Myth of Maia
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MAIA was the eldest of the Pleiades, the seven nymphs of the constellation Pleiades. She was a shy goddess who dwelt alone in a cave near the peaks of Mount Kyllene (Cyllene) in Arkadia where she secretly gave birth to the god Hermes, her son by Zeus. She also raised the boy Arkas (Arcas) in her cave whose mother Kallisto (Callisto) had been transformed into a bear.
Aiskhylos (Aeschylus) apparently idenifies Maia "the nursing mother" with Gaia "the Earth." On several occassions he calls the earth-goddess Gaia Maia (Mother Earth) and pairs her with Hermes Khthonios ("of the Earth").
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