Guide to the Gods 1.0
Va... to Vz...
"Speech". Hindu goddess of speech and mother of the Vedas.
Latvian evil being.
Armenian god of bravery and victory.
Name of one true god of the Sikhs.
Jain group of gods.
Finnish hero-god of the Kalevala.
1 of 5 Dhyani-Buddhas.
(Pali Vessavana, Chinese Do Wen)
1 of 4 Buddhist guardians of the world.
1 of the 8 great Bodhisattvas.
6th Dhyani-Buddha in Nepal.
Buddhist supernatural female beings.
Buddhist goddess of initiation.
Norse god, son of Odin. He was the twin brother of Vidar.
(OE Waelcyrige, German Walkuren, ON valkyrja)
Norse choosers of the slain.
In Vedic Hinduism, the fifth avatar of Vishnu, in the form of a dwarf. It was in this form that Vishnu tricked Bali into giving up heaven and earth. He asked Bali to be given a plot of land a mere three paces wide. Bali agreed, and Vishnu returned to his usual size and paced out the measure of heaven and earth in two steps. He elected not to claim the underworld, which he allowed Bali to retain and rule over.
Slavonic spirit of a dead person.
Vedic tree spirits.
Family of Norse gods. The most prominent Vanir were Freyr and Freyja. Njord had been a Vanir, but was sent as a hostage to the Aesir to ensure a peace between the two races.
Etruscan female underworld demon.
Fijian evil spirit of ironwood trees.
In Vedic Hinduism, the third avatar of Vishnu, in the form of a boar. In this form Vishnu plunged to the bottom of the sea to free the earth from Hiranyaksha.
(Vari Ma Te Takere)
Polynesian great mother of the gods and of humans. She lived in Avaiki, the land of the dead. Mother of the underworld god Vatea and grandmother of the sky god Tangaroa.
One of the major gods of Vedic Hinduism. He was a god of cosmic law and order, and of the waters. He is often depicted riding a fish or a sea monster known as a Makara.
In Hinduism, one of the Rishis and also one of the Prajapatis. He was the owner of Nandi, the white bull of Shiva.
In Vedic myth the father of Krishna and Balarama.
Buddhist goddess of riches.
In Vedic Hinduism, a ruler of the Nagas (qv).
In Vedic Hinduism, the eight attendants of Indra. In later Hinduism, they became attendants of Vishnu.
Old Iranian god of the wind.
Hindu god of the wind.
With Vili, a brother of Odin.
Early name for Jupiter, possibly Etruscan.
A kindly sprite of the woods in south-east Europe (the Balkans).
(Vetis, Latin Veiovis or Vedius)
Latvian goddess of the winds.
Slav/Russian god of the underworld. Veles was known to the Czechs as a demon, while his Serbian counterpart, Volos, was considered to be a cattle god.
Lithuanian name for the devil.
Latvian queen of the dead.
Roman goddess of love and beauty. She was originally associated with vegetable gardens. She later came to be equated with the Greek goddess Aphrodite, whose myths she took over. Her cult was apparently a late import to Rome from the surrounding Latin peoples. She was the daughter of Jupiter and Dione. Her consorts included Mars and Vulcan, modelled on the relationships of Aphrodite with Ares and Hephaistos.
Her importance rose with the political fortunes of the gens Julia, the clan of Julius Caesar, who claimed descent from Venus via Aeneas and Julia. Caesar introduced the cult of Venus as a goddess of marriage and motherhood, Venus Genetrix, under which name he constructed a temple at the Forum in her honour. She became identified with many foreign goddesses, including Ishtar, whence came her identification with the planet we now know as Venus. Her festival, the Veneralia, was celebrated on April 1.
Lapp god associated with the world-supporting pillar.
Celtic goddess of the river Wharfe.
Old Albanian god of fire and north wind.
One of the Norns, or Norse fates.
Old Iranian god of victory. He is the Zoroastrian god of war in the Zend Avesta.
"Truth". Roman goddess of truth. Daughter of Saturn.
