Although much of her power appeared generally dark or menacing, Hecate could also be a merciful goddess. Hecate is usually depicted with a burning torch in her hand and with a dog laying at her feet, its head raised. The goddess Hecate had unusual rituals performed in her honour, which include the offerings of food given at crossroads, road junctions, and any other sort of boundary or threshold known as the supper of Hecate. The keys that she is sometimes shown holding are supposed to be the keys of the Underworld. The goddess Hecate is generally depicted as either an old woman in a long dress or a young woman in a knee-length skirt with hunting boots. Some versions of Scylla's myth say she was once a beautiful sea nymph. To learn more about other Goddesses and exciting information, keep visiting on LearningMole. . Of course, as with many stories of Hecate there was also a darker version. Hecate was also linked to a lot of other goddesses from other pantheons. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree. The triple goddesses are often referred to as the Maiden, Mother (or Matron), and Crone. Kos, Erythrai,Samothrace, Thessaly, and Miletos also worshipped the. She was not portrayed as being loving towards children but as someone who took revenge against anyone that harmed children. Hecate is usually thought to have originated in Thrace, a wild northern region of Greece that is also known for its tales of Amazons. Moon Goddess of Hidden Wisdom, Change and Darkness. She was also closely associated to the spiritual world, ghosts, and the dead. Hecate helps or protects warriors, athletes, hunters, horsemen, herders, shepherds, fishermen, and children. She is not a typical one-dimensional goddess but lives on many different levels. As the Romans developed and constructed superior road systems, we started to see the emergence of choices and nowadays in modern. The food offered to this deity included cheese, cakes of eggs, and a dish of red mullet. Meanwhile, others believe she is the progeny of Hecate and Phorcys. The dog was so closely tied to her than in many ancient stories people could hear the howling and barking of her sacred animal when her magic was used nearby. Since the 5th century BCE, the goddess has been linked to the darker parts of life, like death, witchcraft, magic, the Moon, dreams, fierce hounds, and creatures that roam the night. Still, she was in charge of things that put her in the spotlight. Anatolia, which covered most of what is now Turkey, was a region that had close ties to the Greek world. When Alcmene was in labor with Heracles, Hera attempted to stop the childs birth. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). On an Attic vase from the 5th century BCE, a woman is shown giving a goddess a puppy and a basket of cakes. On her head she sometimes wears a kalathos, a tall wicker basket, or a moon sickle. Authors from the past, like Ovid and Pausanias, say that dogs, especially black dogs, were given to the goddess as sacrifices. As a cthonic goddess of the underworld, her rituals and rites were often associated with death and secrecy. In later times, the most common way to show Hecate in art is as a three-headed goddess with each head facing a different direction at a crossroads. The Lampades are people who carry torches and travel with the goddess at night. By her very nature Hecate was a goddess that existed on the edges of the Greek pantheon, yet she was also a household goddess who watched over every door in Greece. She would go with Persephone to the Underworld every year when the girl returned to Hades. It is unclear exactly when Hecate became so closely linked with magic and witchcraft. The goddess had a lot of powers, some of which were later taken over by other gods. Some myths suggest that Zeus and Hera were the parents of this Goddess, and that is how she came to control the heavens and the earth. In the physical world this could mean anything from doorways to city walls and state borders. Regula, deTraci. She thus becomes a deity of the lower world; but this notion does not occur till the time of the Greek tragedians, though it is generally current among the later writers. Controlling who moved through the border between the earth and the underworld gave her a unique power to summon spirits and raise the dead. She's ill at ease in cities and civilization. This food offering was known as the Supper of Hecate. Thus, pillars called Hecataea stood at crossroads and doorways, perhaps to keep away evil spirits. In mythology Nyx represented night. My work has also been published on Buzzfeed and most recently in Time magazine. "Hecate: Greece's Dark Goddess of the Crossroads." Share This Post. Persis and Asteria, two Titans from the generation of deities prior to the Olympians, are the legendary parents of Hecate. Her friends are the Erinyes, winged creatures that punish bad behaviour, and her children are the Empusae, female demons that like to seduce travellers. 