In the bustling heart of ancient Rome, Vesta was the go-to goddess for all things hearth, home, and family.
In the bustling heart of ancient Rome, Vesta was the go-to goddess for all things hearth, home, and family. Her priestesses, the Vestal Virgins, weren't just about 30-year-long chastity vows—they also made sure her temple's eternal flame stayed lit. If the flame went out, it was believed to be an ominous sign for the Roman state.
Every June, from the 7th to 15th, the festival of Vestalia took place. During this time, the temple had an open house—literally. Married women went barefoot, queueing up to drop off their offerings and perhaps hoping for some household luck. The temple's unique circular design, housing the sacred flame, was a symbol for both the Earth and Vesta's protective embrace over the hearth and home.