Greek Gods and Goddesses The 12 Olympians and their legends Learning Target • Standard 4.2.3 I can understand and analyze how ideas have impacted world history. • Learning Target: I can explain how religion and mythology shaped life for people in Ancient Greece. Ancient Greek Religion • Greeks were Polytheistic • Polytheism- belief in more than one god. • Greeks believed the Olympians were real and could/did intervene in the lives of mortals. • Gods could even marry/have children with mortals. – Heracles (Hercules), Achilles, Perseus. Uranus and Gaia • Uranus- the Sky and the Heavens • Gaia- the Earth –Gave birth to the Titans The Titans • Ruled the universe before the Gods were born • Rhea- “Mother of the Gods” • Cronus- Leader of the Titans, brother and consort to Rhea The First Olympians • Children of Rhea and Cronus • Cronus feared his children would one day overthrow him, so he ate them • Rhea hid away Zeus, replacing him with a boulder wrapped in swaddling clothes. • Cronus ate the stone instead, Zeus overthrows the Titans and frees his siblings. The Gods • Lived atop Mount Olympus • Immortal • Ate Ambrosia and Nectar – Helped keep the gods immortal • Had the power to both help and hinder mortals. – Ex: Hephaestus made armor for Achilles during the Trojan War. Zeus • King of the Gods, Lord of the Heavens • Youngest of the original 6 • Wielded lightning bolts as a weapon • Had many lovers, fathered over 100 children – Ares, Hephaestus, Hermes, Aphrodite, Heracles, Perseus, etc. Zeus’ Children Hades • Brother of Zeus • Lord of the Underworld – The Underworld was where the souls of the dead went. • Not an evil god, but rather a caretaker of the deceased • Underworld guarded by his three-headed dog. Poseidon • Brother of Zeus • Lord of the Ocean • Poseidon vs. Athena – Athena wins • Partly responsible for Medusa becoming a monster Hera • Sister/Wife of Zeus • Goddess of Women and Marriage • Often depicted as bitter, holding grudges • Mother of Hephaestus and Ares Demeter and Persephone • • • • Demeter: Sister/Lover of Zeus Goddess of the Harvest Persephone: their daughter Goddess of Vegetation, Queen of the Underworld • Married to Hades – He tricks/kidnaps her • Changing of the Seasons Hestia • Sister to Zeus • Goddess of the Hearth and Hospitality – Had to keep the fire burning on Olympus • Chose to be celibate Ares • Son of Zeus and Hera • God of War, Combat, Violence • Fear and Terror (Phobos and Deimos) pulled his Chariot • Best known for love affair with Aphrodite Hephaestus • Son of Zeus and Hera • God of smithing, fire, metalwork • Married to Aphrodite • The only ugly god, Hephaestus made up for it by crafting the most beautiful things. Dionysus • Son of Zeus • God of wine, celebrations, ritual madness. – Party-Hardy god. • Unique god – Mother was mortal Semele Athena • Daughter of Zeus – Popped out of his head • Goddess of Bravery, Wisdom, Military Tactics • Patron Goddess of Athens • Virgin Apollo and Artemis • Twins • Children of Zeus and Leto • Apollo: Sun God – Carried the sun across the sky in his chariot • Artemis: Goddess of the Hunt (Katniss ain’t got nothing on her) Hermes • Son of Zeus and Maia • Messenger of the Gods • God of travelers, herdsmen, athletics, sports, invention, and trade. • Conducted souls to the Underworld as well • “The intern” Aphrodite • Goddess of Beauty, Love, Pleasure, and Procreation. • Married to Hephaestus – Often cheated on him with Ares • When Cronus cut off the genitals of Uranus and threw them into the sea, she rose from the sea foam.