170 BCE). Her attributes, besides the torch, are the snake, whip, dagger, and sword. Hecate was a goddess in Greek Mythology. They are sometimes represented with the familiar aspects of the maiden, mother, and crone. She could not undo the curse, but she made the polecat her sacred servant. She is often pictured holding keys because, as the goddess of boundaries, she held the power to open and close the doors to the realm of Hades. Hecate is petitioned for fertility, especially for female children. Follow for more great fun learning. "Worker-from-afar." If you are interested in effective unique protection magickCLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE! Hesiod, for example, seemed to hold in in high regard and makes no mention of this darker association. A: Hecate is the Greek Goddess of magic and witchcraft. Both of these gods were thought to be in charge of the dead and had something to do with Persephone coming back in the spring. Major temple shrines to Hecate were in the regions of Phrygia and Caria. Hecate or Hekate [a] is a goddess in ancient Greek religion and mythology, most often shown holding a pair of torches, a key, snakes, or accompanied by dogs, [1] and in later periods depicted as three-formed or triple-bodied. As worshippers began to focus on one aspect of a god more than others, that gods secondary purposes were separated into another deity altogether. Even in descriptions of Medeas witchcraft, it is difficult to distinguish magical rituals from more standard worship and rites. Empusa or Empousa (/ m p j u s /; Ancient Greek: ; plural: Empousai) is a shape-shifting female being in Greek mythology, said to possess a single leg of copper, commanded by Hecate, whose precise nature is obscure. It is the story of how the polecat became one of her companions. She was known by her Roman name, Trivia, as well as by her triple form. Hecate was the daughter of Perses and "gold-wreathed" Astraea (the starry night), and her sway extended over earth, heaven, and hell, for which reason she is represented in works of art as a triple divinity, having three female bodies, all young and beautiful, and united together. Lastly, the goddess is mentioned in the tragedies of Euripides and Sophocles, among others. Hecate was also known as the queen or Goddess of the night. Hecate is known to rule over the sky, the earth, and the sea. Instead, some believe that the goddess originated in Asia Minor. I have been in love with all things related to Mythology. She is often depicted carrying one or several torches to remind of her connection with the night and insculpturewith three faces, representing her role as the guardian of crossroads. Article created on Monday, March 3, 1997. From the 5th century BCE, the goddess hecate is associated with the darker side of the human experience, that isdeath, witchcraft, magick, the Moon, dreams, hell hounds and creatures which roam the darkness of night. You can email the site owner to let them know you were blocked. Greeks focused worship on the more protective aspects of Artemis, goddess that existed on the edges of the Greek, The Norns These three goddesses were the Norse equivalent of the Moirai. On any trip to Greece, it's helpful to have some knowledge of the Greek gods and goddesses. For many it is a time to connect with Her, to thank her for her blessings, her guidance and her protection during the last lunar cycle and also to ask her to bless and protect them in the new lunar cycle. She was often placed at the entrance of homes to help protect against the evil forces of the world. In sculptures from the Classical and Hellenistic Periods, Hecate has been shown as a woman with three bodies or a single body with three heads. Still another school of thought links her, at least linguistically, to Egypt. She was the daughter of Perses and Asteria. All these were also given Hekate in her Deipnon (food offering). A popular story among the Greeks was that the dog that accompanied Hecate was the Trojan queen Hecuba. Hades was pleased with this, and Hecate was allowed to come and go as she pleased from the Underworld. Apollo is often called Hekatos, the masculine form of his name. HEKATE (Hecate) was the goddess of magic, witchcraft, the night, moon, ghosts and necromancy. A competing theory says that Hecate did not develop in Greece at all. Writings throughout the centuries have woven different tales about Hecate and her role as a goddess. The cave and the dawn are both thresholds- liminal times, thresholds between the earth and the underworld and night and day. And there is a good book titled Hekate liminal rites By David Rankine and Sorite DEsteyou should check out. This is how she came to command the earth, bliss . In the Greco-Roman world, the crossroads were places of spirits, doorways to the other world(s), places of magic, spells and necromancy and also places of purification. Hecate is the Goddess of witchcraft, magic, crossroads, ghosts and necromancy. She was the only Titan who kept her power while Zeus was in charge. Lycophron, 77; Scholiast on Aristophanes'. Tzetzes on Lycophron, 1175; Scholiast on Theocritus, ii, 36. What Were the Hamadryads in Greek Mythology? She is often pictured holding keys because, as the goddess of boundaries, she held the power to open and close the doors to the realm of Hades. The time of the dark moon is a special time of the month to give offerings to Hecate. Many of the rituals described in ancient texts, for example the elaborate sacrifice of a ewe in Argonautica, are in keeping with what is known about the worship of other deities of the underworld. If you purchase using the buy now button we may earn a small commission. Several times, authors make a connection between Medeas use of magic, both harmful and protective, and her worship of Hecate. She was a goddess that could be both a protective guardian and a source of menace. In Greece, there is some evidence that Hecate was originally seen as a much more benevolent, cosmic goddess. Hecate was also offered the sacrifice of dogs, especially