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(2011-08-16 11:10:01)





  The Olympin Gods

  Between Macedon and Thessaly of eastern Greece there stood a high mountain.Its cloudy top rushed into the very heavens.On the top of the mountain, the home of the gods was bathed in brightness. At Olympus Zeus ruled as the father of gods and men. Zeus was not a crude ruler by any standards.All the gods listened to his final words,it was true.But Zeus made them all sit on a committee of twelve members,including six gods and six goddesses. The first in the Olympian crowd sat Zeus himself. He was the overlord of gods and men and the operator of the thunderbolt .Next to him was Hera,his proud and greeneyed queen.Poseidon was ruler of the sea,And Hades,king of the lower world,had no seat in the committee.Apollo was the god of the sun,music and poetry,while his twinsister Artemis was the goddess of the moon and the chase. Athena was the goddess of wisdom and patroness of house holdarts.Hestin,the goddess of the family,represented home life and family happiness.The frightening Ares was the god of war,and the charming Aphrodite the goddess of love and beauty.The god of fire,Hephaestus,was the forger of the thunderbolts of Zeus.The wing footed messenger Hermes was the god of invention and commerce;and the goddess of grains and harvests,Demeter,looked after agriculture and stood for mother ofcivilization. All the chief gods mentioned above took human forms of incomparable beauty and grace. Often moved by human feelings and desires,they frequently gave way to anger and jealousy.They became involved in ceaseless battles with the world of man. Among themselves at Olympus they plotted and struggled for power.In the human world they experienced competitions and difficulties.They enjoyed earthly friendships and loves.Acrowd of everlasting gods looked and acted in a perfectly human fashion that is what all gods at Olympus actually were.








  After the stealing of fire,Zeus became increasingly unkind to men.One day he ordered his son Hephaestus tobuild an image of a beautiful maiden out of clay.He then asked the gods and goddesses to award her with different kinds of gifts.Among others,Athena clothed her in an attractive coat and Hermes gave her the power of telling lies.A charming young lady,she was the first woman that ever lived.Zeus called her Pandora.Because she had received from each of the gods and goddesses a gift.The gift was harmful to men.

  Zeus decided to send her down to men as a present.So Hermes them essenger brought her to Epimetheus,brother of Prometheus.The greatness of her beauty touched the hearts of all who looked upon her,and Epimetheus happily received her into his house.He had quite forgotten Pometheus' warning:never to accept anything from Zeus.The couple lived a happy life for some time.Then trouble came on to the human world.

  When he was busy with teaching men the art of living,Prometheus had left a bigcask in the care of Epimetheus.He had warned his brother not to open the lid.Pandora was a curious woman.She had been feeling very disappointed that her husband did not allow her to take a look at the contents of the cask.One day,when Epimetheus was out,she lifted the lid and out itcame unrest and war,Plague and sickness,theft and violence,??grief sorrow,and all the other evils.The human world was hence to experience these evils.Only hope stayed within the mouth of the jar and never flew out.So men always have hope within their hearts.







  Among the crowd of Olympian gods the one most widely admired was Apollo.He was the son of Zeus and Let to.According to Greek mythology,Leto was driven by Hera from land to land at last Poseidon took Pity on her and brought the island of Delos out of water for her to live on.There she gave birth to the twins ,Apollo and Artemis.

  Apollo was me sun-god.He wore a purple robe.He usually sat in his bright eastern palace early in the morning and madeready to start his daily journey across the sky.During the day hed rove his carriage of gold and ivory , and brought light, life and love to the great world below. Iate in the afternoon he came to the end of his journey in the far western sea and got on his golden boat to return to his eastern home.

  Apollo was the god of music and poetry.He could stir up all feelings.These feelings are expressed in lofty songs.With his lyre of gold and the sweet accents of his godlike voice heled the choir of the Muses at Olympus.The pleasant music from his lyre was so exciting that stones marched into their places in rhythmic time and of their own will when he helped Poseidonbuild up the walls of Troy.On one occasion,invited to a contest by the human musician Marsyas,he won and then flayed him to death for his pride.On another occasion,he lost out toPan at a musical contest and turned the ears of the judge,King Midas,into those of an ass.

  His son,Orpheus,took over such skill from the father that his lyre moved man and animals alike.

  Apollo stood for youthful and manly beauty.His goldenhair,stately manner and air all combined to make him the admiration of the world.A beautiful girl,by the name of Clytle,was so fond of his beauty and glory that from dawn to dusk she knelt on the ground,her hands outstretched towards the sungod,and her eyes looked at his golden wheeled carriage racing across the blue sky.Though her love was not returned,she had never changed her mind about Apollo.The gods were moved at the sad sight,and changed her into a sunflower.



