In Greek mythology, Prometheus is a Titan, culture hero, trickster figure, credited with the creation of man from clay, who defies the gods by stealing fire and giving it to humanity, an act that enabled progress and civilisation. Prometheus is known for his intelligence and as a champion of mankind and seen as the author of the human arts and sciences generally, he is sometimes presented as the father of the hero of the Greek flood story. The punishment of Prometheus as a consequence of the theft is a major theme of his mythology, is a popular subject of both ancient and modern art. Zeus, king of the Olympian gods, sentenced the Titan to eternal torment for his transgression; the immortal Prometheus was bound to a rock, where each day an eagle, the emblem of Zeus, was sent to feed on his liver, which would grow back overnight to be eaten again the next day. Prometheus is freed at last by the hero Heracles. In another myth, Prometheus establishes the form of animal sacrifice practiced in ancient Greek religion.
Evidence of a cult to Prometheus himself is not widespread. He was a focus of religious activity at Athens, where he was linked to Athena and Hephaestus, other Greek deities of creative skills and technology. In the Western classical tradition, Prometheus became a figure who represented human striving the quest for scientific knowledge, the risk of overreaching or unintended consequences. In particular, he was regarded in the Romantic era as embodying the lone genius whose efforts to improve human existence could result in tragedy: Mary Shelley, for instance, gave The Modern Prometheus as the subtitle to her novel Frankenstein; the etymology of the theonym prometheus is debated. The classical view is that it signifies "forethought," as that of his brother Epimetheus denotes "afterthought". Hesychius of Alexandria gives Prometheus the variant name of Ithas, adds "whom others call Ithax", describes him as the Herald of the Titans. Kerényi remarks that these names are "not transparent", may be different readings of the same name, while the name "Prometheus" is descriptive.
It has been theorised that it derives from the Proto-Indo-European root that produces the Vedic pra math, "to steal", hence pramathyu-s, "thief", cognate with "Prometheus", the thief of fire. The Vedic myth of fire's theft by Mātariśvan is an analogue to the Greek account. Pramantha was the tool used to create fire; the suggestion that Prometheus was in origin the human "inventor of the fire-sticks, from which fire is kindled" goes back to Diodorus Siculus in the first century BC. The reference is again to the "fire-drill", a worldwide primitive method of fire making using a vertical and a horizontal piece of wood to produce fire by friction; the oldest record of Prometheus is in Hesiod, but stories of theft of fire by a trickster figure are widespread around the world. Some other aspects of the story resemble the Sumerian myth of Enki, a bringer of civilisation who protected humanity against the other gods; that Prometheus descends from the Vedic fire bringer Mātariśvan was a suggestion made in the 19th century which lost favour in the 20th century but is still supported by some.
The first recorded account of the Prometheus myth appeared in the late 8th-century BC Greek epic poet Hesiod's Theogony. He was a son of the Titan Iapetus by Clymene, one of the Oceanids, he was brother to Menoetius and Epimetheus. Hesiod, in Theogony, introduces Prometheus as a lowly challenger to Zeus's omniscience and omnipotence. In the trick at Mekone, a sacrificial meal marking the "settling of accounts" between mortals and immortals, Prometheus played a trick against Zeus, he placed two sacrificial offerings before the Olympian: a selection of beef hidden inside an ox's stomach, the bull's bones wrapped in "glistening fat". Zeus chose the latter. Henceforth, humans would keep that meat for themselves and burn the bones wrapped in fat as an offering to the gods; this angered Zeus. In this version of the myth, the use of fire was known to humans, but withdrawn by Zeus. Prometheus, stole fire back in a giant fennel-stalk and restored it to humanity; this further enraged Zeus. The woman, a "shy maiden", was fashioned by Hephaestus out of clay and Athena helped to adorn her properly.
Hesiod writes, "From her is the race of women and female kind: of her is the deadly race and tribe of women who live amongst mortal men to their great trouble, no helpmeets in hateful poverty, but only in wealth". Prometheus is chained to a rock in the Caucasus for eternity, where his liver is eaten daily by an eagle, only to be regenerated by night, due to his immortality; the eagle is a symbol of Zeus himself. Years the Greek hero Heracles slays the eagle and frees Prometheus from his torment. Hesiod revisits the theft of fire in Works and Days. In it the poet expands upon Zeus's reaction to Prometheus's deception. Not only does Zeus withhold fire from humanity, but "the means of life" as well. Had Prometheus not provoked Zeus's wrath, "you would do work enough in a day to supply you for a full year without working.