puppies. Learning Mole focuses on educating children of all ages in key skills of Maths, English and learning through crafts. Hekat) is the feminine form of hekatos, an epithet of the god Apollo meaning "the one who works from afar."But the true etymology of the name is uncertain. There are cult sites for the goddess Hecate in Caria, which shows that people there worshipped her. As these stories were passed on, though, they often changed. outlandish in her infernal aspects, she is more at home on the fringes than in the centre ofGreekpolytheism. Hecate rules over the night, magic, and places where three roads meet. She was there when Demeters daughter Persephone was taken to the Underworld, and she helped search for her with a torch in her hand after she saw it happen. Nearby Recently Sold Homes. Even in her origin, Hecate moved between two places. Hecate's appearance is dark-haired and beautiful, but with an eerie edge to that beauty befitting a goddess of the night (though the actual goddess of the night is Nyx). Hecate (Hekate) is the goddess of boundaries and guardian of crossroads; she is often shown with three faces and carrying a torch to show her connection to the night. The most popular theory is that the Carians in Asia Minor brought Hecate to Greece, where she became a part of their religion. She is the witness to every crime. As was already said, the dog was Hecates most holy animal. We know you don't want to miss any news or research breakthroughs. People believed that by honoring and praying to this Goddess, their homes would be preserved from the vengeance of the dead. On Greek pottery, she is usually shown as a young woman holding a torch or a key. She was specifically associated with witchcraft, magick, the Moon, Archways, and creatures of the night such as hell-hounds and ghosts. They believed that by praising the goddess, the restless dead would be soothed and not deliver vengeance on the family. Good is she also when men contend at the games, for there too the goddess is with them and profits them and to those whose business is in the grey discomfortable sea, and who pray to Hekate and the loud-crashing Earth-Shaker [Poseidon], easily the glorious goddess gives great catch, and easily she takes it away as soon as seen, if so she will. She has long been associated with witchcraft and the occult, even necromancy. Esoteric writing from this time says that Hecate has the heads of a horse, a dog, and a snake. A mysterious divinity, who, according to the most common tradition, was a daughter of Persaeus or Perses and Asteria, whence she is called Perseis.1 Others describe her as a daughter of Zeus and Demeter, and state that she was sent out by her father in search of Persephone;2 others again make her a daughter of Zeus either by Pheraea or by Hera;3 and others, lastly, say that she was a daughter of Leto or Tartarus.4 Homer does not mention her. She appears in Ovid's Metamorphoses. Hecate's powers transcended the boundaries of the sky, the earth, the seas, and the underworld. They call her Aristaion or Night. They thought she would protect them and keep away evil spirits. She is helping a dog attack a giant who looks like a snake. The goddess was especially appealed to by sorceresses for aid in their magic and spellsand appears on surviving examples of curse tablets. On the other hand, Euripides says that Leto is her mother. This is how she came to command the earth, bliss, and sea. Of course, as the goddess of boundaries she had the power to let things in as well as keep them out. At least one story, however, gives the goddess a much more human origin. THE MOST COMPLETE COURSE IN PRACTICAL MAGICK EVER RELEA Advanced Magick for the 21st Century The Adeptu 3 Special gods of old Briton You should revisit! Hecate was a goddess in Greek Mythology. This article was most recently revised and updated by, From Athena to Zeus: Basics of Greek Mythology, Ancient Origins - Hecate: Triple-Bodied Greek Goddess of Witchcraft and Keeper of Keys, Hecate - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). In aiding Demeter during her search for the missing Persephone and transfiguring Hecuba to spare her captivity or death she showed a level of compassion that might not be expected from an occult figure. SOLD JUN 15, 2022. According to them, Hecate is known to support bravery and hence encourage soldiers, warriors, athletes, etc. In many cultures and religions in many lands. It was believed that she could see in all directions. Hectate is derived from the Greek word 'hekatos,' which 'means worker from afar.' Hecate was the principal goddess who had jurisdiction over enchantments and spells. Seeing her friend in pain, Galinthias tricked the Moirai into thinking the child had been born despite their interference. The offerings to the goddess were made each month during the night of a new moon. However, she is believed to be protective of human beings. Contrary to popular current belief she wasnt originally a matron for women but for all who fit the above categories. Hecate typically responds to petitions via visions and dreams. She is also mentioned in Aeneid, a play by Virgil where she guides one of the characters, Sibyl, in the Underworld. She witnessed the abduction of Demeters daughter Persephone to the underworld and, torch in hand, assisted in the search for her. She may be petitioned for a swift, painless death. Her association with dark magic is also tied to her identification as an underworld goddess. Hecate: [noun] a Greek goddess associated