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Athene was a deity of many different functions and attributes. On the one hand, she was a goddess of war, the female counterpart of Ares.
- Greek & Roman Mythology A to Z, Kathleen N. Daly pp18-19
Athena. The place where the birth took place is generally said to be the shore of Lake Tritonis in Libya. As she leaped out, she uttered a war-cry which resounded in heavens and earth. Athena, the warrior goddess, armed with spear and aegis
- The Dictionary of Classical Mythology, Pierre Grimal p66
Minerva wore a helmet and held an owl, her sacred animal, in most imagers of her, including statues and coins. P86.
“Her favorite animal was the owl”p68
- The Dictionary of Classical Mthology, Pierre Grimal p68
“Athene rivaled Zeus in wisdom and was symbolized by the owl”
- The Dictionary of World Mythology, Peter Bently p 29
Originally posted by davespanners
From looking at the owl more, I think that it's actually supposed to be facing away and looking over it's shoulder at the viewer