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Lecture 2

Week 2 - Zeus, Olympics.docx

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Classical Studies
CLAS 2000
John Walsh

MONDAY – January 13, 2014 Cronus • First king of the world • Underhanded, violent, suspicious: threatened by succession because he knows how he got to be king of the world, he stole power from his father • Reproduces with is sister Rhea: Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades (god of the underworld), Poseidon (god of the sea), Zeus (last born) • Worries about his own children and that they will still steal the power from him • As his children were born he decides to eat them because he doesn’t want progress. He wants to hold onto his powers. • These children were the Olympians • He ate the first 5 children and that upset Rhea so she tricked Cronus. – Female deception again that we saw with Gaea • At the moment of the birth of the 6 child Zeus she rapped a stone in a blanket and he ate the stone and she brings the baby (Zeus) to Crete where he was protected by the locals and raised in a cave until he was old enough to come back and claim his rightful position. E o Omphalos – the stone that was substituted for Zeus Delphi Titanomachy • titan battle – machy meaning battle • He was helped by the Themis (justitia) and Prometheus • Zeus grows up and challenges his father for power. He takes up residence on Mount Olympus and gives his father a potion and causes his father to get very ill and vomits up the other 5 children that he ate and they were then reborn in the order they were eaten and they call themselves the Olympians. • They [Olympians] rage a war against the Titans (one hundred handers and the c) and seize power by force and revolution. • The cyclopis build Zeus lightning bolt, the weapon he used to defeat the Titans • Tartarus (Atlas) o They imprison the titans in tartatus and it was guarded by the 100 handers. Those who opposed Zeus were put there. • Atlas – doomed to hold up creation and not the earth • They are the third generation o The stuff which consist of the sky, the ground were not born and were not “physical” entities, then there was the Titans which were monster like not human. Finally there were the Olympians who took human ( Zeus is not god of the sky but he’s the god who lives in the sky and rules it) • 3 male GODS divided up the world ( Hades who became God of the underworld, Poseidon who became God of Sea and Zeus who became God of the Sky) Gigantomachy (Gegneis) • These were the titans who opposed the Olympians • They were giants • The earth gives birth to Typhon, Typhoeus. Zeus must confront Typhoeus. This kind of sets him apart from the other Olympians o The Eruptions at Mt… • St. George - dragon slaying represent the victory of our mind. Zeus defeats the dragon and he was a good leader for the Greeks because of this defeat. • Origin of mortals o Unlike Darwin’s theory the Greeks believed that evolution is actually reversed. They were living in the golden age and now we are downgrading. There was no work, no stress, no disease, people were happy. o Decula..df(?) similar to Noah o Zeus visited the earth to test mind kind who came in a disguise. o Man was made by Prometheus – he built man out of dirt. o Prometheus and sacrifice  Prometheus tricked Zeus into accepting the worst parts of the animals  Zeus was angry that he was tricked by Prometheus on the behalf of mankind  He punished mankind by turning the lights out. He took away fire.  Prometheus stole the fire from Zeus and re-gifted back to mankind. Zeus saw that man had fire again and he punished Prometheus\  He was imprisoned in a cage, pierced through the middle and pinned to the rock. A large bird (depending on the geographical location) would visit him and slowly peck his liver • Pandora o To punish man Zeus invented women o Her name was pandora – pan meaning all dora meaning gift o Hephaestus made her in the basement of mount Olympus o Athena gives her a veil and the skill of weaving o She was given a golden head band o Aphrodite – she gave her sexual appeal what man so desires o Hermes – contrived in her breast wheedling words and lies and the nature of a thief and a bitch o She was lazy and wanted to feed upon the labor of man o She sent down to earth with a jar/box and in the container (contrary to popular belief she was not told to not open the box) was all the bad things. The only thing she kept sealed in the box was hope Zeus and Hera • He marries his sister Hera who is older than him • Greek men tended to marry young girls which showed the balance in power • Zeus and Hera were equal which according to the Greek was dysfunctional • Zeus features o First original six Olympians o He’s bearded, he’s an adult male (his muscular physic) o He embodies what a powerful adult male should look like o His pose suggest authority, confidence and aggression o Some people say that the statue is Poseidon o The gods are immensely flawed, not honest, the only difference is that they are immortal, not virtuous, he is a projection of male fantasy o Frequently in conflict with his wife Zeus weakness is women, love, lust WEDNESDAY – January 15, 2014 • Zeus, Hades, Poseidon had to decide how they were going to carve up the world and how they will divide it. The sisters were not involved, as Greeks believed that women should not be rulers. • Traditionally, Greek culture would follow the law of Primogeniture (the first born) to inherit the fathers belongings • Instead they allowed faith to determine the outcome by drawing straws. They relied on the power of faith to make extremely difficult decisions. • Zeus (the youngest) drew the best straw and he became ruler of the sky. He ruled from Mt. Olympus • Zeus at Olympia o It was enormous and sculpted by phidias o It was of gold and ivory o One of the seven wonders of the ancient world • Poseidon ruled the sea o In early stories, there was so real difference between Zeus and Poseidon. However with the time the stories changed - singular intention upon Zeus, The Greeks were working towards monotheism with the focus on Zeus. • Hades (the oldest brother) inherited the world of the dead o The Greek gods hated death o Hades was constantly surrounded by death o He wasn’t thought of as evil but more so unpleasant o No sacrifice, no nymphs, no one worshiped him • The sisters were given roles • Hera - family • Hestia o Hearth o She was associated with the flame of the household, fire o Vestal (vesta) virgins • Demeter (Roman name: Ceres) o She brought life to the earth Zeus • Zeus “father” of gods and men o =justice o Subject to flattery, charm, bribery, deception o Delegated responsibility to siblings/children o he was flawed in the fact that he has this uncontrollable sexual urge  he’s almost everyone’s father  Responsible for the existence of every god.  It’s possible that Greeks believed that Zeus was the only divine god • Zeus and Ganymede o Male sexual relationships (especially between younger boy and older male) were considered to be the most pinnacle relationship men could attain o Greeks believed that the relationship between men and women could not be more than biological. Women were seen as prostitutes. o Greco-Macedonian pederasty was highly governed and regulated
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