Thursday, July 14, 2011

"Hecate is a Crone Goddess" and Other 'Myth'conceptions...

I wasn't sure whether to put this in "Alternate and Revisionist History" but this is a companion thread to my "What are some doozies you've heard?" over in that section.

What strange/odd/blatantly untrue things have you heard regarding the gods?

For instance, there's the 'Hecate is a crone goddess,' one that seems to annoy Hellenics everywhere, but one I've seen is that Hecate is a goddess of cats, and the story that is cited is when she (or another goddess) turns a sorceress into a cat as punishment for her wicked ways (a variation is that she took pity on the poor animal and adopted it as her own). I was curious to see if this story had any basis in textual sources, so I looked it up at

Now, what is interesting is that the word that is commonly accepted to mean "cat" is here translated as "polecat", which aren't cats, they're weasels! I guess "goddess of weasels" doesn't sound as glamorous or "witchy" as "goddess of cats".

Off the top of my head, I've heard:

"Freyja is a mother goddess/an earth goddess/a sun goddess/a moon goddess."

Everyone, just because a goddess has children doesn't mean that they are automatically a mother goddess type. I can see Freyja being an earth goddess in a sense, but not say, in the way that Gaia is an earth goddess. It is a stretch to think of her as a sun goddess, IMO, since Sunna already fills that role, but I can't for the life of me connect her to the moon (or celestial phenomena in general).

"Inanna/Ishtar is a goddess of peace." This is one that one of my professors told us about as part of a discussion on feminist interpretations of the Goddess/goddesses in general, and even then it seemed...odd. It sounds almost Orwellian: "War is Peace" and such.

I've also heard variations of "Pan isn't a lustful god." Really? So what was he doing chasing all those nymphs around? Let me guess, it was a friendly game of tag, right?

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