selene Picture

In Greek mythology, Selene (Greek Σελήνη /selɛ́ːnɛː/ 'moon'; Doric Σελάνα; Aeolic Σελάννα) was an archaic lunar deity and the daughter of the Titans Hyperion and Theia.[1] In Roman mythology, the moon goddess is called Luna, Latin for "moon".

Like most moon deities, Selene plays a fairly large role in her pantheon, which preceded the Olympic pantheon. However, Selene, a Titan, was eventually largely supplanted by Artemis, an Olympian; the Romans similarly deemed Luna predecessor to Diana. In the collection known as the Homeric hymns, there is a Hymn to Selene (xxxii), paired with the hymn to Helios. In it, Selene is addressed as "far-winged", an epithet ordinarily applied to birds. Selene is mentioned in Nonnus, Dionysiaca 48.581; Pausanias 5.1.4; and Strabo 14.1.6,

The etymology of Selene is uncertain, but if the word is of Greek origin, it is likely connected to the word selas (σέλας), meaning "brightness".[2] Boreion Selas (Βόρειον Σέλας) is the Greek name for Aurora Borealis, the "northern lights". In modern times, Selene is the root of selenology, the study of the geology of the Moon, and the chemical element selenium.
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