Manes in Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology
i.e. " the good ones" [MANA], is the general name by which the
Romans designated the souls of the departed; but as it is a
natural tendency to consider the souls of departed friends as
blessed spirits, the name of Lares is frequently used as
synonymous with Manes, and hence also they are called dii
Manes, and were worshipped with divine honours. (Cic. de Leg.
2.9, 22; Apul. de Deo Socrat. ; August. de Civ. Dei, 8.26,
9.11; Serv. ad Virg. Aen. 3.63, 168; Ov. Fast. 2.842; Hor.
Carm. 2.8.9.) At certain seasons, which were looked upon as
sacred days (feriae denicales), sacrifices were offered to the
spirits of the departed with the observance of various
ceremonies. But an annual festival, which belonged to all the
Manes in general, was celebrated on the 19th of February,
under the name of Feralia or Parentalia, because it was more
especially the duty of children and heirs to offer sacrifices
to the shades of their parents and benefactors. (Ov. Fast.
2.535; Tertull. Resur. Carn. 1.) - A Dictionary of Greek and
Roman biography and mythology, William Smith, Ed.
Manes in Wikipedia
In ancient Roman religion, the Manes or Di Manes are chthonic
deities sometimes thought to represent the souls of deceased
loved ones. They were associated with the Lares, Genii, and Di
Penates as deities (di)) that pertained to domestic, local,
and personal cult. They were honored during the Parentalia and
Feralia in February.
Latin spells of antiquity were often addressed to The Manes,
who were the spirits of deceased ancestors....