A labyris (also spelled labris, labrus, labrys) is a double-bladed battle axe
. Its appearance can be described as "a butterfly on a stick."
It is rooted in ancient times and mythology, as the weapon of Amazons, and the scepters of Cretan women. Evidence suggests it may have been used as an actual weapon by the Scythians, who may have been the foundation for the Amazon myth. Further evidence also suggests Celtic women horseriders may also have used it.
It was a symbol of women and goddess-based religions, and can be seen on cave walls and in ancient Greek ornaments. It was the main symbol for the Minoans, who decorated their courtyards with it. As it relates to the story of the minotaur, the labris is probably where the word "labyrinth" came from.
In contemporary times, it has been adopted by lesbians as a symbol of women's power.