In the later period of the republic they are confounded with the Penates (and other deities), though the distinction between them was probably more sharply marked in earkor times.
The identification of the three Capitoline deities with the Penates, and of these with the Cabeiri, tended to increase this feeling.
By common consent he was deified and all those who could afford the cost obtained his statue or bust; for a long time his statues held a place among the penates of the Romans.
Barker, Lares and Penates (1853); V.
2919 2) the conception of Vesta was still material and not anthropomorphic. The Penates were the numina of the store-cupboard, at first vague and animistic, but later on, as the definite deus-notion was developed, identified with certain of the other divinities of household or state religion.
As Janus is in the household the numen of the door, so in the state he is the god associated with the great gate near the corner of the forum: the Penates have their analogy in the Di Penates populi Romani Quiritium by whom the magistrates take their oath on entering office, the Lar familiaris in the Lares Praestites of the community, and the Genius in the new notion of the Genius populi Romani or Genius urbis Romae.
At the same time the new acquaintance with Greek art introduces the making of cult statues, in which the identified Greek type is usually adopted without change, with such curious results as the representation of the Penates under the form of the Dioscuri.
The custom by which the consuls and praetors or dictators sacrificed on the Alban Mount and at Lavinium to the Penates and to Vesta, before they entered upon office or departed for their province, seems to have been one of great antiquity.