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MNEMOYNE 100.00%
Daughter of Uranus and Gaea, and one of the Titanides, the goddess of memory, by Zeus, mother of the Muses (q.v.), in company with whom she was usually worshipped.
URANUS 100.00%
Son and husband of Gaea, the Earth, who bore to him the Titans, the Cyclopes, and Hecatoncheires. He did not allow the children born to him to see the light, but concealed them in the depths of the earth. Enraged at this, Gaea stirred up her children against him, and Cronus, the youngest of the Titans, unmanned him with the sickle which his mother had given to him. From the blood that fell upon the earth were born the Erinyes and the Giants. The member which was cut off fell into the sea, and out of the foam produced around it there came into being the goddess called Aphrodite (hence called Aphrogeneia, i.e. foam-born).
IAPETUS 53.05%
Son of Uranus and Gaees, a Titan, who, either by Clymene or Asia, the daughter of Oceanns, became the father of Atlas, Menaetius, Promatheus, and Epimetheus. He was thrown into Tartarus, with his son Menaetius, on account of his rebellion against Zeus.
TITANS 45.03%
The children of Uranus and Gaea, six sons and six daughters: Oceanus and Tethys, Hyperion and Theia (parents of Helios, Se1ene, Eos), Coeus and Phoebe (parents of Leto and Asteria), Cronus and Rhea (parents of the Olympian deities), Crius (father by Eurybia of Astraeus, Pallas, and Perses), Iapetus (father of Atlas, Menoetius, Prometheus, and Epimetheus, by the Ocean-nymph Clymene), Themis (mother of the Hours and Fates), and Mnemosyne (mother of the Muses). Like the parents, the children and grandchildren bear the name of Titan. Incited to rebellion by their mother Gaea, they overthrew Uranus (q.v.) and established as sovereign their youngest brother Cronus. He was dethroned in turn by his son Zeus, whereupon the best of the Titans and the majority of their number declared for the new ruler, and under the new order retained their old positions, with the addition of new prerogatives. The rest, namely, the family of Iapetus, carried on from Mount Othrys a long and fierce struggle with the Olympian gods, who fought from Mount Olympus. Finally, by help of their own kindred, the Hecatoncheires and the Cyclopes, whom by Hera's counsel Zeus had set free from their prison, they were conquered and hurled down into Tartarus, where the Hecatoncheires were set to guard them. A later legend represents the Titans as reconciled with Zeus and released from Tartarus, and assigns them a place with Cronus in the Islands of the Blest.
THEMIS 34.80%
One of the Titanides; daughter of Uranus and Gaea, and Jupiter's second wife after Metis; mother of the Horae and Moerae (Lat. Parcoe). She is the goddess who, with Jupiter, presides over law and order. She also reigns with him in Olympus as his trusted assessor and no longer as his wife; she represents divine justice in all its relations to man. The rights of hospitality are especially under her protection; hence she is protector of the oppressed, and honoured in many towns as the saving goddess (Soteira). She also had the power of foretelling the future, and for this reason the Delphic oracle was in her possession for some time before it came into that of Apollo. She was especially honoured in Athens, Delphi, Thebes, Olympia, and Troezen. In works of art, she is represented as a woman of commanding and awe-inspiring presence, holding a pair of scales and a cornucopia, the symbol of the blessings of order.
In Hesiod they are three giants, each with a hundred arms and fifty hands, sons of Uranus and Gaea. Their names are Briareus, Cottus, and Gyes. Owing to their hostile attitude to him, their father kept them imprisoned in the bowels of the earth. But on the advice of Gaea, the gods of Olympus summoned them from their prison to lend assistance against the Titans, and, after their victory, set them to watch the Titans, who had been thrown into Tartarus. Homer mentions Briareus, called by men Aegaeon, as the son of Poseidon, and mightier than his father. Briareus was summoned to the aid of Zeus by Thetis, when Hera, Poseidon, and Athene were wishing to bind him.
