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A tutelary () (also tutelar) is a
deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of English'' defines deity as a God (male deity), god or goddess (in a polytheistic religion), or anything revered as divine. C. Scott Littleto ...

deity
or a
spirit Spirit may refer to: *Spirit (animating force) In folk belief, spirit is the vitalism , vital principle or animating force within all life , living things. As recently as 1628 and 1633 respectively, both William Harvey and René Descartes st ...
who is a guardian, patron, or protector of a particular place, geographic feature, person, lineage, nation, culture, or occupation. The etymology of "tutelary" expresses the concept of safety and thus of guardianship. In
late Greek Late Greek means writings in the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the dialects of the Greek ...
and
Roman religion Religion in ancient Rome includes the ancestral ethnic religion In religious studies, an ethnic religion is a religion or Belief#Religion, belief associated with a particular ethnic group. Ethnic religions are often distinguished from univer ...
, one type of tutelary deity, the ''
genius A genius is a person who displays exceptional ability, productivity, universality in genres, or , typically to a degree that is associated with the achievement of new discoveries or advances in a domain of . Geniuses may be s who excel across ma ...
'', functions as the personal deity or ''
daimon Daimon or Daemon (δαίμων: "god", "godlike", "power", "fate") originally referred to a lesser deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of English'' defines deity as a G ...
'' of an individual from birth to death. Another form of personal tutelary spirit is the
familiar spirit In European folklore Folklore is the expressive body of culture shared by a particular group of people; it encompasses the traditions common to that culture, subculture or group. These include oral traditions such as Narrative, tales, prove ...
of European folklore.


In Judeo-Christian

A similar concept in
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of ...

Christianity
would be the
patron saint A patron saint, patroness saint, patron hallow or heavenly protector is a saint who in Catholic Church, Catholicism, Anglicanism, or Eastern Orthodoxy is regarded as the heavenly advocacy, advocate of a nation, place, craft, activity, class, c ...
example of
archangels An archangel is an angel of high Christian angelic hierarchy, rank. The word "archangel" itself is usually associated with the Abrahamic religions, but beings that are very similar to archangels are found in a number of religious traditions. Th ...

archangels
"Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, etc." or to a lesser extent, the
guardian angel A guardian angel is a type of angel An angel is a supernatural The supernatural encompasses supposed phenomena or entities that are not subject to the . This term is attributed to , such as s, s, , and . It also includes claimed a ...

guardian angel
.


America

* Tonás, tutelary animal spirit among the
Zapotec Zapotec () or zapoteca may refer to: Cultures and languages * Zapotec civilization, a historical indigenous pre-Columbian civilization and archaeological culture of central Mexico * Zapotec languages, a group of closely related indigenous Mesoamer ...
. *
Totem A totem (from oj, ᑑᑌᒼ, italics=no or ''doodem The Anishinaabe The Anishinaabe are a group of culturally related Indigenous peoples resident in what are now called Canada and the United States. They include the Odawa, Saulteaux, O ...

Totem
s, familial or clan spirits among the Ojibwe, can be animals.


Asia

*
Chinese folk religion Chinese folk religion, also known as Chinese popular religion, is a general term covering a range of traditional religious practices of Han Chinese The Han Chinese (), or the Han people (), is an East Asian East Asia is the ...
, both past and present, includes a myriad of tutelary deities. Exceptional individuals, highly cultivated sages and prominent ancestors will be deified and honored after passing away.
Lord Guan
Lord Guan
is the patron of military personnel and police, while
Mazu Mazu is a Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, world's most populo ...

Mazu
is the patron of fishermen and sailors. **
Tu Di Gong Tudigong ( "Lord of the Soil and the Ground") or Tudishen ( "God of the Soil and the Ground"), also known simply as Tudi ( "Soil-Ground") is a tutelary deity of a locality and the human communities who inhabit it in Chinese folk religion ...

Tu Di Gong
(Earth Deity) is the tutelary deity of an individual locality and each locality has its own Earth Deity. ** Cheng Huang Gong (City God) is the guardian deity of individual city, and are worship by local officials and locals since imperial times. * In
Hinduism Hinduism () is an Indian religion Indian religions, sometimes also termed Dharmic religions or Indic religions, are the religions that originated in the Indian subcontinent. These religions, which include Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, ...

