Symbol of power, jealousy, ugliness.

Lamia was a goddess with the body of a serpent and the head of a woman. Lamia was the Greek name for the Libyan based serpent goddess referred to as Medusa. Lamina was probably a variation on the Mother Goddess. Lamia have appeared in different cultures during different eras throughout the world. They are generally portrayed as a woman with breasts and the tail of a serpent.

In Ancient Greece, Lamia was believed to be a beautiful human that Zeus fell in love with. They had children together. Zeus’ wife Hera found out about Lamia and killed all of her children. It was believed that Lamia lived in a cave and hunted, stole, and ate other mother’s children out of jealousy. Because Lamina could not sleep, Zeus created a way for her to remove her eyes. The only way Lamina could sleep was if she had one eye out or was drunk.

According to the Ancient Greek Historian Diodorus, Lamina was invoked by mothers as a bogeyman to scare their children. Horace, the Ancient Roman poet, also mentions Lamina as a devourer of children.

Around 1 AD, a lamia was mentioned in the book Life of Apollonius of Tyana where he states that a Lamina was fattening up a member of Apollonius’ crew in order to eat him.

In the Latin Vulgate Bible Lamia was changed to Lilith, who was the obstinate first wife of Adam. In the Revised Version of the Bible, Lilith is referred to as a night monster. In the book of Job, lamina symbolize hypocrisy.

Lamia Symbol

In Germanic culture, a lamia was said to lead the nixies which were water spirits bearing the tail of a fish. In Greece, Lamia were also she-monsters who hunted people to drink their blood and satisfy sexual desires, similar to vampires.

Lamina in the Early Middle Ages referred to monsters who stole children and tore them apart. In the 9th century, lamina were female seductive spirits who threatened marriages, according to Christian writers at the time. Medieval Christians referred to Lamina as a succumbs, a spirit who sucks the life (or semen) out of a man.

During the 15th and 16th centuries, Lamia symbolized witches. Many poems were written about Lamia including one written by John Keats, In 2019, a 1920s tone poem written by Dorothy Howell called “Lamia” was recorded and released within a British tone poem recording. There is a football club in Greece called Lamia. There are also bands in Kazakhstan and Argentina with the name “Lamina.”


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