Thursday, August 21, 2014

Hestia, Day Three

3. Symbols and icons of this deity.

Unlike many deities, Hestia is not associated with many animals, plants, or other symbols. The primary symbol of Hestia is the hearth, as Hestia is a personification of the hearth and hearth fire. The actual hearth fire is probably her strongest symbol, as she was thought to actually reside within it.

In art Hestia is often shown holding a flowering branch of an unknown plant. Some suggest it's the branch of a chaste tree, but there seems to be no real evidence one way or another. Hestia is also sometimes shown with a kettle (cauldron), which was of course used in cooking over the hearth.

Some sources state that the pig is Hestia's sacred animal. There is also a myth where Hestia is sleeping at a party, and another deities attempts to sneak up on her in an to attempt to rape her, but as he got close to Hestia a donkey started braying which woke her up. Due to this myth, some also see the donkey as an important animal to Hestia.

Hestia is shown in classical art as wearing long, flowing robes, and often wearing a head covering. The head covering has become an important symbol to some of her modern devotees, and some have felt called to wear a head covering during some, or all, or her worship, while cooking, cleaning, or doing other domestic chores, and there are some who have even taken to wearing it during most of their day. This is of course a personal decision, and not everyone who worships Hestia chooses to do this, or finds the same meaning in it.

No comments:

Post a Comment