Roman god of the seasons, gardens and orchards. Also god of change (Latin vertere = to turn, change), particularly of the changing year. He appears to have been derived from the Etruscan god Voltumna. He was the consort of Pomona. He had a temple on the Aventine Hill in Rome, dedicated in 264 BC. His festival, the Vertumnalia, was observed on August 13.
Roman goddess of the hearth. Equated with the Greek Hestia. She had a round temple at the foot of the Palatine Hill in Rome. She had an elaborate state cult, and was also worshipped in Roman homes along with the Lares and Penates. Vesta was symbolized by the sacred fire maintained within her temple by the Vestal Virgins. The Vestal Virgins, whose term of office lasted at least thirty years, were expected to keep strict vows of chastity, on penalty of death. The ass was regarded as sacred to her, and asses were adorned with wreaths on her festival day. Her festival, the Vestalia, was observed on June 9.
North-west Hispanic god.
Roman goddess of victory. Equated with the Greek Nike. She had a temple on the Palatine Hill in Rome. Regarded as a protector of the Empire, she was often portrayed on Roman coins.
Norse god of war or of vengeance. Known as 'the Silent One'. He is said to be the son of Odin, or alternatively of Loki. At Ragnarok, Vidar will tear the wolf Fenrir in half to avenge the latter's killing of Odin.
Hindu attendants of Indra.
Buddhist semi-divine beings.
Eastern Slavonic water sprites.
Vili and Ve
Norse sons of Bor and brothers of Odin. Together with Odin they killed the giant Ymir and created the world from his body.
Slavonic spirits of wind and storm.
Supreme Inca god, synthesis of sun god and storm god.
Indian primeval being created by Brahman.
Minor Roman god. Consort of Diana.
Roman god of manly courage and military prowess.
(Pali Virulha, Chinese Zheng Zhang)
One of the four Buddhist guardians of the world.
(Pali Virupakkha, Chinese Guand Mu)
Buddhist guardian of western quarter of heaven.
Hindu god who rose from a subordinate position in the Vedas to become the supreme god of modern Hinduism. He is the most widely worshipped and pre-eminent member of the triad of gods he forms with Brahma and Shiva. His primary consort is Lakshmi, although there are additional consorts associated with individual avatars. Vishnu is the preserver of cosmic order. His chief adversary is Yama, the god of the dead. Vishnu's ten avatars are as follows:
See the individual entries for each avatar for more information.
1. Matsya (fish)
2. Kurma (tortoise)
3. Varaha (boar)
4. Narasinha (man-lion)
5. Vamana (dwarf)
6. Parasu-Rama (Rama with the axe)
9. Buddha (present avatar)
10. Kalki (future avatar)
Indian creator god.
Hindu divine artificer, craftsman and smith.
Hindu sun god. His consort is Saranyu, and he is considered the father of Yama, Yami, Manu, and the Asvins.
Niquitan (Nicaragua) god of famine.
Slavonic werewolf. "Vlko" = wolf.
Slavonic water god.
"Good Thought". One of the Amesha Spentas in Zoroastrianism, representing good thought. He is known as Wahman in Manichaeism.
Serbian cattle god.
Etruscan chthonic god who was later elevated to the status of supreme god. He was known to the Romans as Vertumnus.
Roman protective goddess of the nursery.
Norse goddess of contracts and marriage agreements.
Deified Quiche Mayan religious reformer.
Hindu demon of drought. He was slain by Indra.
Quiche Maya demon mentioned in the Popol Vuh creation myth.
Roman god of fire, particularly of destructive fire. Equated with the Greek Hephaistos (qv), from whom he derives many of his aspects and myths, including the association with blacksmiths and forges. He was believed to have a forge under Mt Aetna. Vulcan was also the tutelary deity of the Roman seaport of Ostia. Because of the dangerous nature of fire, his temples were generally located outside the cities. His festival, the Volcanalia, was observed on August 23, during the height of the Mediterranean drought and the period of highest risk from fire. During the festival, fish were thrown into fires, presumably as an offering meant to invoke the god's assistance in warding off destructive fires.