Representation Of The Gods in Greek Mythology

Categories: Zeus

Many of the Greek myths depict life when they were prospering. Evidence related to when they were going through difficult times is scarce. It’s possible that due to their potentially raised ego they began writing stories as to appear more strong and powerful among their competitors. It’s also possible that due to their thriving economic status they were able to efficiently create the numerous stories we now know today. Without these ancient tales, we wouldn’t know a lot involving how Greek people went about their way of life.

However, due to their stories only being created when they were thriving, little is known about early Greek civilization.

The Greeks created their gods with their own self reflection. Unlike the Greeks, Egyptians created gods that resembled beasts and other animals. Perhaps this differentiation was to make the gods seem more divine. Greek gods were created for the main purpose of describing unexplainable things. Due to the large religious influence on Greek society, the plentiful amount of stories we now know today were created.

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Because of the countless Greek myths, the people became very aware of what the gods did in heaven. They knew what they ate, drank, and even what they were entertained by. They also knew who was married to who and how they coexisted with each other. The more stories that were created, the further Greeks grew a connections with the gods they worshipped.

Cronus (Uranus): Cronus is best known as the father of all gods. He was later dethroned by his son Zeus.

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Zeus (Jupiter): After Zeus had claimed Cronus’ place, he became the new ruler of the gods. He has many titles associated with him, such as the rain god, lord of the sky, as well as the cloud gatherer who wielded the thunderbolt as a weapon.

Hera (Juno): Hera is known to be the protector of marriage. She was also Zeus’s wife and sister. Poseidon (Neptune): Poseidon was the brother and husband of Aphrodite. He’s most notable for being God of the sea, an important title to the Greeks.

Hades (Pluto): Hades was known as the God of wealth. He was also the oldest male child of Cronus and Rhea.

Pallas Athena (Minerva): Birthed by only one person, Pallas Athena was the only daughter of Zeus. She was Zeus’s favorite child being a ruthless battle-goddess.

Phoebus Apollo: Phoebus Apollo has been been widely referred to as “the most Greek of all the gods.” He was also the son of Zeus and Leto.

Artemis (Diana): Artemis was the twin sister of Apollo and the daughter of Zeus and Leto. She was the Lady of Wild Things and Goddess of the hunt.

Aphrodite (Venus): The Goddess of beauty, known to charm all. She was the daughter of Zeus and Dione.

Hermes (Mercury): Hermes father was Zeus and his mother was Maia. He was Zeus’s messenger and the God of travel.

Ares (Mars): Ares is The God of war and the son of Zeus and Hers. He wasn’t worshipped in any cities.

Hephaestus (Vulcan): Hephaestus was the son of Zeus and Hera. He was also the God of fire.

Hestia (Vesta): Hestia was the sister of Zeus and a virgin goddess. She also had no specific personality and played no role in the myths.

Eros (Cupid): Eros is the most important of the lesser divine beings. He was also the God of desire. Iris: Iris was Goddess of the rainbow and the messanger for the gods. In the Iliad she was the only messenger.

The Muses: There were nine Muses. They were the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne Memory.

Pan: Pan was Hermes’ son. He also was part animal, possessing goat horns and goat hooves.

Demeter (Ceres): Demeter is the daughter of Cronus and Rhea. She is the Goddess of grain, growth, harvest, agriculture, and nourishment.

Dionysus (Bacchus): Dionysus is the God of winemaking. He is also the God of fertility.

There are a variety of similarities and differences between Demeter and Dionysus. They’re known by many to be great friends while still possessing many contrasts between the two. One such difference was Dionysus was always open to teaching humans, always liking them, while Demeter wasn’t always as peaceful and had from time to time made humans suffer. Many children are mainly influenced by who they are raised by, with Demeter having been birthed by the Titan Cronus and Rhea, while Dionysus was birthed by the Theban princess Semele and Zeus. However unlike Demeter’s parents who were seen as divine beings, Dionysus’s parents were not divine. Something that was similar between them however was that they were held with high status from a human’s perspective: “...mankind’s best friends”.