In Greek mythology, Charon or Kharon is the ferryman of Hades who carries souls of the newly deceased across the rivers Styx and Acheron that divided the world of the living from the world of the dead. A coin to pay Charon for passage an obolus or danake, was sometimes placed in or on the mouth of a dead person; some authors say that those who could not pay the fee, or those whose bodies were left unburied, had to wander the shores for one hundred years. In the catabasis mytheme, heroes – such as Aeneas, Heracles, Odysseus, Pirithous, Psyche and Sisyphus – journey to the underworld and return, still alive, conveyed by the boat of Charon. Charon is the son of Erebus, he was the brother of, among many others and Hypnos. The name Charon is most explained as a proper noun from χάρων, a poetic form of χαρωπός, "of keen gaze", referring either to fierce, flashing, or feverish eyes, or to eyes of a bluish-gray color; the word may be a euphemism for death. Flashing eyes may indicate the anger or irascibility of Charon as he is characterized in literature, but the etymology is not certain.
The ancient historian Diodorus Siculus thought that the ferryman and his name had been imported from Egypt. Charon is depicted in the art of ancient Greece. Attic funerary vases of the 5th and 4th centuries BC are decorated with scenes of the dead boarding Charon's boat. On the earlier such vases, he looks like a rough, unkempt Athenian seaman dressed in reddish-brown, holding his ferryman's pole in his right hand and using his left hand to receive the deceased. Hermes sometimes stands by in his role as psychopomp. On vases, Charon is given a more "kindly and refined" demeanor. In the 1st century BC, the Roman poet Virgil describes Charon, manning his rust-colored skiff, in the course of Aeneas's descent to the underworld, after the Cumaean Sibyl has directed the hero to the golden bough that will allow him to return to the world of the living: There Charon stands, who rules the dreary coast –A sordid god: down from his hairy chinA length of beard descends, unclean. Other Latin authors describe Charon, among them Seneca in his tragedy Hercules Furens, where Charon is described in verses 762–777 as an old man clad in foul garb, with haggard cheeks and an unkempt beard, a fierce ferryman who guides his craft with a long pole.
When the boatman tells Heracles to halt, the Greek hero uses his strength to gain passage, overpowering Charon with the boatman's own pole. In the second century, Lucian employed Charon as a figure in his Dialogues of the Dead, most notably in Parts 4 and 10. In the 14th century, Dante Alighieri described Charon in his Divine Comedy, drawing from Virgil's depiction in Aeneid 6. Charon is the first named mythological character Dante meets in the underworld, in Canto III of the Inferno. Dante depicts him as having eyes of fire. Elsewhere, Charon appears as a mean-spirited and gaunt old man or as a winged demon wielding a double hammer, although Michelangelo's interpretation, influenced by Dante's depiction in the Inferno, shows him with an oar over his shoulder, ready to beat those who delay. In modern times, he is depicted as a living skeleton in a cowl, much like the Grim Reaper; the French artist, Gustave Dore, depicted Charon in two of his illustrations for Dante's Divine Comedy. The Flemish painter, Joachim Patinir, depicted Charon in his Crossing the River Styx.
And the Spanish painter, Jose Benlliure y Gil, portrayed Charon in his La Barca de Caronte. Most accounts, including Pausanias and Dante's Inferno, associate Charon with the swamps of the river Acheron. Ancient Greek literary sources – such as Pindar, Euripides and Callimachus – place Charon on the Acheron. Roman poets, including Propertius and Statius, name the river as the Styx following the geography of Virgil's underworld in the Aeneid, where Charon is associated with both rivers. Charon, the largest moon of the dwarf planet Pluto, is named after him; the hadrosaurid Charonosaurus is named in Charon's honor because it was found along the banks of the Amur River in the Far East. "Haros" is the modern Greek equivalent of Charon, usage includes the curse "you will be eaten by Haros", or "I was in the teeth of Haros". During the Korean War, the Greek Expeditionary Force defended; the Greek soldiers referred to it as "Outpost Haros". Charon's obol - a coin placed in the mouth of the dead Charun - an Etruscan counterpart to Charon Isle of the Dead - a painting Manannán mac Lir - Ferryman from Irish mythology Manunggul Jar - Early depiction similar figure on burial jar from Tabon Caves on Palawan Phlegyas - another god associated with ferrying the dead Psychopomp - the general word for a guide of the dead Urshanabi - Ferryman from Mesopotamian mythology Smith, William.
