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A List of Greek Gods and Goddesses

דף אינטרנט עם רשימה של האלים והאלות היוונים זמין עברית ב: חץ כאן

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A List of Greek Gods and Goddesses

Possible Cultural sources of Greek Gods and Goddesses with the possible meaning of their names.

A List of Greek Gods and Goddesses

A single culture dominated Greece with varying languages and customs before 338 BC. The whole culture accomodated individual beliefs in a variety of ways. Each community had some unique beliefs, rituals, and festivals. The many different beliefs combined into one system. Uranus, the sky god, and Gaea, the earth goddess, united sexually to form a geneology of all the deities. Reality was divided into many realms and any deities with common realms were merged. Each deity was assured a unique realm. Realms could be subdivided in a way that was reflected in the geneology of the deities. The ancient Greeks called the culture Hellas. They referred to themselves as Hellenes. This type of religion is referred to as polytheism. The divine pantheon included:

In addition to these there were many lesser deities including:

Children of Pontus and Gaea:

  1. Muses: (Presided over the arts and sciences and inspired those who excelled in these pursuits). A picture of the Muses is at: Main panel: cowherd and six Muses, Boston 98.887
  2. Daughters of Zeus and Themis:
  3. Daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, -- Graces, Charities in Greek 'Χαριτες' from Indo-European 'g̑her-', 'to yearn for, desire'.
  4. Nymphs:
  5. Hesperides, guarders of the golden apples of Hera:
  6. Monsters,
  7. Circe - goddess of Aeaea, also the goddess of transformations.
  8. Ino, daughter of Cadmas transformed into the sea goddess Leucotheia. Leucotheia is the white goddess and goddess of the moon. As a sea goddess of the moon she must have been associated with the tides. The name may be derivied from the Indo European 'wei-', 'to turn, twist' This relates to Ino in the Odyssey as she provides a veil that binds him.
  9. Demeter -- Δήμητρα(Δήμητρος in Hesiod) -- 'people mother' From Indo-European 'da-', 'To divide' and 'mater-', the goddess of agriculture, fertility and marriage.
  10. Dione -- 'goddess unique' From Indo-European 'deiw', 'To shine' and 'oino-', 'One, unique', a Titan
  11. Eileithyia, goddess of childbirth
  12. Ἥβην -- Hebe, goddess of youth. 'youthful strenghth' from Indo-European 'i̯ēgu̯ā', 'force, strength'(But notice this is often 'iphi-'. Perhaps the name began as yegwa+bha-1 where 'bha-1' means 'to shine'. The next change might have been to 'Iphibe' and then Hebe'
  13. Persephone -- goddess of the underworld and the goddess of spring,
  14. Nemesis, personification of divine vengeance needed to maintain an equilibrium. From Indo-European 'nem-' 'To assign, allot' and 'es-', 'To be'
  15. daughters of Strife(Eris). Eris -- 'strife' from Indo-European 'er-', 'to move, set in motion'
  16. Tyche - goddess of chance

Hecate -- Ἑκάτην --was a goddess of the underworld, perhaps best identified as the goddess that consumed souls into the underworld. She was also a goddess of luck and a Titan.

Ἰριν -- Iris -- from Indo-European 'wei', 'to turn, twist and 'rei-2', 'striped, in various colors'; a personification of the rainbow and a messenger of the gods.

The Furies -- Three ladies who pursued evil doers and sinners. They were persistent but just. (Eumenides, Erynies)

Nereides are marine nymphs of the Mediterranean Sea, daughters of Doris (Doto, gifts of the sea were offered generously) and Nereus.

Nereids (Νηρηί̈δες) in Homer Book 18 Iliad.

