Infobox Greek deity

Caption = The "Hecate Chiaramonti", a Roman sculpture of triple Hecate, after a Hellenistic original (Museo Chiaramonti, Vatican Museums
Name = Hekate
God_of = Goddess of Witchcraft, Crossroads, Wilderness and Childbirth
Abode =
Symbol =
Consort =
Parents = Perses and Asteria
Mount =
Roman_equivalent = Hekate

Hecate (Greek: , "far-shooting" ) Hekate ("Hekátê", "Hekátē"), or Hekat was originally a goddess of the wilderness and childbirth, naturalized early in Mycenaean Greece [William Berg, "Hecate: Greek or 'Anatolian'?", "Numen" 21.2 (August 1974:128-40).] or in Thrace, but originating among the Carians of Anatolia, Walter Burkert, (1987) "Greek Religion: Archaic and Classical", pp 171. Oxford, Blackwell. ISBN 0-631-15624-0.] the region where most theophoric names invoking Hecate, such as Hecataeus or Hecatomnus, progenitor of Mausollus, are attested, [Theodor Kraus, "Hekate: Studien zu Wesen u. Bilde der Göttin in Kleinasien u. Griechenland" (Heidelberg) 1960. Kraus offers the first modern comprehensive discussion of Hecate in monuments and material culture.] and where Hekate remained a Great Goddess into historical times, at her unrivalled [Berg 1974:128: Berg remarks of Hecate's endorsement of Roman hegemony in her representation on the pediment at Lagina solemnising a pact between a warrior (Rome) and an amazon (Asia)] cult site in Lagina. William Berg observes, "Since children are not called after spooks, it is safe to assume that Carian theophoric names involving "hekat-" refer to a major deity free from the dark and unsavoury ties to the underworld and to witchcraft held by the Hecate of classical Athens." [Berg 1974:129.] The monuments to Hekate in Phrygia and Caria are numerous but of late date. [Kraus 1960:52; list p 166f.] Popular cults venerating her as a mother goddess integrated her persona into Greek culture as Ἑκάτη. In Ptolemaic Alexandria she ultimately achieved her connotations as a goddess of sorcery and her role as the "Queen of Ghosts", in which triplicate guise she was transmitted to post-Renaissance culture. Today she is a goddess of witches and Hellenic Polytheistic Reconstructionism. Some neo-pagans erroneously refer to her as a 'crone goddess' which is incorrect with her original virginal image in ancient Greece.

One aspect of Hecate is represented in the Roman Trivia. The earliest inscription is found in late archaic Miletus, close to Caria, where Hecate is a protector of entrances. [Kraus 1960:12.]


The earliest Greek depictions of Hecate are single faced, not triplicate. Lewis Richard Farnell states::"The evidence of the monuments as to the character and significance of Hekate is almost as full as that of the literature. But it is only in the later period that they come to express her manifold and mystic nature. Before the fifth century there is little doubt that she was usually represented as of single form like any other divinity, and it was thus that the Boeotian poet imagined her, as nothing in his verses contains any allusion to a triple formed goddess. The earliest known monument is a small terracotta found in Athens, with a dedication to Hekate (Plate XXXVIII. a), in writing of the style of the sixth century. The goddess is seated on a throne with a chaplet bound round her head; she is altogether without attributes and character, and the only value of this work, which is evidently of quite a general type and gets a special reference and name merely from the inscription, is that it proves the single shape to be her earlier from, and her recognition at Athens to be earlier than the Persian invasion. [Lewis Richard Farnell, (1896). "Hecate in Art," "The Cults of the Greek States." Oxford University Press, Oxford.] The second-century traveller Pausanias stated that Hecate was first depicted in triplicate by the sculptor Alkamenes in the Greek Classical period of the late fifth century. Greek anthropomorphic conventions of art resisted representing her with three faces: a votive sculpture from Attica of the third century BCE ("illustration, left"), shows three single images against a column; round the column of Hecate dance the Charites. Some classical portrayals, such as the one to the right, show her as a triplicate goddess holding a torch, a key, and a serpent. Others continue to depict her in singular form.

