Today comes the second part of the seventh topic of this Month of Devotional Thought, the epithets and cult titles of Apollon. I split this topic from the first post since the discussion of the etymology of Apollon’s name already took up so much space, that I felt it necessary to make a separate post to deal with His many epithets. Now, since He has so many epithets, this will hardly be an exhaustive list. However, the study of epithets is a very important and useful tool to truly understand how a Deity was honoured in Antiquity, what Their functions are, Their domains, what places They are connected to, etc. This may be even more useful than the study of Their mythology, as it relates to the actual worship rather than just the stories told about Them.
Today’s topic will be the names and epithets of Hera. First of all, I want to note that her name has a variant spelling and pronunciation in the Ionic and Homeric/Epic dialects of ancient Hellenic. This alternate form is Here (Ἥρη). Also important, her name is already attested in Linear B tablets from the Bronze Age. Linear B is a syllabic script not very well suited to Hellenic, but the Mycenaean Hellenes used it anyway. In this script, her name is written as “e-ra”.