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Comment: Venus Castina
Venus Castina
Turned the Scythians at her temple at Ascelon into women.
From: Zelmane* , 166 months, post #1
Not quite. When the Scythians sacked Ascelon, they raised the temple of Athena/Venus to the ground. In revenge, the goddess changed the entire invading army into women, and had them dragged off by their enemies as wives. The story is, I believe, in either Herodotus or Thucydides.

From: JH* , 140 months, post #2
I've read both Herodotus and Thucydides' histories and don't remember this. I think something like this would stick in my memory. Thucydides anyway has very little if any mythological content. The previous poster was probably thinking of some other historian or mythographer.

From: Lady Sekhmet* , 140 months, post #3
This particular "myth" comes from a citation in Krafft-Ebing's "Psychopathia Sexualis". It was a mis-interpretation of a Herodotus text regarding "permanent effentinatio" among the Scythians (that constant horseback riding caused effeminization of warriors due to the friction against their privates).

This has no basis in actual mythology but has been cited in so many places that it has been adopted as true.

From: Zelmane* , 140 months, post #4
Possible I've got the writer wrong (I've read so many of them, after all), but I do remember coming across this story once and thinking "whoa!", which is why it stuck in my mind. Will have to do some hunting.

From: JayGee* , 140 months, post #5
I can confirm what Lady Sekhmet said. I had read it in various places attributed to Heroditus, but also read that it is a mistranslation. It seems that sociologists interested in gender relations are usually quoting it. I did look up the passage in Heroditus and found it apparnely vague in meaning. The interpretation of horse caused insterility was a guess by Hippocrates. The curse put on the Sythians is, if memory serves me, translated as "the female disease" but is otherwise unexplained, and could easily be anything.

From: Kastor* , 139 months, post #6

From: Pizzaman* , 128 months, post #7
Yes, maybe it is apocryphal but it shoulda happened, so let's pretend it did. I wish it could happen now. : )

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