The Owl of Athena

by Gail Emerson September 15, 2016

How wisdom leads to harmony

Daniel's Little Owl design is available as a greeting card or art print.

In cultures and fables from all cultures, the owl is seen as the wise protector of her woodland companions. Aesop's fable the Owl and the Birds tells of the importance of listening, when the owl no longer shares his wisdom with the unheeding birds. More recently AA Milne immortalises the wise owl among Pooh Bear's woodland friends

In ancient Greece, the owl, and the Little Owl specifically, was the chosen mascot of Athena, goddess of wisdom. Its ability to see in the dark was believed to be a sign of seeing what others cannot - also known as wisdom. The big shining eyes were thought to be windows into an 'inner light' that illuminated the dark and, in some instances, into the mists of time allowing the owl to prophesy the future. 

As well as wisdom, Athena was also the goddess of war. This was an extremely judicious combination by the Greeks. Both the goddess and the owl are perceived as having calm temperaments, looking around extensively before jumping in. This meant they would always use their wisdom to seek alternative solutions to conflicts, only sending their soldiers to war when really necessary. What a good maxim to live by! 

Wisdom, calm and harmonious solutions to problems - the owl represents these qualities which are essential to a happy home or in times of trouble. 

Shop the Little Owl design as a  greeting card or art print.

Explore the whole DM Woodland Collection.

 




Gail Emerson
Gail Emerson

Author



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in News / Work in progress / Mythology

Robin - Karma & Fire

by Harry Miller May 14, 2019

One of the most recognisable songbirds in the garden is the plucky Robin.  Being a member of the thrush family, it’s not only cousin to the song thrush and blackbird, but also to the nightingale, so it’s no surprise that the robin has a beautiful voice as well.

Read More

The Love Drug

by Harry Miller April 11, 2019

The earliest depictions of the use of the heart symbol is believed to derive from the ancient culture of Cyrene, a North African city which was founded by the Greeks in 631 BC, and then later ruled by the Romans.

Read More

“Flamin’ Flamingos!”

by Harry Miller March 22, 2019

There’s a lot of ancient mythical beasts which seem pretty isolated, unique to a country’s culture, or even to a specific region.  Others, like mermaids, dragons, and giants, are intercultural, being known by many.  The Phoenix is one of these mythical superstars, and was known by the Greeks, the Romans, the Egyptians, and even by the Chinese.

Read More