There was a lot of evidence pointing to Dionysus being seen as a higher being, such as when it stated, “On board the ship they fetched rude bonds to fetter him with, but to their amazement they were unable to bind him; the ropes could not hold together; they fell apart when they touched his hands or feet’. Something interesting and important to note was that Dionysus was seen by everyone as a god until he neared his home country. Both Demeter and Dionysus held their children in high regard, doing almost anything to save them if they got into a difficult situation. While many similarities and differences are found between the two, they still are seen today as close companions.

Gaea (Mother Earth) was born from the primordial mist and gave birth to Uranus, otherwise known as Father Heaven. The two then birthed numerous children, many of evil nature. Uranus attempted to hide away many of the creatures. The importance of these beings is quite significant as they are part of a war that almost wiped out the universe. The creatures who were first the appearance of life were the children of Mother Earth and Father Heaven. They were monsters. The Greeks, unlike us, believed that the Earth used to be inhabited by fantastic and overwhelmingly powerful creatures. Cronus at the time was lord of the universe with his sister-queen Rhea. One of their sons Zeus eventually rebelled against Cronus, dethroning him. After Zeus took the throne, many giants attempted to dethrone him, but at this point the gods were already overwhelmingly powerful. After they emerged victorious, they were from then on the unquestioned lords of all. There were no human beings still at this time, but with the world now rid of monsters, mankind would soon make its mark. At the time to Greeks believed Earth was a round disk, having been divided into two equal parts by the sea. We now know this is the Mediterranean, by what we call the Black Sea, showing how Greeks had once perceived the world.

Mankind was created when it was delegated by the gods to Prometheus and his brother Epimetheus. Epimetheus however was a disorganized person, who before making man, gave all of the best gifts to animals. After doing so, Prometheus assisted in restoring what he had done. Prometheus took over the task of creation to help right the wrongs, created man nobler than animals, and also gave fire to protect man. For a long time throughout the happy golden age, only men walked the Earth. There were no women until Zeus created them later in his anger towards Prometheus for caring so much about men. The first woman Zeus had created was called Pandora. From her, the first women came the race of women who were evil to men with a nature to do evil. Pandora was the one to release evil into the world which is what we still experience now. After the total annihilation of all life on earth due to Zeus and Poseidon working together to make a massive storm, it was discovered that two people had survived the storm atop a tall mountain. These two were the children of Pandora and Epimetheus, who created the Stone People to restore the world to its former nature.

Zeus gave the task of creating humans to Prometheus and Epimetheus. Prometheus with the role that he had been given decided to make mankind more powerful than animals by granting fire to the humans. Zeus hated that the humans now had a large advantage over animals but was unable to reverse Prometheus’s mistake. Zeus also created a woman named Pandora, whom he gave a box that she was forbid from opening. Zeus then sent Pandora down to Earth where she proceeded to open the box due to her immense curiosity, which led to evil flying throughout the world. Zeus’s main role throughout the chapter was giving other gods powers for certain things as well as creating people for specific purposes. The myth of Europa reveals a few things relating to Zeus as he was shot by cupid with a love arrow and fell in love with a mortal woman named Europa. Zeus takes her upon his back and proceeded to ride across the ocean to Crete. In Crete, Zeus marries her and she lives a happy life after bearing him two sons. Zeus granted the cyclops to return to their land, giving them a home in a fortunate place. Because of this, Odysseus had to face off against a cyclops, which almost destroyed his entire crew. Zeus inadvertently harmed the hero Odysseus but, he was able to resolve the issue by helping Odysseus sail to shore using wind. After Adonis, a very handsome man was put into Persephone’s care due to Aphrodite falling in love with him, Persephone herself ends up falling in love with Adonis. Zeus then intervened and came to the conclusion that Adonis would spend half a year with Aphrodite and spend the other half with Persephone. Zeus is shown to act like a judge, deciding the fate of whoever he’s dealing with. After seeing how Zeus acted throughout the stories, Zeus seems to be taking on the main task of a judge, deciding the result of the clashing between others. One such example is in the story “Flower-Myths: Narcissus, Hyacinth, Adonis,” where Zeus decides the fate of the three: “Neither goddess would yield, and finally Zeus himself had to judge between them. He decided that Adonis should spend half the year with each, the autumn and winter with the Queen of the Dead; the spring and summer with the Goddess of Love and Beauty.” It fits his role as he is the highest ranked among the gods. It’s only fitting that he decides the outcomes of the many conflicts taking place. Although many of his decisions are self-centered, only wanting what is best for him and not what’s best for everyone. This causes Zeus to become imbalanced as a leader, which can lead to drastic consequences.