Hinduism
, tutelary deities are known as ishta-devata and
Kuldevi ''Kula-dèvatā'' (), also known as ''Kuladeva'' or ''Kuladevi'', is an ancestral tutelary deity A tutelary () (also tutelar) is a deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary of ...
or
Kuldevta ''Kula-dèvatā'' (), also known as ''Kuladeva'' or ''Kuladevi'', is an ancestral tutelary deity A tutelary ( or ) (also tutelar) is a deity A deity or god is a supernatural being considered divinity, divine or sacred. The ''Oxford Dictionary ...
. Gramadevata are guardian deities of villages.
Deva Deva may refer to: Entertainment * ''Deva'' (1989 film), a 1989 Kannada film * ''Deva'' (1995 film), a 1995 Tamil film * ''Deva'' (2002 film), a 2002 Bengali film * Deva (2007 Telugu film) * ''Deva'' (2017 film), a 2017 Marathi film * Deva ( ...
s can also be seen as tutelary.
Shiva Shiva (; sa, शिव, lit=The Auspicious One, Śiva ), also known as Mahadeva (; ɐɦaːd̪eːʋɐ, is one of the Hindu deities, principal deities of Hinduism. He is the God, Supreme Being in Shaivism, one of the major traditions wit ...

Shiva
is patron of
yogi A yogi is a practitioner of Yoga Yoga (; sa, योग, lit=yoke' or 'union ) is a group of Asana, physical, mind, mental, and Spirituality#Asian traditions, spiritual practices or disciplines that originated in History of India, ...
s and renunciants. City goddesses include: **
Mumbadevi Mumba Devi Mandir is an old temple in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India dedicated to the goddess ', the local incarnation of the Devi (Mother Goddess). The Marathi language, Marathi ' derives from Sanskrit. Mumba Devi is the goddess of the city of Mumba ...
(
Mumbai Mumbai (, ; also known as Bombay — List of renamed Indian cities and states#Maharashtra, the official name until 1995) is the capital city of the Indian States and union territories of India, state of Maharashtra. According to the United ...

Mumbai
) ** Sachchika ( Osian) :Kuladevis include: :* Ambika (
PorwadImage:Ranakpur1.jpg, 300px, Ranakpur Temple Porwad (also known as Porwal) are mainly Jain or Hindu community that originated in southern Rajasthan, India. Ancient inscriptions written in Sanskrit refer to the community as ''Pragvata''. They orig ...
) :*
Mahalakshmi Lakshmi (; '' Lakṣmī'', ), also known as Sri (, IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation of Brahmic family, Indic scripts as employed by Sansk ...
* In
Korean shamanism #REDIRECT Korean shamanism Korean shamanism or Korean folk religion, also known as Shinism or Sinism ( Tosok Shinang) or Shindo (; Hanja: 神道, "way of the spirits/gods"), is the polytheistic and Animism, animistic ethnic religion of Korea wh ...
, ''
jangseung A ''jangseung'' or village guardian is a Korea Korea (officially the "Korean Peninsula") is a region in East Asia. Since 1945 it has been Division of Korea, divided into the two parts which soon became the two sovereign states: North Korea ...
'' and ''
sotdae A () is a tall wooden pole Pole may refer to: Astronomy *Celestial pole, the projection of the planet Earth's axis of rotation onto the celestial sphere; also applies to the axis of rotation of other planets *Pole star, a visible star that is ap ...
'' were placed at the edge of villages to frighten off demons. They were also worshiped as deities. Seonangshin is the patron deity of the village in Korean tradition and was believed to embody the
Seonangdang The Seonangdang (Hangul: 서낭당), also known as the Seonghwangdang (Hangul: 성황당, Hanja:城隍堂) are holy stone cairns or trees that are dedicated to the deity Seonangshin, the patron of villages. The Seonangdang still remain common in th ...
. * In Philippine
animism Animism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Rom ...

