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Artemis
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Artemis
Eastern Section of the Parthenon Frieze: Slab
Attic Red Figure Chous
Attic Red Figure Pyxis
Attic Red Figure, Hydra
Spartan Woman Running
Text: the politics of Aristotle
Text: Euphiletus: A Husband Speaks In his Own Defense
Bibliography
Text: Sophocles, Tereus
Exhibit Primary Text List
Exhibit Design

Women In Ancient Greece: A Comparison Between Athenian and Spartan Women

artemis.jpg
(MSU EMuseum, 2003)

            The woman shown in the picture is one of the goddess’ worshiped during the time period of the late Golden Age and early Classical Age. Artemis was the daughter of Leto and Zeus and the twin sister of Apollo and had many different names given to her. She was known as the “Virgin Goddess”, goddess of the hunt, wild animals, wilderness, and the fertility goddess. She was said to have protected women in childbirth due to the fact that she did not cause her mother any pain when she was born. The most important aspect of the myth of Artemis was that she remained eternally a virgin. Those who in any way compromised her reputation for being chaste would be severely punished by the goddess. While a goddess that was said to have been sweet and loving she could also be cold and revengeful to any who offended her. In one such case Niobe claimed that she was better than Leto because she had seven sons and seven daughters while Leto only had two. The offended Leto told her children and they proceeded to kill all twelve of Niobe’s children, Apollo killed the seven boys and Artemis slew the seven girls.

 

            Artemis was also known as the “silver goddess”. In the picture above she is shown holding her silver bow. She also wore silver sandals, had asilver chariot, and killed with silver arrows shot from her bow. Many women who were dying, or in the process of giving birth, would ask for a swift, painless death from Artemis’ silver arrow. The women of Sparta worshipped Artemis for she was a symbol of strength and was associated with childbirth which was played a vital role in Sparta as much emphasis was put on having children.

Project History 1001 A Virtual Museum Exhibit.  Noreen Emmanuel, Adam Dewar, & Kerylin Foss.