especially with the underworld, night, and witchcraft. The crossroads were and are also places where several accidents occurred and or ambushes, holdups they can be places of vulnerability where fates seem to be on rare occasions sealed. She was connected to occult practices such as witchcraft and magic, the Moon, gateways, and nocturnal beasts such as hellhounds and ghosts. A: In Greek Mythology, Hecate was the Goddess of magic and witchcraft. Kidadl is supported by you, the reader. Hecate is a goddess of life, death, regeneration, and magic. Hecate is remembered best not as a goddess of boundaries, but as a goddess of magic. Hecate was the chief goddess presiding over magic and spells. "Hecate: Greece's Dark Goddess of the Crossroads." Later periods show statues of Hecate in three-fold having 3 separate bodies and faces. Her main jobs were to control boundaries, witchcraft, and the Underworld. Her companions are known to punish wrong doing and criminals. The necromancers not only conjured the spirits of the dead on nightly cemeteries but also on the crossroads, the leftovers from spells are buried on the crossroads in many magical traditions and in many religions it is believed that the spirits are lingering on the crossroads. First 6 Months for 1.99 with Monthly Student and Teacher Plans Dismiss, 2022 Learning Mole. The Matres While little is known of their exact function, over 1,000 images of the three goddesses have been found in Northwestern Europe. The Orphic Mysteries said that Hestia was the daughter of Demeter instead. Hecate was considered an ancient Thracian divinity and she was also a titan; the titans ruled the heavens, the earth and the sea. Greek pantheon was once much smaller than we know. Hecate is invoked when justice is not forthcoming from other channels. Originally she seems to have been an extremely powerful and benevolent goddess, identified with three other goddessesSelene (in heaven), Artemis (on earth), and Persephone (in the underworld). The Egyptian fertility goddess Heqet was associated with magic, which the Egyptians called heqa. A: In Greek mythology, Hecate was the Goddess of witchcraft and magic. Hecate has the power to grant or deny any mortals wish. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family. In literature, there is a clear link between her, Demeter, and Persephone. These took the form of small cakes of eggs, cheese, bread, and dog meat, which were lit with miniature torches or, alternatively, a dish of red mullet, which was usually prohibited from offerings to the other gods. By joining Kidadl you agree to Kidadls Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and consent to receiving marketing communications from Kidadl. As you may already know Hecateis a goddess ofGreek mythologywho was capable of both good and evil. Historian Robert Graves notes that the heads could be distinctive of a dog, lion and horse, representing the constellations which cover the calendar year. She is sometimes shown holding a key. The Tridevi The triad of goddesses in Hinduism often represents the three states of creation, preservation, and destruction. The duration ofa dark moonvaries between 1.5 and 3.5 days) to the crossroads. When they heard this the Moirai uncrossed their arms, releasing the bonds that kept the infant Heracles from the earth. In this manner, pillars known as Hecate stood at key intersections and entryways, possibly to ward off malevolent spirits. This grouping of the goddesses happens again in Aristophanes Frogs (1358f) when Aeschylus character calls on the goddesses. Hecate may be invoked for healing, especially if medical solutions have failed or are not an option. It has been suggested that this arose from the use of watchdogs, particularly at night, to scare away intruders and warn their owners of danger. Hecates actual origins may be in caria, Turkey we can find The Temple of Hecate in the Sanctuary of Hecate at Lagina in Caria (modern-day Turkey which has been dated to the last quarter of the 2nd century CE. Hecate appears in many plays and poems as the personification of darkness, the moon, and magic. Some of the statues she made as offerings to the goddess had the Graces dancing around her. In single form she appears on Greek vases and coins. (accessed March 4, 2023). Check your inbox for your latest news from us. She could switch between being a Titan and a goddess in Greek mythology. Quite often each face is different, one of a dog, one of a horse and one of a goddess. Regula, deTraci. Like most of the Olympic pantheon, Hecate predates the written mythology of Greece. And all these views if we go back in time can also be found in the Greco-Roman world. We strive to recommend the very best things that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents. Hecate is also sometimes interpreted in association with Artemis and Selene. Hesiod describes the goddess in the following glowing terms: Zeus, Cronus son, honoured [Hecate] above all others: he gave her splendid gifts to have a share of the earth and of the barren sea, and from the starry sky as well she has a share in honour, and is honoured most of all by the immortal gods. The iconography had not yet come to include her usual attributes, such as her keys and torches or her three aspects. Persephone was married to Hades and was the queen of the Underworld. Hecate Triodos is the specific aspect presiding over crossroads. My name is Mike and for as long as I can remember (too long!) We offer advice and practical, interactive