animism
, ''
Diwata Diwata may refer to: * Diwata, the equivalent term for anito in the Visayan, Palawan, and Mindanao regions according to Philippine mythology * Diwata (song), a song by Filipino rapper Abra featuring Chito Miranda * Philippine satellites ** Diwata ...
'' or ''Lambana'' are deities or spirits that inhabit sacred places like mountains and mounds and serve as guardians. : *
Maria Makiling Maria Makiling in Philippine mythology is a '' diwata'' ( anito) or ''lambana'' (fairy) associated with Mount Makiling Mount Makiling, or Mount Maquiling, is an inactive stratovolcano A stratovolcano, also known as a composite volcano, is a c ...
is the deity who guards Mt. Makiling. : *
Maria Cacao Maria Cacao is the ''diwata Diwata may refer to: * Diwata, the equivalent term for anito in the Visayan, Palawan, and Mindanao regions according to Philippine mythology * Diwata (song), a song by Filipino rapper Abra featuring Chito Miranda * P ...
and
Maria Sinukuan Apúng Sinukuan is the Kapampangan sun god of war and death who lived on Mount Arayat. During the colonial period, the Spanish rebranded him into Maria Sinukuan, the ''Anito, diwata'' or mountain goddess associated with Mount Arayat in Pampanga, P ...
. * In
Shinto Shinto () is a religion which originated in Japan. Classified as an East Asian religions, East Asian religion by Religious studies, scholars of religion, its practitioners often regard it as Japan's indigenous religion and as a nature religion. ...

Shinto
, the spirits, or ''
kami (often taken to mean "gods A deity or god is a supernatural The supernatural encompasses supposed phenomena or entities that are not subject to the laws of nature. This term is attributed to non-physical entities, such as angel ...
'', which give life to human bodies come from nature and return to it after death. Ancestors are therefore themselves tutelaries to be worshiped. *
Thai Thai or THAI may refer to: * Of or from Thailand, a country in Southeast Asia ** Thai people, the dominant ethnic group of Thailand ** Thai language, a Tai-Kadai language spoken mainly in and around Thailand *** Thai script *** Thai (Unicode block) ...

Thai
provincial capitals have tutelary city pillars and palladiums. The guardian spirit of a house is known as ''Chao Thi'' (เจ้าที่) or ''Phra Phum'' (พระภูมิ). Almost every traditional household in
Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the Mainland Southeast Asia, Indochinese Peninsula, spanning , wi ...

Thailand
has a miniature shrine housing this tutelary deity, known as a
spirit house A spirit house is a shrine to the protective spirit of a place that is found in the Southeast Asian countries of Burma Myanmar (; my, မြန်မာ ) or Burma ( my, ဗမာ ), officially the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, i ...
. *
Tibetan Buddhism Tibetan Buddhism (also referred to as Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, Himalayan Buddhism, and Northern Buddhism) is the form of Buddhism practiced in Tibet and Bhutan, where it is the dominant religion. It also has adherents in the regions surrounding ...
has
Yidam Yidam is a type of deity A deity or god is a supernatural The supernatural encompasses supposed phenomena that are not subject to the laws of nature.https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/supernatural By definition, a supernatura ...
as a tutelary deity.
Dakini A ḍākinī ( sa, डाकिनी; ; mn, хандарма; ; alternatively 荼枳尼, ; 荼吉尼, ; or 吒枳尼, ; Japanese language, Japanese: 荼枳尼 / 吒枳尼 / 荼吉尼, ''dakini'') is a type of female spirit or demon in Hinduism ...

Dakini
is the patron of those who seek knowledge.


Europe


Ancient Greece

Socrates Socrates (; ; –399 BC) was a Greek philosopher from Athens Athens ( ; el, Αθήνα, Athína ; grc, Ἀθῆναι, Athênai (pl.) ) is the capital city, capital and List of cities in Greece, largest city of Greece. Athens domi ...

Socrates
spoke of hearing the voice of his personal spirit or ''daimonion'': The Greeks also thought deities guarded specific places: for instance,
Athena Athena or Athene, often given the epithet An epithet (, ) is a byname, or a descriptive term (word or phrase), accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied ...

Athena
was the patron goddess of the city of
Athens , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in the picture causes the browser to load the appropriate article. rect 15 15 985 460 Acropolis of Athens rect 15 475 48 ...

Athens
.