In Egyptian-inspired Greek esoteric writings connected with Hermes Trismegistus, and in magical papyri of Late Antiquity she is described as having three heads: one dog, one serpent, and one horse. Hecate's triplicity is expressed in a more Hellene fashion, with three bodies instead, where she is shown taking part in the battle with the Titans in the vast frieze of the great Pergamon Altar, now in Berlin. In the Argolid, near the shrine of the Dioscuri, Pausanias saw the temple of Hecate opposite the sanctuary of Eileithyia; "The image is a work of Scopas. This one is of stone, while the bronze images opposite, also of Hekate, were made respectively by Polycleitus and his brother Naucydes, son of Mothon. ("Description of Greece" ii.22.7)

A fourth century BCE marble relief from Crannon in Thessaly was dedicated by a race-horse owner. [This statue is in the British Museum, inventory number 816.] It shows Hecate, with a hound beside her, placing a wreath on the head of a mare. Her attendant and animal representation is of a female dog, and the most common form of offering was to leave meat at a crossroads. Sometimes dogs themselves were sacrificed to her (a good indication of her non-Hellenic origin, as dogs along with donkeys, very rarely played this role in genuine Greek ritual).

In "Argonautica", a third century BCE Alexandrian epic based on early materials, Jason placates Hecate in a ritual prescribed by Medea, her priestess: bathed at midnight in a stream of flowing water, and dressed in dark robes, Jason is to dig a pit and offer a libation of honey [Fermented honey was an entheogen older than wine.] and blood from the throat of a sheep, which was set on a pyre by the pit and wholly consumed as a holocaust, then retreat from the site without looking back ("Argonautica", iii). All these elements betoken the rites owed to a chthonic deity.


Despite popular belief, Hecate was not originally a Greek goddess. The roots of Hecate seem to be in the Carians of Asia Minor. [Kraus 1960; Ruickbie 2004:16] She appears in the Homeric Hymn to Demeter and in Hesiod's "Theogony", where she is promoted strongly as a great goddess. The place of origin of her cult is uncertain, but it is thought that she had popular cult followings in Thrace. Her most important sanctuary was Lagina, a theocratic city-state in which the goddess was served by eunuchs. Lagina, where the famous temple of Hecate drew great festal assemblies every year, lay close to the originally Macedonian colony of Stratonikea, where she was the city's patroness. [Strabo, "Geography" xiv.2.25; Kraus 1960.] In Thrace she played a role similar to that of lesser-Hermes, namely a governess of liminal points and the wilderness, bearing little resemblance to the night-walking crone she became. Additionally, this led to her role of aiding women in childbirth and the raising of young men.

There was a fane sacred to Hecate as well in the precincts of the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, where the eunuch priests, "megabyzi", officiated. [ Strabo, "Geography", xiv.1.23 ] Hesiod records that she was among the offspring of Gaia and Uranus, the Earth and Sky. In "Theogony" he ascribed to Hecate such wide-ranging and fundamental powers, that it is hard to resist seeing such a deity as a figuration of the Great Goddess, though as a good Olympian Hesiod ascribes her powers as the "gift" of Zeus:

:"Hecate whom Zeus the son of Cronos honoured above all. He gave her splendid gifts, to have a share of the earth and the unfruitful sea. She received honour also in starry heaven, and is honoured exceedingly by the deathless gods.... The son of Cronos did her no wrong nor took anything away of all that was her portion among the former Titan gods: but she holds, as the division was at the first from the beginning, privilege both in earth, and in heaven, and in sea"."

Her gifts to humans are all-encompassing, Hesiod tells::"Whom she will she greatly aids and advances: she sits by worshipful kings in judgement, and in the assembly whom her will is distinguished among the people. And when men arm themselves for the battle that destroys men, then the goddess is at hand to give victory and grant glory readily to whom she will. Good is she also when men contend at the games, for there too the goddess is with them and profits them: and he who by might and strength gets the victory wins the rich prize easily with joy, and brings glory to his parents. And she is good to stand by horsemen, whom she will: and to those whose business is in the grey discomfortable sea, and who pray to Hecate and the loud-crashing Earth-Shaker, easily the glorious goddess gives great catch, and easily she takes it away as soon as seen, if so she will. She is good in the byre with Hermes to increase the stock. The droves of kine and wide herds of goats and flocks of fleecy sheep, if she will, she increases from a few, or makes many to be less"."

