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THE NAIADES.

The NAIADES were the nymphs of fresh-water springs, lakes, brooks, rivers, &c.

As the trees, plants, and flowers owed their nourishment to their genial, fostering care, these divinities were {168} regarded by the Greeks as special benefactors to mankind. Like all the nymphs, they possessed the gift of prophecy, for which reason many of the springs and fountains over which they presided were believed to inspire mortals who drank of their waters with the power of foretelling future events. The Naiades are intimately connected in idea with those flowers which are called after them Nymphæ, or water-lilies, whose broad, green leaves and yellow cups float upon the surface of the water, as though proudly conscious of their own grace and beauty.

We often hear of the Naiades forming alliances with mortals, and also of their being wooed by the sylvan deities of the woods and dales.



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