The Little Owl in mythology

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Athena noctua – – It is the most diurnal of all owls and the like. Its french name refers to the Greek goddess Athena. As Zeus’ daughter, she became the protective divinity of the City of Athene; she symbolizes Thought, Art of defensive war, Intelligence and protects Craftsmen and Workers. Athenians also worshipped her for teaching them agricultural techniques such as the use of the plow and the harness of oxen. She chooses the owl species for the symbol of its wisdom and night-vision, although this is the most diurnal of owls.

Since Antiquity Athens adopted the owl symbol, issuing coins with the bird on one side and on the other Athena’s portrait. Today still, Greece issues its 1€ coin with the bird’s effigy. Back to the owl: it symbolizes Wisdom and Knowledge for its immobility but it is also a symbol of wealth and abundance. The symbolism of its attributes to Athena will stop here, because this Owl is diurnal contrary to the 4 other species of owls whose night-vision qualities are connected to the moon, as opposed to the eagle’s, a solar symbol.

Unfortunately, humanity did not always see it with positive eyes; in the Middle Ages it was considered as devilish and associated with the witchcraft, death and ghosts.

Noushka Wildlife

Noushka

Passionate about Nature and photography but mostly animals and birds. I live in France at the present, but have lived in Africa for 16 years and in the U.S. for 3 years and with Australia in mind for the future. With my husband, I created and managed a Bird Park in South Africa, raising mainly psittacines; the breeding facility housed over 1000 parrots at any given time. My photography is about sharing fauna's beauty with other enthusiasts! Equipment: NIKON lenses: 300 mm F/4, 80/400 mm, 500 mm, 200/500 mm, 800 mm f5/6E,

Noushka Wildlife

Noushka Wildlife

Passionate about Wildlife, Photography and Wildlife issues. I live in the south of France at the present, but have lived in Africa for 16 years, in the U.S. for 3 years. With my husband, I created and managed a BIRD PARK in South Africa, raising mainly psittacines; the breeding facility housed over 1000 parrots at any given time. I speak French and English alike and manage decently in Spanish. My photography is about sharing fauna's beauty with other enthusiasts! Equipment: ALL NIKON Cameras: D500, D750 Tele lenses: 300 mm, 500 mm, 800 mm f5/6E, Zoom lenses: 16/80 mm, 80/400 mm, 200/500 mm and: Macro 150 Sigma. * * * My work can be seen HERE: http://1000-pattes.blogspot.fr/ * * * NOT ON FACEBOOK

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Susan Lee

Great article! There is a striking resemblance to the North American Burrowing Owl in this particular photo portrait.

Susan Lee

Great article! There is a striking resemblance to the North American Burrowing Owl in this particular photo portrait.

Steve Elliott

The desert form of Little owl of the race ‘lillith’ gets its name from early versions of the bible in which Lillith was Adam’s first wife. She left Adam and became an evil demon of the night preying on very young children.

Steve Elliott
Steve Elliott

The desert form of Little owl of the race 'lillith' gets its name from early versions of the bible in which Lillith was Adam's first wife. She left Adam and became an evil demon of the night preying on very young children.

Bob Bushell

Noushka, you’re a beautiful photographer, that is a superb Little Owl.