A girl named Psyche was born so beautiful that she angered the goddess Venus because that she had had all of the attention so Venus instructed her son, Cupid, to shoot Psyche with an arrow making her fall in love with the most terrible man. But when Cupid sees Psyche in her radiant glory, he shoots himself with the arrow instead and they fell into deep love, but she doesn't know what he looks like so she sneakingly glances which makes them lose faith, ending the relationship. The goddess Venus then puts Psyche through many trials to prove her love in which case she does, obtaining immortality from Zeus. Pyramus and Thisbe were deeply in love with one another and lived next to each other, but sadly their love was forbidden due to their parents building a wall between the two houses. However there was a small crack in the wall which let them kiss and speak to each other. They decided to meet at the Tomb of Ninus one night and when Thisbe came before Pyramus she saw a lioness which ripped her cloak, which led to many misunderstandings ending with both dying to to the belief that one another had been killed by the lioness.

Orpheus is the most talented musician alive, and after falling in love with Eurydice, a viper stings her, killing her. Orpheus then travels down into the underworld to beg her return from Hades and successfully charms the creatures of death with his sweet music, and finally Hades agrees to give Eurydice back to Orpheus on the condition that Orpheus must not look back at his wife as she follows him back above ground, but just before the two lovers return to the surface, Orpheus couldn’t handle his overwhelming curiosity and looks back. He sees his wife disappearing, saying "farewell." Ceyx and Alcyone were happily married until Ceyx decided to journey across the ocean, and even with Alcyone begging him not to go he sets out and ends up dying in a storm. The god Juno pitied Alcyone, letting her know that her husband had died, which led her to go to the ocean in order to drown herself, however she saw that his body was floating towards her. Attempting to dive in, she ends up flying over the waves, with her becoming a bird as well as Ceyx turning into a bird, flying with each other peacefully.

Pygmalion was a talented artist who still had never fallen in love with a woman. Instead of women, he has fallen in love with a sculpture representing a woman whom he created and he gave gifts, put her to sleep, and dressed her up. Finally, Pygmalion realizes that there’s no hope attempting to please and inanimate object, Venus noticed the situation and pitied him, turning the statue into a living woman named Galatea whom Pygmalion marries. Jupiter and Mercury disguised themselves as poor travelers to see if anyone would let them stay at their home. Everyone besides Baucis and Philemon wouldn’t let them stay at their home, so the gods destroyed the entire town except for Baucis and Philemon’s home, as well as turning their small hut into a marble house. The gods were asked by the couple that when one of them were to die, the other would die with them, so many years later they both turned into trees. A beautiful young man named Endymion catches the attention of Selene, the Moon. Selene puts him in a magical slumber and he lies as if dead, but it turns out he was actually alive but forever asleep. Every night, Selene covers him with kisses, but she eternally suffered from lonliness. Daphne was a wood nymph whom Apollo was attracted to, so he came down and chased her through the woods attempting to catch her. When Apollo caught up to her, Daphne screamed attempting to call out to her father, but was turned into a laurel tree. Apollo failed at capturing Daphne and instead made her the victor’s crown.

Updated: Feb 27, 2024
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Representation Of The Gods in Greek Mythology. (2024, Feb 27). Retrieved from

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