A beneficent deity worshipped in various parts of Greece, especially in Thessaly, Boeotia, the African colony of Cyrene, and the Islands of Ceos, Corcyra, Sicily and Sardinia. He gives his blessing to herds, hunting, bee-keeping, wine, oil and every kind of husbandry. In particular he defends men, animals and plants from the destructive heat of the dog-days. According to the story most in vogue, he is the son of Apollo by the Thessalian nymph Cyrene, whom the god carried off to the country named after her. She is the daughter of Hypseus, and granddaughter (another story says daughter) of the river-god Peneus. After his birth Hermes took Aristaeus to the Hours and Gaea, the goddess of the earth, who brought him up and made him an immortal god. Sometimes he is called the son of Uranus (Heaven) and Gaea (Earth). In the Theban legend he and Autonoe the daughter of Cadmus are represented as the parents of Actaeon. He brought destruction upon the nymph Eurydice, the beloved of Orpheus; for in fleeing from his persecutions she was killed by a snake. [Vergil, Georg. iv 316-558.]
OCEANUS 27.16%
In Greek mythology, originally the ancient river of the world which flows around and bounds the earth and sea, itself unbounded and flowing back into itself. From Oceanus arise all seas, rivers, streams, and fountains. Herodotus is the first to oppose this view [ii 23, iv 8, 36]. To Homer, Oceanus is the beginning of all things, even of the gods: he the original father, and his wife, Tethys, the original mother. With her he lives, a gentle and hospitable old man, in the farthest west away from the world and its doings. He keeps aloof even from the assemblies of the gods, although river gods and nymphs appear there. It is with the aged pair that Hera grows up, and it is to them that she flees on the outbreak of the war with the Titans. According to Hesiod [Theog. 133, 337-370], Oceanus and Tethys are children of Uranus and Gaea; the former the oldest of the Titans, who after the fall of Cronus submitted to Zeus. From him are sprung 3000 sons and as many daughters, the Oceanides. The oldest of the family, which is spread over the whole earth, are Achelous and Styx. Oceanus was represented as a venerable old man with a long beard: on his head are bull's horns, after the usual manner of river gods; or crab's claws, as customary with gods of the sea; and he is surrounded by sea monsters.
CRONUS 26.58%
In Greek mythology, the youngest son of Uranus and Gaea, who mutilated and overthrew his father, and, with the assistance of his kinsfolk the Titans, made himself sovereign of the world. He took his sister Rhea to wife, and became by her father of Hestia, Demeterr, Hera, Hades, Poseidon, and Zeus. But his mother prophesied that one of his children would overthrow him. He accordingly swallowed them all except Zeus, whom Rhea saved by a stratagem. Zeus, when grown tip, obtained the assistance of the Ocean-nymph Thetis in making Cronus disgorge his children, and then, with the help of his kinsfolk, overpowered Cronus and the Titans. According to one version of the fable, Cronus was imprisoned in Tartarus with the Titans; according to another, he was reconciled with Zeus, and reigned with Rhadamanthys on the Islands of the Blessed. Cronus seems originally to have been a god of the harvest; whence it happens that in many parts of Greece the harvest month was called Cronion. His name being easily confused with that of Chronos ("Time"), he was afterwards erroneously regarded as the god of time. In works of art he was represented as an old man with a mantle drawn over the back of his head, and holding a sickle in his hand. The Romans identified him with Saturnus, their god of sowing (see SATURNUS).
In Greek mythology, the round-eyed ones. According to Hesiod the Cyclopes are the gigantic sons of Uranus and Gaea, named Argos, Steropes, and Brontes. For the rest, they resemble the gods, except that they have only a single eye in their forehead. Their father threw them into Tart1rus, and they assisted Cronus to the sovereignty. Cronus, however, put them again in prison, where they remained until Zeus set them free. For this they gave him the thunder, and forged him the lightning. Apollo slew them when Zeus struck his son Asclepius by lightning. In Homer the Cyclopes, like the giants and the Phaeacians, are the kinsfolk of the gods; but in other respects they have nothing in common with the Cyclopes of Hesiod but their gigantic size and strength. They live a pastoral life in the far West, without knowledge of agriculture, law, morals, or social order. Each dwells separately with his family in caverns at the mountain tops, without troubling himself about the gods, to whom, indeed, the Cyclopes deem themselves easily superior in strength. The Phaeacians used to live in their neighbourhood, but were driven by their violent dealing to emigrate. The figure of Polyphemus, well known from his encounter with Odysseus, gives a typical notion of their rudeness and savagery. (See also GALATEA). The Homeric Cyclopes were in a later age localized in Sicily, and came to be identified with the Cyclopes of Hesiod. They were imagined as assistants of Hephaestus, and as helping him to forge lightnings for Zeus and arms for heroes in the bowels of Aetna or on the Aeolian islands. A third variety of Cyclopes were the giants with arms to their belly as well as to their shoulders, whom Proetus was supposed to have brought from Lycia to. Argos. It was they who were supposed to have built the so-called Cyclopean walls at Mycenae and Tiryns (see ARCHITECTURE). In works of art the Cyclopes are represented as giants with one eye in their forehead, though there is, generally an indication of a pair of eyes in the usual place.
