Ave, Sandum Citizens!
Summer has historically been a time of great diplomatic activity, but it has also left us traces of great cultural attainment. The function of Isolationism and the Armilustrium grew out of it; it was in the Summer of MMXI (2011) when Sandus first welcomed Native American cultural influence; last Summer saw renewed attention given to festivals of the Collegio Sacerdae as the State celebrated Neptunalia and the Festival of the Dioscuri during PoliNations 2012. Cultural attainment for the State of Sandus post-Foundatio MMXI has been one of great importance, especially this Summer with the poster released above for the “Three Major Fronts” — Political, Social & Cultural, and Economic.
Since the Solstice, Sandus has consistently advanced the Three Major Fronts. We have created our own unique form of currency, we have begun Tellus which has led to cultural change, and we have made the social affirmation of equality in Sandus most recently in the intermicronational community concerning an album about a Transgender and Gender-Questioning camp for boys entitled «You are You». Since the Solstice, too, we’ve released a recipe for Tsampa de Riz, a wholly Sandum dish, and have released initial information on research concerning Lycurgan Sparta. And, since the beginning of Iunio MMXIII, we had experienced great information since the Sôgmô’s visit to Iceland and France.
The Sôgmô has recently joined a group named «Cultus Deorum Romanorum» which is focused on the ancient Roman religion. Pursuant of studying the Religio Romana, this group shall become an important resource for the Sôgmô in his capacity as Sacra Flameno.
In the following week, three certain festivals are being celebrated concerning nature and the growing period on the Collegio’s calendar. The festivals of Lucaria, Neptunalia, and Furrinalia are considered by scholars to be a triune collection of festivals concerning agriculture and, especially, droughts for the ancient Roman religio. Lucaria is a festival dedicated to a purposefully anonymous deity — invoked as «si deus, si dea» (whether god or goddess) — of sacred groves («lucus»); groves which were consecrated, Cato wrote, would be cleared on this festival. Neptunalia is a major festival to Neptune (Greek: Poseidon); this festival was celebrated in the Summer for the necessity of water, of which the Romans differed with the Greeks by celebrating Neptune as god of both fresh and salt water. Furrinalia is dedicated to the archaic Roman goddess Furrina, whose festival and function were obscure even in the Late Republic; what has been understood, however, is that Furrina is a water goddess who had a grove with a sacred spring located on the Janiculum dedicated to Her. The grouping of these three festivals in rapid succession implies an intention for the security of shelters, gardens, and running waters.
As this festival takes place in the middle of Summer and as the Tellus cooperative has recently been founded and has begun production during this grouping, the Sôgmô shall explore consecrating the gardens of the Palace of State as a grove and conducting rites for these three festivals. The Furrinalia, it may be considered, may be a day of remarking on the works of Gaius and Tiberius Gracchus, the former who died in the grove to Furrina; the importance of the two are for the populares faction of Rome, who wished to expand the democratic power of the People and who wished to suppress aristocratic power.
Further innovations shall be considered following the three festivals being celebrated. The Sôgmô shall seek the advice of the members of the Cultus Deorum Romanorum group.