Hecate was carefully attended::"For to this day, whenever any one of men on earth offers rich sacrifices and prays for favour according to custom, he calls upon Hecate. Great honour comes full easily to him whose prayers the goddess receives favourably, and she bestows wealth upon him; for the power surely is with her"."

Hesiod emphasizes that Hecate was an only child, the daughter of Asteria, a star-goddess who was the sister of Leto, the mother of Artemis and Apollo. Grandmother of the three cousins was Phoebe the ancient Titaness who personified the moon. Hecate was a reappearance of Phoebe, a moon goddess herself, who appeared in the dark of the moon.

His inclusion and praise of Hecate in "Theogony" is troublesome for scholars in that he seems fulsomely to praise her attributes and responsibilities in the ancient cosmos even though she is both relatively minor and foreign. It is theorized that Hesiod’s original village had a substantial Hecate following and that his inclusion of her in the Theogony was his own way to boost the home-goddess for unfamiliar hearers.Johnston, Sarah Iles, (1991). "Restless Dead: Encounters Between the Living and the Dead in Ancient Greece". ISBN 0-520-21707-1]

As her cult spread into areas of Greece it presented a conflict, as Hecate’s role was already filled by other more prominent deities in the Greek pantheon, above all by Artemis, and by more archaic figures, such as Nemesis.

There are two versions of Hecate that emerge in Greek myth. The lesser role integrates Hecate while not diminishing Artemis. In this version, Hecate is a mortal priestess who is commonly associated with Iphigeneia. She scorns and insults Artemis, eventually leading the mortal to commit suicide. Artemis then adorns the dead body with jewelry and whispers for her spirit to rise and become her Hecate, and act similar to Nemesis as an avenging spirit, but solely for injured women. Such myths where a home deity sponsors or ‘creates’ a foreign one were widespread in ancient cultures as a way of integrating foreign cults. Additionally, as Hecate’s cult grew, her figure was added to the later myth of the birth of Zeus as one of the midwives that hid the child, while Cronus consumed the deceiving rock handed to him by Gaia.

The second version helps to explain how Hecate gains the title of the "Queen of Ghosts" and her role as a goddess of sorcery. Similar to totems of Hermes—"herms"— placed at borders as a ward against danger, images of Hecate, as a liminal goddess, could also serve in such a protective role. It became common to place statues of the goddess at the gates of cities, and eventually domestic doorways. Over time, the association of keeping out evil spirits led to the belief that if offended Hecate could also let in evil spirits. Thus invocations to Hecate arose as the supreme governess of the borders between the normal world and the spirit world.

The transition of the figure of Hekate can be traced in fifth-century Athens. In two fragments of Aeschylus she appears as a great goddess. In Sophocles and Euripides she has become the mistress of witchcraft and the Keres.

Eventually, Hecate’s power resembled that of sorcery. Medea, who was a priestess of Hecate, used witchcraft in order to handle magic herbs and poisons with skill, and to be able to stay the course of rivers,Fact|date=February 2007 or check the paths of the stars and the moon.

Implacable Hecate has been called "tender-hearted", a euphemism perhaps to emphasize her concern with the disappearance of Persephone, when she addressed Demeter with sweet words at a time when the goddess was distressed. She later became Persephone's minister and close companion in the Underworld.

Although she was never truly incorporated among the Olympian deities, the modern understanding of Hecate is derived from the syncretic Hellenistic culture of Alexandria. In the magical papyri of Ptolemaic Egypt, she is called the she-dog or bitch, and her presence is signified by the barking of dogs. She sustained a large following as a goddess of protection and childbirth. In late imagery she also has two ghostly dogs as servants by her side.

In modern times Hecate has become a prevalent figure in Neopagan religions, and a version of Hecate has been appropriated by Wicca and other modern magic-practising traditions.