In Homer the Gigantes are a wild and gigantic race of aborigines, kinsmen of the gods, as are the Cyclopes and Phaeacians. With their king Eurymedon, they are destroyed for their wickedness. Hesiod makes them the sons of Gaea, sprung from the blood of the mutilated Uranus. Neither Hesiod nor Homer know anything of their struggle with the gods (Gigantomachia ), the story of which seems to be a reflexion of the myth of the Titans, and their contest with the gods, and to be associated with local legends. The two are often confused by later poets. The place of the contest was Phlegra, or the place of burning. Phlegra, was always localized in volcanic regions. In the earlier stories it is on the Macedonian peninsula of Pallene; and in later times on the Phlegraean plains in Campania between Cumae and Capua, or again at Tartessus in Spain. Led on by Alcyoneus and Porphyrion, they hurled rocks and burning trunks of trees against heaven. But the gods called Heracles to their assistance; a prophecy having warned them that they would be unable to destroy the giants without the aid of a mortal. Heracles slow not only Alcyoneus, but gave the others, whom the gods had struck down, their quietus with his arrows. As Enceladus was flying, Athene threw the island of Sicily upon him. Polybotes was buried by Poseidon under the island of Nisyros, a piece of the island of Cos, which Poseidon had broken off with his trident, with all the giants who had fled there. Besides these, the following names are given among others: Agrios, Ephialtes, Pallas, Clytios, Eurytos, Hippolytos, Thoon. In the oldest works of art the Giants are represented in human form and armed with harness and spears. But in course of time their attributes became terrific, awful faces, long hanging hair and beard, the skins of wild animals for garments, trunks of trees and clubs for weapons. In the latest representations, but not before, their bodies end in two scaly snakes instead of feet (see cut). In the Gigantomachia of Pergamos, the grandest representation of the subject in antiquity, we find a great variety of forms; some quite human, others with snakes' feet and powerful wings, others with still bolder combinations of shape; some are naked, some clothed with skins, some fully armed, and others slinging stones. (See PERGAMENE SCULPTURES.)
ERINYES 18.43%
The goddesses of vengeance. Homer speaks sometimes of one, sometimes of several, but without any definite statement about either number, name, or descent. Hesiod makes them the daughters of Gaia (Earth), sprung from the blood of the mutilated Uranus. According to others they were the daughters of Night (Nyx) or of the Earth, and Darkness (Skotos). Euripides is the earliest writer who fixes their number at three, and considerably later we find them with the names Allecto ("She who rests not"), Tisiphone ("Avenger of murder"), and Magaera ("The jealous one.") They are the avengers of every transgression of natural order, and especially of offences which touch the foundation of human society. They punish, without mercy, all violations of filial duty, or the claims of kinship, or the rites of hospitality ; murder, perjury, and like offences; in Homer even beggars have their Erinys. The punishment begins on earth and is continued after death. Thus they pursue Orestes and Alemaeon, who slew their mothers, and CEdipus for the murder of his father and marriage with his mother, without regard to the circumstances by which their offences were excused. Their principle is a simple one, "an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth." In spite of their terrible attributes as goddesses of vengeance they were called Semnai (the honourable) and Euminedes(the kindly). For the punishment of the evil secures the well-being of the good, and by pursuing and destroying transgressors the Erinyes prove themselves benevolent and beneficent. They were worshipped in Athens under the name of Semnai, and had a shrine on the Areopagus, and the hill of Colonus. Fresh water and black sheep were offered to them in sacrifice. The terrible picture drawn of them by Aeschylus in his Eumenides, as women like Gorgons, with snakes for hair, bloodshot eyes, grinding teeth, and long black robes with blood-red girdles, was softened down in later times. They appear as maidens of stern aspect, with snakes in their hair or round their girdles and arms, torches, scourges, or sickles in their hands, generally in the costume of huntresses, and sometimes with wings as a sign of the swiftness of their vengeance (see cut). The Furies (Furiae or Dirae) of the Roman poets are a mere adaptation of the Greek Erinyes. They are generally represented as torturing the guilty in the world below, but as sometimes appearing on earth, to excite to crime and throw men into madness.
