The month of May was name after the Goddess Maia. In Greek mythology she was a daughter of the Titan Atlas and Pleione ( another name for Aphrodite). She was the eldest and loveliest of the seven mountain nymphs known as Pleiades. Maia was the mother of Hermes with Zeus as the father. Hermes was not only the messenger of the Gods, but it was said that he also invented magic, therefore Maia also became known as the grandmother of magic.
Later, through the tales, Zeus placed in Maia's care the son of Callisto, Arcus. Maia became known as the mothering goddess and the goddess of midwifery.
In the Roman mythology, she was not only known as Maia but as Maia Maiestas, an earth goddess. She symbolized youth, life, rebirth, love and sexuality and also the goddess of spring. Instead of Zeus but by Jupiter she was the mother of Mercury. In the Roman culture she was worshipped as the good mother.
As I said she was one of the seven mountain nymphs; Alcyone, Celaeno, Electra, Merope, Sterope and Taygete. According to legends when Pleione was traveling with her daughters through Boeotia, she was attacked by Orion. Along with her daughters, she managed to escape him by hiding in the tail of the bull,
Tarus. Orion searched for seven years and never found them. Zeus pitied the girls and placed them into the night sky where they would forever be out of the reach of Orion, who constantly pursued them.
Maia, along with the six other Pleiades, has her own star located in the constellation of Tarus. Some would say that she is the brightest star but in reality she is the fourth brightest star.
Another explanation of the origin of the Pleiades is that Maia and her sisters mourned their father's punishment and humiliation. Atlas had taken part in a revolt against the gods of Olympus. As his punishment, he was made to bare the world on his shoulders. The gods felt sorry for the girls and turned them into doves to spare them anymore pain. They flew to the highest heaven and became the shining stars, the Pleiades.