GODS AND GODDESSES
AEOLUS - God - keeper of the winds.
APHRODITE - Goddess of love & beauty, one of the three Daughters of ZEUS. Born in the sea from a shell. Symbols - Roses, Doves, Sparrows, Dolphins & Rams.
APOLLO - God of the Sun, Light & Truth. Patron of the Arts, skilled musician. Killed the enemy of his mother the serpent, PYTHON. APOLLO fell in love with DAPHNE a NYMPH a beautiful half-Goddess. She ran away asking MOTHER EARTH to help her, and was turned into a Laurel Tree. So APOLLO from then on wore a wreath of Laurel in memory of DAPHNE. Symbol - Laurel Tree.
ARES - God of war. Son of ZEUS. Once stood trial on the hill of the Areopagus in Athens for murder. Symbols - a Burning Torch, a Spear, Dogs & Vultures.
ARTEMIS - Moon Goddess & huntress, one of the three Daughters of ZEUS. Virgin Goddess, used silver arrows for plague & death. Had healing powers. Protected young girls and pregnant women. Symbols - Cypress Trees, Deers & Dogs.
ASCLEPIUS - God of medicine, a man, who brought the dead back to life. But killed by ZEUS then rived to become a God.
ATHENE - Goddess of wisdom & war, patron Goddess of Athens. Symbols - the Owl & the Olive Tree.
CASTOR - One of the Sons of ZEUS, but a mortal. An Argonaut, and brother of Helen of Troy, Clytemnestra and POLLUX.
DEMETER - Goddess of the earth, plants & harvest. Symbol - sheaf of wheat or barley.
DIONYSUS - God of wine & plays. Fanatical followers included the female MAENADS. Became Cup-Bearer to the Gods.
EOS - Goddess of the Dawn. Drove a Chariot across the sky.
ERIS - Goddess of Spite. Caused Trojan War. Daughter of ZEUS and HERA.
EROS - God of love. Made couples fall in love - even unsuited ! Fell in love with mortal woman PSYCHE, so ZEUS made her immortal.
THE FATES - Divine Sisters - CLOTHO, LACHESIS, and ATROPOS. Arbiters of destiny, Spinner, Giver of Fate, and Death.
THE FURIES - TISIPHONE, MEGAERA, and ALECTO. Goddesses of Retrobution. They tormented those guilty of terrible crimes. Particularly the murder of mothers & fathers.
HEBE - Goddess - Cup-Bearer to the Gods. Daughter of ZEUS and HERA. Married HERACLES(Hercules) after he became a God.
HEPHAESTOS - God of Craftsmen. Skilled, hard working & kind. Crippled by his mother HERA when she threw him from Olympus in a temper. Forced to marry APHRODITE !
HERA - Goddess of Olympus. ZEUS' sister and wife. Cruel & jealous. Protector of women & marriage. Symbols - Pomegranate & Peacock.
HERACLES - (or the Roman spelling - Hercules) - DEMI-GOD - the son of ZEUS and Alcmene a human woman. HERA was jealous of Alcmene and tried to kill HERACLES as a baby, with 2 serpents, but he strangled them. HERACLES married Megara, but the still jealous HERA drove him insane till he murdered his wife. In dispair he consulted the Oracle of Delphi, and was sent to King Eurystheus. He had to complete 'The Twelve Labours Of Heracles' including defeating monsters, finding rare objects and feats of strength and cunning. With the help of the Gods he succeeded and became immortal.
HERMES - God - Messenger to the Gods & Patron to voyagers & thieves. Mischievous & got in trouble, stole cattle, but invented the Lyre(stringed musical instrument) & was forgiven. Had hat with wings on and a staff with entwined snakes.
HESTIA - Goddess of the Home(the Hearth). Every family had a shrine dedicated to her. Quiet, gentle and didn't get involved with Mount Olympus quarrels. Eventually gave up Goddesshood to DIONYSUS.
