Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Colors of Athena

And now for some lighter fare.

I've been working with different epitaphs of Athena and making notes of their subtle differences. Most noticeable in these visions has been the various colors of Athena's peplos. And so, presented here as completely Unverified Personal Gnosis, are a few of Athena's epithets and their corresponding colors.

Athena Areia (war) - scarlet
Athena Ergane (crafts) - pale saffron yellow
Athena Glaukopis (gleaming, silver, or gray-eyed; glaux means owl) - shifting dove gray
Athena Hygieia (healer) - white
Athena Nike (victory) - deep yellow
Athena Pallas (spear brandisher) - garnet red
Athena Parthenos (virgin) - brilliant white
Athena Polias (city) - white with elaborate trim
Athena Promachos (fighter of the front lines) - garnet red
Athena Pronoia (foresight) - pale yellow
Athena Soteira (savior) - brilliant white
Athena Tritogeneia (born of Triton, or third-born) - deep silver gray

From this UPG I have devised a system of visualization and shrine adornment that focuses on specific aspects and traits associated with Athena.

White: Athena as healer, savior, protector, and eternal virgin.
Yellow: Athena as creatrix, holy wisdom, intellect, craftsmanship and victory.
Red: Athena as warrior, weapons master, and patron of heroes.
Silver/Gray: Athena as spirit of stormy sky, fresh water, olives, serpents, and owls.

I also associate Athena strongly with the color bronze because of her involvement with the Khalkeia festival. Often I perceive her weapons, helm, tools, and aegis to be bronze. Occasionally, especially when working with the "gray aspect" of Athena, I perceive her skin itself to be a shade of bronze.

I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on these associations, and would love to hear from you if you should choose to incorporate them into your personal practice.


  1. That's "epithets", not "epitaphs"; "epitaphs" are for tombstones. ;)

    I love the peplos concept.

  2. Chelsea said she always sees Athena as Bronze. In my spiritual journey so far I relate to her being very earthy. Wearing many earthy colors as she blends into her surroundings, sort of like her owl companion.