Relations in the Greek Pantheon

Hecate is a pre-Olympian chthonic goddess, and was not easily assimilated into the later pantheon of Classical Greece. Beyond the "Theogony", the Greek sources do not offer a story of her parentage, or of her relations in the Greek pantheon: sometimes Hecate is related as a Titaness, daughter of Perses and Asteria, and a mighty helper and protector of humans. Her continued presence was explained by asserting that, because she was the only Titan who aided Zeus in the battle of gods and Titans, she was not banished into the underworld realms after their defeat by the Olympians, more indications of the persistence of the cults in which she was worshipped.

It also is told that she is the daughter of Demeter or Pheraia. Hecate, as was Demeter, was a goddess of the earth and fertility. Sometimes she is called a daughter of Zeus, a trait she shares, however, with Athena and Aphrodite, being aspects of the earlier deities who also could not be eclipsed by the Olympians because their worship was so pervasive.

Ancient, Powerful and Unconquerable

Hesiod considered Hecate to be a daughter, with Leto, of Perses and Asteria, two pre-Olympian Titans. As in most cultures with multi-generational deities, the preceding Titans were originally the only deities worshipped by the earlier Greek cultures,Fact|date=December 2007 while the later Olympians were the deities worshipped by later invaders who conquered Greece.Fact|date=December 2007 Some readers of mythography find elements of cultural history reflected in myth: as Hecate was one of the only Titans who kept power and status after the Titans lost their war with the Olympians— she was always regarded as having great favor with Olympian Zeus and it seems likely that Hecate's cult was so strong that it could not be suppressed by the invading new religions.Fact|date=December 2007

As with many ancient virgin goddesses she remained unmarried, had no regular consort, and often is said to have reproduced via parthenogenesis.

In another aspect she is the mother of many monsters, such as Scylla, who represented the dreaded aspects of nature that elicited fear as well as awe.

Other Names and Epithets

*"Chthonian" (Earth/Underworld goddess)
*"Crataeis" (the Mighty One)
*"Enodia" (Goddess of the paths)
*"Antania" (Enemy of mankind)
*"Kurotrophos" (Nurse of the Children and Protectress of mankind)
*Artemis of the crossroads
*"Propylaia" (the one before the gate)
*"Propolos" (the attendant who leads)
*"Phosphoros" (the light-bringer)
*"Soteira" ("Saviour")
*"Prytania" (invincible Queen of the Dead)
*"Trioditis" (gr.) "Trivia" (Latin: Goddess of Three Roads)
*"Klêidouchos" (Keeper of the Keys)
*"Tricephalus" or "Triceps" (The Three-Headed)

Goddess of the Crossroads

Hecate had a special role at three-way crossroads, where the Greeks set poles with masks of each of her heads facing in different directions Fact|date=February 2007

The crossroad aspect of Hecate stems from her original sphere as a goddess of the wilderness and untamed areas. This led to sacrifice to assure safe travel into these areas. This role is similar to lesser Hermes, that is, a god of liminal points or boundaries.

Hecate is the Greek version of "Trivia" "the three ways" in Roman mythology. Eligius in the 7th century reminded his recently converted flock in Flanders "No Christian should make or render any devotion to the gods of the trivium, where three roads meet, to the fanes or the rocks, or springs or groves or corners".

Hecate was the goddess who appeared most often in magical texts such as the Greek Magical Papyri and curse tablets, along with Hermes.

Queen of the Witches

In the so-called "Chaldean Oracles" that were edited in Alexandria, she was also associated with a serpentine maze around a spiral, known as Hecate's wheel (the "Strophalos of Hecate", verse 194 of Isaac Preston Cory's 1836 translation). The symbolism referred to the serpent's power of rebirth, to the labyrinth of knowledge through which Hecate could lead mankind, and to the flame of life itself: "The life-producing bosom of Hecate, that Living Flame which clothes itself in Matter to manifest Existence" (verse 55 of Cory's translation of the Chaldean Oracles).

In Aradia, or the Gospel of the Witches compiled by Charles Leland (1899), he describes the remanents of an Italian witchcraft tradition; the text descirbes the exploits of the strege and their worship of Diana (mythology) who sounds rather like Hecate. It is debatable as to whether the goddess Diana as depicted in Leland's work is actually the Greek Goddess Hecate by another name; indeed Diana was usually heavily identified with the Greek Artemis, taking on a great many of her traits. But the Diana is not depicted in Aradia as the Diana of Roman cultus. For example, she is spoken of like this in Aradia: ' [...] Diana has ever a dog by her side.' [Leland, Charles (1899) "Aradia or Gospel of the Witches," 'A Spell to Win Love', [http://www.sacred-texts.com/pag/aradia/ara08.htm] ] Hecate is famously synonymous with dogs, driving the Wild Hunt across the skies and chasing the lost souls of the dead into the Underworld.