Ancient Rome

Tutelary deities who guard and preserve a place or a person are fundamental to
ancient Roman religion Religion in ancient Rome includes the ethnic religion of Ancient Rome that the ancient Romans, Romans used to define themselves as a people, as well as the religious practices of peoples brought under Roman rule, in so far as they became widel ...
. The tutelary deity of a man was his
Genius A genius is a person who displays exceptional ability, productivity, universality in genres, or , typically to a degree that is associated with the achievement of new discoveries or advances in a domain of . Geniuses may be s who excel across ma ...
, that of a woman her
Juno Juno commonly refers to: *Juno (mythology), the Roman goddess of marriage and queen of the gods *Juno (film), ''Juno'' (film), 2007 Juno may also refer to: Arts, entertainment and media Fictional characters *Juno, in the film ''Jenny, Juno'' *Jun ...
. In the
Imperial era
Imperial era
, the Genius of the
Emperor An emperor (from la, imperator The Latin word "imperator" derives from the stem of the verb la, imperare, label=none, meaning 'to order, to command'. It was originally employed as a title roughly equivalent to ''commander'' under the Roma ...
was a focus of
Imperial cult An imperial cult is a form of state religion A state religion (also called an established religion or official religion) is a religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations ...
. An emperor might also adopt a major deity as his personal patron or tutelary, as
Augustus Caesar Augustus (23 September 63 BC19 August AD 14) was the first Roman emperor The Roman emperor was the ruler of the Roman Empire during the imperial period (starting in 27 BC). The emperors used a variety of different titles through ...

Augustus
did
Apollo Apollo, grc, Ἀπόλλωνος, ''Apóllōnos'', label=genitive , ; , grc-dor, Ἀπέλλων, ''Apéllōn'', ; grc, Ἀπείλων, ''Apeílōn'', label=Arcadocypriot Greek, ; grc-aeo, Ἄπλουν, ''Áploun'', la, Apollō, ...

Apollo
. Precedents for claiming the personal protection of a deity were established in the Republican era, when for instance the
Roman dictator A dictator was a magistrate The term magistrate is used in a variety of systems of governments and laws to refer to a civilian officer who administers the law. In , a ' was one of the highest ranking government officers, and possessed both an ...
Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), commonly known as Sulla, was a Roman general A general officer is an officer of high rank in the armies, and in some nations' air forces, space forces, or marines Marines or naval infan ...

Sulla
advertised the goddess Victory as his tutelary by holding public games ''(
ludi ''Ludi'' (Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it be ...

ludi
)'' in her honor. Each town or city had one or more tutelary deities, whose protection was considered particularly vital in time of war and siege.
Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, Italy).svg , map_caption = The te ...
itself was protected by a goddess whose name was to be kept ritually secret on pain of death (for a supposed case, see Quintus Valerius Soranus). The
Capitoline Triad The Capitoline Triad was a group of three deities who were worshipped in Religion in ancient Rome, ancient Roman religion in an elaborate temple on Rome's Capitoline Hill (Latin ''Capitolium''). It comprised Jupiter (mythology), Jupiter, Juno (my ...
of
Juno Juno commonly refers to: *Juno (mythology), the Roman goddess of marriage and queen of the gods *Juno (film), ''Juno'' (film), 2007 Juno may also refer to: Arts, entertainment and media Fictional characters *Juno, in the film ''Jenny, Juno'' *Jun ...
,
Jupiter Jupiter is the fifth planet from the Sun and the List of Solar System objects by size, largest in the Solar System. It is a gas giant with a mass more than two and a half times that of all the other planets in the Solar System combined, but ...
, and
Minerva Minerva (; ett, Menrva) is the Roman goddess Roman mythology is the body of of as represented in the and . One of a wide variety of genres of , ''Roman mythology'' may also refer to the modern study of these representations, and to ...

Minerva
were also tutelaries of Rome. The Italic towns had their own tutelary deities. Juno often had this function, as at the
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, it became ...
town of
Lanuvium Lanuvium, modern Lanuvio Lanuvio is a ''comune The (; plural: ) is a local administrative division of Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of a N ...
and the
Etruscan__NOTOC__ Etruscan may refer to: Ancient civilisation *The Etruscan language, an extinct language in ancient Italy *Something derived from or related to the Etruscan civilization **Etruscan architecture **Etruscan art **Etruscan cities **Etruscan ...
city of
Veii Veii (also Veius; it, Veio) was an important ancient Etruscan civilization, Etruscan city situated on the southern limits of Etruria and only north-northwest of Rome, Italy. It now lies in Isola Farnese, in the Comuni of the Province of Rome, c ...

Veii
, and was often housed in an especially grand temple on the ''arx'' (citadel) or other prominent or central location. The tutelary deity of
Praeneste Palestrina (ancient ''Praeneste''; grc, Πραίνεστος, ''Prainestos'') is a modern Italian city and ''comune The (; plural: ) is a basic Administrative division, constituent entity of Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or mun ...
was
Fortuna Fortuna ( la, Fortūna, equivalent to the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. ...

