Explore mythology and art with information about the classic stories of heroes and gods...from the myths of ancient Greece and Rome, to the legends of the Celts. Mythography presents resources and reference materials about mythology - including recommended books, and lexicons that explain Greek, Roman, and Celtic terms.

Gardner's Art Through the Ages

This book is the classic reference for the study of art. It features a history of artists and their works, as well as lucid and engaging descriptions of the styles and periods of art history. Highly recommended for both students and scholars.

Aphrodite in Art
Aphrodite in Myth
Art Themes

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Janus in Myth
Janus was the god of gates in Roman mythology. And in his role as the numen of gates and doors, Janus was also thought to represent beginnings. The explanation for this belief comes from the idea that one must emerge through a gate or door before entering a new place.

As the god of beginnings, Janus also lent his name to the first month of the year. This month was referred to by the ancient Romans as Ianuarius - you can see how similar this word is to our own version (which is, of course, January).

The god Janus has a distinctive appearance in art, as he is often depicted with two faces. Some sources claim that the reason Janus was represented in this peculiar fashion was due to the notion that doors and gates look in two directions. In this way, one of the god's faces could look forward, while the other looked backward.

In addition, the Romans had an important temple to Janus, which was called the Ianus geminus. This temple served a symbolic function. When the gates of the structure were closed, this represented peace in the Roman Empire; but when the gates were open, it meant that the Romans were at war.

It worth noting that Janus was well respected and highly regarded by the ancient Romans. From his role as the guardian of gates and his position as the god of beginnings, to the honor of having the first month of the year named after him, it is clear that Janus played a significant part in Roman myth and religion.

Janus did not have a counterpart in Greek mythology.

Who's Who in Classical Mythology

Who's Who in Classical Mythology

This book is a great source for information about Greek and Roman mythology! Organized alphabetically, this who's who features information about over 1200 of the most intriguing characters from Classical myth and legend.

Bulfinch's Mythology

Bulfinch's Mythology

The stories of Classical myth come to life in Bulfinch's book. This edition also features legends from other cultures.

Mythography Forums

Mythography Forums

Do you have a specific question about Greek, Roman, and Celtic mythology? Then try the Mythography forum!

The Bibliography

If you want more recommended resources for information about Roman myths, visit the books section - it lists books about mythology, art, literature, and more.