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unclasped

Galanthis

In Greek mythology, Galanthis (or Galinthias) was the red-gold haired servant of Alcmene, who assisted her during the birth of Heracles. When Alcmene was in labor, she was having difficulty giving birth to a child so large. After seven days she called for assistance from Lucina, the goddess of childbirth. However, Lucina did not help her due to the wishes of Hera. Instead, she clasped her hands and crossed her legs, preventing the child from being born. Alcmene struggled in pain, cursed the heavens, and became close to death. Galanthis noticed Lucina and deduced Hera's plans. She told the goddess that the baby was born; this so startled her that she jumped up and unclasped her hands. This freed Alcmene, and she was able to give birth. Galanthis laughed and ridiculed Lucina, and as a punishment was turned into a weasel. She continued to live with Alcmene after her transformation.

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