MORPHEUS - God of Dreams. Son of HYPNOS, God of Sleep.
PAN - God of nature, shepherds & sheep. He fell in love with a NYMPH called SYRINX, but she escaped by turning herself into a bed of reeds. So PAN made the reeds into musical pipes to create music.
PERSEUS - DEMI-GOD - son of ZEUS and the woman Danae. King Seriphos sent him to kill MEDUSA, one of the GORGONS. ATHENE gave him a mirror so as not to look at the snake headed MEDUSA who could turn to stone any who looked at her. PERSEUS cut her head off, and gave it to ATHENE for her shield.
PERSEPHONE - Goddess - Daughter of ZEUS and DEMETER. Helped her mother with the harvest, but kidnapped by PLUTO, who made her Queen of the Underworld. A bargain struck she returned for spring & summer, but stayed with PLUTO for autumn & winter.
PLUTO - God of the Underworld. Brother of ZEUS & HERA. Drove a gold chariot with black horses and guarded the dead. Rich and had PERSEPHONE as his Queen.
POLLUX - An Immortal, an Argonaut, and brother of Helen of Troy, Clytemnestra and Castor. One of the Sons of ZEUS.
POSEIDON - God of the Oceans. Brother of ZEUS & HERA. Drove a gold chariot with white horses and had an underwater palace. Controlled the depths and creatures and storms and earthquakes. Symbols - Trident, Dolphins & Horses.
PROMETHEUS - God - gave humans the secrets of the Gods, including growing crops, taming horses, using plants as medicine, but it was giving humans fire that made ZEUS angry. ZEUS had him chained to Mount Caucasus and had his liver torn out everyday by a vulture. But it grew back each night. PROMETHEUS was rescued after many years by HERACLES(Hercules).
URANUS - God of the sky. He created everything with the GODDESS - MOTHER EARTH. He was heartless and cruel, and imprisoned some of his children, so MOTHER EARTH turned against him.
ZEUS - God of Olympus, ruler of all Gods. Married his sister HERA. they had 3 children ARES, ERIS & HEBE. He constantly had affairs with human women, appearing in the form of a bull, a swan, a shower of gold, and many others including pretending to be the woman's husband away at war. Meanwhile his relationship with Hera was always explosively at war. Symbols - the Thunder Bolt, the Eagle and the Oak Tree.
MOUNT OLYMPUS - Was where the OLYMPIAN GODS lived after ZEUS led his brothers and sisters(HERA, POSEIDON, PLUTO, HESTIA & DEMETER) against their parents THE TITANS. They killed them, then ZEUS married his sister HERA to become KING & QUEEN OF THE GODS. And the others became rulers of their kingdoms.
THE OLYMPIC GAMES - Was a religious ceremony held to worship ZEUS. It lasted 5 days and was held every 4 years at Olympia. All sorts of sports took place including athletics, horse racing, chariot racing, boxing, and wrestling. In fact athletics competitions were held in Greece as part of religious ceremony for GODS & GODDESSES by the Ancient Greeks. It is thought that the first OLYMPIC GAMES took place around 776BC.
THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE ANCIENT WORLD - 1. STATUE of ZEUS at OLYMPIA, in GOLD & IVORY(stood for nearly 500 years since the new AD date system). 2. The TEMPLE of ARTEMIS at EPHESUS, in MARBLE(stood for over 400 years since AD 1). 3. The MAUSOLEUM at HALICARNASSUS, a STONE TOMB built by KING MAUSOLUS of CARIA(stood till 16th Century AD). 4. The PHAROS of ALEXANDRIA, the LIGHTHOUSE built as a BEACON for the TRADING PORT(stood till 1300's AD). 5. The HANGING GARDENS of BABYLON, terraced GARDENS of BABYLON. 6. The GREAT PYRAMID of GIZA, TOMB built for EGYPTIAN PHARAOH KHUFU(still standing !). 7. The COLOSSUS of RHODES, a STATUE that straddled the entrance to the PORT.
