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Origin Stories from Greek Mythology

Introduction

Humans have always wondered about how the world was created. How did life start? Who created humans?

Every mythology has stories which describe how the world came in to existence.

Greek Mythology has a very interesting set of stories relate to creation or origin of the world

Before anything else

When there was nothing in this world, there was chaos. As per Greek Mythology, everything started from Chaos.

Chaos gave birth to other primordials – Gaea, who is a personification of Earth itself; Tartarus which denotes the underworld; and Eros, who denotes Love.

After these primordials, Chaos created Erebus (also known as Darkness) and Nyx, who denotes Night. Nyx was feared by everyone. But she wanted a family for herself and created Moros (Fate), Ker (Doom), Thanatos (Death), Hypnos (Sleep), Oneiroi (Dreams), Geras (Old Age), Oizus (Pain), Nemesis (Revenge), Eris (Strife), Apate (Deceit), Philotes (Sexual Pleasure), Momos (Blame), and the Hesperides (the Daughters of the Evening).

Meanwhile, Gaea created Uranus – the starry sky. Then Gaea took Uranus, who surrounded her from all the sides as her mate. Together they had lots of children. First Gaea gave birth to three Cyclopes. They were huge creatures with one eye in the center of their forehead. Next came three Hecatonchires who had Hundred Hands. Then came twelve titans. Seven males and seven females.

However, Uranus was not too fond of his children. He pushed all the children back in Gaea’s womb. Naturally, Gaea was not too happy with this. In fact, she was getting really fed up with Uranus. So she hatched a plan with her youngest child – a Titan named Cronus.

Gaea made a huge sickle and gave it to Cronus. When Uranus came to Gaea, Cronus attacked his father and severed his genital. From the blood that fell on the land, Giants, Nymphs and Furies emerged. Uranus’ genitals fell in the ocean and from its froth arose Aphrodite – the goddess of Beauty.

The Birth of Venus
The Birth of Venus – Wikipedia

Titans

After defeating Uranus, Cronus declared himself the new ruler of the world. He did not want to lose his throne, so he eliminated any competition. He locked up the Cyclopes and Hecatonchires deep in the Tartarus.

He took Titaness Rhea as his mate. When they had their first child, Cronus got worried that the child may dethrone him like he dethroned his father Uranus. To avoid the same fate, Cronus swallowed the baby. Rhea was not happy with this. And she got more and more furious when Cronus did the same with their next child. Cronus swallowed five of his children like this.

When Rhea was expecting her sixth child, she decided that she will not let Cronus take away this child too. So she hid herself on the island of Crete. When the child was born, Rhea left him with the Nymphs and went back to Cronus. She wrapped a stone in a baby blanket and handed it to Cronus. Now we must remember that Cronus was a really crappy father, so he didn’t even notice that Rhea had handed him a stone. Cronus didn’t waste any time in swallowing the stone, thinking it was his sixth child. Thus Rhea could save one son who was growing safely on Crete. She named her son Zeus.

When Zeus grew up, he was told of his origin stories. Zeus got furious and vowed to avenge his siblings. He knew he could not defeat Cronus alone. So he teamed up with a Titaness Metis and came up with a plan. Metis got him a potion which would make Cronus throw up. Zeus like this plan and went to Cronus’s palace disguised as a servant.

Zeus was able to switch Cronus’s wine goblet with the potion given by Matis. The potion worked quickly. In no time, Cronus was vomiting. First came the stone wrapped in a baby blanket. Then came Zeus’s siblings – Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades and Poseidon.

Zeus was able to free his siblings, but Cronus was still in power. Zeus and his siblings united to defeat Cronus. But Cronus too called the other Titans to help him. Zeus and his siblings (also known as Olympians) fought with the Titans for a long time. Ultimately, Olympians freed Cyclopes and Hecatonchires, who joined them in fighting Titans.

After a long time, the Titans were defeated.

Olympians

Zeus became the ruler after defeating the Titans. Atlas was the leader of the Titans in the war. So after the war, Zeus punished Atlas by placing the burden of the entire world on his shoulders. He imprisoned rest of the Titans in Tartarus.

But not every Titan fought the Olympians. Prometheus left Titans and helped Olympians in the war. Prometheus was the one who created later created humans and stole fire for them. For this Prometheus was punished rather harshly. But for now, Olympians cheered him.

Even Cyclopes were thankful to the Olympians. To show their gratitude, they gifted a thunderbolt to Zeus, a trident to Poseidon and a helmet of invisibility to Hades.

Zeus and the other Olympians ruled over the world from Mount Olympus. More Olympian Gods and Goddesses joined the existing six Olympians.

Rule of the Olympians led to an era of Heroes and Legends.

Greek Mythology Origin Stories
Greek Mythology Origin Stories

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