A Fair Maiden, but Which One?

As summer fades into fall, the days get shorter and the nights get longer. The air gets cooler for those in the Northern Hemisphere, and people begin to get ready to send their vacations packing as school begins. The harvest begins to come up and surely more rules need to be enforced as the lax ways of summer are transitioning into the stricter autumn. Funny how all of these things are represented by the constellation Virgo. Oh, no one knew that? Well why don’t we continue with the story of the largest Zodiac constellation and the second largest in the sky.

As with the other zodiac constellations, Virgo has a story. However, Virgo doesn’t just have one story, there are many. Scholars cannot agree who Virgo is in myth. Some say Persephone, others her mother Demeter, others still Astraea, and more Dike. So listen well, all of you here, and hear the stories of the women who claim the name of Virgo.

Virgo soap, made with olive oil, sunflower oil, castor seed oil, and other food grade materials to help keep your skin clean and give a delectable sudsy lather.

Demeter, goddess of agriculture and harvest, sister to Zeus, Hera, Poseidon, Hestia, and Hades, had a daughter. Her daughter caught the eye of many men wishing she was their bride. Demeter refused all suitors for her daughter, keeping her pure and untouched. As the goddess of Spring, Persephone made the world flourish with beauty and lovely flora. Spring was eternal while Demeter and Persephone were happy and together. Demeter ensured the harvests and kept the lands producing. Persephone kept the foliage green and springtime around, making the mortals who worshiped the gods happy and healthy. Hades watched Persephone and the King of the Underworld’s heart warmed when he saw her. When he asked Demeter for Persephone’s hand, Demeter refused. But Hades wanted Persephone, so as she was walking and playing one day, he stole her and brought her to the Underworld. He pleaded with her to stay for he had fallen in love with her. He showered her with gifts and food, but nothing would stop her tears. Demeter searched for her daughter, pleading with Zeus to tell her anything he knew. Finally she got answers from Helios, the all seeing sun. When she learned that Hades had her and Zeus knew, Demeter left her duties causing the world to spiral into famine and starvation. Zeus pleaded with Demeter but she stayed firm in her decision that until she had her daughter back, the earth would never be fruitful and produce the food needed to keep the humans alive. Zeus promised that he would bring Persephone back if it was shown she was held against her will. Hades learned of the promise and knew that Persephone would be taken from him. That is, until she ate six seeds of the fruit of the underworld, the pomegranate. When Zeus came with Demeter and Hermes, Persephone was finally split between the Underworld with her husband and her mother on the surface, sentenced to spend half the year with each party. It is when the seasons change and the harvest comes around that Persephone makes her journey down to her husband, plunging the world into winter.

The story of Persephone comes after the myth of her mother, Demeter of course. Most know that Demeter as the goddess of the harvest and agriculture, sister to Zeus, Hera, Poseidon, Hades, and Hestia. In her story, she was the third born child, second daughter, to Rhea and Kronos and thus the third child to be swallowed by her father. Kronos had found out from his mother Gaia and his father Ouranos that he would have the same fate delivered to him that he gave his father. So as Rhea brought his children into the world, Kronos swallowed them whole. After many years inside her father’s stomach, she grew and was finally released from her father after her youngest brother Zeus freed his siblings from their prison. The six siblings worked together with some of the other titans who were unhappy with how Kronos ruled and thus overthrew the tyrannical reign of Kronos and the Titanomachy that had been in place. Once the war was won, Demeter went about her duties to provide a world rich with food and beauty for the mortals that prayed to them all. As she was venturing out in the world one day as a snake, she laid with another snake, Zeus in disguise, and after nine months gave birth to her daughter who would take the name Persephone. After Persephone was taken by Hades and Demeter stepped down from her duties, she hid as a horse among some of the herds. She was accosted by Poseidon in the herd and bore him twins, Areion and Despoine. She had four other children, all demi-gods and goddesses as they were products of affairs with mortal men. 

Virgo, The Maiden, is a well known figure. Though there are multiple different versions of her story, Virgo fits into whatever she is needed for. She is always watching over those born under her stars, even when she can’t be seen due to the light of the sun.

Astraea, daughter of Eos (the dawn) and Astreaus (the dusk), represented innocence. Astraea lived among the humans and brought happiness and peace to the world until the Bronze and Iron Ages came to humankind. When the humans turned their backs to the gods, Astraea left the Earth and took her place in the stars. Astraea is also close to the goddess Dike, goddess of justice. Dike and Astraea are often confused with one another or even combined into the same person. While Dike is considered for this myth, and explains why the next Zodiac is so close by in the sky, we’ll talk about Dike a bit more when the next zodiac season comes along.

Virgo has four women that are all said to claim the spot of this constellation. It makes sense that this soap inspired by the Maiden looks to have four colors in it: light and dark blue, brown, and creamy white. White for innocence and purity, brown for the earth, and blues for the tranquility and truth the Maiden provides. The scent of this soap, Spiced Honey Tonka, is a warm and comforting scent. Smelling close to maple syrup, those with a keen nose can pick up the notes of the woodsy base notes, the slight hint of dark tobacco leaves, the comforting spices blended with honey, the supple notes of bergamot, oud wood, musk, and coriander to give a deepness to the fragrance. Tonka brings a bit of vanilla into the mix.These scents blend together to create a warm hug for your senses when you shower or wash your hands to say, “Welcome to cooler weather. Take a minute and enjoy a nice warm spiced honey mead and stay a while.” This soap, like the rest of the Zodiac Line, has a gemstone on the top. This gemstone is Lapis Lazuli, mimicking the colors of the soap with blue, dark brown that’s almost black, and gold with some bits of white. This lapis tumble is ethically mined so while many stories of the lapis mines come to light, these stones are not in the middle of the controversy.

Virgos are known to be very practical and almost snobby. They love their clean spaces and seem to be very judgmental when they break past that shyness. But when you get a Virgo as a friend, you have someone that will tell you the truth and will stay by your side. This soap lasts a long time, just like your friendship with Virgo.

Now everyone loves to see what their horoscope says in the daily paper. Why not see what a Virgo’s personality really is? Chances are someone in your life is a Virgo. With Virgo being the sixth sign of the zodiac, covering the dates of August 23 to September 22, this second earth sign pays attention to the smallest details. Loyal, analytical, hardworking, and practical, these people tend to be misunderstood because they don’t like to accept their emotions as valid. Virgos are shy, worry quite often, become overly critical of others and themselves, and tend to follow the “All work and no play” mentality. Virgos love to be around animals, healthy foods, books, nature, and places that are very clean. On the other hand, they get a bit testy when people are rude or when they have to ask for help and be in the spotlight. The colors for Virgo are grey, beige, and pale yellow and their day of the week is Wednesday. Virgos are ruled by Mercury and as such have a great understanding of speech, written language, and all forms of communication. A Virgo might like to be a journalist, typist, or writer but will also do well as caregivers since they have a need to be of service to people.

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Always great info

Catherine Clarke

I love hearing the mythology of Greek and Viking lore!

Quentin Graves

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