ideas to help parents challenge, teach and develop their childrens skills at home. Medeas magic was often described as having to do with necromancy, sleep, and the night. Hecate became Persephones guardian and close friend while she was living in the Underworld. Performance & security by Cloudflare. In Hesiod she is the daughter of the Titan Perses and the nymph Asteria and has power over heaven, earth, and sea; hence, she bestows wealth and all the blessings of daily life. A: In the play Macbeth by Shakespeare, in Act three, scene five, Hecate was shown to be angry with the witches as they excluded her from their meetings with Macbeth. Most likely, the cults of Thessalian Pherai (Pherae) and Eleusis saw Hekate as Chthonian (Underworld) Hermes's wife. Many historians believe that the Greek pantheon was once much smaller than we know it today. In Late Antiquity, the empousai have been described as a category of phantoms or spectres, equated with the lamiai and mormolykeia . She was accompanied by packs of barking dogs. She may be invoked for protection for dogs and from dogs. A lot of the same things were said about all of the goddesses. The goddess, on the other hand, usually has human heads. If you use any of the content on this page in your own work, please use the code below to cite this page as the source of the content. Hecate, goddess accepted at an early date into Greek religion but probably derived from the Carians in southwest Asia Minor. Ft. 1302 Covington Ct, Virginia Beach, VA 23453. Many people think that worshipping the goddess began before the Greeks, while others think it started in Thrace. Eating crunchy while enjoying a good movie or your favourite video game is a blessing. Dogs also howl at the Moon, so this could be a link. Many Anatolian gods had their roots in the Greek pantheon. However, she was transformed by Circe into the monster form. I have been in love with all things related to Mythology. The aspects of the goddess that had darker connotations were separated from her to create another goddess altogether in the character of Hecate. And during these times Hecate was also very much connected to other portals- such as doors, entrances, thresholds and eventually the crossroads. If you enjoyed this content why not dive into some more historical eras check out these articles: Ancient Rome, Ancient Egyptians The First Woman Pharaoh, Greek Mythology Medusa, Native American History. By the first century CE, Lucans Pharsalia made it clear that Hecate was the goddess of magic and witchcraft. goddess, with the latter having a 6th-century BCE circular altar for sacrifices to be made in her honour (the earliest archaeological evidence of her worship). The goddess was also worshipped in Kos, Erythrai, Samothrace, Thessaly, and Miletos. She is described as of terrible appearance, either with three bodies or three heads, the one of a horse, the second of a dog, and the third of a lion.14 In works of art she was some-times represented as a single being, but sometimes also as a three-headed monster.15, Besides Samothrace and Aegina, we find express mention of her worship at Argos16 and at Athens, where she had a sanctuary under the name of Epipyrgidia (), on the acropolis, not far from the temple of Nike.17 Small statues or symbolical representations of Hecate, called (hekataia), were very numerous, especially at Athens, where they stood before or in houses, and on spots where two roads crossed each other; and it would seem that people consulted such as oracles.18, At the close of every month dishes with food were set out for her and other averters of evil at the points where two roads crossed each other; and this food was consumed by poor people.19 The sacrifices offered to her consisted of dogs, honey, and black female lambs.20. Some scholars of ancient Greek religion have noted that Apollo was occasionally given the name Hecatos, which they interpret to mean one who reaches far. These academics believe that Hecate, therefore, may have once been another name for Apollos twin sister, Artemis. Wormwood and cypress are traditional herbs in spirit work and lavender brings a kind of protection to your workings without banishing all the spirits around you at the crossroads. It is unclear why this change took place. In single form she appears on Greek vases and coins. Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress, A Recommended Book on Hekate Liminal Rites, Planetary MAGICK -7 Facts you should know, Magickal Protection-The BEST 10 SOLUTIONS. The name "Hecate" (Greek , translit. She is commonly depicted as a three-headed Goddess, or the Greek version of The Triple Goddess, being the Maiden, Mother, and Crone depending on the season. Modern neopagan and Wiccan religions often include worship of a triple goddess, and of Hecate herself. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. While every effort has been made to follow citation style rules, there may be some discrepancies. Scholars say that this Apolline name connects Hecate to Artemis, another goddess with a similar area of power. Some later stories agreed that Asteria was her mother, but claimed Zeus had been her father. In fact, Hecate might have been another goddess altogether! Further, the home would be blessed and any wrong-doing by family members would be forgiven and the household purified. She's ill at ease in cities and civilization. She is also Queen of the Night, and is highly connected to All Hallow's Eve. kroger political donations, roman roads in dorset map,