JUPITER 11.21%
In the Italian mythology, the highest god in heaven, corresponding to the Greek Zeus (q.v.), with whom he was identical, not only in his nature, but also in his name. For Jupiter is compounded of Iovis (an older form is Diovis) and pater; Zeus stands for Dieus (Indian Diaus- "the bright heaven"). As in course of time the Italian god became identified with the Greek, he was regarded as a son of Saturn and of Ops, the deities deemed to correspond to the Greek Uranus and Rhea respectively. From Jupiter comes all that appears in the heavens. As Lucetius (from lux, "light") he is the bringer of light, the cause of the dawn of day, as well as of the full moon at night. Just as the calends (1st) of each month are sacred to Juno, so the ides (13th or 15th), which are full-moon days, are sacred to Jupiter. On these his special priest, the flamen dialis, offers him the Idulia, a sacrifice of a white lamb. While he watches over fair weather, he also controls all other weather; as Fulgurator and Fulminator ("flasher of lightning") and as Tonans or Tonitrualis ("thunderer") he brings down those fearful storms which were familiar to Rome; as Pluvius he sends a fertilizing rain. Any place, or thing, struck by lightning was supposed to be sacred to Jupiter as having been taken possession of by him, and thus it needed a particular dedication. (See PUTEAL.) As the god of rain, there was instituted in his honour at Rome a festival of supplication, called aquoelicium. In this the pontifices brought into Rome from the temple of Mars outside the Porta Capena a cylindrical stone called the lapis manalis (rain-stone), while the matrons followed the procession with bare feet, as did also the magistrates, unaccompanied by their insignia. In the same character he was appealed to by the country-folk, before sowing time and in the spring and autumn, when a sacrificial feast was offered to him. He and Juno were worshipped before the commencement of the harvest, even before any sacrifice to Ceres. Throughout all Latium, the feast of the Vinalia (q.v.) was celebrated in his honour as the giver of wine; and at the commencement of the vintage season he was offered a lamb by the flamen Dialis. He was honoured in all Italy, after Mars, as the decider of battles and giver of victory; this was specially the case at Rome, where, as early as the days of Romulus, shrines were founded to him as Stator ("he who stays flight ") and Feretrius (to whom the spoils taken by a Roman general in the field from a hostile general were offered. See SPOLIA). He watches over justice and truth, and is therefore the most ancient and most important god of oaths; he was specially called on by the fetiales (q.v.) as a witness at the ceremonies connected with treaties of peace. Not only the law of nations, but also the law of hospitality, is under his special protection, and while he causes his blessing to fall on the whole country, he is also the god of good fortune and blessing to the family. His gracious power does not confine itself to the present alone; by means of signs comprehensible to experts, he reveals the future (see AUSPICIA) and shows his approval or disapproval of a contemplated undertaking. He was worshipped of old on the Alban Hill, by the Latin people, as their ancestral god, under the name of Iuppiter Latiaris (or Latialis); at the formation of the Latin league he was honoured as the god of the league by a sacrificial feast, which they all held in common; even after its dissolution the sacrifice was continued under the superintendence of the consuls. (See FERIAe.) The chief seat of his worship in Rome was the Capitol, where he was honoured as the ideal head of the State, as the Increaser and Preserver of Roman might and power, under the name of Iuppiter Optimus Maximus ("Best and Greatest"). It was there that his earthenware image was enthroned, with the thunderbolt in its right hand. It stood in the