"Charon" Media related to Charon at Wikimedia Commons The Theoi Project, "KHARON" Images of Charon in the Warburg Institute Iconographic Database
In Greek mythology, Cerberus called the "hound of Hades", is a multi-headed dog that guards the gates of the Underworld to prevent the dead from leaving. Cerberus was the offspring of the monsters Echidna and Typhon, is described as having three heads, a serpent for a tail, snakes protruding from parts of his body. Cerberus is known for his capture by Heracles, one of Heracles' twelve labours. Descriptions of Cerberus vary, including the number of his heads. Cerberus was three-headed, though not always. Cerberus had several multi-headed relatives, his father was the multi snake-headed Typhon, Cerberus was the brother of three other multi-headed monsters, the multi-snake-headed Lernaean Hydra. And, like these close relatives, Cerberus was, with only the rare iconographic exception, multi-headed. In the earliest description of Cerberus, Hesiod's Theogony, Cerberus has fifty heads, while Pindar gave him one hundred heads; however writers universally give Cerberus three heads. An exception is the Latin poet Horace's Cerberus which has a single dog head, one hundred snake heads.
Trying to reconcile these competing traditions, Apollodorus's Cerberus has three dog heads and the heads of "all sorts of snakes" along his back, while the Byzantine poet John Tzetzes gives Cerberus fifty heads, three of which were dog heads, the rest being the "heads of other beasts of all sorts". In art Cerberus is most depicted with two dog heads, never more than three, but with only one. On one of the two earliest depictions, a Corinthian cup from Argos, now lost, Cerberus is shown as a normal single-headed dog; the first appearance of a three-headed Cerberus occurs on a mid-sixth-century BC Laconian cup. Horace's many snake-headed Cerberus followed a long tradition of Cerberus being part snake; this is already implied as early as in Hesiod's Theogony, where Cerberus' mother is the half-snake Echidna, his father the snake-headed Typhon. In art Cerberus is shown as being part snake, for example the lost Corinthian cup shows snakes protruding from Cerberus' body, while the mid sixth-century BC Laconian cup gives Cerberus a snake for a tail.
In the literary record, the first certain indication of Cerberus' serpentine nature comes from the rationalized account of Hecataeus of Miletus, who makes Cerberus a large poisonous snake. Plato refers to Cerberus' composite nature, Euphorion of Chalcis describes Cerberus as having multiple snake tails, in connection to his serpentine nature, associates Cerberus with the creation of the poisonous aconite plant. Virgil has snakes writhe around Cerberus' neck, Ovid's Cerberus has a venomous mouth, necks "vile with snakes", "hair inwoven with the threatening snake", while Seneca gives Cerberus a mane consisting of snakes, a single snake tail. Cerberus was given various other traits. According to Euripides, Cerberus not only had three heads but three bodies, according to Virgil he had multiple backs. Cerberus ate raw flesh, had eyes which flashed fire, a three-tongued mouth, acute hearing. Cerberus' only mythology concerns his capture by Heracles; as early as Homer we learn that Heracles was sent by Eurystheus, the king of Tiryns, to bring back Cerberus from Hades the king of the underworld.
According to Apollodorus, this was the final labour imposed on Heracles. In a fragment from a lost play Pirithous, Heracles says that, although Eurystheus commanded him to bring back Cerberus, it was not from any desire to see Cerberus, but only because Eurystheus thought that the task was impossible. Heracles was aided in his mission by his being an initiate of the Eleusinian Mysteries. Euripides has his initiation being "lucky" for Heracles in capturing Cerberus, and both Diodorus Siculus and Apollodorus say that Heracles was initiated into the Mysteries, in preparation for his descent into the underworld. According to Diodorus, Heracles went to Athens, where Musaeus, the son of Orpheus, was in charge of the initiation rites, while according to Apollodorus, he went to Eumolpus at Eleusis. Heracles had the help of Hermes, the usual guide of the underworld, as well as Athena. In the Odyssey, Homer has Athena as his guides, and Hermes and Athena are shown with Heracles on vase paintings depicting Cerberus' capture.
