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Transcript of The Creation
In the beginning there was only Chaos.
Out of Chaos, Mother Earth Gaea,
Tartarus (who ruled the Underworld)
and Eros (Love)
came into existence.
Gaea alone gave birth
to Uranus, the heavens.
Uranus became Gaea's mate
covering her on all sides.
Together they produced
three Cyclopes, and three
Hundred Handed Giants
Fearful of his children overthrowing him,
Uranus pushed his children back into Gaea
and into the region named after its ruler, Tartarus.
The next immortal children born to Gaea and Uranus were the 13 Titans. Oceanus, Hyperion, Coeus, Cronus, Crius, Lapetus, Helios, Mnemosyne, Tethys, Theia, Phoebe, Rhea, and Themis.
Helios, god of the sun, drove the sun
across the sky in his chariot.
Selene was the goddess of the Moon
Oceanus was the god of the
river that surrounded earth.
Like her mother, Gaea,
Themis was the goddess
of prophecy at Delphi.
Cronus married his sister Rhea, who was a goddess
of the earth like her mother, and in time they
became the parents of the Greek gods.
Later, Atlas, by far the strongest
of the Titans, held up the sky so
it would not fall upon the earth.
Soon thereafter, Prometheus, the most intelligent and clever Titan, created mortal man out of clay and water.
Epimetheus, married Pandora,
the first mortal woman.
Gaea wanted to use her Titan children as her means of revenge against Uranus. She took a large piece of flint and shaped it into a huge, sharp, stone sickle. Almost all of Gaea's sons were so terrified of Uranus that they refused to obey her. But Cronus, the youngest Titan, stepped forward and declared that if his father has been cruel to her and to his brothers, they should take revenge.
Gaea gave the curved blade to Cronus. Later, when Helios had drawn the chariot of the sun across the sky and had retired for the night, Uranus joined his wife by the shore of the sea to sleep. Cronus snuck up upon Uranus and cut him into several pieces. He then threw the severed pieces into the sea. Uranus being immortal, could not die.
Cronus became the god of the sky, as his father had been before him. Like his father, he feared the Hundred- handed giants and the Cyclops, so he ignored his promise to Gaea and kept his brothers bound and imprisoned in Tartarus. Gaea, disappointed and angry, enjoyed informing Cronus that one day a son of his would overpower him just as he overpowered his own father.
Cronus, believing he could fool the Fates, took his first child lovingly from his wife, opened his gigantic mouth, and swallowed the infant in one gulp. Though she was a girl. Four more children were born to Cronus and Rhea, and each time Cronus embraced the child lovingly, and each time he would open his mouth and swallow the infant in one gulp.
When Rhea was about to give birth to her sixth child, she went to Gaea, her mother, for help. Gaea told her daughter to go to the island of Crete and give the child to the Nymphs who will nurse him and hang his cradle from a tree so that Cronus will not be able to find him on land, or sea, or in the air. So when Zeus was born, Rhea followed the advise given to her by Gaea. Then Rhea substituted a rock for the baby. Cronus did not notice the difference and gulped down the rock.
Years passed, and Zeus became a mature god. One day when Cronus was thirsty, Rhea gave him a drink. He was delighted and asked for more. A young stranger walked in and handed him the cup, and Cronus swallowed the drink before realizing that he had never seen the young man before. Suddenly, Cronus felt an excruciating pain in his stomach. He vomited up the rock, followed by Poseidon, Hades, Hera, Demeter, and Hestia, all of whom were fully grown by now. So it came to pass that Zeus and his brothers and sisters, the first Greek "gods," waged war against Cronus and the Titans.
The gods and the Titans were so evenly matched in numbers and in strength that they fought for ten years without victory for either side. it also did not help that they were immortal. Finally, Gaea told Zeus about his uncles, the Hundred Handed Giants and Cyclopes, whom Uranus and Cronus had imprisoned beneath the ground at the borders of the earth, and how they were chained in grief and sorrow, far from the light of Helios and the companionship of the deathless god.
Zeus and his brothers went down to Tartarus to rescue Gaea's children and encourage their alliance. When they broke the cyclopes and Giants out, they were given special gifts. Zeus got the gift of thunder and lightning in the form of a thunderbolt. Poseidon got a trident, and Hades got the helmet of invisibility. With high spirits, Zeus and his allies returned to the upperworld and renewed the battle.
The combatants could not kill each other, for they were all immortal beings. Finally, the Hundred-handed Giants hurled the Titans beneath the earth into Tartarus and placed them in chains for eternity in the dark, dismal land. Two of them volunteered to guard the hated Titans forever. The war was over.
When the three male gods drew lots for their kingdoms, Zeus drew the sky, Poseidon the sea, and Hades the Underworld. Zeus married his sister Hera, who bacame the goddess of marriage and childbirth as well as queen of Olympus. Hestia became guardian of the home and thought mortals how to build houses. Demeter became the goddess of grain. Zeus became the father of many other gods: Athena, the goddess of arts and craft and defensive war. Apollo, the god of prophecy, medicine, and archery. Artemis, the goddess of the hunt. Hermes, Zeus's messenger. Persephone, the queen of the underworld. Ares, the god of war. Hephaestus, the renowned metal smith.
The rule of the Titans had ended. The rule of the gods had begun.
Creation of the world
First Greek Gods » Theogony - The Creation of the First Greek Gods
John M. Hunt; Creation of the World;
The Creation of the Titans and the Gods; World Mythology; Donna Rosenberg