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The Machlyes were an ancient Libyan tribe. According to Herodotus,[1] their young women held a ritual battle with sticks and stones annually with neighboring Auseans.

Pliny the Elder claimed they were hermaphrodites, with a male half and a female half, possibly inspired by the martial practices of the females.[2][3]

In the book Sweet Shadows by Tera Lynn Childs, the machlyes Achilla saves Gretchen from the merdaemon in the abysses.


  1. ^ "Herodotus's account of the Libyan female warriors in Corinthian helmets". Perseus Project. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  2. ^ Pliny the Elder, Natural History, VII, ii, 15
  3. ^ "Machlyes". Theoi Greek Mythology. Retrieved 2008-12-28.