  1. Θέτις -- Thetis -- 'Soul of the wave' from Indo-European 'dheu-', 'To rise in a cloud' and 'teue', 'To swell'.
  2. Γλαύκη -- Glauce or Glauke, Würzburg L 540 'glaring fiercely' from Indo-European 'glogh' 'thorn, point' and 'kei-3', 'To set in motion'
  3. Θάλειά -- Θάλειά -- 'Blooming' from Indo-European 'dhal-', 'To Bloom' and 'ya', 'to be aroused'.
  4. Κυμοδόκη -- Cymodoce -- 'wave receiver' from Indo-European 'keu-3', 'To swell', 'mo-', 'to exert onself', 'dek-', 'To take, accept', 'e', 'off, away'
  5. Νησαίη -- Nesaea or Nesea 'journey' from Indo-European 'nes-', 'To return home safely' and 'ei-1', 'To go' (ησ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  6. Σπειώ -- Speio or Speo -- 'announce prosperity' from Indo-European 'spei-', 'To thrive, prosper' and 'o-', 'to announce'.
  7. Θόη -- Thoe -- 'cloud', from Indo-European 'dheu', 'to rise as a cloud'.
  8. Ἁλίη τε βοῶπις -- ox eyed Halie -- 'Go to bloom' from Indo-European 'dhal-', 'To Bloom' and 'ei-1', 'To go'.
  9. Κυμοθόη -- Cymothoe or Kymathoe, Würzburg L 540 -- 'wave cloud' from Indo-European 'keu-3', 'To swell', 'mo-', 'to exert onself','dheu', 'to rise as a cloud'.
  10. Ἀκταίη -- Actaee -- 'Shore dweller' from Indo-European 'ak-', 'Sharp' and 'treb-', 'Dwelling'
  11. Λιμνώρεια -- Limnoreia -- 'lake shore dweller' from Indo-European 'laku-', 'Lake', 'rei', 'scratch, tear, cut', and 'ya', 'to be aroused' (This ia a good candidate for a loan word from the Minoan culture)
  12. Μελίτη -- Melite, Würzburg L 540 'Like honey' from Indo European 'melit-', 'honey' and 'ei-', 'to go'.(ελ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  13. Ἴαιρα -- Iaera -- 'changing seasons' from Indo-European 'ei-', 'to go'' ('i̯ē-ro-', 'year, summer'), (αιρ indicates loan word not IE)
  14. Ἀμφιθόη -- Amphithoe --'flowing around' from Indo-European 'ambhi', 'around, at both sides' and 'dheu-', 'to flow, run'.
  15. Ἀγαυὴ -- Agave 'Illustrious' from Indo-European 'ag-', 'to drive' and 'ei-', To go'.
  16. Δωτώ -- Doto -- 'give over, present, gift' from Indo-European 'do-, 'to give' and 'ato-', 'over, beyond'. Pausanias(bk2.1.8) "In Gabala is a holy sanctuary of Doto".
  17. Πρωτώ -- Proto -- 'beginning' from Indo-European 'per-', 'To pass over/beyond ' and 'ato-', 'over, beyond'.
  18. Φέρουσά -- Pherusa -- 'carry sound' from Indo-European 'bher-', 'to bear, bring, carry' and 'ōus-', 'ear'
  19. Δυναμένη -- Dynamene -- 'enduring power' from Indo-European 'deu-', 'to worship, venerate; mighty', 'men-', 'to stay, remain, stand still'. (αμ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  20. Δεξαμένη -- Dexamene 'receptacle, tank, cistern' from Indo-European 'dek̑-'. 'To take, accept' and 'men-', 'to stay, remain, stand still'.((αμ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  21. Ἀμφινόμη -- Amphinome -- 'surrounder' from Greek 'ἀμφί', 'on both sides, and 'νομή', 'distribution' from Indo-European 'ambhi', 'around' and 'nem-2'. 'To assign, allot'.
  22. Καλλιάνειρα -- Callineira -- 'beautifully strung together' from Greek 'καλλῐ', 'beautiful' and 'ἀνείρω', 'fasten on or to, strung' from Indo-European 'kal-', 'handsome, beautiful; healthy' and 'an-', 'there, other side', 'eres-','to stab, pierce'. (αλλ, ειρ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  23. Δωρὶς -- Doris -- 'gift' from Indo-European 'dō- : də-, also dō-u- : dəu- : du-', 'to give, donate' and '4. rei- : rēi-', 'thing, possession'