By most accounts, Heracles made his descent into the underworld through an entrance at Tainaron, the most famous of the various Greek entrances to the underworld. The place is first mentioned in connection with the Cerberus story in the rationalized account of Hecataeus of Miletus, Euripides and Apolodorus, all have Heracles descend into the underworld there; however Xenophon reports that Heracles was said to have descended at the Acherusian Chersonese near Heraclea Pontica, on the Black Sea, a place more associated with Heracles' exit from the underworld. Heraclea, founded c. 560 BC took its name from the association of its site with Heracles' Cerberian exploit. While in the underworld, Heracles met the heroes Theseus and Pirithous, where the two companions were being held prisoner by Hades for attempting to carry off Hades' wife Persephone. Along with bringing back Cerberus, Heracles managed to rescue Theseus, in some versions Pirithous as well. Accordi
In ancient Greek religion and mythology, the Moirai or Moerae known in English as the Fates, were the white-robed incarnations of destiny. Their number became fixed at three: Clotho and Atropos, they controlled the mother thread of life of every mortal from birth to death. They were independent, at the helm of necessity, directed fate, watched that the fate assigned to every being by eternal laws might take its course without obstruction. Both gods and men had to submit to them, although Zeus's relationship with them is a matter of debate: some sources say he can command them, while others suggest he was bound to the Moirai's dictates. In the Homeric poems Moira or Aisa are related to the limit and end of life, Zeus appears as the guider of destiny. In the Theogony of Hesiod, the three Moirai are personified, daughters of Nyx and are acting over the gods, they are daughters of Zeus and Themis, the embodiment of divine order and law. In Plato's Republic the Three Fates are daughters of Ananke, it seems that Moira is related with Tekmor and with Ananke, who were primeval goddesses in mythical cosmogonies.
The ancient Greek writers might call this power Moira or Ananke, the gods could not alter what was ordained: "To the Moirai the might of Zeus must bow. In earliest Greek philosophy, the cosmogony of Anaximander is based on these mythical beliefs; the goddess keeps the order and sets a limit to any actions. The ancient Greek word moira means a portion or lot of the whole, is related to meros, "part, lot" and moros, "fate, doom", Latin meritum, "reward", English merit, derived from the PIE root *mer, "to allot, assign". Moira may mean portion or share in the distribution of booty, portion in life, destiny, portion of the distributed land; the word is used for something, meet and right. It seems that the word moira did not indicate destiny but included ascertainment or proof, a non-abstract certainty; the word daemon, an agent related to unexpected events, came to be similar to the word moira. This agent or cause against human control might be called tyche: "You mistress moira, tyche, my daemon."The word nomos, "law", may have meant a portion or lot, as in the verb nemein, "to distribute", thus "natural lot" came to mean "natural law".
The word dike, "justice", conveyed the notion that someone should stay within his own specified boundaries, respecting the ones of his neighbour. If someone broke his boundaries, thus getting more than his ordained part he would be punished by law. By extension, moira was one's portion or part in destiny which consisted of good and bad moments as was predetermined by the Moirai, it was impossible for anyone to get more than his ordained part. In modern Greek the word came to mean "destiny". Kismet, the predetermined course of events in the Muslim traditions, seems to have a similar etymology and function: Arabic qismat "lot" qasama, "to divide, allot" developed to mean Fate or destiny; as a loanword, qesmat'fate' appears in Persian, whence in Urdu language, in English Kismet. When they were three, the Moirai were: Clotho spun the thread of life from her Distaff onto her Spindle, her Roman equivalent was Nona, a goddess called upon in the ninth month of pregnancy. Lachesis measured the thread of life allotted to each person with her measuring rod.