  在众多的奥林波斯山神中,主神宙斯和雷托之子阿波罗最受推崇。iphone pc transfer据希腊神话记载,雷托被天后赫拉驱赶得四处流浪。最终是海神波塞冬怜悯她并从海中捞起提落岛让她居住。在岛上,她生了孪生儿子阿波罗和阿尔特弥斯。







  Prometheus was a Titan .In the war between Zeus the giants he had stood on the side of the new Olympiangods.Out of the clay he made the first man,to whom Athena gave soul and holy breath.Prometheus spent a lot of time and energy in creating the gift of fire.And fire raised man above all animals .Later,there held a joint meeting of gods and men.The meeting was to decide what part of burnt animals should begiven to gods and what to men.Prometheus cut up an ox and divided it into two parts:under the skin he placed the fresh,and under the fat he put the bones,for he knew the selfish Zeus loved fat. Zeus saw through the trick and felt displeased at the Prometheus' favor towards men.So in a masterful way??he took away the gift of fire from mankind.However,Prometheus managed to steal fire from heaven and secretly brought it down tomen.Flying into an anger at??this unjustified act of rebellion,Zeus let the other gods chain Prometheus to a rock??on Mountain Caucasus,where a hungry eagle ever tore at his liver which ever grew again.His period of pain was to be thirty-thousand years.Prometheus faced his bitter fate firmly and never lost courage before Zeus.At last Heracles made Prometheus and Zeus restore to friend ship,when Heracles came over in search of the golden apple and killed the eagle and set the friend of mankind free.




  Nereus and Proteus

  Of all the small sea divinities Nereus and Proteus stood out as Peculiar sea-gods.Nereus,known as“the Old Man of the sea”,represented the pleasant aspect of ocean waters.He lived beneath the sea with his fifty lovely daughters,of whom the most famous were Amphritrite,Thetis,Galate a and Panope.It was Nereus who advised Heracles to seek Prometheus in the hero's search of the golden apples.

  Proteus was Poseidon's herdsman. He was well known for two qualities:the gift of prophecy and the power to take various forms.At one time he was a lion with a curly wavy hairs;at another he appeared in the shape of a wild boar;and still another he stood a stately tree covered with rich leaves.When,after all these and many other changes,he failed to get rid of his questioner, the god offered detailed answers.

  在所有的小海神中,纳鲁斯和普鲁吐斯异常独特。纳鲁斯是人们熟知的“海中的老人”。他代表了海水友善的一面。他和50个可爱的女儿一起生活在海中。她们当中最著名的有;安菲瑞垂托、iphone to pc transfer塞提丝、盖拉蒂和潘诺珀。在勇敢地寻觅金苹果的时候,纳鲁斯建议赫格立斯寻找普罗米修斯。




  Eros was the god of love,better known by hislatin name Cupid.Son of Aphrodite by Ares ,he took his place among??the small gods of Olympus.He was represented asa little naked boy,with sparkling wings,and he carried his bowand arrows wherever he wandered.Shooting his thrilling arrows??in evils,he inspired the passion of love and provided all nature with life and power of reproduction.The lovely,naughty god had two kinds of arrows:the gold tipped arrows used to quicken the pulse of love and the lead tipped ones to palsy it. Besides,he had a torch to light hearts with.

  Though sometimes he was blindfolded ,no man nor god,Zeus himself included,was safe from his evils.At one time the little naughty god was wounded by his own arrows and suchburning love was awakened in him for the human maiden Psyche that he disregarded the constant interference of his mother and plucked up his courage to beg Zeus for justice.Another famousstory where Eros played an important part was the Argonautic expedition.Medea,daughter of king Aeetes,was wounded by Eros' arrows,took Jason's part in recovering??the golden fleece and eventually became the hero's wife.





  Son of Zeus and Hera,Ares was appointed god of war.Hewas terrible and majestic ,and his march shook the world.Of all the major gods at Olympus,he was the most hateful,loving struggle and war and ever thirsty for blood .On the other hand he signified courage and victory in battle,and was devoutly worshipped by soldiers going to war.Prayers were addressed to him before the war and spoils presented at his altar after it.

  He was the one god who ever had to submit to the power ofhis inferiors .At one time lack of tact and good udge ment led to his shame.He was fighting with two giants,and finding himself no match for the two monstrous creatures,laid down hisarms and was imprisoned in chains. He was set free in the end by the artful??Hermes,but not before he had suffered all the humiliations .

  He was as thoughtless as he was unkind .A son of Poseidon's,attempting to kidnap his daughter,made the war-god unhappy,so that he killed the youth Without he sitation.In retaliation ,Poseidon dragged him before a group of Athenian judges for trial.The court was held on a hill outside Athens.Ares presented his case and was declared innocent . The hill was ever after called Areopagus,“the hill of Ares”,and the judges receivedthe names of Areopagitae.







