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Women & WeaselsMythologies of Birth in Ancient Greece and Rome$
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Maurizio Bettini and Emlyn Eisenach

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226044743

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226039961.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 04 August 2021

An Encyclopedia without Footnotes

An Encyclopedia without Footnotes

Chapter:
(p.214) [14] An Encyclopedia without Footnotes
Source:
Women & Weasels
Author(s):

Maurizio Bettini

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226039961.003.0015

This chapter suggests that the choice of the weasel as the Rescuer in Alcmene's story was not made by chance, but was the result of a sense of the weasel's identity that emerged from the stories that were told about it. The complex of beliefs about the weasel permitted the creation of many possible figures, including an animal that could help the Woman in Labor. The weasel was an animal good for thinking about childbirth because it offered a complex of symbolic elements that already had a privileged relationship with birth.

Keywords:   weasel, Alcmene, childbirth

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