Her Roman equivalent was Decima. Atropos was the cutter of the thread of life, she chose the manner of each person's death. Her Roman equivalent was Morta. In the Republic of Plato, the three Moirai sing in unison with the music of the Seirenes. Lachesis sings the things that were, Clotho the things that are, Atropos the things that are to be. Pindar in his Hymn to the Fates, holds them in high honour, he calls them to send their sisters Hours, Eunomia and Eirene, to stop the internal civil strife: Listen Fates, who sit nearest of gods to the throne of Zeus, weave with shuttles of adamant, inescapable devices for councels of every kind beyond counting, Aisa and Lachesis, fine-armed daughters of Night, hearken to our prayers, all-terrible goddesses, of sky and earth. Send us rose-bosomed Lawfulness, her sisters on glittering thrones and crowned Peace, make this city forget the misfortunes which lie on her heart. In ancient times caves were used for burial purposes in east
Aeacus was a mythological king of the island of Aegina in the Saronic Gulf. Aeacus was the son of Zeus by Aegina, a daughter of the river-god Asopus, thus, brother of Damocrateia. In some accounts, his mother was Europa and thus possible brother to Minos and Sarpedon, he was the father of Peleus and Phocus and was the grandfather of the Trojan war warriors Achilles and Telemonian Ajax. In some accounts, Aeacus had a daughter called Alcimache. Aeacus was born on the island of Oenone or Oenopia, where Aegina had been carried by Zeus to secure her from the anger of her parents; some traditions related that, at the time when Aeacus was born, Aegina was not yet inhabited, that Zeus either changed the ants of the island into the men over whom Aeacus ruled, or he made the men grow up out of the earth. Ovid, on the other hand, supposed that the island was not uninhabited at the time of the birth of Aeacus, instead stating that during the reign of Aeacus, jealous of Aegina, ravaged the island bearing the name of the latter by sending a plague or a fearful dragon into it, by which nearly all its inhabitants were carried off.
Afterward, Zeus restored the population by changing the ants into men. These legends seem to be a mythical account of the colonization of Aegina, which seems to have been inhabited by Pelasgians, afterwards received colonists from Phthiotis, the seat of the Myrmidons, from Phlius on the Asopus. While he reigned in Aegina, Aeacus was renowned in all Greece for his justice and piety, was called upon to settle disputes not only among men, but among the gods themselves, he was such a favourite with the latter, that when Greece was visited by a drought as a consequence of a murder, committed, the oracle of Delphi declared that the calamity would not cease unless Aeacus prayed to the gods to end it. Aeacus prayed, as a result, the drought ceased. Aeacus demonstrated his gratitude by erecting a temple to Zeus Panhellenius on Mount Panhellenion, afterward, the Aeginetans built a sanctuary on their island called Aeaceum, a square temple enclosed by walls of white marble. Aeacus was believed in times to be buried under the altar of this sacred enclosure.
A legend preserved in Pindar relates that Apollo and Poseidon took Aeacus as their assistant in building the walls of Troy. When the work was completed, three dragons rushed against the wall, though the two that attacked the sections of the wall built by the gods fell down dead, the third forced its way into the city through the portion of the wall built by Aeacus. Thereafter, Apollo prophesied that Troy would fall at the hands of Aeacus's descendants, the Aeacidae. Aeacus was believed by the Aeginetans to have surrounded their island with high cliffs in order to protect it against pirates. Several other incidents connected to the story of Aeacus are mentioned by Ovid. By Endeïs Aeacus had two sons and Peleus, by Psamathe a son, whom he preferred to the former two sons, both of whom conspired to kill Phocus during a contest, subsequently fled from their native island. After his death, Aeacus became one of the three judges in Hades and, according to Plato, was concerned with the shades of Europeans upon their arrival to the underworld.
