Lara was a beautiful Italian Naiad who talked too much. She revealed Jupiter’s secret affair with Juturna to his wife, Juno who put an end to the liaison. Jupiter punished Lara by cutting out her tongue, rendering her mute, hence her secondary name, Muta. Muta is a fierce, frightening spirit who sometimes visits in dreams. She doesn’t speak and she doesn’t actually cause harm but her presence is so menacing and wrathful, that she is the stuff of nightmares.
Lara and Mercury are the parents of the guardian spirits, the Lares who may have been conceived and born prior to Lara’s run-in with Jupiter. An alternative version, suggests that rendering this talkative spirit speechless wasn’t deemed sufficient punishment: Jupiter transformed her from a water spirit to a spirit of the dead. Jupiter ordered Mercury to conduct Lara to the Underworld. Mercury, too, is known for his loquacious nature: perhaps Lara’a plight touched his heart. He took his time transporting Lara and that’s when the Lares were conceived and born.
ALSO KNOWN AS:
Larunda; Muta; possibly Mana
- 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.