In the Pseudo-Homeric Hymn to Demeter, Hekate is described as a torch-bearing maiden that wears a shining headband. The epithet that is used in this description of Hekate is Liparokredemnos, which is translated as “with shining headband, bright coiffed or with gleaming veil”. One of the Charites also had the epithet Liparokredemnos (Iliad Book 18). The Charites were depicted in some Hekataia (threeformed statues of Hekate) dancing around the three bodies of the Goddess. The Charis that was described as Liparokredemnos was later named Aglaia in the Theogony of Hesiod 47. Aglaia is also a epithet/form of Hekate in the Neoplatonic writings the Chaldean Oracles 48.

The author Thomas Lautwein sees this headband connected with the Mystery Cults and that this headband is a sign that she was initiated into the Mysteries. With she is the wise woman that wears the headband of the initiated and is seen contemplating secret knowledge in her cave 49.

One might also see a connection between the epithet Krokopeplos “with saffron veil” connected to the epithet Liparokredemnos. Saffron was used to dye cloth in red and yellow colours. So maybe the shining headband/veil was coloured with saffron? In some statues, Hekate was crowned by a diadem that looks like rays of light that emerge from her head. This also could be connected to the ephitet Liparokredemnos too. Additionally in the PGM ( PGM IV, 2786 ff) she wears a diadem that she received from Kronos and it is this diadem that is connected to the golden sceptre that is described in the same text and that she also received from Kronos.


47 Evelyn White, H.G. trans. 1914. The Theogony of Hesiod. From: Hare, J.B. 1999. Internet Sacred Text Archive. Available from: http://www.sacred texts.com/cla/hesiod/theogony.htm Accessed: 2 July 2010

48 Ronan, S. 1992. The Goddess Hekate. London: Chthonios Press.

49 Lautwein, T. 2009. Hekate die dunkle Göttin Geschichte und Gegenwart. Germany: Edition Roter Drache

50 Betz, H-D, ed. 1996. The Greek Magical Papyri in Translation. Chicago: University of
Chicago Press.

The Symbols of the Goddess Hekate
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