centre of the temple begun by Tarquinius Superbus, the last of the kings, and finished and dedicated in the first year of the Republic. In the pediment of the temple was the quadriga, the attribute of the god of thunder, while the chambers to the left and right were dedicated to Juno and to Minerva respectively. Here the consuls, at their entry into office and their departure to war, made their solemn vows; hither came the triumphal procession of the victor, who was clad in the festal garb of the god, and who, before offering to Jupiter the customary thank-offering of white oxen, prayed to his image and placed in his lap the laurel-wreath of victory bound about the fasces. Hither poured in, to adorn the temple and to fill its treasures, countless multitudes of costly votive offerings from the State, from generals and private citizens, and from foreign kings and nations. When, after its existence for 400 years, the ancient temple was destroyed by fire in B.C. 83, it was rebuilt on its original plan but with increased magnificence (B.C. 78). The image of the god was a copy in gold and ivory of the Olympian Zeus (q.v.). The temple was burnt down again A.D. 70, and Vespasian had scarcely restored it when a fresh fire burnt it down A.D. 80, whereupon Domitian in A.D. 82 erected the temple which continued to stand as late as the 9th century. As was natural for the most exalted god of the Roman State, he had the most splendid festivals in his honour. Amongst the greatest of these were the ludi Romani, the ludi magni, and the ludi plebeii. (See GAMES.) Under the Empire the Capitoline Jupiter was recognised as the loftiest representative of the Roman name and State, whose vicegerent on earth was the emperor. As his worship gradually spread over the whole empire, he finally became the representative of the pagan world in general. He was often identified with the native gods of the provinces, including the sun-god of Heliopolis and Doliche in Syria, who, from the 2nd and 3rd centuries A.D., Was worshipped far and wide under the name of Iuppiter Heliopolitanus and Dolichenus. Antoninus built for the former the magnificent temple of Heliopolis, or Baalbec. He was similarly identified with various Celtic and German gods, especially those who were worshipped on Alpine mountain-tops as protectors of travellers. As an example of the latter we have Iuppiter Optimus Maximus Poeninus, whose seat was on the Great St. Bernard.
RHEA 11.14%
Daughter of Uranus and Gaea, wife of her brother, the Titan Cronus, by whom she gave birth to the Olympian gods, Zeus, Hades, Poseidon, Hera, Hestia, Demeter. For this reason she was generally called the Mother of the gods. One of her oldest places of worship was Crete, where in a cave, near the town of Lyctus or else on mounts Dirce or Ida, she was said to have given birth to Zeus, and to have hidden him from the wiles of Cronus. The task of watching and nursing the newborn child she had entrusted to her devoted servants the Curetes, earth-born demons, armed with weapons of bronze, who drowned the cry of the child by the noise which they made by beating their spears against their shields. The name of Curetes was accordingly given to the priests of the Cretan Rhea and of the Idaean Zeus, who executed noisy war-dances. at the festivals of those gods. In early times the Cretan Rhea was identified with the Asiatic Cyble or Cybebe," the Great Mother," a goddess of the powers of nature and the arts of cultivation, who was worshipped upon mountains in Mysia, Lydia, and Phrygia. In the former character she was a symbol of the procreative power of nature; in the latter, she originated the cultivation of the vine and agriculture, together with all other forms of social progress and civilization, which depend upon these. Thus she was regarded as the founder of towns and cities, and therefore it is that art represents her as crowned with a diadem of towers. The true home