Table of Roman Equivalents of Greek Gods

Equivalent Roman and Greek Names for the Olympians and Minor Gods

5th Century BC Greek Sculpture of Poseidon, Athena, Apollo, and Artemis
Dating from the 5th century B.C., this relief sculpture depicts Poseidon, Athena, Apollo, and Artemis. David Lees/Getty Images

The Romans had many gods and personifications. When they came into contact with other people with their own collection of deities, the Romans often found what they considered equivalents to their gods. The correspondence between the Greek and Roman gods is closer than that of, say, the Romans and the Britons, because the Romans adopted many of the myths of the Greeks, but there are cases where Roman and Greek versions are only approximations.

With that proviso in mind, here are the names of the Greek gods and goddesses, paired with the Roman equivalent, where there is a difference.

Major Gods of the Greek and Roman Pantheons

Greek Name Roman Name Description
Aphrodite  Venus The famous, beautiful love goddess, the one awarded the apple of Discord that was instrumental in the start of the Trojan War and for the Romans, the mother of the Trojan hero Aeneas. 
Apollo  Apollo  Brother of Artemis/Diana, shared by Romans and Greeks alike. 
Ares  Mars The god of war for both Romans and Greeks, but so destructive he was not much loved by the Greeks, even though Aphrodite loved him. On the other hand, he was admired by the Romans, where he was associated with fertility as well as the military, and a very important deity.
Artemis Diana The sister of Apollo, she was a hunting goddess. Like her brother, she is often combined with the deity in charge of a celestial body. In her case, the moon; in her brother's, the sun. Although a virgin goddess, she assisted in childbirth. Although she hunted, she could also be the animals' protector. In general, she is full of contradictions. 
Athena Minerva She was a virgin goddess of wisdom and crafts, associated with warfare as her wisdom led to strategic planning. Athena was the patron goddess of Athens. She helped many of the great heroes.
Demeter Ceres A fertility and mother goddess associated with cultivation of grain. Demeter is associated with an important religious cult, the Eleusian mysteries. She is also the law-bringer.
Hades Pluto While he was the king of the Underworld, he was not the god of death. That was left to Thanatos. He is married to Demeter's daughter, whom he abducted. Pluto is the conventional Roman name and you might use it for a trivia question, but really Pluto, a god of wealth, is the equivalent of a Greek god of wealth called Dis.
Hephaistos Vulcan The Roman version of this god's name was lent to a geological phenomenon and he required frequent pacification. He is a fire and blacksmith god for both. Stories about Hephaestus show him as the lame, cuckolded husband of Aphrodite.
Hera Juno A marriage goddess and the wife of the king of the gods, Zeus.
Hermes Mercury A many-talented messenger of the gods and sometimes a trickster god and god of commerce.
Hestia Vesta It was important to keep the hearth fires burning and the hearth was the domain of this stay-at-home goddess. Her Roman virgin priestesses, the Vestals, were vital to the fortunes of Rome. 
Kronos Saturn A very ancient god, the father of many of the others. Cronus or Kronos is known for having swallowed his children, until his youngest child, Zeus, forced him to regurgitate. The Roman version is far more benign. The Saturnalia festival celebrates his pleasant rule. This god is sometimes conflated with Chronos (time).
Persephone Proserpina The daughter of Demeter, the wife of Hades, and another goddess important in religious mystery cults.
Poseidon Neptune The sea and fresh water springs god, brother of Zeus and Hades. He is also associated with horses. 
Zeus Jupiter Sky and thunder god, the head honcho and one of the most promiscuous of the gods.

 Minor Gods of the Greeks and Romans

Greek Name Roman Name Description​
Erinyes Furiae The Furies were three sisters who at the behest of the gods, sought vengeance for wrongs.
Eris Discordia The goddess of discord, who caused trouble, especially if you were foolish enough to ignore her.
Eros Cupid The god of love and desire.
Moirae Parcae The goddesses of fate.
Charites Gratiae The goddesses of charm and beauty.
Helios Sol The sun, titan and great-uncle or cousin of Apollo and Artemis.
Horai Horae The goddesses of the seasons.
Pan Faunus Pan was the goat-footed shepherd, the bringer of music and the god of pastures and woods.
Selene Luna The moon, titan and great-aunt or cousin of Apollo and Artemis.
Tyche Fortuna The goddess of chance and good fortune.

Ancient Sources of Greek and Roman Gods

The great Greek epics, Hesiod's "Theogony" and Homer's "Iliad" and "Odyssey," provide much of the basic information on the Greek gods and goddesses. The playwrights add to this and give more substance to the myths alluded to in the epics and other Greek poetry. Greek pottery gives us visual clues about the myths and their popularity.

The ancient Roman writers Vergil, in his epic Aeneid, and Ovid, in his Metamorphoses and Fasti, weave the Greek myths into the Roman world.

Sources and Further Reading

  • Gantz, Timothy. "Early Greek Myth." Baltimore MD: Johns Hopkins University Press. 1996. 
  • "Greek and Roman Materials." Perseus Collection. Medford MA: Tufts University. 
  • Hard, Robin. "The Routledge Handbook of Greek Mythology." London: Routledge, 2003. 
  • Hornblower, Simon, Antony Spawforth, and Esther Eidinow, eds. "The Oxford Classical Dictionary." 4th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012. 
  • Smith, William, and G.E. Marindon, eds. "A Classical Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography, Mythology, and Geography." London: John Murray, 1904.