What is the Hestia symbol?

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In Greek mythology, Hestia is considered the goddess of the hearth, the home, and the family.  This also explains why Hestia is symbolized by the hearth or a flame.  With her association to domesticity and the hearth, many people have taken the flame symbol as Hestia’s symbol.

In various myths, Hestia is depicted as the daughter of Rhea and the great god Cronus.  During her birth, it was said that her own father swallowed her in full but later spit her out after the god Zeus intervened.  Many of Hestia’s siblings became very popular and huge figures in Greek mythology, and they include the underworld god Hades, god of the seas Poseidon, Hera, and Demeter.  All throughout Hestia’s life, many men tried to win her heart.  Hestia remained a virgin, though, and never married any of her suitors which included Poseidon and Apollo.  Being a virgin, Hestia is also depicted as very simple, modest, and very domesticated. This also explains why she is considered the goddess of the home and architecture.

Being the goddess that is symbolized by hearth and flames, Hestia is also considered sacred among many people.  Her life was not fully explained in the various books in Greek mythology, and her stature as a great goddess is even questioned. Some people even consider her as the forgotten goddess because of limited information regarding her life.  Despite all of this, though, her symbolism involving the hearth and flames make her a significant character in the myths.  Fire was considered important back then because it was necessary in many activities including sacrificial offerings, cooking of food, and keeping homes warm during bad weather.  With her reputation, Hestia’s flame has become the symbol of the home.  If ever this flame was extinguished or put out, it is said that the people inside have failed to take care of their domestic and religious issues in life.

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