Moon (New Moon)

The challenge with understanding the symbolism of Hekate and the New Moon is that there is no universal agreement about which specific phase of the moon that the term refers to in relation to Hekate.

Hekate’s Deipnon refers to a meal that is symbolically served to Hekate and the restless dead, on the night of each month when there is no visible moon usually noted on modern calendars as the New Moon.

In the book Hekate: Liminal Rites 78  the authors quote Aristophanes who “recorded that offerings to Hekate were made “on the eve of the New Moon” that is when the first sliver of the New Moon is visible. This chapter also refers to K.F. Smith’s essay 79  mentioning “a possible connection with Hekate as a lunar goddess, rising like the moon, from the underworld on the night of the New Moon.” Here we have two references to the New Moon being the first visible fragment of the moon’s form.

So clearly there is confusion between the terms New Moon and Dark Moon. More descriptive names such as the “New Crescent Moon” may be used by those who are aware of the potential for misunderstanding, but other writers appear oblivious and make no clarification.


78 d’Este, S. and Rankine, D. 2009. Hekate: Liminal Rites. London: Avalonia, pg 126.

79 Smith, K.F. 1992. Hekate’s Suppers. In Ronan, S. The Goddess Hekate. London: Chthonios Press, pg 56-64.

The Symbols of the Goddess Hekate
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