God of seasons, change, plant growth, gardens and orchards
Vertumno - dios romano.jpg
Mosaic image of Vertumnus
Other namesVortumnus, Vertimnus
Major cult centerstatue on the Vicus Tuscus, temple on the Aventine Hill
Abodegardens and orchards
Symbolsgardening tools
Etruscan equivalentVoltumna
Vertumnus and Pomona (c. 1618) by Peter Paul Rubens

In Roman mythology, Vertumnus (Latin pronunciation: [ˈwɛrtʊmnʊs]; also Vortumnus or Vertimnus) is the god of seasons, change[1] and plant growth, as well as gardens and fruit trees. He could change his form at will; using this power, according to Ovid's Metamorphoses (xiv), he tricked Pomona into talking to him by disguising himself as an old woman and gaining entry to her orchard, then using a narrative warning of the dangers of rejecting a suitor (the embedded tale of Iphis and Anaxarete) to seduce her. The tale of Vertumnus and Pomona has been called "the first exclusively Latin tale."[2]

Vertumnus' festival was called the Vertumnalia and was held 13 August.[3]

  1. ^ " Vertumnus then, that turn'st the year about," (Thomas Nashe, Summer's Last Will and Testament (1592, printed 1600)).
  2. ^ It is called the first exclusively Latin tale by Charles Fantazzi, "The revindication of Roman myth in the Pomona-Vertumnus tale", in N. Barbu et al., eds. Ovidianum (Bucharest, 1976:288), as Roxanne Gentilcore notes in "The Landscape of desire: the tale of Pomona and Vertumnus in Ovid's 'Metamorphoses'", Phoenix 49.2 (Summer 1995:110-120), p. 110 ("It has also been called the first exclusively Latin tale") and note 1.
  3. ^ Ovid, Fasti.

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