Themis - A Greek Goddess of Justice

Themis Goddess of Justice
Themis Goddess of Justice.

Themis - A Greek Goddess of Justice:


Themis and Dike were both Greek goddesses associated with Justice. The role of Themis was the embodiment of order. Sometimes she is called the mother of Dike. Themis was also a goddess of prophecy and of oaths. She is sometimes associated with the Earth goddess, her mother Gaia.





Family of Themis:


Themis was the daughter of Gaia and Ouranus, along with her brother titans, Cronus, Oceanus, Hyperion, Iapetus, Crius, and Coeus, and sisters, Tethys, Theia, Phoebe, and Mnemosyne, according to Hesiod.

As the second wife of Zeus, Themis was mother to Horai (Seasons), Eirene (Peace), Eunomia (Good Order), Dike (Justice), the Moirai (Fates: Klotho, Lakhesis, and Atropos). Some say the Moirai were present at the marriage of Zeus and Themis. Themis is sometimes called the mother of Prometheus.


Goddess of Prophecy:


Themis was the first deity of prophecy and in charge of the Delphic oracle, until she gave it to Apollo.

Themis was the one who predicted to Zeus that if he married Thetis (the nymph mother of Achilles), his son would be greater than his father.


Goddess of Divine Law:


Themis was the goddess of divine law and sat beside Zeus to offer advice. Themis was the Greek personification of divine law.


Roman Equivalent:


Iustitia, whence our "justice," was the Roman goddess equated with Themis.


Blindfolded Goddess Themis:


Themis judged whether the dead went to Tartarus or the Elysian Fields.

When people were assigned to Tartarus, the Erinyes took them. When alive, those who thwarted Themis, were visited by Nemesis, the personification or goddess of divine retribution. Themis is now depicted as blindfolded so as to be impartial.


Sources on Themis:


Apollodorus, Diodorus Siculus, Hesiod, Homer, Hyginus, Pausanias, and Pindar.