The Vestalia: An Ancient Festival With Modern Meaning

Ah, June. There’s just so much to celebrate about this particular month.  In my part of the world – Canada – we celebrate warmth.  The snow is gone, the skies are blue and we’re all positively giddy at the thought of wearing sandals for the next few months.  For a northerner, there’s nothing like the... Read More

From Rabbits to Resurrections: The Pagan Origins of Easter

As those of us who honor the old ways know, many of our traditions have been usurped by other religions who go on to claim them as their own.  Easter is a colorful example of this. Although many people assume Easter began as a Christian holiday, it did not.  This spring holiday began as, and... Read More

The Vestals Get a Modern Makeover

Hello all!  Most of the images we have of the Vestals are from antiquity – these are statues, relief carvings and images minted on coins or engraved on seal rings. As lovely and informative as these are, it is wonderful to see more modern treatments.  Angus McBride was popular history and fantasy illustrator and his... Read More

Vesta Rises from the Rubble…

I thought those who follow this site and who honor Vesta would appreciate this post and this b&w photo. The photo for this blog is of the original press photograph of the Temple of Vesta shortly after it was restored in 1930.  This was the first time this lovely temple, or what remains of it,... Read More

Why Modern Men Honor Vesta: One Man’s Story

The first “religious experience” I had was at ten years old, courtesy of one hell of a crazy Pentecostal upbringing.  The church pastor was a real charmer full of hellfire and brimstone teachings.  He encouraged the congregation to speak in tongues.  That’s when you babble a secret, made-up language to commune with god.  It’s not... Read More

Coffee, Biscotti and the Flamma Vesta

In my home, supper-time offerings to Vesta are done on a daily basis.  My husband, son and I nourish the flame – and by extension our own family – at the beginning and end of each meal.  Yet as much as we prioritize eating supper at the table, this time of year puts a few... Read More

The Vestal Cossinia

Here’s an amazing thing – it’s a press photo taken shortly after the excavation of the tomb of the Vestal Cossinia in Tivoli. This esteemed and beloved priestess served the goddess for sixty-six years. The marble plaque on her tomb reads, “Here lies and rests the Virgin / Borne by the people/ Because she was... Read More

An Ancient Prayer to Vesta

Here is a lovely prayer you can say to Vesta while offering into the Flamma on your lararium…it is taken from an ancient Homeric hymn: “Vesta, you have gained everlasting honor: glorious is your portion and right. Come dwell in this house in friendship together.” At around 1:15 of this video, a clip from the... Read More

Vestal Virgins: Feminism and the “Evil Field”

Despite the resurgence and richness of the Vesta tradition, many people who think “Vestal Virgin” still think of one thing: the fact that ancient Vestals who broke their vow of chaste service to the goddess were buried alive. Let’s be honest. Who can blame people for going there? It’s a pretty dramatic image: a young... Read More

Why The Vesta Tradition is Good for Today’s Families, Part I

This blog is part one of a two-part series discussing the rise and role of the Vesta tradition in today’s families. Part I tells the author’s story, while Part II expands into the history and principles of some practices. I grew up in an atheist home. It was a happy, kind-hearted and good-humoured one, with... Read More