Hestia, Detail of an Attic Red-figure kylix signed by Oltos and the potter Euxitheos, c. 520 BC. Tarquinia

In Greek Mythology, virginal Hestia is the goddess of the hearth, of the right ordering of domesticity and the family, who received the first offering at every sacrifice in the household, but had no public cult. In Roman mythology her approximate equivalent was Vesta, who personified the public hearth, and whose cult round the ever-burning hearth bound Romans together in the form of an extended family.

Her name means "home and hearth": the household and its inhabitants. Hestia symbolizes the alliance between the colonies and their mother-cities and is the oldest daughter of Rhea and Cronus, sister to Zeus, Hera, Hades, Poseidon, and Demeter. Originally listed as one of the Twelve Olympians, Hestia was later removed in favour of Dionysus. Afterwards, she tended the sacred fire on Mt. Olympus. Her altars included every family hearth.

Immediately after their birth, Cronus swallowed Hestia and her siblings except for Zeus, who later rescued them and led them in a war against Cronus and the other Titans. Hestia vowed to forever remain a virgin and refused Poseidon and Apollo when they came calling.

Vesta Giustiniani , Museo Torlonia Rome.

Hestia Tapestry

Other meanings

Hestia may also refer to:

One of the Hesperides in Greek mythology.

46 Hestia, an asteroid.

Hestia Stamps

Carl Kerenyi , Gods of the Greeks , Thames & Hudson; Reissue edition (February, 1980) ISBN: 0500270481

Carl Kerenyi , The Heroes of the Greeks , Thames & Hudson (October, 1997) ISBN: 050027049X

Mythology Images

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