Prayers to Venus

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Anthologia Latina I 781.15

Grant, I pray, your assistance and ease the pain of our fiery passions.

Apuleius Metamorphoses 11.2

O blessed Queen of Heaven, celestial Venus, who in the beginning of the world did join all kinds of things with an engendered love, by an eternal propagation of life, now worshipped within the Temple of the Isle of Paphos; You who is worshipped in divers manners, and does illuminate all the borders of the earth by Your feminine shape, You which nourishes all the fruits of the world by Your vigor and force; with whatsoever name or fashion it is lawful to call upon You, I pray You end my great travail and misery, and deliver me from the wretched fortune, which has for so long a time pursued me. Grant peace and rest if it please You to reply to my entreaties, for I have endured too much labor and peril.

Horcae Carmina 1.30.1-8

Come to us Venus, O Queen of Cnidos and Paphos, leave Cyprus, though the isle is dear to You, come instead to where the incense is thick and Glycera sings to You, that you may transfer Your home to a new shrine among us. Bring along for Your company desirous Cupid, loose- girdled Graces and Nymphs, youthful Juventus and Mercury, who without You are graceless.

Horcae Carmina 4.1.1-2

After so long a time, do You once more disturb my peace of mind with desires? Spare me, Venus, I pray, I beg of You!

Laevius FPR fr. 26

Therefore adoring You as though You were nurturing Venus Herself, whether You are female, or whether You are male, even so, Illuminating the Night, You are a nurturing Moon.

Lucretius De Rerum Natura 1.1-9

Venus Genetrix, charmer of gods and mankind, nurturing Mother, beneath the starry signs that glide through the night, You enliven the ship-bearing seas and the fruitful earth, since it is through You that all things are conceived and animated into life to behold the Light of Day. Goddess, for You the winds make way, the heavenly clouds open at Your coming, the miraculous earth greets You with sweet scented flowers, for You the surface of the seas laugh, and the peaceful heavens glisten in luminescence.

Martial Epigrammata 9.90.13-18

Restore our youth, Venus, restore our healthy glow, and the kalends of March they will devote to the Paphian goddess. Gladly will the procession wind to Your altar, in shining white robes they will bring You sweet incense and pure wine, served with glistening morsels of meat piled as delicate petit fors.

Nemesianus Eclogue 2.57-59

Venus, Daughter of Dione, You who touches the lofty ridges of Eryx, into whose care, throughout all the centuries, the unions of men and their lovers have been placed, what, I pray, have I come to merit?

Ovid Ars Amore 1.30

Restore our youth, Venus, restore our healthy glow, and the kalends of March they will devote to the Paphian goddess. Gladly will the procession wind to Your altar, in shining white robes they will bring You sweet incense and pure wine, served with glistening morsels of meat piled as delicate petit fors.

Ovid Ars Amore 2.14-15

Now, if ever before, I required Your favor, Venus Cytherrea, and that of Your son, and now, too, Erato, whose erotic name exudes Love.

Ovid Amores 1.3.1-6

My prayer is just. May Venus hear all our many prayers. Take one who would serve You through long years, accept one who knows how to love with a pure heart.

Ovid Amores 3.2.55-7

Winsome Venus, to You we pray, and to Your children with the mighty bow Assent to my undertaking, and may You change my lady's mind, make her open to love.

Ovid Heroides 15.57-58

I am Yours, Venus Ericina, who also celebrates the Sicilian mountains, O Goddess, look after your prophetic poet, you who has the name of Love.

Ovid Fasti 4.1

Nurturing Venus, Mother of the twin Loves, favour me.

Ovid Metamorphoses 10.640-41

Venus of Cytherea, I pray that you come to our venture, and that she gives herself to whom you help in passion.

Petronius Arbiter Satyricon 85

Dear Venus, if I may kiss this boy without his knowing, a pair of doves I'll give tomorrow.

Plautus Bacchides 892-95

By Jupiter and all the gods and goddesses, Juno and Ceres, Minerva, Latona, Hope, and Ops, Virtue, Venus, Castor and Pollux, Mars, Mercurius, Hercules, Summanus, Sol and Saturnus, I swear she is not lying with him, walking hand-in-hand with him, kissing him full upon the lips, or in any other way, as they say, being familiar with him.

Plautus Miles Gloriosus 1228-30

Venus, I offer You thanks, and I beg and entreat You that I may win the man I love and long for, and that he may be gracious to me, and not reject my desire for him.

Plautus Poenulus 125

Venus, of the little I have to offer, I willingly give You a little.

Plautus Rodens 694-701

Kind Venus, tearfully we plead to You, as we kneel and clasp this your altar, receive us into Your safekeeping and watch over us. Take vengeance on the wicked who have belittled your sanctuary, and in Your goodness let us remain at this altar as a refuge from our suffering... be not offended with us, nor hold us at fault, if there be anything about us that to you is unclean.

Plautus Rodens 702-5

Venus, I think that this is a fair request and that you should grant it. Their fears have driven them to it. If you yourself, as they say, came from a seashell, then you should not object to the soiled shell of their garments.

Plautus Rudens 144-46

May Venus, or better still Ceres see that no risk of danger befall you as you travel from here to your home for lunch; Venus cares for lovers, Ceres cares for wheat.

Plautus Rudens 1348-9

Venus, I pray to You that all pimps may suffer.

Propertius Eligiae 2.16.13-14

O Venus, come quickly now to give succor to our sorrows; may love erupt in the hearts of those passionate limbs we continually desire.

Propertius Eligiae 3.4.19-22

Preserve one of Your own sons, Venus, let it be in this lifetime, may You perceive those remaining descendents of Aeneas. May there be plunder enough in this for them, that honest rewards are piled up from hard work. For me it shall be enough if able to dance along the Sacred Way in praise of the Gods.

Statius Achilleis 1.143-44

Lead on, O best of Mothers, I plead, lead on, and exhaust the Gods with humble entreaties (on my behalf).

Tibullus 1.2.41-2; 56; 99-100

"Venus born of blood and thought to be born of the ocean, too."

Three times sing, (I'm told), and three times spit upon the ground as you say this charm.

"At the very least, Venus, preserve one who in his heart always serves you. What offerings shall I set upon your altar to appease your anger?"

Tibullus 3.3.33-8

Come, Saturn's daughter, give favor to my prayer! Hear me, Cyprian Venus, who was born along on a conch shell! Rather let my fate be denied, than that my life should now be sorrowfully ended by those sisters who spin the threads of everyone's future, and called down by ghastly Orcus into the desolate swamps and sluggish streams of black waters.

Tibullus 3.9.4

May Venus keep him safe for me; may Amor preserve my love.

Valerius Flaccus Argonautica 2.611-12

O Cretheian Virgin, borne on graceful and gentle waves, unfold the way, Goddess, and show us what course to follow.

Virgil Catalepton 14

If I am to further my undertaking, to traverse all the world, O Venus, who dwells in Paphos and in Idalian groves, so that Trojan Aeneas is thought worthy at last to sail with You in song through Roman towns, not only with incense or painted tablet shall I adorn Your temple, and with pure hands bring You garlands, but a humble offering of a horned ram and a bull, the greatest sacrifice, their blood a priest shall sprinkle into the fire of an altar erected in Your honor, and a marble painted in a thousand colours for You, a picture of Amor with His quiver. Come, O Goddess of Cythera, Your own Caesar and an altar along Sorrento's shore beckon You from Olympus.

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