Hestia (Hearth) Greek Goddess of the hearth and fire; eldest daughter of Cronus and Rhea; sister of Zeus and Hera; one of the 12 Olympian gods.
Publié le 26/01/2014
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Hestia (Hearth) Greek Goddess of the hearth and fire; eldest daughter of Cronus and Rhea; sister of Zeus and Hera; one of the 12 Olympian gods. Gentle, peace-loving, and pure, Hestia kept away from all disputes. She was the embodiment of a sacred principle--the household fire--and much honored as such, though there are few surviving stories about her. Hestia and the Hearth It was a difficult task for primitive people to make and preserve fire. They tended the hearth with care and honored it as a source of power. When a member of the family left home, he or she carried a glowing ember from the hearth, thus symbolizing the continuity of the family. When groups of people began to form villages and then towns, each community had a public hearth (prytaneum) where the fire was maintained. In later days, the fire of the public hearth was used in religious sacrifices and took on a sacred character. Eventually, the character of the hestia was personified as the deity Hestia. Hestia and Priapus The hearth was the center of domestic life in early Greece. Hestia represented personal security and happiness and the sacred duty of hospitality. One story emphasizes the importance of the hearth as a symbol of hospitality and protection. One day, at a rustic feast, the drunken god Priapus assaulted Hestia. The guests were extremely angry and drove Priapus away. This anecdote represents a warning against the ill-treatment of guests, particularly women, who are under the protection of the domestic or public hearth.
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