There are also rich references to Diana creating the worlds in Aradia: 'And having made the heaven and the stars and the rain, Diana became Queen of the Witches; she was the cat who ruled the star mice, the heaven and the rain.' [Leland, Charles (1899) "Aradia or Gospel of the Witches," 'How Diana Made the Stars and the Rain', [http://www.sacred-texts.com/pag/aradia/ara05.htm] ] Of course in Greek mythology Hecate not only predates the Greek pantheon in a historical sense but she also predates the Olympians in Greek myth. Zeus formally recognised her power by giving to her dominion over earth, sky (' [Diana] was the cat who ruled the star mice, the heaven and the rain') and the underworld as well as connections to the tide in her lunar aspect.

Hecate is also often named as 'Queen of all Witches' having long been associated with Witchcraft in both archaeological curse tablets, crossroads and myth. Both Hecate and the Roman Diana are associated with the moon, the evidence certainly points abundantly towards Diana of Aradia as being Hecate (only with a more familiar name to Italians). Indeed only Hecate was ever publically associated with Witchcraft, whereas Diana's connection to it never existed within Roman cultus -- like the Greek Artemis, she was a moon deity and a goddess of the hunt, not a patron of Witches.

Queen of the Dead

"Queen of Ghosts" is a title associated with Hecate due to the belief that she can both prevent harm from leaving, but also allow harm to enter from the spirit world. Hecate thus has a role and special power in graveyards and at crossroads.Facts|date=July 2007 She guards the "ways and paths that cross".Facts|date=July 2007 Her association with graveyards also played a large part in the idea of Hecate as a lunar goddess.Facts|date=July 2007

The leaves of the black poplar are dark on one side and light on the other, symbolizing the boundary between the worlds. The yew has long been associated with the Underworld.


The bitch is the animal most commonly associated with Hecate. She was sometimes called the 'Black bitch'Fact|date=January 2008 and black dogs were once sacrificed to her in purification rituals. At Colophon in Thrace, Hecate might be manifest as a dog. The sound of barking dogs was the first sign of her approach in Greek and Roman literature. Hecate is also sometimes associated with deer as is her counterpart Diana (mythology) of the hunt.

The frog, significantly a creature that can cross between two elements, also is sacred to Hecate. [Varner, Gary R. (2007). "Creatures in the Mist: Little People, Wild Men and Spirit Beings Around the World: A Study in Comparative Mythology", p. 135. New York: Algora Publishing. ISBN 0875865461.]

As a triple goddess, she sometimes appears with three heads-one each of a dog, horse, and bear or of dog, serpent, and lion.

It was asserted in "Malleus Malificarum" (1486) that Hecate was revered by witches who adopted parts of her mythos as their goddess of sorcery. Because Hecate had already been much maligned by the late Roman period, Christians found it easy to vilify her image. Thus were all her creatures also considered "creatures of darkness"; however, the history of creatures such as ravens, night-owls, snakes, scorpions, asses, bats, horses, bears, and lions as her creatures is not always a dark and frightening one. (Rabinovich 1990)

Plants and Herbs

The yew, cypress [cite book | last = Freize | first = Henry | authorlink = | coauthors = Dennison, Walter | title = Virgil's Aeneid | publisher = American Book Company | year = 1902 | location = New York | pages = N111 | url = | doi = | id = | isbn = ] , hazel, black poplar, cedar, and willow are all sacred to Hecate Fact|date=February 2007.

The yew has strong associations with death as well as rebirth. A poison prepared from the seeds was used on arrows Fact|date=February 2007, and yew wood was commonly used to make bows and dagger hilts. The potion in Hecate's cauldron contains 'slips of yew'. Yew berries carry Hecate's power, and can bring wisdom or death. The seeds are highly poisonous, but the fleshy, coral-colored 'berry' surrounding it is not.

