What Were Some of Artemis’s Personality Traits?

Artemis is one of the goddesses in the ancient Greek pantheon; she is a headstrong woman, a hunter and a modest virgin. Her twin brother is the messenger-god Apollo, and the two often travel and encounter struggles together.

Artemis’ mother was Leto, and her father was Zeus, the ruler of the gods. She is the equivalent of the Roman goddess Diana.

Artemis was a proud goddess, and several stories show her taking revenge on those who slight her. For example, Niobe — a woman with 14 children — once mocked Artemis and Apollo’s mother, so the twins came down from Olympus to kill all of Niobe’s children. In another story, Artemis murdered a hunter named Actaeon because he saw her bathing in the nude. This upset Artemis because she was a virgin goddess, so she turned Actaeon into a stag, and he was killed by his own hunting dogs.

Artemis often helped heroes in need. She aided Hercules during his Twelve Labors and healed Aeneas when he was wounded during the Trojan War. Artemis took the side of the Trojans during this war and intervened at several crucial moments throughout Homer’s Iliad.

Her personality was individualistic and free-spirited yet kind. She was a patron goddess of hunting but also of childbirth and the safety of young children. This sort of dual personality in a single god or goddess was very common in Greek and Roman mythology.