Hymen (mythology)

   In Greek mythology, Hymen was the god of marriage. One account makes him the son of Bacchus and Aphrodite; an­other account names Apollo as his father and one of the muses as his mother. For love of a maiden, Hymen dressed himself in woman's attire and went on a religious pilgrimage in a company of women. He was the means of saving the party from a band of pirates. As a natural result he married the maiden and came, in time, to be deified as the god of marriage. He is mentioned first by the poetess Sappho. In art he is represented as a boy, with wings and a garland. Hymen is larger than Cupid. He carries a veil for the bride in one hand and a torch with which to light the house­hold fire in the other.