Many other herbs and plants are associated with Hecate, including garlic, almonds, lavender, thyme, myrrh, mugwort, cardamon, mint, dandelion, hellebore, yarrow and lesser celandine. Several poisons and hallucinogens are linked to Hecate, including belladonna, hemlock, mandrake, aconite (known as hecateis), and the opium poppy. Many of Hecate's plants were those that can be used shamanistically to achieve varyings states of consciousness.


Wild areas, forests, borders, city walls and doorways, crossroads, and graveyards are all associated with Hecate at various times.

It is often stated that the moon is sacred to Hecate. This is argued against by Farnell (1896, p.4)::"Some of the late writers on mythology, such as Cornutus and Cleomedes, and some of the modern, such as Preller and the writer in Roscher's Lexicon and Petersen, explain the three figures as symbols of the three phases of the moon. But very little can be said in favour of this, and very much against it. In the first place, the statue of Alcamenes represented Hekate Επιπυργιδια, whom the Athenian of that period regarded as the warder of the gate of his Acropolis, and as associated in this particular spot with the Charites, deities of the life that blossoms and yields fruit. Neither in this place nor before the door of the citizen's house did she appear as a lunar goddess."

:"We may also ask, why should a divinity who was sometimes regarded as the moon, but had many other and even more important connexions, be given three forms to mark the three phases of the moon, and why should Greek sculpture have been in this solitary instance guilty of a frigid astronomical symbolism, while Selene, who was obviously the moon and nothing else, was never treated in this way? With as much taste and propriety Helios might have been given twelve heads."

However in the magical papyri of Greco-Roman Egypt [cite book|last=Betz |first=Hans Dieter (ed.) |title=The Greek Magical Papyri in Translation : Including the Demotic Spells : Texts |publisher=University of Chicago Press |year=1989] there survive several hymns which identify Hecate with Selene and the moon, extolling her as supreme Goddess, mother of the gods. In this form, as a threefold goddess, Hecate continues to have followers in some neopagan religions. [Pike, Sarah M. (2004). "New Age and Neopagan Religions in America", pp. 131-32. Columbia University Press. ISBN 0231124023.]


Hecate was worshipped by both the Greeks and the Romans who had their own festivals dedicated to her. According to Ruickbie (2004:19) the Greeks observed two days sacred to Hecate, one on the 13th of August and one on the 30th of November, whilst the Romans observed the 29th of every month as her sacred day.

Cross-Cultural Parallels

The figure of Hecate can often be associated with the figure of Isis in Egyptian myth, mainly due to her role as sorceress.Facts|date=July 2007 Both were symbols of liminal points. Lucius Apuleius (c. 123 - c. 170 CE) in his fine work "The Golden Ass" associates Hecate with Isis:

'I am she that is the natural mother of all things, mistress and governess of all the elements, the initial progeny of worlds, chief of powers divine, Queen of heaven, the principal of the Gods celestial, the light of the goddesses: at my will the planets of the air, the wholesome winds of the Seas, and the silences of hell be disposed; my name, my divinity is adored throughout all the world in divers manners, in variable customs and in many names, [...] Some call me Juno, others Bellona of the Battles, and still others Hecate. Principally the Ethiopians which dwell in the Orient, and the Egyptians which are excellent in all kind of ancient doctrine, and by their proper ceremonies accustomed to worship me, do call me Queen Isis. [...] ' [Lucius Apuleius, (c.155 CE) "The Golden Ass" Book 11, Chap 47.]

Some historians ultimately compare her to the Virgin Mary. She is also comparable to Hel of Nordic myth in her underworld function.Facts|date=July 2007

Before she became associated with Greek mythology, she had many similarities with Artemis (wilderness, and watching over wedding ceremonies) [Heidel, William Arthur (1929). "The Day of Yahweh: A Study of Sacred Days and Ritual Forms in the Ancient Near East", p. 514. American Historical Association.] and Hera (child rearing and the protection of young men or heroes, and watching over wedding ceremonies).Facts|date=July 2007

Hecate in Literature

Hecate is a character in William Shakespeare's tragedy "Macbeth", which was first performed circa 1605; she commands the Three Witches, although whether she is a witch, a demon or a goddess is not known. There is some evidence to suggest that the character and the scenes or portions thereof in which she appears (Act III, Scene v, and a portion of Act IV, Scene i) were not written by Shakespeare, but were added during a revision by Thomas Middleton, [Taylor, Gary, and Lavagnino, John (eds.) (2007) "Thomas Middleton and Early Modern Textual Culture", pp. 384-85. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0198185707.] who used material from his own play "The Witch", which was produced in 1615. Most modern texts of "Macbeth" indicate the interpolations.

