Friday, February 27, 2009
Lately I have been attracted to this mysterious goddess. Not a lot is known about her with any surety.We know she was venerated at the mouth of the Scheldt river, because about 160 votive altars were discovered in the Dutch province of Zeeland. Two were actually discovered in Cologne, Germany. These votive altars were mainly erected by sea traders who survived a severe storm. She is mainly depicted with a basket of apples and a hound on these votive altars. Occasionally the apples are replaced with loaves of bread, and she might have her foot on the prow of a ship. The apples suggest a connection with the otherworld, like Avalon. The otherworld is often connected with apples. The hound suggests a connection with some kind of underworld, like the dogs of Hades. The votive altars suggests she was a protectress of travellers. I guess she may have had more functions, like many goddesses in different pantheons. It isn't quite clear from which pantheon she came. Linguistics have not offered a final solution to the problem. What is clear is that she was worshipped in Roman times, but since she defenitely does not belong to the classic Roman pantheon and was not worshipped elsewhere she probably was a local goddess. To me, she is the goddess of land and water, the very image of the Netherlands, because of the fight this country had with the sea. To me she protects on travels, in real life and in the maickal world. Her animals, the dolphin, the hound and the raven guard me wether I travel in real life by water or land, and in the otherworld.I have made a special connection with this goddess. In Zeeland, a reconstruction was built of one of her temples. I am looking forward to visiting it with my friend T. She was supposed to go last Sunday, but decided not to because of the weather. She also said she wanted to share the experience with me. How nice is thst?