of this religion was the Phrygian Pessinus, on the river Sangarius, in the district afterwards known as Galatia, where the goddess was called Agdistis. [Strabo, p. 567] or Angdistis, from a holy rock named Agdus upon Mount Dindymus above the town. Upon this mountain, after which the goddess derived her name of Dindymene, stood her earliest sanctuary, as well as her oldest effigy (a stone that had fallen from heaven), and the grave of her beloved Attis (q.v.). Her priests, the emasculated Galli, here enjoyed almost royal honour. In Lydia she was worshipped, principally on Mount Tmolus, as the mother of Zeus and the foster-mother of Dionysus. There was also a temple of Cybele at Sardis. Her mythical train was formed by the Corybantes, answering to the Curetes of the Cretan Rhea; these were said to accompany her over the wooded hills, with lighted torches and with wild dances, amid the resounding music of flutes and horns and drums and cymbals. After these the priests of Cybele were also called Corybantes, and the festivals of the goddess were celebrated with similar orgies, in the frenzy of which the participators wounded each other or, like Attis, mutilated themselves. Besides these there were begging priests, called Metragyrtoe and Cybebi, who roamed from place to place, as inspired servants and prophets of the Great Mother. On the Hellespont and on the Propontis, Rhea-Cybele was likewise the chief goddess; in particular in the Troad, where she was worshipped upon Mount Ida as the Idoean Mother, and where the Idoean Dactyli (q.v.) formed her train. From Asia this religion advanced into Greece. After the Persian Wars it reached Athens, where in the Metroum, the temple of the Great Mother, which was used as a State record-office, there stood the ideal image of the goddess fashioned by Phidias [Pausanias, i 3 § 5]. The worship of Cybele did not, however, obtain public recognition here, any more than in the rest of Greece, on account of its orgiastic excesses and the offensive habits of its begging priests. It was cultivated only by particular associations and by the lower ranks of the people. In Rome the worship of the Great Mother (Magna Mater) was introduced for political reasons in 204 B.C., at the command of a Sibylline oracle, and for the purpose of driving Hannibal out of Italy. An embassy was sent to fetch the holy stone from Pessinus; a festival was founded in honour of the goddess, to be hold on April 4-9 (the Megalesia, from the Greek megale meter= magna mater): and in 217 a temple on the Palatine was dedicated to her. The service was performed by a Phrygian priest, a Phrygian priestess, and a number of Galli (emasculated priests of Cybele), who were allowed to pass in procession through the city in accordance with their native rites. Roman citizens were forbidden to participate in this service, though the praetor on the Palatine, and private persons among the patricians, celebrated the feast by entertaining one another, the now cult being attached to that of Maia or Ops. The worship of Cybele gained by degrees an ever-wider extension, so that under the early Empire a fresh festival was instituted, from March 15-27, with the observance of mourning, followed by the most extravagant joy. In this festival associations of women and men and the religious board of the Quindecimviri (q.v.) took part. In the first half of the 2nd century A.D. the Taurobolia and Criobolia were added. In these ceremonies the person concerned went through a form of baptism with the blood of bulls and rams killed in sacrifice, with the object of cleansing him from pollutions and bringing about a new birth. The oak and pine were sacred to Rhea-Cybele, (See ATTIS), as also the lion. She was supposed to traverse the mountains riding on a lion, or in a chariot drawn by lions. In art she was usually represented enthroned between lions, with the mural crown on her head and a small drum in her hand.
