Presentation on theme: "The Age of Mythology Timeless Tales of Heroes, Gods, and Monsters."— Presentation transcript:
The Age of Mythology Timeless Tales of Heroes, Gods, and Monsters
Mythology Definition: a usually traditional story of events that serves to unfold part of the world view of a people or explain a practice, belief, or natural phenomenon. Myths often involve divine, supernatural, and/or heroic characters. Or in other words…
Mythology Definition #2: A collection of fictional stories involving the actions of gods, goddesses and other imaginary characters, intended to explain the unexplainable.
Oral Tradition Definition: the practice of passing along stories, tales, and folklore by word of mouth Oral tradition is responsible for many of the “inconsistencies” of ancient mythology.
Legends Definition: fictional stories loosely based upon real/historical people and events. Also known as “tall-tales” Are rooted in facts, but stories have been changed through the years… WHY ?
Fables Definition: A brief story, often containing animal characters that teaches a lesson or moral Fables deal with “useful truth”
Fantasy Definition: highly imaginative writing that contains elements not found in real life Many science fiction and fantasy books, movies and comic books are based upon the style and manner of myths.
Classical Greek Mythology Definition: A collection of stories about a set of gods, based upon oral tradition, as told and recorded by the ancient Greeks Myths served as entertainment, a sense of national/regional pride, and religious education
“The Classicists” Greek mythology existed for hundreds of years before these stories were ever recorded with written words. The scholars/poets who recorded the myths are known as “classicists.” The major classicists of Greek Mythology include Virgil, Homer, and Ovid.
Categories of Myths Myths of creation: these explain the beginning of time, space, and man Myths of explanation: these explain the great questions of the universe Myths of morality: these teach lessons and reinforce cultural morality
The Importance of Myths Myths were critical to the Ancient Greeks These stories touched all aspects of Greek life, including their art, music, architecture, military endeavors, religion, and education.
Why Study Mythology? Greek myths are the foundation for the arts as we know it, including: movies, television, commercial products, sports, music, and comic books. A knowledge of Greek mythology enhances a person’s ability to understand and appreciate the world as a whole.
Mythology: A Brief Timeline The beginning: according to popular belief Uranus was the “First One”, and he created the universe. Uranus created and married Gaia, otherwise known as “Mother Earth.” They lived on Mt. Olympus
Uranus and Gaia had many children: Some were human-like giants, called the “Titans” Some were hideous, disfigured monsters The Titans lived for many years under Uranus’s cruel reign Uranus’s most powerful son would soon challenge his rule.
Cronus killed his cruel father and assumed his role as “king of the Titans.” Before Uranus died, he predicted that Cronus would be killed by one of his sons, just as he had been. What is the logical solution to this problem?
Cronus married his sister, Rhea, and had: -Three daughters: Hestia, Demeter, Hera -Three sons: Posiedon, Hades, and Zeus These offspring were considered Titans, but would later become the gods and goddesses of Greek Mythology
Because he feared his sons, Cronus ate his first two sons whole Fed up with his baby-gobbling, Rhea gave birth to her third son in secret Rhea dressed a boulder up as a baby and Cronus ate the rock unknowingly Zeus was sent as an infant to be raised in secret by human shephards
“Cronus Devours His Children”
Zeus returned to Mt. Olympus as a young man and poisoned Cronus Cronus vomited up brothers Poseidon and Hades Zeus was celebrated as a hero An epic battle ensues between Cronus and his sons for the right to rule Mt. Olympus and the universe.
The Great Battle! Cronus is assisted in battle by his Titan brothers Zeus and his brothers are assisted by the monsters Cronus had abused and tortured for years in captivity. These monsters included the Cyclopes (3) and the Hundred-Handed Ones (3)
Mythology and Classic Art The Battle Between the Gods and the Titans by Wtewael Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago
Cronus is Defeated! The three sons roll dice to divide Cronus’ kingdom Poseidon wins, but elects to choose second, knowing that naïve Zeus would choose the empty sky. Poseidon is correct, and Zeus chooses unwisely. Hades is left to bitterly receive “leftovers.”
Enter the Gods… Magically and mysteriously, the children of Cronus become immortal, and become gods and goddesses. Mythology offers no explanation for this important transformation!
The Pantheon There are many gods, goddesses, demi- gods (half-gods) and supernatural beings in Greek Mythology. The twelve main gods and goddesses are known as the Pantheon.
