Artemis


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Artemis

(är`təmĭs), in Greek religion and mythology, Olympian goddess, daughter of Zeus and Leto and twin sister of Apollo. Artemis' early worship, especially at Ephesus, identified her as an earth goddess, similar to Astarte. In later legend, however, she was primarily a virgin huntress, goddess of wildlife and patroness of hunters. Of the many animals sacred to her, the bear was most important. Artemis valued her chastity so highly that she took terrible measures against anyone who even slightly threatened her (e.g., ActaeonActaeon
, in Greek mythology, son of Aristaeus and Autonoë. Because he saw Artemis bathing naked, she changed him into a stag, and his own dogs killed him.
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). She was attended by nymphs, whose virginity she guarded as jealously as her own. She was also an important goddess in the life of women, concerned with marriage and with the young of all creatures. As the complement to Apollo, she was often considered a moon goddess and as such was identified with Selene and Hecate. In ancient Greece, the worship of Artemis was widespread. The Romans identified her with Diana. She is mentioned in the biblical book of Acts of the ApostlesActs of the Apostles,
book of the New Testament. It is the only 1st-century account of the expansion of Christianity in its earliest period. It was written in Greek anonymously as early as c.A.D. 65, but more likely later in the century, as a sequel to the Gospel of St. Luke.
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, where she appears to be in competition with the god of the Christians.

Artemis (Diana)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Daughter of Zeus and Leto and twin sister of Apollo, Artemis was one of the twelve great gods and goddesses of Olympus. She was a Greek goddess mainly associated with wildlife and with human birth. She was originally one of the great Mother Goddesses, with emphasis on her role as virgin huntress and patroness of chastity. As Apollo's twin sister, she is regarded as a divinity of the light, specifically the light of the mon, and as such has been an influential archetype for Witches. Her symbol is the female bear and she is associated with the constellation Ursa Major.

Legend has it that she was born on the sixth day of the month of Thargelion, a day before her brother. As she grew up in her favorite Arcadia, she would hunt accompanied by sixty young Oceanids and twenty nymphs. Armed with bow and arrows given to her by Zeus, she gained the epithet Apollousa, "the destructress," and was a deity of sudden death. She was especially venerated in Arcadia but was also worshiped throughout Greece, Crete and Asia Minor.

Her Roman equivalent is Diana, described as "the eternal feminist." She is the source of magical power for Witches, who gather to adore her at the full of the moon (see ARADIA). The Canon Episcopi of the tenth century condemned those who "believe and profess themselves, in the hours of the night to ride upon certain beasts with Diana, the goddess of the pagans." She is a slim, beautiful virgin, usually depicted with her hair drawn back and wearing a short tunic—a Dorian chiton. She is frequently accompanied by either a young hind or a dog. As goddess of fertility, she is sometimes depicted with many breasts.

Artemis made chastity a strict law, although she did fall in love with Orion, whom she later shot in the head when tricked into doing so by Apollo. She had a dark and vindictive character and many were punished by death or torment when they crossed her or forgot to pay her reverence. Yet she could also be gentle and loving. She was also a music goddess and lover of singing and dancing.

Most Wiccans honor Artemis/Diana as part of the triple goddess aspect of the moon and as a nurturer and protector. She has inspired the Dianic, strongly feminist, tradition of Wicca.

Artemis

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Artemis, asteroid 105 (the 105th asteroid to be discovered, on September 16, 1868), is approximately 126 kilometers in diameter and has an orbital period of 3.6 years. Artemis was named after the Greek goddess of the hunt. J. Lee Lehman associates this asteroid with the psychological urges evoked by “the hunt”—hunting, killing, and eating. Jacob Schwartz gives the astrological significance of Artemis as “relating to childbirth, animal husbandry, hunting and devouring as a form of emotional absorption and transmutation.”

Sources:

Kowal, Charles T. Asteroids: Their Nature and Utilization. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Ellis Horwood Limited, 1988.
Lehman, J. Lee. The Ultimate Asteroid Book. West Chester, PA: Whitford Press, 1988.
Room, Adrian. Dictionary of Astronomical Names. London: Routledge, 1988.
Schwartz, Jacob. Asteroid Name Encyclopedia. St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 1995.

Artemis

(Rom. Diana) moon goddess; virgin huntress. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 36]

Artemis

(Rom. Diana) goddess of childbirth. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 59]

Artemis

(Rom. Diana) moon goddess; virgin huntress. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 36]
See: Hunting

Artemis

(Rom. Diana) goddess of the moon. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 36; Brewer Dictionary, 727]
See: Moon

Artemis

Greek myth the virgin goddess of the hunt and the moon: the twin sister of Apollo
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