I noticed an important detail that didn’t make it into my previous post.
The Orphic Hymn containing the Λύκαινα epithet is part of a collection composed in Roman Anatolia which often incorporate local divinities and religious concepts.
Likewise the Homeric Hymn places Aphrodite’s wolf-attended theophany in the vicinity of Mount Ida near the city of Troy.
Well, check out this coin from Laodicea ad Lycum in Phrygia that recently sold on eBay.
The obverse depicts a standing Aphrodite holding a dove, while the reverse (pictured above) has a seated wolf and a double-axe or labrys within a wreath. (This was, by the way, the favorite weapon of Lykourgos before Dionysos took it from his vanquished foe.)
All of these instances of a Wolf Aphrodite have been in the region of Asia Minor.
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Hmm! The plot thickens…
I’m wracking my brain to figure out if there’s something I’ve forgotten…loads of other Deities are coming to mind with direct werewolf connections (e.g. Pan, Leto), but Aphrodite is just turning up nothing direct beyond what I’ve already mentioned.
However, “metaphorical werewolves” are a thing, too, and since She is given a direct epithet that describes Her as a she-wolf, then we can say that Aphrodite Herself is a werewolf, thus. ;)
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