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Hestia is a Greek goddess and the personification of the hearth and home. Her Roman counterpart is called Vesta.

Influence and legacy

While temples dedicated to Hestia were rare, all prytaneion were considered her sanctuaries, and housed an altar specifically dedicated to her. Even if sacrificed to other gods were offered, a part of them was always reserved to Hestia.

6th century BCE

The island of Samos had an altar dedicated to Hestia in the town of Pythagoreion, which Kyros of Zarax revered.[1]

5th century BCE

During the Peloponnesian War the best known prytaneion was the Prytaneion within the Sanctuary of Olympia, where the Olympic flame burned. Athens also housed one.[2]


  • Hestia's name is the Greek word ἑστίᾰ (hestía) for 'home, hearth, altar'; the Greek word for 'restaurant, banquet hall', εστιατόριο (estiatório), is derived from ἑστίᾰ.
  • According to the myths, the Titan Kronos devoured every child he begat with his sister-wife Rhea. When Zeus saved his siblings, they accompanied him as the new gods, and became part of the twelve mightiest. In order from oldest to youngest, the children were Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades and Poseidon before Zeus.



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