Artemis (or Diana to the Romans) was the Greek goddess of the Moon, hunting, the wilderness and chastity, and the sister of Apollo, god of the Sun. They were the children of Zeus and Leto, the daughter of the Titans Phoebe and Coeus. Artemis is sometimes identified with another Greek lunar goddess, Selene, who pulled the Moon across the sky in a silver chariot. Artemis was an archer and also wielded a spear, and had several hunting hounds.
The hunter Orion was her companion and when he was killed by a giant scorpion, she asked for him to be made into a constellation.
She was very protective of animals; when Heracles hunted the Ceryneian Hind for his third task, he had to promise to give it back to her to avoid her wrath, and she got revenge on Agamemnon for killing a sacred stag by calming the winds, preventing his ship from sailing.
He was told to sacrifice his daughter Iphigenia, but Artemis snatched her and put a deer in her place.
Tsukuyomi, or Tsukuyomi-no-Mikoto, is the Shinto god of the Moon and one of the three children of the god Izanagi, who created the islands of Japan along with his wife Izanami. Tsukuyomi was either born from Izanagi's right eye or a copper mirror he was carrying.
His sister Amaterasu was the goddess of the Sun, and the two originally shared the sky together. However, Amaterasu fell out with Tsukuyomi when the moon god took umbrage at the food goddess Uke-Mochi, who created a feast by vomiting up various foods, which Tsukuyomi was attending on Amaterasu's behalf. Tsukuyomi was so disgusted he killed Uke-Mochi, and Amaterasu was furious at his behaviour and split away from him, causing day and night to exist.
Coniraya was a low-ranked moon god who fell in love with Cavillace, a virgin goddess. He turned into a brightly coloured bird to attract her attention and left behind a fruit, which was actually his sperm. Cavillace fell pregnant and a year later, summoned all the local gods to find out who the father of her son was.
The baby crawled towards Coniraya, who was disguised as a scruffy peasant, and Cavillace was so embarrassed she ran away with the baby. Coniraya chased after her and met various animals on the way, blessing them or cursing them depending on how helpful they were.
Unfortunately, by the time he caught up with her, she had turned herself and her son into rocks. Another Incan moon deity was Mama Killa/Mamaquilla, the daughter of the creator god Viracocha.
She also represented marriage and the menstrual cycle, and was said to cry silver tears.
Máni is the Norse god of the Moon and the brother of Sól, goddess of the Sun. According to the 'Prose Edda', Snorri Sturluson's collection of Norse mythology, he is followed across the sky by two children, Hjúki and Bil, who are said to represent the phases of the Moon, and whom he found while they were gathering water. Máni and Sól are the children of Mundilfari, who named them after the Moon and the Sun because they were so beautiful.
The gods saw this as arrogance and placed the children in the heavens.
Some interpretations say that Máni will be swallowed during Ragnarök, the end of the world.
Kuu is both the name of the Moon in Finnish and a moon goddess in Finnish mythology, also known as Kuutar. In the Kalevala, the national epic poem of Finland, a teal sat on the lap of the air goddess Ilmatar and laid an egg. The egg cracked and its white became the Moon, and its yolk the Sun. Kuu's sister Päivätar is the goddess of the Sun and the sisters are said to be very beautiful, and to weave clothes out of gold and silver threads.
They are also associated with stinging insects. Their tears are said to have formed the World Tree.
Chang'e is the goddess of the Moon in Chinese mythology, and the wife of the archer Hou Yi. The Chinese lunar programme and its satellites are named for her. One legend says that Hou Yi shot down all but one of the ten suns that were scorching the earth and was rewarded with an elixir that would grant him immortality.
He gave it to Chang'e for safe keeping but Feng Meng, his apprentice, tried to steal it from her and she drank it, and ascended to the Moon. Another similar myth says that Hou Yi became a tyrant and Chang'e drank the elixir to prevent him from becoming immortal, and he tried to shoot her down when she ascended, but failed. During the Mid-Autumn Festival, which celebrates the full moon and the harvest, it is customary to make offerings of moon cakes (sweet pastries filled with bean paste) to Chang'e.
Sin was originally known as Nanna, but became syncretised with a Semitic moon god called Sin during the days of the Akkadian Empire. He was the son of the creator god Enlil and his consort Ninlil, whom Enlil seduced while she was bathing in a river. His wife was Ningal, goddess of reeds, and their children were Utu (aka Shamash), god of the Sun; Ishkur (aka Haddad), god of storms and rain; and Inanna (aka Ishtar), goddess of war, love and the planet Venus.
He rode on a winged bull, the Bull of Heaven, and had a beard made of lapis lazuli.
Answer: Ancient Egyptian
Khonsu, along with the ibis-headed Thoth, was one of ancient Egypt's moon gods. He was the son of Mut, a primordial creation goddess, and Amun, a wind god who was later fused with Ra, the god of the Sun, and became Amun-Ra. Like Ra, Khonsu was sometimes depicted with the head of a falcon.
He also had a moon disc on his head and carried a crook and flail. He was associated with healing, fertility and childbirth as well as the Moon; worshippers would pray to him for healing and protection from wild animals.
Answer: Australian Aboriginal
Bahloo - not to be confused with the bear out of 'The Jungle Book' - is a moon god who appears in Australian Aboriginal mythology, especially the Kamilaroi people of New South Wales. He has three snakes, which he refers to as his 'dogs', and according to one myth, he is the reason why humans and snakes do not get on; he asked a group of people to carry his 'dogs' over a river, but the people refused because they didn't want to get bitten. Bahloo said that if they carried the snakes for him, they would rise from the dead, but if they did not, they would sink like a stone in the water and never return (which he demonstrated by lobbing a stone into the river).
The people were too scared, so Bahloo carried the snakes across himself and cursed them to stay dead forever once they died.
Another myth of the Gamilaraay people tells of Yhi, the sun goddess, trying to court Bahloo, but he turned her down and she chased him across the sky and threatened the sky spirits that she would make the sky go dark if they let Bahloo escape.
The Guaraní are an indigenous people of South America, who are mainly based in Paraguay; there are also communities in Uruguay, southern Brazil, the Misiones Province of Argentina and Bolivia. The Guaraní language is one of the official languages of Paraguay. Abaangui is the moon god in Guaraní mythology, and his brother Zaguagua was the god of the Sun. Abaangui tried to become human, but ended up with an overly large nose.
He chopped it off and threw it into the sky, and it became the Moon.
It doesn't matter if you're a reader or not-- we took book titles for this 61st Commission, launched in April 2020, and handed them off to the quiz-writers of the Author's Lounge to create a veritable booklist of quizzes.