Also known as:
Persephone wasn’t the only victim of Hades. Her childhood friend, the water Nymph Kyane was also utterly transformed by Persephone’s abduction. Abbreviated versions of Persephone’s myth usually indicate that no one came to her aid but that’s not exactly true. In some variations, the kidnapping of Persephone was witnessed by her friend Kyane who loudly protested but to no avail. Hades opened a path to his realm right at the freshwater spring over which Kyane presided and disappeared with Persephone. (Alternatively, the gateway to Hades may have already existed; Kyane may be a threshold spirit, a dweller between realms, hence her proper placement to witness the crime.)
Kyane was either so grief-stricken that she literally dissolved into tears becoming one with the water or Hades struck her mute so that she was unable to reveal what she had seen. She may also have been rendered unable to leave her sacred Sicilian spring, ever after dedicated to Persephone as well as to its resident Nymph.
Kyane is closely associated with the color blue. Her hair may be blue. She may manifest as a mermaid and if so, her tail may be blue. Kyane is a melancholy spirit; she is the forgotten victim of Hades’ attack and has never entirely recovered. She is the goddess of the blues and bluemoods as well as the literal color. She may or may not be among the Sirens. (There is a Siren bearing her name but it’s not clear if they’re the same spirit. If so, then the loss of her voice is even more poignant.)
In Ovid’s version of the myth, Kyane, attempting to wrest Persephone from Hades’ arms, is only able to catch hold of her scarf, which she preserves. When Demeter comes seeking Persephone, Kyane, rendered mute by Hades, is unable to speak but she allows the scarf to float in the spring and Demeter instantly knew all.
As a beautiful girl; as a mermaid or as water. Kyane does not speak but can be very expressive.
Kyane may be venerated alongside Demeter and/or Persephone.
Blue; cyan refers to the watery colors between blue and green
L’heure bleu or “the blue hour”: the hour between daytime and darkness, just before nightfall and dawn, often characterized by vividly blue skies.
Messengers: Blue birds
Spring water; blue flowers (delphiniums or hydrangeas, for example); Guerlain’s L’Heure Bleu perfume; Blue Curaçao liqueur or other blue drink.
Demeter; Hades; Naiad; Nymph; Persephone; Sirens
Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.