William Blake portrayed Hecate in a number of his paintings and poems.

In Popular Culture

* Hecate figures in the novel "".
* In "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," Hecate is often invoked by witches such as Willow Rosenberg and particularly Amy Madison during their spells. When Willow visits Angel in the "Angel" episode "Orpheus," she rambles mindlessly about Wesley for a moment before commenting "For the love of Hecate, somebody stop me." [cite episode
title = Orpheus
episodelink = Orpheus (Angel episode)
series = Angel
serieslink = Angel (TV series)
airdate = 2003-03-19
season = 4
number = 15
* In the first season of "Charmed" Hecate is the Queen of the Underworld who comes to earth every 200 years to find an innocent man and put him under her spell so she can create a demonic spawn. She must marry the innocent man in a sanctified wedding before impregnating herself. Her child would look human on the outside but would be evil on the inside. Her spell can only be broken by a declaration of true love and a sealed kiss. A fourteenth century Italian dagger is the only way to vanquish Hecate and her demonic companions back to the underworld. She is shown with horns, old hands and long, sharp nails.
*Hecate appears in the Hellboy comic series as one of its principal antagonists, the serpentine Queen of Witches. In "", Hecate sets up the chain of events to set up a meeting between her and Hellboy, watching him for some time to have him embrace his true destiny as one to ensure the destruction of mankind. But Hellboy refuses to accept that and sends her off after a lengthy fight between them. Hecate is voiced in the movie by Cree Summer (Hecate's name is mispronounced throughout the movie as "Heh-kate"; it should be "Heh-kah-tee").
* In the anime series "Shakugan no Shana", Hecate is the name of the supreme leader of Bal Masqué. Her exact title is Itadaki no Kura (literally: Supreme Throne).
* Breakcore artist "Rachel Kozak" performs as Hecate.
* There is a Symphonic black metal band named Hecate Enthroned
* Hecate is a class of destroyer in FreeSpace 2.
*In Sandra Heath's regency romance novel Halloween Magic, Hecate appears as the goddess of witchcraft and evil, whom Judith Villiers worships. Judith summons Hecate's face in a stone called the Lady in order to perform her magic.



Primary Sources

* Hesiod, "Theogony, Works and Days". An English translation is [http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/hesiod/theogony.htm available online]
* Pausanias, "Description of Greece"
* Strabo, "Geography"

econdary Sources

* Burkert, Walter, 1985. "Greek Religion" (Cambridge: Harvard University Press) Published in the UK as "Greek Religion: Archaic and Classical", 1987. (Oxford: Blackwell) ISBN 0-631-15624-0.
* Lewis Richard Farnell, (1896). "Hecate in Art", "The Cults of the Greek States". Oxford University Press, Oxford.
*Johnston, Sarah Iles, (1990). "Hekate Soteira: A Study of Hekate's Role in the Chaldean Oracles and Related Literature".
*Johnston, Sarah Iles, (1991). "Restless Dead: Encounters Between the Living and the Dead in Ancient Greece". ISBN 0-520-21707-1
* Mallarmé, Stephane, (1880). "Les Dieux Antiques, nouvelle mythologie illustrée".
*Johnston, Sarah Iles. "Hekate Soteira: A Study of Hekate's Role in the Chaldean Oracles and Related Literature". 1990.
*Kerenyi, Karl. "The Gods of the Greeks". 1951.
*Rabinovich,Yakov. "The Rotting Goddess". 1990. A work which views Hekate from the perspective of Mircea Eliade's archetypes and substantiates its claims through cross-cultural comparisons. The work has been sharply criticized by Classics scholars, some [http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/bmcr/1998/98.5.11.html dismissing Rabinowitz as a neo-pagan] .
* J. D. Turner, "The Figure of Hecate and Dynamic Emanationism in The Chaldaean Oracles, Sethian Gnosticism and Neoplatonism," "The Second Century Journal" 7:4, (1991), 221-232.
*Ruickbie, Leo. "Witchcraft Out of the Shadows: A Complete History". Robert Hale, 2004.

