A divinity of the lower world, respecting whom the following tradition is related. She was a daughter of Trophonius, and once while she was playing with Kore, the daughter of Demeter in the grove of Trophonius, near Lebadeia in Boeotia, she let a goose fly away, which she carried in her hand. The bird flew into a cave, and concealed itself under a block of stone. When Kore pulled the bird forth from its hiding place, a well gushed forth from under the stone, which was called Hercyna. On the bank of the rivulet a temple was afterwards erected, with the statue of a maiden carrying a goose in her hand; and in the cave there were two statues with staves surrounded by serpents, Trophonius and Hercyna, resembling the statues of Asclepius and Hygieia.

Hercyna founded the worship of Demeter at Lebadeia, who hence received the surname of Hercyna.1 Hercyna was worshiped at Lebadeia in common with Zeus, and sacrifices were offered to both in common.



  1. Lycophron, 153, with the note of Tzetzes.
  2. Livy. The History of Rome xlv, 27.


  • Pausanias. Description of Greece ix, 39.2.
  • Smith, William. (1870). Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. London: Taylor, Walton, and Maberly.

This article incorporates text from Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology (1870) by William Smith, which is in the public domain.