Janus (3)


in Roman mythology, was a god, concerning whose original signification the most contrary views were held. The most commonly accepted view is that he was a deified king of ancient Italy. About his worship in Rome the following is related: Numa dedicated a sanctuary to his honor, which was opened in time of war and closed in time of peace. This goes to show that he was a god of war, as also his by-name "Quirinus." He is represented with a double face, sometimes with four heads. In his right hand he carried a staff (the symbol of augury), in his left a key (god of doors, for Janua signifies door). On his fingers the number three hundred was written on one hand, the number sixty-five on the other, designating him the god of the year.

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