eklogai

polytheist extractions

Cato, De Agricultura 139-141

“To open up a clearing, you must use the Roman rite, as follows. Do sacrifice of an expiation piglet, and say it thus: ‘Whatever god, whatever goddess you may be to whom this place is sacred, since it is proper to sacrifice the expiation swine for the taking of this sacred place, therefore, may what I do or what another by my order does be rightly done. Therefore in slaughtering for you this expiation swine I pray with good prayers that you be willing and favourable to me, to my house and household and to my children; wherefore, accept the slaughter of this expiatory piglet.’ If you want to dig there, do another Expiation. Say explicitly ‘for the purpose of working the land’. Then do some of the work on each consecutive day till all is done. If you interrupt it, or public or household holidays intervene, you must do another Expiation. You must consecrate the field as follows. Instruct Pig, Sheep and Ox to be driven all around: ‘Under the favour of the spirits and in confidence of a good outcome I entrust to you, (Manius), to consecrate by your care my farm, field and land; driving or drawing Pig, Sheep and Ox thereupon, wherever you may determine.’ First invoke Janus and Jove with wine, and say: ‘Father Mars, I ask and pray that you be ready and favourable to me, our house and household. Wherefore I have ordered Pig, Sheep and Ox to be driven all around my land and farm, so that you will prevent, ward off and avert sicknesses seen and unseen, childlessness and fruitlessness, disaster and storm; so that you will permit fruits, grains, vines and saplings to flourish and come to fruition; so that you will keep safe shepherds and flocks and give good heart and health to me, our house and household. Therefore, for the consecration and making sacred of my farm, field and land as aforesaid, accept the slaughter of this suckling Pig, Sheep and Ox.’ Repeat: ‘… therefore, Father Mars, accept the slaughter of this suckling Pig, Sheep and Ox.’ Do it with a knife. Have strues and fertum at hand. Offer immediately. As you slaughter the piglet, lamb and calf, then: ‘… therefore accept the slaughter of Pig, Sheep and Ox.’ Mars must not be named, nor must one say ‘lamb’ or ‘calf’. If all the offerings are unpromising, say it thus: ‘… Father Mars, if anything dissatisfies you in that suckling Pig, Sheep and Ox, I offer you this Pig, Sheep and Ox in expiation.’ If only one or two are doubtful, say it thus: ‘… Father Mars, since you were dissatisfied with that piglet, I offer you this piglet in expiation.’” – Cato, De Agricultura 139-141

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