Why was Artemis called Artemis



Roman nameDiana
God ofthe hunt, the forest, women and children, moon
SymbolsBow and arrow, doe
parentsZeus and Leto

Artemis (ancient Greek: Ἄρτεμις) is one of the twelve Olympian gods. She is the twin sister of Apollo, while Zeus is her father and Leto is her mother.

The temple of Artemis dedicated to her in Ephesus was one of the seven wonders of the world.



When Leto was pregnant with Artemis and Apollo, she, like many other lovers of Zeus, was persecuted by Hera because she was very jealous. Fearing Hera's wrath, she was not tolerated anywhere to bear her children. Finally she found a barren island: Delos, which until then was called Ortygia. There are different versions of whether Artemis or Apollo was born first. Mostly it is said, however, that Artemis was the firstborn, but that her mother, Leto, did not feel any pain during the birth, which is why she is also called the goddess of birth. After she was born, she is said to have helped give birth to Apollo. But other stories tell that Apollo was the firstborn

Trojan War

Artemis supported Troy in the Trojan War.


Actaion, a hero, was a great hunter. However, when he was hunting once, he discovered a valley dedicated to Artemis. In the bottom there was a grotto in which the goddess was bathing. When she noticed that Aktaion saw her, she turned him into a deer. He was later mauled by his own hunting dogs.


Artemis was the goddess of vengeance. Once she and her twin brother Apollon took revenge on Niobe, the daughter of Tantalus. She had demanded that Leto no longer make sacrifices, since she had given birth to fourteen children, seven girls and seven boys, and Leto only two. To avenge their mother, Apollon and Artemis first shot all of their children - Apollon killed the boys and Artemis the girls - and in the end they shot Niobe together.


Artemis had an entourage of nymphs or priestesses to serve her. Callisto, daughter of the Arcadian king Lykaon, was the most beautiful of them. When Zeus saw her, his need for her grew at once. Since Artemis demanded absolute chastity from her followers, Zeus came up with a ruse: he appeared to her the first time in the form of her own mistress in order to gain her trust. Under a pretext, he lured them to a spring to bathe together. When he had persuaded her to undress, he disappeared behind a bush and came out again in the form of an attractive man. The frightened Callisto immediately wanted to draw her bow, but the stranger immediately cast a spell over her, so that she finally surrendered to him. The nymph tried desperately to keep the resulting pregnancy a secret from Artemis. But while bathing together, the goddess finally found out.

According to another tradition, the jealous Hera gave her a hint. Angered by Callisto's betrayal, Artemis turned her into a bear. Soon afterwards she gave birth to a son named Arkas in a cave. When Artemis met her unchaste priestess one more time, she aimed the arrow at her and ordered her hunting dogs to kill her. Zeus paid her heavenly honor and placed her in the sky as the constellation "Great Bear". Hera was so angry about this that she ordered the sea gods Okeanos and Thetis that the she-bear should never bathe in the waters of the ocean. This explains why the Big Bear never "goes down" in the sea. According to another story, it was the jealous Hera who turned Callisto into a bear. Likewise her son Arkas. Zeus finally put them both as "Big Bear" and "Little Bear" in the star firmament. These two constellations are better known to us as "Big Dipper" and "Little Dipper".


As the healing goddess of nature, the moon, the forest and the animals living in it, archery, nature, fertility and youth, as well as the protector of women and children, she protected hunters and innocent people, as well as the Amazonian people. She is often portrayed as a virgin.

Her attributes are golden arrows and a silver bow. As a plant, wormwood, cypress, moor lily and palm are sacred to her. She is therefore represented, albeit rarely, with a bear and a boar; more often with a young deer and in connection with their role as river / spring god with fish, especially the puffer fish.

She went hunting with nymphs. The only man who could approach with impunity was her twin brother Apollo. She is a courageous fighter and was especially worshiped by the Amazons.