  24. Πανόπη -- Panope -- 'visible to all' from Greek 'πᾰν', 'all' and 'ὅπη', 'in what direction' from Indo-European 'keu-', 'to swell' and 'oku̯-', 'to see; eye'(αν makes this a pre IE loan word)
  25. Γαλάτεια -- Galatea -- 'blow over' from 'ghel-', 'ghel- 'to call, cry' and 'ati','over, beyond' (αλ,άτ makes this a pre IE loan word) Every myth associated with Galatea as Nereid or mortal relates to a transformation and none relate to milk, the more common derivation of the name.
  26. Νημερτής -- Nemertes -- 'unerring, infallible' from Greek 'νέμω', 'deal out, dispense' and 'ἐρτός', 'threaded, passed through'from Indo-European 'nem-', 'To assign, allot' and 'er-', 'to move, set in motion'; '(s)teu-', 'to hit, push, thrust' (ερ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  27. Ἀψευδὴς -- Apseudes -- 'grow into an aspen (goddess)' from Indo-European 'aspu-', 'Aspen', 'ud-', 'up, out', and 'es-', 'To be'
  28. Καλλιάνασσα -- Callianassa -- 'Beauty queen' from Indo-European 'kal-2', 'beautiful', and from Proto-Greek 'Wanax', 'lord'(αλλ, ασσ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  29. Κλυμένη -- Klymene -- 'famous for ability' from Greek 'κλειυός','famous' and 'μένος', 'might, force' from Indo-European 'kleu' to hear and 'magh-1', 'To be able, have power'
  30. Ἰάνειρά -- Ianeira -- Exciting to man from Indo-European 'ya-', 'to be aroused' and 'ner-2' man(ειρ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  31. Ἰάνασσα -- Ianassa -- 'excited Queen' from Indo-European 'ya-', 'to be aroused' and and from Proto-Greek 'Wanax', 'lord' (ἄνασσα means queen in Greek) (ασσ makes this a pre IE loan word)
  32. Μαῖρα -- Maera -- 'the dog star, the sparkler' (There may be no Indo-European Translation of this name.
  33. Ὠρείθυια -- Oreithuia -- 'mountain juniper' from Indo-European 'gu̯or-', 'mountain', and Greek 'θυἰα', 'odorous cedar, Juniperus foetidissima'
  34. Ἀμάθεια -- Amatheia -- 'mother suckler' from Indo-European 'amma-', 'mother', and 'dhē(i)-', 'to suck, suckle'
  35. Νηρηίδες -- 'sea nymph' plainly 'ner-' relates to Nereus the father of the Nereids. But to be Indo-European some other meaning must apply. 'ner-1' means under,; also left, with an eastward orientation, north'. Under the sea makes sense but one would expect a water reference. 'eus-' means to burn. This relates to the easetn idea, the direction of the sunrise. Is it possible that the nymphs were called this because of the direction of the water to the east? This fits the Greek mainland. It is hard to understand why there are two types of sea nymphs, Nereids and Oceanides in Greek mythology. One possibility is that the names are actually Minoan and the distinction relates to Crete, Nereides to the north and Oceanides to the south. But the only loan word among the Nereides seems to be 'Maera'. This is not a compelling argument for a Minoan source for the Nereides. The '-id,-ides' suffix probably relates to Indo-European: '1. u̯ebh-', 'to plait, weave, waver, move back and forth'. This seems to be a attempt to define women by a common task of women.
  36. Nao, Würzburg L 540, 'helper' from 'nā-', 'to help, be useful', Not in Homer
  37. Kymatolege, Würzburg L 540 -- Κῡμᾰτολήγη - 'Wave-stiller' not Indo-European ,Not in Homer
  38. Psamathe -- not Indo-European, Not in Homer. Said to mean "goddess of sand", "θεά της άμμου", but I cannot verify it
  39. Glauconome is a Nereid in Apolod. 1.2.6, 'fish catch' from Indo-European 'dhel-', 'to light; shining' and 'nem-2'. 'To assign, allot. "

