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Consualia

From Academic Kids

The Consuales Ludi or Consualia is a festival which honors Consus, the god of counsel, and the one who protects the harvest which is now in storage at this time. The harvest grains were stored in underground vaults, and the temple of Consus was also underground. This shrine was covered with earth all year and was only uncovered for this one day. Mars, as a protector of the harvest, was also honored on this day, as were the lares, the household gods that individual families held sacred. Chariot races were held this day in the Circus Maximus, which included an odd race in which chariots were pulled by mules.

On this day the Rape of the Sabine women took place under Romulus. Seeing a need to increase the population of Rome, Romulus authorized each Roman to forcibly take women from the visiting Sabines as their wives, but only as appropriate to their social status. A war to avenge this insult was avoided when the kidnapped Sabine women intervened and voluntarily accepted their Roman husbands, who had been careful to treat them honorably. Some say, however, that Romulus only regulated and re-instituted them after they had been before established by Evander.

During the celebration, which happened about the middle of August, horses, mules, and asses were exempted from all labour, and were led through the streets adorned with garlands and flowers.

August was originally called Sextilis, or the sixth month (after March). It was renamed in honor of Augustus Caesar, the most revered of the Roman emperors.it:Consualia

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