As seen in Main Street Magazine (MSM)

Archive articles from Main Street Magazine (MSM) Issues

Ancient Mystic: Venus, Goddess of Love and Beauty

© Copyright, 2011 Main Street Magazine/Rain Enterprises
As seen in the February Issue of Main Street Magazine “Ancient Mystic” article.
Printed in Canada, ISSN: 1920-4299 by Rain Enterprises
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Goddess of Love

By Patti Wigington


The Roman equivalent of Aphrodite, Venus was a goddess of love and beauty. Originally, she was believed to be associated with gardens and fruitfulness, but later took on all the aspects of Aphrodite from the Greek traditions. She is considered by many to be the ancestor of the Roman people, and was the lover of the god Vulcan. The cult of Venus was based in the city of Lavinium, and her temple there because the home of a festival known as the Vinalia Rustica. A later temple was dedicated after the defeat of the Roman army near Lake Trasimine.

As often found in Roman gods and goddesses, Venus existed in many different incarnations. As Venus Victrix, she took on the aspect of warrior, and as Venus Genetrix, she was known as the mother of the Roman civilization. During the reign of Julius Caesar, a number of cults were started on her behalf, since Caesaer claimed that the family of the Julii were directly descended from Venus. She is also recognized as a goddess of fortune, as Venus Felix.

Similar to Aphrodite, Venus took a number of lovers, both mortal and divine. She bore children with Mars, the god of war, but doesn’t seem to have been particularly maternal in nature. Scholars have noted that Venus doesn’t have many myths of her own, and that many of her stories are borrowed from the tales of Aphrodite.

Venus is nearly always portrayed as young and lovely. The statue Aphrodite of Milos, better known as the Venus de Milo, depicts the goddess as classically beautiful, with womanly curves and a knowing smile. The statue is believed to have been done by Alexandros of Antioch, around 100 b.c.e.

Venus is probably most familiar from the armless Venus de Milo at the Louvre, in Paris.

Venus Goddess of Love



The Roman goddess Venus is distinct from the Greek goddess Aphrodite, although there is substantial overlap.

Fertility Goddess

The goddess of love has an ancient history. Ishtar/Astarte was the Semitic goddess of love. In Greece this goddess was called Aphrodite. Aphrodite was worshiped especially on the islands of Cyprus and Kythera. The Greek goddess of love played a crucial role in the myths about Atalanta, Hippolytus, Myrrha, and Pygmalion. Among mortals, the Greco-Roman goddess loved Adonis and Anchises. The Romans originally worshiped Venus as goddess of fertility. Her fertility powers spread from the garden to humans. The Greek aspects of the love and beauty goddess Aphrodite were added on to Venus’ attributes, and so for most practical purposes, Venus is synonymous with Aphrodite. The Romans revered Venus as the ancestor of the Roman people through her liaison with Anchises.

“She was the goddess of chastity in women, despite the fact that she had many affairs with both gods and mortals. As Venus Genetrix, she was worshiped as the mother (by Anchises) of the hero Aeneas, the founder of the Roman people; as Venus Felix, the bringer of good fortune; as Venus Victrix, the bringer of victory; and as Venus Verticordia, the protector of feminine chastity. Venus is also a nature goddess, associated with the arrival of spring. She is the bringer of joy to gods and humans. Venus really had no myths of her own but was so closely identified with the Greek Aphrodite that she “took over” Aphrodite’s myths.”

Source: ( ~grandpa/rommyth2.html) Roman Gods: Venus

The Parentage of the Goddess Venus/Aphrodite

Venus was the goddess not only of love, but of beauty, so there were two important aspects to her and two main stories of her birth:

“There were actually two different Aphrodites, one was the daughter of Uranus, the other the daughter of Zeus and Dione. The first, called Aphrodite Urania, was the goddess of spiritual love. The second, Aphrodite Pandemos, was the goddess of physical attraction.”

Source: Aphrodite

Although we are most familiar with the nude Venus artistic representations, this wasn’t always the way she was portrayed:

“The patron deity of Pompeii was Venus Pompeiana; she was always shown as being fully clothed and wearing a crown. The statues and frescos which have been found in Pompeian gardens always show Venus either scantily clothed or totally nude. Pompeians seem to have referred to these nude images of Venus as Venus fisica; this may be from the Greek word physike, which meant ‘related to nature’.”
Venus in Pompeiian Gardens

Ancient Mystic

Goddess of Love


Festivals of the Goddess Venus

Encyclopedia Mythica:

“Her cult originated from Ardea and Lavinium in Latium. The oldest temple known of Venus dates back to 293 B.C., and was inaugurated on August 18. Later, on this date the Vinalia Rustica was observed. A second festival, that of the Veneralia, was celebrated on April 1 in honor of Venus Verticordia, who later became the protector against vice. Her temple was built in 114 B.C. After the Roman defeat near Lake Trasum in 215 B.C., a temple was built on the Capitol for Venus Erycina. This temple was officially opened on April 23, and a festival, the Vinalia Priora, was instituted to celebrate the occasion.”








