Brill’s New Pauly

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(815 words)

Roman deity; Cic. Nat. D. 2,66 explains she is the goddess the Greeks called Persephone.

[German version]

A. Theology

The derivation of the name P. from Latin (pro-)serpere, 'creep (forward)', in Varro is connected with the allegorical interpretation of P. as 'grain's germ' (frumenta germinantia) and as 'the lower part of the earth' (terrae inferior pars) and its associated deities (e.g. Luna, Diana, Tellus, Vesta: Varro Ling. 5,68; Varro Antiquitates fr. 28, 167, 268 Cardauns). This is not 'folk etymology' (contr…

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Haase, Mareile (Toronto), “Proserpina”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 08 August 2022 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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