Tag Archives: Olympus

The Olympians: The Second Generation


The Olympians shared many of the characteristics of the humans they ruled (anthropomorphic).  They consumed ambrosia for their food and nectar as their drink.  The food and drink of the gods conferred immortality without aging upon whoever consumes it but was generally reserved for the gods.  It was delivered toOlympusby doves.  They also fathered or bore children which leads us to the Generation #2 of the Olympians.  The Olympians Ares, Hermes, Hephaestus, Athena, Apollo, and Artemis were children of the first generation of Olympians and joined their parent(s) onOlympus.  Some claim that Hestia gave up her place among the gods to Dionysius.

Aphrodite (Roman-Venus) was the goddess of love, beauty, and desire. Her parentage varied by accounts. Her symbols include the dove, scallop, bird, apple, bee, swan, myrtle and rose. Her sacred animal is the dove.  She was married to Hephaestus, but was unfathful. She was depicted as a beautiful woman usually accompanied by her son Eros.

Ares (Mars) was the son of Zeus and Hera.  He was the god of war, violence, bloodshed, manly courage, and civil order. His symbols included the boar, alligator, serpent, dog, vulture, spear and shield. He was despised by all the other gods, except Aphrodite. He was depicted as either a mature, bearded warrior dressed in battle arms, or a nude beardless youth with helm and spear. His attributes are golden armor and a bronze-tipped spear.

Artemis (Diana) was the goddess of the hunt, childbirth, archery and all animals. Her symbols include the moon, deer, hound, she-bear, snake, cypress tree and bow and arrow. She was the twin sister of Apollo.


Apollo (Apollo) was the God of light, knowledge, music, poetry, prophecy and archery. His Symbols include the sun, lyre, bow and arrow, raven, dolphin, wolf, swan and mouse. He was the Twin brother of Artemis.

Hephaestus (Vulcan) was a master blacksmith and the craftsman of the gods. He was the god of fire, metalworking, stonemasonry, sculpture and volcanism. He was the Son of Hera, either by Zeus or alone. His symbols included the fire, anvil, ax, donkey, hammer, tongs and quail. After he was born, his parents threw him offMountOlympusbecause of his damaged leg.  He was usually depicted as a bearded man holding hammer and tongs—the tools of a smith—and riding a donkey.


Athena (Minerva) was the messenger of the gods and was the god of commerce and thieves. Her symbols included the caduceus (staff entwined with two snakes), winged sandals and cap, stork and tortoise.




Dionysus (Bacchus) was the god of wine, parties and festivals, madness, drunkenness and pleasure. He was depicted in art as either an older bearded god or a pretty effeminate, long-haired youth. His attributes include the thyrsus (a pinecone-tipped staff), drinking cup, grape vine, and a crown of ivy. Animals sacred to him include dolphins, serpents, tigers, panthers, and donkeys. A later addition to the Olympians, in some accounts he replaced Hestia.

Hermes (Mercury) was the son of Zeus and the nymph Maia. He was the father of Pan by Dryope. He was the god of travel, messengers, trade, thievery, cunning wiles, language, writing, diplomacy, athletics, and animal husbandry. He was the messenger of the gods and led the souls of the dead into Hades’ realm. He was depicted either as a handsome and athletic beardless youth, or as an older bearded man. His attributes included the herald’s wand or caduceus, winged sandals, and a traveler’s cap. His sacred animals were the tortoise, the ram, and the hawk.

Tomorrow, The Pantheon  RitaBay

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The Titans & the Greek Creation Myth


The Greeks developed a creation myth to explain the origin of their world and place their universe in comprehensible terms. Hesiod in his Theogony related how Chaos, a yawning nothingness, was alone at the beginning of the universe.  According to the  G-rated version, Gaia, the Earth, came out of the nothingness and was surrounded by Oceanus, the primeval river god.  They were followed by Erebus, Eros (Love), and the Abyss (Tartarus).  Gaia gave birth to Uranus (the Sky) and was the mother of the twelve Titans.

Gaia Presenting Stone to Cronos

Uranus, fearing that his children might depose him, refused to have more children.  Too late, as it turned out.  The Titan Cronos deposed his father Uranus and married Rhea.  Rhea had Cronos’ children but because he feared he would be deposed also, he swallowed them when they were born. Rhea gave him a wrapped-up stone to swallow when the youngest, Zeus, was born. 

Zeus Battles Cronos

The son, Zeus, returned and deposed his father, then drugged him which forced him to throw up the children that he had swallowed.  Zeus, supported by his siblings, waged war with his father.  Cronos lost and he and the other Titans were hurled into Tartarus, a kind of hell.  Zeus and his siblings reigned supreme from Olympus.

More about them tomorrow.  Rita Bay

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Creation Myths


A creation myth is a symbolic story of a culture, tradition or people that describes their earliest beginnings, how the world they know began and how they first came into existence in it. They are found in many cultures and are the most common form of myth. The creation myth conveys profound truths, although not necessarily in historical or literal.  The sacred accounts usually describe the ordering of the cosmos from a state of chaos or amorphousness.

Creation myths have several common. They address deeply meaningful questions held by the society, revealing major components of their central worldview.  The stories which are often set in a dim and nonspecific past include a plot and characters who are either deities, human-like figures, or animals, who often speak and transform easily. 

Uranus & Gaia

In Greek mythology, for example, an amorphous Chaos that was the domain of the Eurynome (Goddess of All Things) which was surrounded by the river ruled by the god Oceanus.  Eurynome divided out her territory and created the first generation of major gods and goddesses and exotic creatures.  The second generation which included Zeus and his brothers and sisters overthrew their father, Cronus, and ruled the earth from Olympus.

Tomorrow,   Rita Bay

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