October 7th, 2009 by sabrina

vanthVanth is the Etruscan Goddess of death. She appears when death is near and also helps guide the newly dead to the Underworld. Vanth is depicted as a winged woman, wearing a short skirt and with only leather straps across her bare chest. There are sometimes eyes on her wings, symbolic of the omnipresence of death. The items that Vanth carries are also representative of her role as a psychopomp or escort of the dead—she carries a torch to light the way and a key to open the gates to the Underworld. Other items that she is sometimes shown with include a sword, a scroll, and snakes, all symbols of fate. Vanth’s name, which has been interpreted as “one who keeps the door,” is also seen as Van.

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