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In Greek (originally Cretan) mythology, the foster mother of Zeus, king of the gods. She is sometimes represented as the goat that suckled the infant god in a cave in Crete, sometimes as a nymph who fed him the milk of a goat. This goat having broken off one of its horns, Amalthaea filled the horn with flowers and fruits and presented it to Zeus, who, according to one version, placed it, together with the goat, among the stars. In general, the horn was regarded as the symbol of inexhaustible riches and plenty and became the attribute of various divinities and of rivers as fertilizers of the land.
In Greek mythology, satyrs are forest demons as mischievous as they are bothersome. They are half man, half animal, shaggy-haired, with goats legs, horns and a tail. They are descendants of Dionysus and personify the rough sensual side of life. Drinking, playing and pestering nymphs were their favourite pastimes. In the iconography, they are usually depicted in sensual and sometimes obscene scenes. The nature of these forest demons is still reflected in words such as satire and satyriasis.
Pan, a satyr with divine status and discoverer of the Pan flute, could give unsuspecting passers-by a nasty scare [panic]. Carousals he organised often ended in Pandemonium.
In imitation of the Greek satyr, the devil in the Middle Ages was often represented with goat's horns, tail and hooves, or it was said that he flew through the air at night on the back of a buck goat. Since theologians in those days believed that angels or ghosts could actually make human women pregnant, it could not be excluded that demons, as well as Satan himself, enjoyed sexual intercourse with people of flesh and blood. A visit from the devil, with the resulting intimacy, never occurred unnoticed, however, since it was common knowledge that his penis and seed felt ice-cold.