Selene – Goddess of the Moon

Selene was the goddess of the moon, often depicted as a beautiful woman with a crescent moon on her forehead. As a Titaness in Greek mythology, Selene was the daughter of the Titans Hyperion and Theia, who were themselves the children of the primordial deities Gaia and Uranus.

The Story of Selene
According to the myths, Selene fell in love with the mortal shepherd Endymion and would visit him every night while he was asleep. She would gaze upon him lovingly, and some versions of the story suggest that she even had children with him. However, the relationship was not without its challenges. The god Zeus became jealous of Selene’s affection for Endymion and put him into an eternal slumber so that he would never age or die.

Selene was also associated with the goddess Artemis, who was her sister. Together with their brother Apollo, they formed a triad of deities representing the sun, moon, and earth. Selene was responsible for the phases of the moon, and it was believed that she drove her chariot across the sky each night, pulling the moon behind her.

Family of Selene
Selene’s family tree was a complex one, as was common in Greek mythology. Her father was Hyperion, one of the Titans, while her mother was Theia, another Titan. Selene had several siblings, including Eos (the goddess of the dawn) and Helios (the god of the sun). She was also the aunt of the god Hermes and the mother of several children, including Pandeia (the goddess of dew) and the demigod Narcissus.

10 Myths and Facts About Selene

Myth 1: Selene was the most beautiful of all the goddesses. Fact: Selene was known for her beauty, but she was not necessarily considered the most beautiful of all the goddesses. In fact, Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, was often regarded as the most beautiful of all the Greek goddesses.

Myth 2: Selene was associated with the tides. Fact: While Selene was often associated with the moon, which affects the tides, she was not specifically associated with the tides themselves. That association was more commonly made with the sea god Poseidon.

Myth 3: Selene was responsible for causing insanity. Fact: This is a myth. While the term “lunacy” is derived from the Latin word for moon (luna), there is no evidence to suggest that Selene was ever believed to cause insanity or any other mental health issues.

Myth 4: Selene had the power to bring about death and rebirth. Fact: This is true. Selene was believed to have the power to bring about death and rebirth through her association with the moon and the cycles of life and death.

Myth 5: Selene was often depicted as a virgin goddess. Fact: This is true. While Selene was associated with romance and love through her relationship with the mortal shepherd Endymion, she was often depicted as a virgin goddess, much like her sister Artemis.

Myth 6: Selene was a goddess of prophecy. Fact: This is true. Selene was believed to have powers of divination and was often consulted for her ability to reveal secrets and mysteries.

Myth 7: Selene had a son named Nemea. Fact: This is a myth. While Selene had many children, there is no evidence to suggest that she had a son named Nemea.

Myth 8: Selene was responsible for bringing about sleep. Fact: This is a myth. While Selene was associated with the night and darkness, she was not specifically believed to have the power to bring about sleep.

Myth 9: Selene was a goddess of purification. Fact: This is true. Selene was believed to have purifying powers and was often associated with the cleansing of the soul.

Myth 10: Selene was worshipped in ancient Rome as well as Greece. Fact: This is true. While Selene was primarily a Greek goddess, she was also worshipped in ancient Rome, where she was known as Luna and had a temple on the Aventine Hill.

The Symbols of Selene

This symbol of the crescent moon has become synonymous with Selene and is one of the most enduring symbols of her power and influence.

The crescent moon symbol is rich with meaning and symbolism in Greek mythology. It is a representation of the lunar cycle, with the waxing and waning of the moon reflecting the cyclical nature of life and death. Selene was responsible for the phases of the moon, and it was believed that she drove her chariot across the sky each night, pulling the moon behind her. The crescent moon on her forehead was a symbol of her power and control over the moon’s cycles.

In addition to its association with Selene, the crescent moon symbol also had other important meanings in Greek mythology. It was often associated with the goddess Artemis, who was Selene’s sister and was also associated with the moon. Artemis was the goddess of the hunt and the protector of women, and the crescent moon was a symbol of her strength and power.

The crescent moon was also associated with other deities in Greek mythology. For example, it was a symbol of the goddess Hecate, who was associated with witchcraft and magic. Hecate was often depicted holding a torch and a crescent moon, representing her role as a guide through the darkness of the night.

The crescent moon symbol was also used in ancient Greek art and architecture. It was often incorporated into temple designs and sculptures, representing the power and influence of the moon and the goddesses associated with it. The symbol was also used in jewelry, clothing, and other decorative objects, serving as a reminder of the divine power of the goddesses and their connection to the natural world.

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