In works of art he was depicted bearing the keys of Hades. Aeacus had sanctuaries in both Athens and in Aegina, the Aeginetans regarded him as the tutelary deity of their island by celebrating the Aeacea in his honor. In The Frogs by Aristophanes, Dionysus proclaims himself to be Heracles. Aeacus, lamenting the fact that Heracles had stolen Cerberus, sentences Dionysus to Acheron to be tormented by the hounds of Cocytus, the Echidna, the Tartesian eel, Tithrasian Gorgons. Alexander the Great traced his ancestry through his mother to Aeacus; this article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Smith, William, ed.. "Aeacus". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology
In Ancient Greek religion, Hestia is a virgin goddess of the hearth and the right ordering of domesticity, the family, the home, the state. In Greek mythology, she is a daughter of Rhea. Hestia received the first offering at every sacrifice in the household. In the public domain, the hearth of the prytaneum functioned as her official sanctuary. With the establishment of a new colony, flame from Hestia's public hearth in the mother city would be carried to the new settlement, her Roman equivalent is Vesta. The Zoroastrian holy fire of the Sasanians in Adhur Gushnasp was equated with Hestia by Procopius. Hestia's name means "hearth, altar", stemming from the same root as the English verbal form was, it thus refers to the oikos, the domestic, household, house, or family. "An early form of the temple is the hearth house. The Mycenaean great hall, like Homer's hall of Odysseus at Ithaca, had a central hearth; the hearth of the Greek prytaneum was the community and government's ritual and secular focus.
Hestia's name and functions show the hearth's importance in the social and political life of ancient Greece. It was essential for warmth, food preparation, the completion of sacrificial offerings to deities, she was offered the first and last libations of wine at feasts. Her own sacrificial animal was a domestic pig; the accidental or negligent extinction of a domestic hearth-fire represented a failure of domestic and religious care for the family. A hearth fire might be deliberately, ritually extinguished at need, its lighting or relighting should be accompanied by rituals of completion and renewal, comparable with the rituals and connotations of an eternal flame and of sanctuary lamps. At the level of the polis, the hearths of Greek colonies and their mother cities were allied and sanctified through Hestia's cult. Hestia's nearest Roman equivalent, had similar functions as a divine personification of Rome's "public", colonial hearths, bound Romans together within a form of extended family; the similarity of names between Hestia and Vesta is, misleading: "The relationship hestia-histie-Vesta cannot be explained in terms of Indo-European linguistics.
Responsibility for Hestia's domestic cult fell to the leading woman of the household, sometimes to a man. Hestia's rites at the hearths of public buildings were led by holders of civil office. Evidence of her priesthoods is rare. Most stems from the early Roman Imperial era, when Sparta offers several examples of women with the priestly title "Hestia". Existing civic cults to Hestia served as stock for the grafting of Greek ruler-cult to the Roman emperor, the Imperial family and Rome itself. In Athens, a small seating section at the Theatre of Dionysus was reserved for priesthoods of "Hestia on the Acropolis and Julia", of "Hestia Romaion". A priest at Delos served "Hestia the Athenian Demos" "and Roma". An eminent citizen of Carian Stratoniceia described himself as a priest of Hestia and several other deities, as well as holding several civic offices. Hestia's political and civic functions are further evidenced by her numerous funded dedications at civic sites, the administrative rather than religious titles used by the lay-officials involved in her civic cults.
Pausanias writes that the Eleans sacrifice first to Hestia and to other gods. Athenaeus, in the Deipnosophistae, writes that in Naucratis the people dine in the Prytaneion on the natal day of Hestia Prytanitis; every private and public hearth or prytaneum was regarded as a sanctuary of the goddess, a portion of the sacrifices, to whatever divinity they were offered, belonged to her. A statue of her existed in the Athenian Prytaneum: "Hard by is the Prytaneon... and figures are placed of the goddesses Eirene and Hestia."There was however few temples dedicated to Hestia. Pausanias mention only two, in Ermioni and in Sparta: " Passing into the sanctuary of Hestia, we see no image, but only an altar, they sacrifice to Hestia upon it; the Lakedaimonians have a sanctuary of Hestia." Hestia is a goddess of the first Olympian generation. She was the eldest daughter of the Titans Rhea and Cronus, sister to Zeus, Demeter and Hades. After their birth, Cronus swallowed all his children except the last and youngest, who forced Cronus to disgorge his siblings and led them in a war against their father and the other Titans.
