Etymology
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Pallas 

Greek goddess' name, another name for Athene, literally "little maiden," related to pallake "concubine," and probably somehow connected to Avestan pairika "beautiful women seducing pious men." The asteroid so named was discovered 1802 by Olbers and Bremen.

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Ceres 

Roman goddess of agriculture (identified with Greek Demeter), also the name given to the first-found and largest asteroid (discovered 1801 by Piazzi at Palermo), from PIE *ker-es-, from root *ker- (2) "to grow." Her festival, Cerealia, was April 10.

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Niobe 

in Greek mythology, a queen of Thebes, daughter of Tantalus, married to Amphion, she was changed to a stone while weeping for her numerous children (slain, after she boasted of them overmuch, by Artemis and Apollo); hence the name is used figuratively for bereavement and woe. The name is said to mean literally "snowy; snowy-bright." By scientists the name was given to a type of trilobites and an asteroid. Related: Niobean.

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