her the goddess of hinges so that she would always cling to him. They may be venerated together.
Hawthorn (place a branch over or beside a child’s bed or cradle to beseech Cardea’s blessings and protection)
- Roman Mythology
Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.