Zeus: King of the gods, ruler of Mt. Olympus Also god of lightning Was a powerful and aggressive ruler Struck Earth with lightning bolt when upset Waged constant war with wife Hera Cheated on wife countless times, and had numerous children with mortals, gods, and other creatures
Zeus (continued) Was a master of disguise, which aided him in his philandering Was a complex character: capable of unspeakable acts of immorality and occasional acts of mercy
HERA Queen of immortals, goddess of marriage and childbirth Unhappy wife of Zeus Disapproved of Zeus’ constant cheating Held grudges against Zeus’ “children” Often punished Zeus with childish pranks and vengeful schemes Associated with the peacock
Poseidon God of water God of horses as well Ruled over seas, oceans, rivers and all the sea creatures Did not live in the lost city of Atlantis Invented many of the fish and sea monsters of mythology Created the horse for Demeter (*)
Demeter Goddess of the harvest, plants, farming One of Zeus’ favorite females (also sister) Poseidon also loved Demeter Mother of Persephone Responsible for the all-important growing season (most Greeks were farmers)
Athena Goddess of wisdom and warfare Zeus daughter out of wedlock Mother was Metis, a Titaness Zeus became paranoid that his child would harm him, so he eats her whole. Zeus developed a splitting headache Hephaestus split his head open with a chisel, and…
The “Rebirth” of Athena Athena jumped out of Zeus skull, full-grown and wearing battle armor. Often associated with the owl Carried a shield adorned with the head of Medusa, the Gorgon One of the most popular and respected immortals Athens, Greece is named for her
APoll0 God of the sun, art, music, math, moderation and poetry Artemis’ twin brother Was especially talented but arrogant Often engaged in unfair competitions with mortals Regarded as Zeus’ most powerful son Known for his bloated self-esteem
The Flaying of Marsyas
Artemis Goddess of hunting, sport, and the moon Born of Zeus and Leto (a nymph) Was Zeus’ favorite daughter Zeus granted Artemis three wishes to show her his affection Many of Zeus’ children were jealous of Artemis’ attention and gifts
Artemis (continued) 1) Artemis wished for a silver hunting bow and arrow. 2) Artemis desired to be known by many nicknames. 3) Artemis desired to stay forever young. *Artemis remains chaste for eternity. She endures countless advances, though.
HADES God of the Underworld Was an aggressive, moody and selfish god Often depicted inaccurately as the “antagonist” of mythology “Hades” refers to both the character and the region of the Underworld itself
Hades (continued) Ruled over the three regions of Underworld: Tartarus: dark field bordered by hideous, animated trees, filled with lost souls River Styx: raging river, often depicted as lava or blood, that marked the entrance to the Underworld. Also called the “River of Souls”
Hades (continued) Elysian Fields: a barren wasteland where the good dead reside (*) Isle of the Blessed: blissful paradise where only the most priviledged mortals went upon dying
Hades (continued) Lived with his kidnapped wife, Persephone Cerberus (three-headed dog) guarded the entrance to the Underworld Despite being an important mythological character, Hades only left the Underworld a handful of times.
Hephaestus (Vulcan) God of iron work, blacksmithing, mechanics and manual labor Son of Zeus and Hera Was born ugly and fitful Hera kicked him from Mt. Olympus Was reinstated by Hera for his masterful skill of jewelry-making Was ugly, crippled and hideous
Hephaestus Strikes Gold… Married to Aphrodite, the most beautiful of all goddesses Had no children with his wife Endured Aphrodite’s many affairs and constant flirtations Was emotionally scarred by Aphrodite’s affair with Ares, the god of war
Aphrodite Goddess of beauty, love, and sex Most beautiful of all immortals Aphrodite has a sketchy and controversial past Due to oral tradition and censorship, the tales of Aphrodite have changed considerably through the years
Aphrodite’s Creation Version #1: Aphrodite was the son of Zeus and a Dione Version #2: Aphrodite was born of Zeus and the daughter of one of his arch enemies But both of these stories are less-than- accurate twists on the real version…
The Real Creation of Aphrodite Aphrodite was born from the death of Uranus Cronus castrated his father before death, and threw the “part” into the ocean From the bubbling, boiling, bloody foam, Aphrodite appeared She was accompanied at birth by sea nymphs and doves Often depicted as having hatched from a seashell
Aphrodite (con’t.) Discovered by fishermen and taken to Mt. Olympus as a gift to Zeus Hera, fearing a relationship between Zeus and Aphrodite, insisted that she marry Hephaestus, her ugliest child Aphrodite serves as a constant temptation for gods and mortals alike. Her name literally means “from the foam”
Ares God of warfare Was violent, aggressive, and unlikeable Was Hera and Zeus’s most despised son Had an awkward love affair with Aphrodite Was actually a coward (traitor) Was feared, but not respected by Greeks
Hermes Messenger god, god of gambling, theivery and trickery Has a sketchy creation: – Zeus child with a nymph – Zeus child with a goddess (unnamed) – Son of two enchanted mortals *Oral tradition is contributed to the many different creations of Hermes
Hermes Considered Zeus’ “toadie” Messenger and courier of the gods Only mythological character with ability to enter and leave Underworld freely Ran on air with a pair of special winged sandals called “thalia” “Thalia” were a gift from Athena