Asteria (mythology)

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Asteria and Phoebe on the Pergamon Altar.

In Greek mythology, Asteria (/əˈstɪəriə/; Ancient Greek: Ἀστερία, "of the stars, starry one") was a name attributed to the following eleven individuals: the daughter of Coeus, an Amazon woman, Heliad, Danaid, Alkyonides, the Consort of Phocus, the consort of Bellerophon, the daughter of Coronus, the daughter of Teucer, an Athenian maiden, and a character in the opera "Telemaco". Each of these is detailed below.

Daughter of Coeus

Asteria was the daughter of the Titans Coeus and Phoebe and sister of Leto.[1] According to Hesiod, by Perses she had a daughter Hecate.[2]

The Titan goddess of nocturnal oracles and falling stars, Asteria flung herself into the Aegean Sea in the form of a quail in order to escape the advances of Zeus, and became the "quail island" of Ortygia.[3] This then became identified with the island of Delos, which was the only piece on earth to give refuge to the fugitive Leto when, pregnant with Zeus's children, she was pursued by vengeful Hera.[4]


Asteria was the ninth Amazon killed by Heracles when he came for Hippolyte's girdle.[5]


Asteria or Astris was a daughter of Helios and Clymene or Ceto, one of the Heliades. She married the river god Hydaspes (the modern Jhelum River) and became mother of Deriades, king in India.


Asteria was one of the Danaids, daughters of Danaus who, with one exception, murdered their husbands on their wedding nights. She was, briefly, the bride of Chaetus.[6]


Asteria was one of the Alkyonides. Along with her sisters, she flung herself into the sea and was transformed into a kingfisher.[7]

Consort of Phocus

Asteria[8] or Asterodia[9] was the mother of Crisus and Panopeus by Phocus.

Consort of Bellerophon

Asteria, daughter of Hydeus, was the mother of Hydissos by Bellerophon. Her son is known for having founded a city in Caria which was named after him.[10]

Daughter of Coronus

Asteria, daughter of Coronus, and Apollo were possible parents of the seer Idmon.[11]

Daughter of Teucer

The daughter of Teucer and Eune of Cyprus also bore the name Asteria.[12]

Athenian maiden

Asteria was one of the would-be sacrificial victims of Minotaur, portrayed in a vase painting.[13]

In Gluck opera

Christoph Willibald Gluck gave the name Asteria to one of the characters in his 1765 opera "Telemaco", though the name did not appear in Homer's Odyssey on which the opera was based.


  1. Hesiod, Theogony, 404ff.
  2. Theogony 409–11.
  3. John Tzetzes.
  4. Theoi Project - Titanis Asteria
  5. Diodorus Siculus, Library of History, 4. 16.3 (on-line text)
  6. Bibliotheca 2. 1. 5
  7. Suda s. v. Alkyonides
  8. Tzetzes on Lycophron, 53
  9. Tzetzes on Lycophron, 939
  10. Stephanus of Byzantium, s. v. Hydissos
  11. Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica, 1. 139, citing Pherecydes of Leros
  12. Tzetzes on Lycophron, 450
  13. Corpus Inscriptionum Graecarum 4. 8185 (painting on François Vase)

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