Sirona

Dirona (Sirona) In Celtic mythology, a mother goddess who appears to be identical with the goddess known elsewhere as Divona. She is depicted with a dog on her lap, a diadem (implying high status), three eggs (a fertility symbol), and a snake wrapped around her arm. The ancient Roman writers associated her with the consort of their god Mercury.

SOURCE:

Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow – Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante

Sirona

ALSO KNOWN AS:

Sarana (Hungary); Tsirona (Brittany)

ORIGIN:

Celtic

Sirona’s name seems to be etymologically related to “star.” This ancient goddess was truly a star of the Celtic spiritual firmament. Sirona, among the most prominent Celtic goddesses, was venerated throughout the continental Celtic world. Her images have been found from Brittany to Hungary. She is a goddess of fertility, healing, renewal, and regeneration associated with thermal springs. She had shrines throughout Europe, many affiliated with what are still highly significant therapeutic mineral springs.

Sirona was venerated independently but also had various male consorts and partners, including prominent Celtic deities like Belenus and Grannus. After the Roman occupation of Gaul, Sirona was partnered there with Apollo, their arranged marriage indicating the union of Romans and Celts.

Sirona’s images usually depict her with a snake or a small dog or both. She holds the dog lovingly. Sirona is traditionally invoked to heal humans, but it’s possible that she may assist dogs, too.

ICONOGRAPHY:

A second-century CE image from the Moselle Basin renders Sirona as a robed woman wearing a diadem with a snake entwined around one arm. She holds a bowl of eggs in the other. Many small votive images depict Sirona holding a little dog either in her lap or in her arms.

Creatures: Snake and lapdog (both symbolic of healing)

Plants:

Grapes, wheat

SACRED SITES:

Her sanctuaries included those in Bitburg, Hochscheid, Mainz, Nietaldorf, and Wiesbaden (now in Germany); Luexeuil, Mâlain, Metz, and Sainte-Fontaine (now in France); Brigetio (now in Hungary); and in the ancient Celtic kingdom of Noricum, corresponding to parts of modern Austria and Slovenia.

Dates:

In modern Dianic witchcraft, 6 January is the Feast of Sirona, a time for blessing of the waters.

OFFERINGS:

Serve her mineral water and wine; offer coins, milagros (ex-votos), eggs (real, marble, crystal), images of snakes, snakeskins.

SEE ALSO:

  • Apollo
  • Belenus
  • Grannus
  • Sequana
  • Sulis

SOURCE:

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.

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