Nemesis, the goddess of retribution and vengeance


Greek goddess of vengeance, personification of divine wrath, from Greek nemesis “just indignation, righteous anger,” literally “distribution” (of what is due), related to nemein “distribute, allot, apportion one’s due,” in the sense of “retributive justice.”

Nemesis is honored in the celebration known as ‘Nemesea’ or the Festival of Nemesis on August 23rd.

The hand of Nemesis balances the scales of justice.

She untangles the threads spun by the Fates.

Lift the burden of this problem, great Nemesis.

Guide me to the solution.” DJ Conway

Nemesis is the goddess of divine retribution, indignation and revenge. She maintains the balance of justice, bringing either happiness of unhappiness. She worked especially in matters of love with unfair treatment. She punished those who deserve it and rewards others.

Nemesis is the Goddess who punished Narcissus for his arrogance by leading him to a pool to see his own reflection. He fell so in love with it that he died there.

In particular, she was invoked against those whose hubris and arrogance got the better of them, and served as a force of divine reckoning. Originally, she was a deity who simply doled out what people had coming to them, whether good or bad.

According to Daily Life of the Ancient Greeks, by Robert Garland, her festival, held each year, was seen as a way to console the spirits of those who had met a violent end. The festival was also a way to keep the angry spirits from taking out their frustrations on those still living.

Nemesis is often represented by a pair of scales, or the sword of divine vengeance

Today, many Hellenic Pagans still hold celebrations in honor of Nemesis, acknowledging both her power over the living and as a goddess of the dead. In the Orphic Hymns, Hymn 61 is a prayer to honor Nemesis:

Thee, Nemesis, I call, almighty queen,

by whom the deeds of mortal life are seen:

eternal, much revered, of boundless sight,

alone rejoicing in the just and right.


I am the Darkness behind and beneath the shadows.

the never-ending struggle to reclaim that which is denied.

I am the Key that unlocks every Door.

I am the Glory of Discovery,

for I am that which is hidden, secluded and forbidden.

Come to me at the Dark Moon and see that which can not be seen.

In your natal chart, Nemesis indicates energy influences that tear you down and apart.

In the natal chart, Nemesis calls for responsibility and acceptance of the shadow self. Note your weaknesses and embrace them. Accept that you are flawed and take note of how many times you have experienced a downfall due to your flaws. Take on and embrace ‘your’ role in the negative events and move on from resentment. Wherever Nemesis is placed and whatever is the rulership is a key to personal resentment. When you look towards others, what do you envy? When difficult situations happen, not events or tragedies totally out of your control, but when life events happen, how do you dish out the blame?

Nemesis helps you handle office politics and troublemakers while helping you see ways you sabotage yourself.



Often we have someone in our lives who consistently works at being a real trial to us. This person is sometimes called ‘our Nemesis’. The problem can fall under the power of the goddess Nemesis. She can remedy or sweep away interpersonal problems, provided we are not the cause of them. If we are contributing to the upset, she will stand back and make us work it out. So, before you call on Nemesis, be certain that you have accepted your share of the responsibility.

Use a black candle, anointing it with orange, or your favorite oil.

Place a sliced apple in a dish next to it.

Light the candle and sit facing it.

Explain everything about the problem to the goddess in your own words.

Then say:

The hand of Nemesis balances the

scales of justice.

She untangles the threads spun by the Fates.

Lift the burden of this problem, great Nemesis.

Guide me to the solution.

If there can be no harmony, separate us one from

the other.

Untangle my life thread, Nemesis.

This I do ask with a sincere heart.

Now sit quietly and listen with your mind, to possible solutions, decisions to follow through with.

Listen, and look at everything logically.


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