Fortuna
, whose oracle was renowned. The Roman ritual of ''
evocatio The vocabulary of ancient Roman religion was highly specialized. Its study affords important information about the religion, traditions and beliefs of the ancient Romans. This legacy is conspicuous in European cultural history in its influence on ...
'' was premised on the belief that a town could be made vulnerable to military defeat if the power of its tutelary deity were diverted outside the city, perhaps by the offer of superior cult at Rome. The depiction of some goddesses such as the ''Magna Mater'' (Great Mother, or
Cybele Cybele ( ; Phrygian: ''Matar Kubileya/Kubeleya'' "Kubileya/Kubeleya Mother", perhaps "Mountain Mother"; Lydian Lydian may refer to: * Lydians, an ancient people of Anatolia * Lydian language, an ancient Anatolian language * Lydian alphabet * ...
) as " tower-crowned" represents their capacity to preserve the city. A town in the
provinces A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are g ...
might adopt a deity from within the Roman religious sphere to serve as its guardian, or syncretize its own tutelary with such; for instance, a community within the ''
civitas In the history of Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, Italy).svg , m ...
'' of the
Remi The Remi (Gaulish Gaulish was an ancient Celtic language The Celtic languages ( , ) are a group of related languages descended from Proto-Celtic The Proto-Celtic language, also called Common Celtic, is the ancestral proto-language o ...
in
Gaul Gaul ( la, Gallia) was a region of Western Europe Western Europe is the western region of Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rat ...

Gaul
adopted Apollo as its tutelary, and at the capital of the Remi (present-day
Rheims Reims ( , , ; also spelled Rheims in English) is the most populous city in the French of . The city lies northeast of Paris on the river, a tributary of the . Founded by the , Reims became a major city in the . Reims later played a promin ...

Rheims
), the tutelary was
Mars Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and the second-smallest planet in the Solar System, being larger than only Mercury (planet), Mercury. In English, Mars carries the name of the Mars (mythology), Roman god of war and is often referred to ...
Camulus Camulus or Camulos was a theonym A theonym (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast ...
. Tutelary deities were also attached to sites of a much smaller scale, such as storerooms, crossroads, and granaries. Each Roman home had a set of protective deities: the
Lar or Lares
Lar or Lares
of the household or ''familia'', whose shrine was a ''
lararium Lares ( , ; archaic , singular ''Lar'') were Tutelary deity#Ancient Rome, guardian deities in ancient Roman religion. Their origin is uncertain; they may have been hero-ancestors, guardians of the hearth, fields, boundaries, or fruitfulness, or ...

lararium
''; the
Penates In ancient Roman religion, the Di Penates () or Penates ( ) were among the ''dii familiares'', or household deities, invoked most often in domestic rituals. When the family had a meal, they threw a bit into the fire on the hearth for the Penates. ...
who guarded the storeroom ''(penus)'' of the innermost part of the house; Vesta, whose sacred site in each house was the hearth; and the Genius of the ''paterfamilias'', the head of household. The poet Martial lists the tutelary deities who watch over various aspects of his farm. The Architecture of ancient Rome, architecture of a granary ''(horreum)'' featured Niche (architecture), niches for images of the tutelary deities, who might include the ''genius loci'' or guardian spirit of the site, Hercules, Silvanus (mythology), Silvanus, Fortuna Conservatrix ("Fortuna the Preserver") and in the Greek East Aphrodite and Agathodaemon, Agathe Tyche. The ''Lares Compitales'' were the tutelary gods of a neighborhood ''(Vicus (Rome), vicus)'', each of which had a ''compitum'' (shrine) devoted to these. During the Republic, the cult of local or neighborhood tutelaries sometimes became rallying points for political and social unrest.


Germanic Europe

* Fylgja * Hamingja * Landdisir * Landvættir


Slavic Europe

Some tutelary deities are known to exist in Slavic Europe, a more prominent example being that of the Leshy.


Austronesian

* Atua * Hanitu * Hyang * Kaitiaki * Kawas (mythology) * Tiki


See also

* Dvarapala * Eudaemon (mythology) * Guardian angel * Hiisi * Liminal deity * Nagual * National god * Neoshamanism * Patron saint * Wayob, Uay


References

{{Wiktionary, tutelar Tutelary deities, Deities by association