External links

* [http://www.goddessgift.com/goddess-myths/greek_goddess_hecate.htm Myths of the Greek Goddess Hecate]
* [http://www.hekate.nu Frequently Asked Questions about Hekate]
* [http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/Hecate "Encyclopaedia Britanica" 1911:] "Hecate"
* [http://www.goddessmystic.com/CoreCurriculum/Goddesses/Hekate/index.shtml Hekate: Guardian at the Gate]
*" [http://www.invisiblebooks.com/Junk12.27.06.pdf The Rotting Goddess] " by Yakov Rabinovich, complete book included in the anthology "Junkyard of the Classics" published under the pseudonym Ellipsis Marx.
* [http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Hekate.html Theoi Project, Hecate] Classical literary sources and art
* [http://www.islandnet.com/~hornowl/HekateArticle.html Hecate in Early Greek Religion]
* [http://www.granta.demon.co.uk/arsm/jg/hekate.html Hekate in Greek esotericism] : Ptolemaic and Gnostic transformations of Hecate
* [http://www.beazley.ox.ac.uk/CGPrograms/Cast/image/D083.jpgCast of the Crannon statue] , at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Hecate — Hécate Pour les articles homonymes, voir Hécate (homonymie). Hécate à triple corps, type hellénistique, musée Chiaramonti …   Wikipédia en Français

  • HECATE — Iovis et Latonae filia, soror Apollinis; quae et Dianae dicitur. Huic triplex nomen attribuitur. Nam in caelo creditur esse Luna, in terra Diana, et apud inferos Proserpina. Hecate vero Servio dicta, quod centum victimis placetur, ant quod 100.… …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • HÉCATE — Astérie, «l’Étoilée», fille du Titan Coios et de sa sœur Phoibé «la Brillante», unie à Persès, eut une fille unique, Hécate, unique en effet par la nature et l’étendue de son pouvoir: «Car, de tous ceux qui sont nés de la Terre et du Ciel et qui… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Hécate — (en griego Ἑκάτη Hekátē o Ἑκάτα Hekáta, de έκατερις hekateris, «baile de manos») fue originalmente una diosa de las tierras salvajes y los partos originaria de Tracia o de los carianos de Anatolia (Burkert 1985 p.171). Gracias al culto popular… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Hecate — HECĂTE, es, Græc. Ἑκάτη, ης, (⇒ Tab. I.) 1 §. Namen. Diesen führen einige von ἑκὰς, fern, her, weil sie weit von uns entfernet sey; oder von ἑκατὸν, hundert, weil sie mit hundert Opfern mußte versöhnet werden; oder auch weil sie der unbegrabenen… …   Gründliches mythologisches Lexikon

  • Hecate — early 15c., Greek deity, daughter of Perseus and Asteria (said to be originally Thracian), later identified as an aspect of Artemis, fem. of hekatos far shooting. Associated since Shakespeare ( I Henry VI, III.ii.64) with witches and sorcery …   Etymology dictionary

  • Hecate — [hek′ə tē, hek′it] n. [L < Gr Hekatē] Gr. Myth. a goddess of the moon, earth, and underground realm of the dead, later regarded as the goddess of sorcery and witchcraft …   English World dictionary

  • Hécate — Para otros usos de este término, véase Hécate (desambiguación). Escultura romana de Hécate triple, copia de un original griego (Museo Chiaramonti). Hécate (en griego antiguo Ἑκάτη Hekátē o Ἑκάτα Hekáta) fue originalmente una diosa de las tierras… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Hécate II — PGM Hécate II Pour les articles homonymes, voir Hécate (homonymie). PGM Hécate II …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Hécate — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Hécate (homonymie). Hécate à triple corps, type hellénistique, musée Chiaramonti Dans la mytho …   Wikipédia en Français

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