"the three Fates who spin man's destiny"

   In Greek myth the Fates, or Moirae, were variously described as being a single being or many, descended from the gods or superior to them.  Their number ultimately became fixed at three: one to spin, one to measure, and one to cut the thread of life.  The first is named Clotho, whose responsibility for birth makes her a mother to all, as Freud implies by comparing her to his own.


Online overview of the Fates' mythical evolution, at Theoi.com