Hades

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The god Varuna – Hinduism – India

By |2017-07-21T13:25:30+00:00July 21st, 2017|India, Religion|

Monsoon rain (Goa) Around 1000 BC, in the Vedic period in India, Varuna was an important Hindu god. Varuna was originally a sky god - his name means "the one who covers everything." Often people think of Varuna as a rain god. He represented order in the universe (against the forces of chaos). Some parts of Varuna's identity, at [...]

The Greek underworld – Hades

By |2018-04-23T09:49:50+00:00July 16th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Hades and Persephone in the underworld Greek people didn't like to talk about what happened to you after you died. So we don't know as much about what they thought as we might like. Probably they did not think about life after death as much as later people like the Christians and the Buddhists did, or [...]

Persephone and Hades – Greek religion

By |2018-04-23T09:49:50+00:00July 16th, 2017|History|

Hades kidnaps Persephone (mosaic from Amphipolis, 300s BC) Persephone was the daughter of the goddess Demeter. One day Persephone was dancing with her friends in a sunny meadow, having a good time, picking flowers. Suddenly Persephone's spooky uncle Hades burst out of the ground and grabbed her and pulled her into his chariot! He took Persephone (purr-SEFF-oh-nee) [...]

Tantalus’ Crime and Punishment

By |2018-06-10T23:32:21+00:00July 16th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

Tantalus' crime and punishment: This Italian vase from the 300s BC shows a different version of the story where a spirit holds Tantalus back from a basket of bread and a jug of water Who was Tantalus in Greek myth? Tantalus (TAN-ta-luss) was a Greek king (and a son of Zeus) who was so full of hubris that he thought he could fool [...]

Herakles and Cerberos – Greek mythology

By |2018-04-23T10:07:40+00:00July 14th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

King Eurysthenes hides in a jar, while Hercules threatens him with his dog Cerberus For the last and toughest of his twelve labors, Herakles had to get the three-headed dog Cerberos from the underworld - the land of the dead. King Eurystheus was sure Herakles wouldn't be able to do this one. Nobody comes back from the land [...]

Who is Hades? – ancient Greek gods

By |2018-04-23T09:54:02+00:00July 13th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Hades kidnaps Persephone (Greek painting from the Hellenistic period) Hades was the god of the dead, who ruled the place where dead people went after they died (Sometimes people also called the underworld "Hades"). He is a rather shadowy figure in more ways than one, spooky and cruel, and the Greeks didn't like to talk about [...]

Classical Greek painting – ancient Greece

By |2018-04-22T10:42:18+00:00July 3rd, 2017|Art, Greeks|

Tomb of the Diver (ca. 500 BC) Artists in Classical Greece continued to favor the stiffer Mycenaean style of painting more than the looser, fancier Minoan style. Classical Greek painters usually didn't include any background, and they focused mainly on people rather than trees or flowers in their pictures. That's the same attitude [...]

Who were the Norse gods?

By |2017-06-29T02:10:43+00:00June 29th, 2017|Northern Europe, Religion|

A Viking religious sacrifice (ca. 900 AD, Sweden) From their first appearance in historical literature around 100 BC, the Germans were polytheistic. They believed in many gods, just like the Greeks and the Romans and the Persians and the Indians and other Indo-European people. In fact, the most important German gods are closely [...]