Greek mythology

Greek mythology: 6 known myths

Greek mythologyWe can trace back the the basis of believe and thinking of the ancient Greeks from the Geek mythology. The myths have been well preserved over the centuries by the works of Homerus, besides archeological findings that have to do with Greek mythology. In this article you will read more about the mythology and we are discussing six well known myths.

Greek Mythology

In the Greek myths we encounter different gods and demigods (half gods) that have been seen as examples of behaviours for centuries. With the help of Greek mythology the genesis of the earth, the heavenly bodies, the natural phenomenon, the gods and the people could be explained. Centuries ago the Greek mythology was thus a sort of religion for the ancient Greeks.

The Twelve Gods of Olympus

According to the Greek mythology the coming into existence of the earth (Gaea) and the heaven (Uranus) originated from the big Chaos. Uranus and Gaea reunited themselves and this was the first godly pair. Back then already a total of twelve gods were born: six male and six female gods. These gods were also called Titans. From the reunion of the first godly pair, the birth of the cyclops also followed.
Then the Titan Cronus and the Titaness Rhea reunited themselves and they birthed six children: Zeus, Demeter, Poseidon, Hera, Hestia and Hades. These children would become the future world rulers and Zeus and Hera became the rulers of the Greek Pantheon. The throne of Zues was located on the highest mountain of Greece (Olympus) and this was the residence of the Titans.
The gods often descended from the mountain offer aid to the people, or to punish them. They also conceived children and they were the so called demigods. These demigods performed different heroic deeds. The Greek myths tell different stories of the deeds of the Twelve Gods of Olympus.

The eye of the Cyclops

The myth about the eye of the cyclops tells the story of Odysseus who together with his friends was taken hostage of an island full of cyclops. He escaped together with the others by making the guard cyclops drunk and gauging out his eye. Then they bound himself and his friends under the sheep of the Cyclops and the guard cyclops let out these sheep the moment he awakened. Once they are outside Odysseus and his friends get the chance to walk to their boat with the sheep whilst remaining unseen, then they sail away.

The Trojan Horse

One important Greek myth that is known by most people in western contemporary society is the story about the Trojan horse. In this myth the war of Troy played a big role. This war was being fought between the citizens of the city of Troy and the Greeks that wanted to conquer this city. A part of the story is based on true events that occurred in the twelfth century in the Trojan war.



Odysseus is again the star in this epic and he thought of a trick to conquer the city of Troy after a war that was already going on for 10 years of fighting. The Greek  warriors gave the Trojans a work of art in the shape of a Giant horse on wheels and left to an island nearby. The Trojans were celebrating the whole night, but they did not know that the Greek were hiding inside the Trojan Horse. The next morning the Greeks climbed out of the horse and took the city by surprise while everyone was enjoying their hangover.

The Achilles' heel

Demigod Achilles was baptised by his mother in the river Styx quickly after his birth. The water from this river ensured that he became immortal. This makes him to be a true hero. The only thing not immortal about Achilles was his heel, because his mother was holding on to the heel during his the baptising.
A friend of Achilles disguised himself as Achilles to scare away the Trojans. Hector soon discovered this and killed him for this reason. This triggered an immense rage within Achilles and killed Hector for his actions. The god Apollo in turn was filled with anger directed towards Achilles and told the shepherd Paris that the ankle of Achilles was his weak spot. Then Achilles was killed by the shepherd by being shot in his ankle by an arrow.

The Seven Pomegranate Seeds

In the story of the seven pomegranate seeds from the Greek mythology, Persephone - the daughter of the goddess Demeter - is locked into the underworld by Hades. Demeter is of course not happy with this and takes away all the fertility from the earth. The god Zeus bids Hades to give Persephone back to her mother.
Hades agreed, but Persephone had to eat the last evening meal in the underworld. This meal consisted of seven pomegranate seeds. According to the oracle she was however not allowed to come out of the underworld anymore. Zeus then decided that for every pomegranate seeds that she had eaten she had to stay a month in the underworld. From then on every Spring and Summer Persephone came out of the underworld and returned again every Autumn. This myth was the explanation for the Greeks for the different seasons.

Sisyphos

Sisyphos was a cunning man that regularly tried to challenge the gods. As a result of this he unleashed the anger of the gods upon him and Thanatos (the personification of death) was sent to get him. Sisyphos was to clever however and chained Thanatos with the chains that were actually meant for himself. Ares freed Thanatos however, for the reason that his enemies would not die anymore.
Ares and Thanatos came to get Sisyphos to die, but Sisyphos asked his wife not to bury him and not to have a coin be laid under his tongue for the underworld. When he arrived in the underworld he complained about his wife and Hades sent him back to the worlds above. The gods then sent Hermes after him and he was taken to Tartaros. There he was doomed eternally to push a big rock up against a steep hill that would roll back down indefinitely.

Hippolytos

The son of Theseus - Hippolytos - was in love with the goddess of hunting, Artemis. He therefore didn't see Aphrodite - the goddess of love - for who she was and she became jealous. With revenge she made Phaidra - the stepmother of Hippolytos - in love with him. She did not want to show this however, but the maid noticed and told Hippolytos.
Hippolytos became enraged and his stepmother therefore decided to commit suicide. Coming from revenge she left a letter in which she wrote that Hippolytos had tried to seduce her. His father Theseus believes this and banished his son. Hippolytos then becomes the victim of a terrible accident, because Poseidon sent a bull from the water that made the horses of Hippolytos and his friends go crazy. Hippolytos became strangled in the reins and got hurt quite badly. His father was satisfied upon hearing the news.
Artemis explained the whole situation to Theseus and father and son reconciled. After this Hippolytos died. Artemis swears consequently to kill the mortal being that Aphrodite cares about the most.





                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Article written by: roybor
Times read: 967x
Added: 17-12-2016 06:40
Last modified: 09-01-2017 23:24

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