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Atabey is the supreme goddess of the Taínos (native peoples at the pre-Columbian era), one of two supreme deities in the Taíno religion. She was worshipped as a goddess of fresh water and fertility; she is the female entity who represents the Earth Spirit and the Spirit of all horizontal water, lakes, streams, the sea, and the marine tides. This deity was one of the most important for the native tribes that inhabited the Caribbean islands of the Antilles, mostly in Puerto Rico (Borikén), Hispaniola, and Cuba.
Goddess of earth, fresh water and fertility
Reproduction of petroglyph depicting Atabey
|Symbol||Depicted as a nude woman, anthropomorphic representation of Mother Earth|
|Children||Yúcahu and Guacar (twins), Guabancex/Juracán|
Atabey or Atabeira defines prime matter and all that is tangible or material and has several manifestations. One is the aforementioned nurturing maternal figure. Another is Caguana: the spirit of love. The last is Guabancex (also known as Gua Ban Ceh): the violent, Wild Mother of storms, volcanoes, and earthquakes.
Alternate names for the Taíno mother goddess are Iermaoakar, Apito, and Sumaiko and Taíno women prayed to Atabey to ensure a safe childbirth.
- Rouse, Irving (1993). The Tainos: Rise and Decline of the People Who Greeted Columbus (New ed.). New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300056969.
- Lamarche, Sebastian Robiou (1992). Encuentros con la Mitologia Taina. University of Texas: Editorial Punto y Coma.
- Monaghan, Patricia. "Atabey". Llewellyn. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
- Arrom, Jose J. (1989). Mitologia y artes prehispanicas de las Antillas. Mexico City: Siglo Veintiuno Editores.