Victoria is the Roman goddess of victory. She was identified with Greek Nike, and it can now be extremely difficult to disentangle the two goddesses. Victoria was venerated alongside Jupiter and Mars rather than with Minerva. (Nike is intensely associated with Athena to whom Minerva is identified.) Victoria is more intensely and exclusively associated with military victory than Nike but of course this may be a reflection of her devotees, the Romans. Roman soldiers carried veneration of Victoria throughout the Roman Empire.
Victoria was a major goddess possessing a vast official cult that existed for centuries. The Romans had a hard time denying Victoria or giving her up: hers was among the last cults abandoned with the rise of Christianity. Victoria’s image appeared on Roman coins until the third century CE.
Victoria was envisioned as a winged woman carrying trophies and spoils taken from defeated enemies. She may stand with one foot resting on the globe. Her image was often incorporated into the reliefs carved on Roman triumphal arches, including the Arches of Augustus, Constantine, and Septimius Severus.
Victoria had multiple temples, including one on the Palatine Hill dedicated in 294 BCE. An altar was dedicated to her in Rome’s Senate house.
- 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.