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Neptune

Neptune is the Roman God of freshwater and the sea.  He is one of the twelve Olympian Gods of Greek Mythology, His mother is Ops the Earth Mother Goddess and his father is Saturn the sky God who ruled over the Olympians.  Saturn was worried that his children would one day take away his power as ruler, and so he swallowed all of his children immediately after they were born.  Ops eventually saved all of her children by disguising a stone as a child and offering it to Saturn.  Saturn swallowed the stone and it made him so sick that he vomited up the stone and all the children.  Neptune and his two brothers, Jupiter and Pluto dedicated their lives to usurping their Father. When  eventually the three brothers defeated Saturn, Zeus suggested that they divide the world into three sections; the sky, the earth and the underworld.  Everyone wanted the sky , the earth was commonplace but second best, and no one wanted to have to live in the cold darkness of the underworld, so they decided to draw lots.  Jupiter drew first and got the sky, Neptune drew second and decided to live in the sea, and Pluto got the underworld, he was not too happy about it, but soon accepted his fate and withdrew to the underworld.

Neptune was jealous of Jupiter, and never really forgave him for winning the sky.  They had many power struggles and arguments.  In mythology Neptune is described and violent and ill-tempered, somewhat like the unpredictability and tempestuousness of the ocean waters.  He is seen as a tall white-bearded man carrying a trident.  He is often depicted with fish or with horses that draw his chariot over the seas. 

Neptune was a ladies man, loving goddesses, nymphs and mortal women, and was not above using force to get his way. One day Neptune saw the water nymph Amphitrite dancing in the island of Naxos and fell in love with her. He promptly asked her to marry him but unfortunately she refused. However, not discouraged by Amphitrite refusal, Neptune sent one of his servants, a dolphin to look for her. The dolphin found her, and pleaded Neptune's cause so persuasively that she changed her mind. As a reward for finding and returning Amphitrite to him, Neptune immortalized the dolphin by placing it in the heavens as the constellation Dolphinus

July 23 is Neptunalia was the summer festival of Neptune.  People would build shelters out of branches and twigs in the woods, sit in them and drink wine and spring water.  It was a time of great merry-making when men and women would freely mix without the usual Roman social constraints.

Horses - Wendy Rule