Fierce! Courageous! Strong! Brave! Beautiful! Tall!
The warlike, self-reliant Amazons were a no nonsense tribe of early feminists.
An intriguing myth first perpetrated by the Greeks, we’re more familiar with the modern Xena:Warrior princess and Wonder Woman version.
Like all myths there’s few real anthropological indicators to validate that there was indeed a tribe of women warriors. Wow– a race of warlike gorgeous ruling babes–who doesn’t want to totally buy into that legend!
Let’s start with the myth, because that’s more fun than the reality.
- They hail from what is now Ukriane
- Queen Hippolyta wore a magical girdle ( why such independent women would wear one is beyond me–maybe it held their weapons)
- They seared or cut off their right breast so it wouldn’t interfer with their archery aim ( although no ancient art depictions support this)
- One tale claims they had sex with men in the neighboring lands soley to procreate. Boy babies were either returned to the father or left to die in the willderness
- they dressed as Persian men–in pants
- they invented the battle-axe
- a woman couldn’t get married until she killed a man in battle
- another story asserts the women kept male sex slaves
- girls were raised to be hunters, warriors, and farmers
- graves found in the Ukraine reveals many women buried in battle gear and with weapons ( usually a spear)
- women at the time would definitely have needed to defend themselves from invaders since their warrior hubbys were on years-long military campaigns
- scholars believe the myth arose from the Greek culture about their battles with foreign barbarians
- or the myth originated from the earlier Minoan civilization ( Bronze age )
- the Amazon river is named after the explorer, Francisco de Orellana, who claims he encountered a tribe of warrior women while exploring the rain forest.
Amazons, bad-ass women who didn’t didn’t need men ( well…except for that one thing)!
Something to mull over:
Being referred to as an Amazon has a (mostly) positive connotation,
whereas being called a Battle Axe–not so much!
Related links: Fab Females