The Greek goddess of love. Her attributes combine, with Hellenic conceptions, a great many features of Eastern, especially Phoenician, origin, which the Greeks must have grafted on to their native notions in very old times. This double nature appears immediately in the contradictory tales of her origin. To the oldest Greeks she was the daughter of Zeus and Dione (and is sometimes called that name herself); yet from a very early time she appears as Aphro-geneia, the "foamborn" (see URANUS), as Anadyomene, "she who rises" out of the sea, and steps ashore on Cyprus, which had been colonized by Phoenicians time out of mind; even as back as Homer she is Kypris, the Cyprian. The same transmarine and Eastern origin of her worship is evidenced by the legend of the isle of Cythera, on which she was supposed to have first landed out of a sea-shell. Again, the common conception of her as goddess of love limits her agency to the sphere of human life. But she is, at the same time, a power of nature, living and working in the three elements of air, earth, and water. As goddess of the shifting gale and changeful sky, she is Aphrodite Urania, the "heavenly," and at many placesin Greece and Asia her temples crowned the heights and headlands; witness the citadels of Thebes and Corinth, and Mount Eryx in Sicily. As goddess of storm and lightning, she was represented armed, as at Sparta and Cythera; and this perhaps explains why she was associated with Are (Mars) both in worship and in legend, and worshipped as a goddess of victory. The moral conception of Aphrodite Urania as goddess of the higher and purer love, especially wedded love and fruitfulness, as opposed to mere sensual lust, was but slowly developed in the course of ages. As goddess of the sea and maritime traffic, especially of calm seas and prosperous voyages, she was widely worshipped by sailors and fishermen at ports and on seacoasts, often as the goddess of calm, while Poseidon was the god of disturbance Next, as regards the life of the earth, she is the goddess of gardens and groves, of Spring and its bounties, especially tender plants and flowers, as the rose and myrtle; hence, as the fruitful and bountiful, she was worshipped most of all at that season of the year in which her birth from the sea was celebrated at Paphos in Cyprus (comp. cut). But to this, her time of joyful action, is opposed a season of sorrow, when her creations wither and die: a sentiment expressed in her inconsolable grief for her beloved ADONIS (q.v.), the symbol of vegetation perishing in its prime. In the life of gods and men, she shows her power as the golden, sweetly smiling godess of beauty and love, which she knows to kindle or to keep away. She outshines all the goddesses in grace and loveliness; in her girdle she wears united all the magic charms that can bewitch the wisest man and subdue the very gods. Her retinue consists of Eros (Cupid), the Hours, the Graces, Peitho (persuasion), Pothos and Himeros (personifications of longing and yearning). By uniting the generations in the bond of love, she becomes a goddess of marriage and family life, and the consequent kinship of the whole community. As such she had formerly been worshipped at Athens under the name of Pandemos (- all the people's), as being a goddess of the whole country. By a regulation of Solon, the name acquired a very different sense, branding her as goddess of prostitution; then it was that the new and higher meaning was imported into the word Urania. In later times, the worship of Aphrodite as the goddess of mere sensual love made rapid strides, and in particular districts assumed forms more and more immoral, in imitation of the services performed to love-goddesses in the East, especially at Corinth, where large bands of girls were consecrated as slaves to the service of the gods and the practice of prostitution. And later still, the worship of Astarte, the Syrian Aphrodite, performed by eunuchs, spread all over Greece. In the Greek myths Aphrodite appears occasionally as the wife of Hephaestus. Her love adventures with Ares are notorious. From these sprang Eros and Anteros, Harmonia, the wife of Cadmus, and Deimos and Phobos (fear and alarm), attendants on their father. By Anchises she was the mother of Eneas. The head-quarters of her worship were Paphos, Amathus, and Idalion (all in Cyprus), Cnidus in Dorian Asia Minor, Corinth, the island of Cythera, and Eryx in Sicily. As mother of Harmonia, she was a guardian deity of Thebes. Among plants, the myrtle, the rose, and the apple were specially sacred to her as goddess of love; amongst animals, the ram, he-goat, bare, dove, sparrow, and other creatures of amorous nature (the ram and dove being widely-current symbols of great antiquity); as sea-goddess, the swan, mussels, and dolphin; as Urania, the tortoise. In ancient art, in which Aphrodite is one of the favourite subjects, she is represented in a higher or lower aspect, according as the artist's aim was to exhibit Urania or the popular goddess of love. In the earlier works of art she usually appears clothed but in later ones more or less undraped; either as rising from the sea or leaving the bath, or (as in later times) merely as an ideal of female beauty. In the course of time the divine element disappeared, and the presentation became more and more ordinary. While the older sculptures show the sturdier forms, the taste of later times leans more and more to softer, weaker outlines. Most renowned in ancient times were the statue at Cnidus by Praxiteles (a copy of which is now at Munich, see fig. 2), and the painting of Aphrodite Anadyomene by Apelles. Of original statues preserved to us, the most famous are the Aphrodite of Melos (Milo, see fig. 3) now at Paris, and that of Capua at Naples, both of which bring out the loftier aspect of the goddess, and the Medicean Venus at Florence, the work of a late Attic sculptor, Cleomenes, in the delicate forms of face and body that pleased a younger age. On the identification of Aphrodite with the Roman goddess of love, see VENUS.
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