Author: Elaine Williams Information

Author:  Elaine Williams

“A Journey Well Taken: Life After Loss” Featured on A Book Inside
Carol Denbow of “A Book Inside” has graciously invited me to be in the Author Spotlight.
“A Book Inside is where new and seasoned authors come to learn the complete process to writing, publishing, and selling their stories. Step-by-step, in an easy to read and comprehend format, each blog will guide you through your journey to your ultimate goal of seeing your book in print.”

It’s a great resource of information is you’re writing or thinking about writing and getting published. Stop by and check it out.

Portion of Book Proceeds to Make a Wish Foundation
I will be donating a portion of my proceeds on the sale of my book to Make a Wish Foundation. is a variety talk show for baby boomers. I’ve been invited to be a guest on their show with host Daniel Davis on July 2nd at 9:30 a.m. (PST) That’s 12:30 Eastern time.

I have also been invited to be a featured author on July 31, on the blog of Rosemary Lichtman, Ph.D and Phyllis Goldberg, Ph.D, at their blog

Elaine Williams, author A Journey Well Taken: Life After Loss, a widow’s journey through loss, grief and renewal.

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As seen in MSM (Main Street Magazine)

Chef of Merit

Andrew McLeod

Chef de Cuisine

Edgewater Manor Restaurant

Stoney Creek Ontario

Written/Interviewed by: T. Rivers

Chef McLeod’s culinary career began in his hometown of Toronto, Canada. After completing his culinary education at George Brown College he worked in such prestigious restaurants as Auberge du Pommier and La Bodega Restaurant.

“I have a deep passion for seasonal and local ingredients which motivated me to relocate to the Niagara region where I developed my knowledge of food and wine pairing as Sous Chef at the award winning Peller Estates Winery Restaurant in Niagara-on-the-Lake under Executive Chef Jason Parsons.” Chef Andrew told Main Street Magazine. “While in Niagara, I also shared my knowledge and experience as an instructor at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Culinary Institute. My commitment to regional cuisine has led me to The Edgewater Manor Restaurant in Stoney Creek, Ontario. While maintaining a relationship with the local growers I also believe in the quality of unique and rare ingredients from all over the world which has resulted in innovative dishes and seasonal menu design. At The Edgewater I also offer tasting menus that showcase some of my many favourite dishes.”

We asked Chef McLeod what was, in his opinion the most challenging part of being a chef? “The most challenging thing for me as a chef,” he responded, “is creating balance and consistency in the kitchen. It’s easy to create a new dish that the guests will enjoy, but replicating that dish promptly and perfectly each time during a busy service is the challenging part. Each item has to be measured correctly and flavours have to be precise in order for every guest to have the same enjoyable experience.”

I never took that into consideration before, personally when I cook, and I use the term loosely ~smiles~ the meal is prepared and eaten, it is not ‘repeated’ each time a new order comes in.

I have often thought that compared to European and American Chefs, in great part thanks to television shows such as Hell’s Kitchen and Iron Chef American that Canadian Chefs have not always received the same recognition. I asked Chef McLeod if he felt this was the case.

“European and American chefs have had the spotlight for a long time,” said Chef McLeod, “but Canadian chef’s are gaining ground. Canadian’s have become more aware of the amazing products that surround them and seek them out in great restaurants all over Canada. Some very good Canadian restaurants have even gained world recognition and awards such as the Relais and Chateaux. I believe that young innovative Canadian chefs are among the best in the world!”

What does your food say about you as a person? “I don’t like to complicate or change the natural flavors of my dishes. I like them to speak for themselves” he said. “I try to be innovative, creative and use seasonal Canadian ingredients as much as possible. Our menus change frequently to showcase seasonal products. At the Edgewater Manor, we don’t want to create a pretentious atmosphere, people should relax and enjoy.”

Are your friends / family nervous about having you over for a meal? “I asked my mother this question last Sunday while over for dinner” Chef McLeod replied, “she laughed and asked what I wanted to order take-out from the local Thai restaurant! That’s a No, everyone knows that my favorite thing to eat is a home cooked meal with friends, good wine and conversation, even if the roast is a little over cooked. Although… someone did recently admit that the Yorkshire puddings never turn out when I come for Sunday dinner.”

So often food boredom can set in when you are cooking so many meals for the family, how do you suggest we conquer the “kitchen blues?” “Try something different” Chef McLeod exclaimed! “If it means adding new ingredients to an old dish, or just trying something new, your family will love it.  I like to go to the local butcher shop and find a beautiful cut of meat, and then build the rest of my meal around that. Most of the time, I get to the grocery store and don’t have a clue what I’m buying until I get there. If that sounds scary, then find an interesting recipe in a magazine or on-line and try to add your own flare. Heirloom tomato’s are in season? Try to incorporate them into your dish!”

As the interview with Chef McLeod ended, I asked him this final question; what is the most important thing, in your opinion that we should all learn regarding food? “Have fun! Take interest in local ingredients, you will be amazed at what unique things are available from artisan cheeses and bread to some of the best beef and lamb in the world.”

“Plan ahead! Having an important dinner party? Think of dishes that can be partially prepared ahead of time so you’re not slaving away in the kitchen while your guests are enjoying your hundred dollar bottle of wine. This will create time for you to entertain and make things more enjoyable for you and your guests.”

Thanks for the tips Chef McLeod and for taking the time to be part of Main Street Magazine’s “Chef of Merit!”