The underlined ones have links to pictures. The directory gives other links.

Oceanides were daughters of Oceanus and Tethys. Here is a list from Hesiod(Theogony. 346-370):

Note that every Oceanide seems to have an Indo-European name. Though the translation is not perfect, still the chance that the name came from Crete is slight. These goddesses are plainly Indo-European. It should also be noted that some of the goddesses have names that can be translated into Greek. But often the Indo-European translation makes more sense. The suggestion is that the name was formed before Greek was fully developed. The names may have been given 1400-1200 BCE while the names were written down around 700 BCE. So the changes may reflect the changes in the Greek language during the interval. The only loan word identified is Hebrew 'haruz'.

Note: Phaedra and Pasiphae share "phae" while Pasithoe and Pasiphae share "pasi". The question is whether 'Pasiphae' is Indo-European or not. If 'Phae' is related to 'dhē(i)-'. 'to suck, suckle' then the name 'All nourisher' might fit her possible role in Minoan religion. 'Pasi-' seems to come from 'pet- 'to stretch out (esp. arms)'. Pasiphae may have been a goddess at one time and then have been demoted to a mortal in myth. This may have also happened to Helen.

A Nymph is a nature spirit according to the ancient Greeks. She is a minor goddess with a more restricted realm such as a tree or a spring. It is interesting to note that the word nymph has an Indo-European derivation related to the root sneubh-. The meanings related to this root involve marriage suggesting that Nymphs are rlated to marriagable women. In that Indo-European culture somehow marriageable women were connected to natural resources as their dowery. The different types of Nymphs also relate to the Indo-European Culture. There are two types of nymphs already mentioned, but others as well:

In the beginning there was only Heaven (Uranus) and Earth (Gaea). These two bore the Titans:

Uranus and Gaea also bore the Hecatoncheires, monsters with 100 hands and 50 heads

  1. Briarus
  2. Cottus
  3. Gyes

Wind gods:

Lyssa - Lyssa's name means "canine madness," and she is the Greek underworld goddess who drove her dogs through the world proding the divine intoxication of the Maenads to destructive fury. She is the daughter of Nyx.

Eos-- Ἠώς -- goddess of the dawn. From Indo-European 'au̯es-', 'to shine',Click here

Σελήνη -- Selene -- goddess of the Moon. Selene is not likely an Indo-European goddess as the Indo-European word for moon is 'mēnōt', 'month; moon'. The Indo-European culture had a god of the Moon Menot who was male.

Harmonia - goddess of harmony Harmonia, daughter of Ares and Aphrodite. From Indo-European '1. ar-, thematic (a)re-, heavy-base arə-, rē-, and i-base (a)rī̆-, rēi-', 'to fit, suit' and 'sme, smā̆', 'really, truly (emphatic particle)' and 'gu̯ē̆nā', 'queen, wife, woman'

Graiae - goddesses of old age

The family of Styx(oath)

Εὐρῠφάεσσα -- 'Far-shining', wife of Hyperion and mother of Helios from Indo-European 'wer-8', wide, broad' and 'bheigw', 'to shine'

The Pleiads: Their parents were Atlas and Pleione -- Πληιονη -- 'wealth coming' from Indo-European 'pleu-', 'to flow' and 'ei-', 'to go'. These are as listed in Hesiod's Catalog of Women

Personifications:

Place Names

Selected Unicode Greek Alphabet: Α Ἄ α ὰ ά ἄ Β β Ί γ Δ δ Ε ε έ ἐ ἔ Ζ ζ Ή η ὴ ή ἣ ἡ ῆ ἦ ἥ Θ θ Ἱ Ἰ ι ί ῖ Κ κ Λ λ Μ μ Ν ν Ξ ξ Ο ο ὸ ό Π π Ρ ρ Σ ς σ Τ τ Ξ ξ υ ὐ ύ ϋ ὗ ὕ ῦ Φ φ Χ χ Ψ ψ Ω Ὠ ω ῶ ώ (not complete)

Questions and Answers


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Question and Answers

Question: Did Lyssa and Oizys from Nyx have children? How do you pronounce Lyssa and Oizys?

Answer: Lyssa is the goddess of madness and Oizys is the goddess of Distress. I have little infomation on their pronunciation except to say that 'oi' is often pronounced 'wa'. Both of these are literal personifications with the names of the godesses the same as words of Greek. Lyssa is the madness of Bacchae. I could not find any offspring.

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