Plato (Symposium) distinguishes between Aphrodite Urania (and Eros as principle of
cohesion) and Aphrodite Pandemos (and Eros as the naughty boy with arrows)
Aphrodite Pandemos is the daughter of Zeus and Dione, sometimes presented as more
powerful than Zeus since she can't be controlled by him.
Socrates learned from Diotima that Eros is a creature that cannot be defined because it
exists in between ignorance/knowledge, property/wealth.
Appearance and attendants of Aphrodite:
- usually clothed in vase paintings (6-5th c. B.C.)
- following Praxiteles' full standing statue, Aphrodite of Cnidus, often represented nude
(4th c. B.C.)
- has crown of myrtle leaves, magic girdle, geese, doves, sparrows (often associated
with birds/winged creatures, somehow connected to sexual desire?)
- with Eros, Peitho (Persuasion), Horae (seasons), three Graces
- festival is Adonia
- Golden apple for the most beautiful goddess - Hera, Athena, Aphrodite want it
- Zeus is too scared to choose so sends them to Paris, a shepherd. Chooses Aphrodite,
which starts the Trojan war. Hera offers royalty, Athena offers military power, Aphrodite
offers the most beautiful person in the world, Helen, who is married. Helen is abducted
which results in the Trojan war.
- Himeros ("desire" a sort of Eros)
Aphrodite and weddings:
- one who governs the wedding in between the realm of Artemis/Athena and that of
- co opted in the depiction of marriage
- Sappho, Prayer to Aphrodite (1LP) 6th c. B.C.
Myth of Pygmalion
- in Ovid' metamorphoses
- a man of cyprus, pygmalion, creates an ivory maiden (Galatea) who will receive life
- Their child is Paphos, the name of the main city in Cyprus Aphrodite is sometimes
Myth of Adonis
- in Ovid, Metamorphoses
- Paphos' son, Cinyras, has a daughter Myrrha
- Myrrha claims to be more beautiful than Aphrodite
- she has sex with her father, and turns into a myrrh tree from which Adonis is born - Adonis becomes Aphrodites lover, is castrated by a bull and dies in a boar hunt.
Aphrodite tries to rescue him but she cant. Anemone flower springs from his blood.
- Hetheral - unmarried women/prostitute/mistresses
- festival of Adona: plant scented herbs in small clay pots, place in roofs, and celebrate
on top/mourn death of Adonis
- Aphrodite is connected to first marriage/sexual intercourse but Hera carries on from
Aphrodite and Anchises
- mortal shepherd from Troy
- Aphrodite takes the image of a maiden
- seduces him and gives birth to Aeneas, hero who will survive the fall of Tr