Aphrodite

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Who is Astarte? West Asian religion

By | 2018-04-13T11:20:06+00:00 September 15th, 2017|Religion, West Asia|

The goddess Astarte in the Late Bronze Age The goddess Astarte As early as about 3000 BC,  Astarte was a Semitic goddess of love and fertility. People worshipped her in Mesopotamia and in the Levant. Like the Roman goddess Venus or the Greek goddess Aphrodite, Astarte started out as the goddess of the evening star. (And soon West Asian astronomers [...]

Who was the Roman goddess Venus? Roman religion

By | 2017-09-04T16:45:03+00:00 September 4th, 2017|Religion, Romans|

Venus rising out of the ocean, from Tunisia in North Africa (300s AD) The goddess Venus was the goddess of growing things, gardens, love and fertility for the Romans. People sacrificed to her when they wanted to have babies, or to make somebody fall in love with them. People thought of Venus as watery and [...]

Judgment of Paris – Trojan War

By | 2018-04-23T13:41:07+00:00 July 16th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

Judgment of Paris -Paris is on the right (A fresco from Pompeii, ca. 79 AD) Who is the most beautiful? Once upon a time, around 1250 BC, toward the end of the Bronze Age in Greece, three goddesses were having an argument (said the Greeks). The goddesses Aphrodite, Athena, and Hera were arguing about which one of them was the most beautiful. [...]

Hero and Leander – a Greek story

By | 2018-04-23T10:11:12+00:00 July 14th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

Leander swimming to Hero (from Pompeii) In this Greek version of an old story, Hero was a priestess of Aphrodite, whose father sent her to live alone in a tower on the European side of the Hellespont, in the town of Sestos. Leander was a young man who lived on the Asian side of [...]

Atalanta and the golden apples – Greek myth

By | 2018-04-23T10:11:30+00:00 July 14th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

Atalanta (see her name misspelled on the vase?) Atalanta was a woman who was very good at all kinds of sports (in the story; this is a story). She was a fast runner and a sharp-shooter and a strong wrestler and a great huntress. An oracle told Atalanta that she would be ruined if she got married, so she didn't [...]

Who is Aphrodite? Greek goddess

By | 2018-04-23T09:48:09+00:00 July 12th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Birth of the goddess Aphrodite (from Pompeii, about 50 AD) The goddess of love Aphrodite (a-fro-DIE-tee) was the Greek goddess of love. Naturally she was always falling in love with somebody. Or somebody was falling in love with her. Aphrodite is one of the oldest goddesses, the daughter of Ouranos. In some stories, [...]

Hellenistic Greek sculpture

By | 2018-04-22T11:38:50+00:00 July 5th, 2017|Art, Greeks|

Hellenistic sculpture: Hermes At the end of the 400s BC, Greece, and especially Athens, was devastated by a terrible war which involved nearly all the Greek city-states, the Peloponnesian War. The end of the war left the Greeks too poor for much sculpture, but when people did begin creating new sculpture again it [...]

Freya – European goddess of love

By | 2017-06-27T17:18:59+00:00 June 27th, 2017|Northern Europe, Religion|

Freya wearing her necklace (about 800 AD) Freya is the only important goddess of the Germans. She was married to Odin, and she's a kind of fertility goddess like Hera or Aphrodite or Venus. Her name just means "lady" in old Norse and old German. Friday is named after her, because in Latin [...]