ANCIENT GREEK HISTORY
First people settle and hunt and gather/First people settle on CRETE/First evidence of people on the CYCLADES ISLANDS of metal work.
BRONZE AGE 2900-1000BC
2500 TROY founded.
2000BC Arrival of GREEK speaking people.
1900BC MINOAN culture on CRETE.
1700BC Earthquake destroys CRETE PALACES, but they are rebuilt.
1600BC MYCENAEAN era.
1500-1450BC Eruption of THERA.
1450-1400BC KNOSSOS ON CRETE is taken over by the MYCENAEANS/KNOSSOS is abandoned.
1250BC TROJAN WAR starts.
GREEK DARK AGES 1100-800BC
1100BC MYCENAEAN culture has collapsed.
900BC SPARTA founded.
850-750 HOMER writer of the ILLIAD & ODYSEY alive.
ARCHAIC PERIOD 800-500BC
800BC GREEK trade & adaptation of the PHOENICIAN ALPHABET to GREEK.
776 First OLYMPICS.
750-650BC GREEKS start to emigrate.
740-720BC SPARTANS conquer MESSENIA.
650BC Tyrants take over GREECE.
630-613BC MESSENIANS revolt, but are defeated.
621BC DRACO introduces harsh laws in ATHENS.
594BC SOLON introduces reforms in ATHENS for the poor, and gives food to the poor.
546BC PERSIANS conquer GREEK colony of IONIA in TURKEY.
508BC CLIESTHENES seizes power in ATHENS introducing democracratic reforms.
500-494BC GREEKS in IONIA revolt against PERSIANS.
490-479BC GREEKS defeat PERSIANS at MARATHON/PERSIANS defeat GREEKS at THERMOPLYAE/GREEKS defeat the PERSIANS in the sea battle of SALAMIS/BATTLE OF THE PLATAEA-GREEKS defeat PERSIANS & PERSIAN fleet is destroyed at MYCALE, with the PERSIANS driven from GREECE.
CLASSICAL AGE 500-323BC
500-336BC CLASSICAL GREEK ART.
478BC ATHENS & other GREEK DELIAN states fight PERSIANS.
460-429BC PERICLES elected STRATEGOS in ATHENS 443-429BC/ATHENS & PIRAEUS walls built & ACROPOLIS rebuilt/DELIAN LEAGUE makes peace with PERSIA/30 YEARS PEACE declared between ATHENS & SPARTA/PELOPONNESIAN WARS/PLAGUE in ATHENS.
421BC 50 YEARS PEACE between SPARTA & ATHENS negotiated/420BC ALCIBIADES elected STRATEGOS/10 or more wars in involving GREECE in the MEDITEREANIAN.
340BC HELLENIC LEAGUE formed/GREECE loses BATTLE OF CHAERONEA and their independence to PHILIP II of MACEDONIA.
336-323BC PHILIP II murdered, succeeded by his son ALEXANDER THE GREAT/He defeats the PERSIANS at ISSUS/Conquers PHOENICIA, SAMARIA, JUDEA, GAZA, EGYPT/Defeats PERSIANS at GAUGAMELA, Conquers rest of PERSIA/Conquers parts of INDIA but dies.
323-30BCWARS FOR INDEPENDENCE OF GREEK CITY STATES/OTHER WARS/REBELLION/HANNIBAL OF CARTHAGE FIGHTS ROMANS IN PUNIC WARS/MACEDONIAN WARS AGAINST THE ROMANS/ROMANS DESTROY CORINTH, AND IMPOSE DIRECT RULE ON GREECE.
Compiled by James Wyatt, with help from the 'Usbourne Internet Linked Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece' & 'Xena Warrior Princess The Complete Illustrated Companion' by K. Stoddard Hayes & 'The World of Hercules The Legendary Journeys Map.