Levana is a birth and childhood deity.
She was the goddess who oversaw the lifting of the child by the midwife immediately after birth in symbolic contact with Mother Earth. Squatting or kneeling was a more typical birthing position in antiquity than it is now; like di nixi. The infant was then delivered to the mother after the midwife cut the umbilical chord, as is sometimes shown on sarcophagi. Next, a grandmother or maternal aunt held the child in her arms while massaging the baby’s lips and forehead with a finger covered with lustrous saliva in an effort to fend off the evil eye.
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