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Hades kidnaps Persephone (Greek painting from the Hellenistic period)

Persephone project: Hades kidnaps Persephone (Greek painting from the Hellenistic period)

Put on a play for your class, or make a short film about Persephone, or write a book or a song about Persephone. Send it to us here at (or send us a link to the YouTube video), and we’ll put a link to it from this page (if it’s good!).

Or, try writing different stories that explain the seasons. Imagine you don’t know why it’s colder in the winter. What kind of stories might you write?

This is a poem about Persephone written by Edna St. Vincent Millay about 1920:

Prayer To Persephone

Be to her, Persephone,
All the things I might not be:
Take her head upon your knee.
She that was so proud and wild,
Flippant, arrogant and free,
She that had no need of me,
Is a little lonely child
Lost in Hell, Persephone,
Take her head upon your knee:
Say to her, “My dear, my dear,
It is not so dreadful here.”

Why is the poet talking to Persephone? Whom is she talking about?

Here’s one example of a video about Demeter and Persephone


More about Persephone

Bibliography and further reading about Persephone and the underworld:

Persephone and the Pomegranate: A Myth from Greece, by Kris Waldherr (1993). . Not cheap, but beautifully illustrated.

D’aulaire’s Book of Greek Myths, by Edgar and Ingri D’Aulaire.

Greek Religion, by Walter Burkert (reprinted 1987). By a leading expert. He has sections on each of the Greek gods, and discusses their deeper meanings, and their function in Greek society.

Aspects of Death in Early Greek Art and Poetry, by Emily Vermeule (1979). She’s an expert on early Greece, and this book goes into detail about what the Greeks thought happened to people after they died. For adults.

More about Persephone
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