Priapus
(Also Priapos)

Greco-Roman god of fertiliy and nature, son of Dionysos and Aphrodite, also called Lutinus by the Romans. He was seen as the guardian of vineyards,gardens and cultivated fields. The Romans also revered him as a patron of sailors and fishermen.

His symbols were a drinking cup and a spear.

Carved images and statues of Priapus, with a large erect phallus, were placed in fields and gardens to ensure fruitfulness and protection. The Romans portrayed him as wearing wearing a long dress, with his genitals uncovered.

The Romans gave offerings to him, such as the produce of the fields, hone, milk, and occasionally donkeys. The Priapea, a collection of 85 poems, sometimes funny but usually obscene, were written in his honour. His symbol in Roman belief was the pruning knife.

Priapus originally appeared as a fertility god from Asia Minor, especially in Lampsacus on the Hellespont, where he was the most important god of the local pantheon. He was introduced in Greece around 400 BC, but never reached the popularity that he did the Roman belief.

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