As "first to be devoured... and the last to be yielded up again", Hestia was thus both the eldest and youngest daughter. Hestia rejects the marriage suits of Poseidon and Apollo, swears herself to perpetual virginity, she thus rejects Aphrodite's values and becomes, to some extent, her ch
In mythology, the Greek underworld is an otherworld where souls go after death. The original Greek idea of afterlife is that, at the moment of death, the soul is separated from the corpse, taking on the shape of the former person, is transported to the entrance of the underworld; the underworld itself—sometimes known as Hades, after its patron god—is described as being either at the outer bounds of the ocean or beneath the depths or ends of the earth. It is considered the dark counterpart to the brightness of Mount Olympus with the kingdom of the dead corresponding to the kingdom of the gods. Hades is a realm invisible to the living, made for the dead. There are six main rivers that are visible both in the underworld, their names were meant to reflect the emotions associated with death. The Styx is considered to be one of the most prominent and central rivers of the underworld and is the most known out of all the rivers, it is named after the goddess Styx. This river circles the underworld seven times.
The Acheron is the river of pain. It's the one that Charon known as the Ferryman, rows the dead over according to many mythological accounts, though sometimes it is the river Styx or both; the Lethe is the river of forgetfulness. It is associated with the goddess of forgetfulness and oblivion. In accounts, a poplar branch dripping with water of the Lethe became the symbol of Hypnos, the god of sleep; the Phlegethon is the river of fire. According to Plato, this river leads to the depths of Tartarus; the Cocytus is the river of wailing. Oceanus is the river that encircles the world, it marks the east edge of the underworld, as Erebos is west of the mortal world. In front of the entrance to the underworld live Grief, Anxiety and Old Age. Fear, Need, Death and Sleep live in front of the entrance, together with Guilty Joys. On the opposite threshold is War, the Erinyes, Discord. Close to the doors are many beasts, including Centaurs, Briareus, the Lernaean Hydra, the Chimera, Harpies. In the midst of all this, an Elm can be seen.
The souls that enter the underworld carry a coin under their tongue to pay Charon to take them across the river. Charon may make allowances for those visitors carrying a certain Golden Bough. Charon is appallingly filthy, with eyes like jets of fire, a bush of unkempt beard upon his chin, a dirty cloak hanging from his shoulders. Although Charon embarks now one group now another, some souls he grimly turns away; these are the unburied which can't be taken across from bank to bank until they receive a proper burial. Across the river, guarding the gates of the underworld is Cerberus. There is an area where the Judges of the underworld decide where to send the souls of the person — to Elysium, the Fields of Asphodel, or Tartarus. While Tartarus is not considered to be directly a part of the underworld, it is described as being as far beneath the underworld as the earth is beneath the sky, it is so dark that the "night is poured around it in three rows like a collar round the neck, while above it grows the roots of the earth and of the unharvested sea."
Tartarus is the place. Homer wrote that Cronus became the king of Tartarus. While Odysseus does not see them himself, he mentions some of the people within the underworld who are experiencing punishment for their sins; the Asphodel Meadows was a place for ordinary or indifferent souls who did not commit any significant crimes, but who did not achieve any greatness or recognition that would warrant them being admitted to the Elysian Fields. It was. In the Aeneid, the Mourning Fields was a section of the underworld reserved for souls who wasted their lives on unrequited love; those mentioned as residents of this place are Dido, Procris, Pasiphaë, Evadne and Caeneus. Elysium was a place for the distinguished, it was ruled over by Rhadamanthus, the souls that dwelled there had an easy afterlife and had no labors. Those who had proximity to the gods were granted admission, rather than those who were righteous or had ethical merit. Most accepted to Elysium were heroes. Heroes such as Cadmus and Achilles were transported here after their deaths.
Normal people who lived righteous and virtuous lives could gain entrance such as Socrates who proved his worth sufficiently through philosophy. The Fortunate Isles or Isles of the Blessed were islands in the realm of Elysium; when a soul achieved Elysium, they had a choice to be reborn. If a soul was reborn three times and achieved Elysium all three times they were sent to the Isles of the Blessed to live in eternal paradise. Hades, the eldest son of the Titans Cronus and Rhea; when the three brothers divided the world between themselves, Zeus received the heavens, Poseidon the sea, Hades the underworld. Therefore, while Hades' responsibility was in the underworld, he was allowed to have power on earth as well. However, Hades himself is seen outside his domain, to those on earth his intentions and personality are a mystery. In art and literature Hades is depicted as stern and dignified, but not as a fierce torturer or devil-like. However