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9 Jan 2011
Oct 4, 2010
Chapter 9: Aphrodite
-Botticellis painting of Aphrodite
-Born from the sea from Uranus genitalia after he was castrated
oFloats along the sea, comes to shore by Cyprus after passing Cythera
-Diff story of birth: Zeus and Dione (which means she-Zeus)
oDione consort of Zeus @ Dodona (not Hera); could be daughter of Titan, or an Oceanid
oThis gives Aphrodite a proper Olympian birth; a younger Olympian not older > regularized
oOriginally the gods can beget children on their own; but b/c gods get anthropomorphized,
harder to tell story of a man giving birth > so Zeus and female-Zeus reproduce
So kind of giving birth by himself but not really
-Pattern of gods being reborn
oExplains why there are distinct stories of gods that are different; update old gods to
become part of their new system of gods > regularized, relevant
-Important aspects in descending order:
oSex, love, beauty, fertility; goddess of marriage (the love in the marriage)
oSea; sometimes as goddess of sailors
oWar (localized only in a few places: Sparta, Cythera)
-Aphrodite Urania (heavenly) > celestial love; noble-spirited
-Aphrodite Pandemos (of all the people) > physical love
oPlatos idea > very philosophical; divides Aphrodite into two
oBut in the religious aspect Aphrodite is not that divided
-Aphrodite Urania was very lustful; and Pandemos had a high-mindedness
oPandemos was also very matronly > of marriage (which juxtaposes what one would expect
of Aphrodite of all the people)
-The Graces (Charites)
oAphrodites attendants
oCharm, beauty, good nature, poise
-Horai (the Hours)
oPersonification of timely order; idea that things happen at the right time
oMore physical rep of Aphrodite
oOriginally a god of Lampsacus (city in Asia Minor, near Troy)
oWorship spreads to Greece in 3rd C BC, then to Italy, where Priapus is connected w/ local
Italic god
oSon of Hermes and Aphrodite (sometimes Zeus/Dionysus are his father)
oFrom Hermes he ‘inherited aspects as a divinity of boundaries (fences, doors)
oFrom Aphrodite, aspects as divinity of love and sex
Working backwards, rather than saying he had these characteristics b/c of birth
parents, was he had these characteristics therefore he is the son of so-and-so
oMinor rustic fertility god, protector of animals, sailors, fruits and veg, gardens, male
oVery phallic > represented w/ a very large penis, which was to scare threats away from the
house and garden (w/ hisvery large ‘weapon >_>)
oTo Romans also god of luck and prosperity (b/c then ppl dont steal your stuff so you still
have it)
- Myths of Aphrodite:
oCybele and Attis
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