Ageleia or Ageleis (Gr. Ἀγελεία or Ἀγεληῖς) was an epithet of the Greek goddess Athena, of somewhat obscure definition, mostly playing off the meaning of the Greek words ago (ἄγω), the verb for "leading" or "doing", and leia (λεία), a noun meaning "plunder" or "spoils", particularly herds of cattle.[1][2]

To some writers, it is the name by which she is designated as the leader or protectress of the people, as a herder protects his cattle.[3][4][5] In other sources, the name is taken more literally, and Athena Ageleia is the "pillager"[6] or "she who carries off the spoils".[7]


  1. ^ Liddell, Henry; Scott, Robert (1996). A Greek-English Lexicon. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 1034. ISBN 0-19-864226-1.
  2. ^ O'Neill, John (1893). The Night of the Gods: An Inquiry Into Cosmic and Cosmogonic Mythology. London: Bernard Quaritch. p. 386.
  3. ^ Schmitz, Leonhard (1867). "Ageleia". In Smith, William. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. 1. Boston. p. 68.
  4. ^ Homer, Iliad iv. 128, v. 765, vi. 269, xv. 213
  5. ^ Homer, Odyssey iii. 378, &c.
  6. ^ Homer; George Chapman, trans. (1843). The Iliads of Homer, Prince of Poets. London: Charles Knight & Co. p. 104.
  7. ^ Westcott, William Wynn (1890). Numbers: Their Occult Power and Mystic Virtue. Theosophical Publishing Society. p. 32.


  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSmith, William, ed. (1870). "Ageleia". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.