  Dionysus was the god of wine.He was the son of Zeus by Semele. When his mother was burnt to death in the glory of Zeus .He was still a helpless infant.His father trusted his upbringing to some mountain fairy maidens .They tookthe greatest care of him. Under the tutorship of Silennus,the Satyr, he was introduced to all the secrets of nature and the culture of the wine. He travelled far and wide in his carriage drawn by wild beasts. He was said to have been to India and Ethiopia .Wherever he went, there was music and song and revelling.Hisattendants,known as??the Bacchantes,??were??noted??for their noiseand??disorder.A most wild,noisy crow,they drank,danced andsang in a careless way.The women Bacchantes were infamous for their excessive immodesty and disgraceful excitement .In their madness and intoxication they committed cruel violence. They tore??Orpheus,the gifted musician,limb from limb.King Pentheus of Thebes,for frowning on the worship of Bacchus in his kingdom, suffered the same treatment at the hands of a band of these fanatical women,of whom his own mother was the leader.




  King Pandion of Athens had two daughters,Procne and Philomela.When Athens was threatened by the wild men,King Tereus of Thrace came to its help.Out of gratitude??King Pandion offered Tereus either of his daughters in marriage and the Thracian king chose Procne as wife. For yearsthey lived in Thrace and had one son,Itylus by name.Then Procne became homesick and longed to see her dear sister Philomela.At her repeated requests Tereus sailed to Athens tofetch Philomela.On the way back his evil heart took flame at the sight of??Philomela??who was then in her beauty of maidenhood.He seized and carried her away by force,cut out her tongue and imprisoned her in a lonely hut in the woods.To Procne he lied,saying that Philomela was dead.Philomela stayed in prison for ayear,where she had woven her painful story into the web of a robe .Then she managed to send the robe to her sister. As soon as she received the web Procne came over to the woods and to reher sister away from the keepers.

  Back at the palace, the two women,hot for paying??back ,killed little Itylus and served him up to his father . When Tereus learned of the terrible truth he grasped his sword and chased the sisters into the woods. There the gods turned Procne into a swallow,Philomela a nightingale and Tereus a hoopoe .





  When Ilus had first built his new seat,the city of Troy, he prayed Zeus to show some sign of blessing for it. His prayer was heard,and a wooden image of Pallas- A-thena fell from heaven to within the walls of the city. Known as the Palladium, the statue afforded the city safety and protection. At religious meetings of the goddess it was carried through the city streets amid joys and songs of praise.

  After the flames of war had spread for ten years before the walls of Troy, a prophet foretold that Troy could never be expected to fall as long as the Palladium was treasured by its??people .In order to steal it out,Odysseus and Diomedes slipped into the capital one night in??disguise ,known to none but Hellen.The bad woman took out them to He cuba, the queen of Troy, at whose feet Odysseus immediately bowed down and asked formercy.The queen granted their request,and with the help of Helen,they successfully brought the image back to the Greek camp at dawn.

  Later it was said that Aeneas got hold of it and carried itwith him to his new land,where it was Preserved together with the goddess' fire.





  The Flood??

  Towards the end of the Age of Bronze the human world became very cruel.

  Men grew hungry,impolite and ungodly.Neither rightn or law was respected any longer,and the rule of hospitality was forgotten.Dressed up in human form,Zeus visited Arcadia andThessaly,and disliked the deadly wrongs of men .He decidedto clear the earth of them all.Without hesitation he released therainy south wind and called upon the heartless Poseidon to help.Soon the whole world sank in a vast ocean, and the entire humanrace disappeared in the unheard of flood,all but two poor Thessalians .

  These were an old childless couple,kind and faithful and contented with life.The man was called Deucalion and his wife Pyrrha.Son of Prometheus,Deucalion had been warned beforehand by his father of the coming flood??and made himself a hugechest.When the roaring flood came the couple hid themselves init and floated for nine days until it touched land again on Mt Parnassus.

  The once active world presented a frightening sight.It was all death and ruin.Feeling lonely and unsafe,the old coupleprayed to the gods for help.A sage instructed them to cast the bones of their mother about .The son of the wise Titan, havingguessed the true meaning of the mysterious command, started throwing stones behind him. A miracle occurred. The stonesthat the man cast became men;the stones that the woman threwturned into women.Since then,people appeared on the land again.The Heroic Age had begun.





  Ajax(the Great)??

  Ajax was a man of giant stature,daring but slow.When the Trojan War was about to break out he led his forces from Salamis to join the Greek army at Aulis.As one of the trustiest champions of the Greek cause,he was given thejob of guarding one end of the Greek camp near Troy.He was noted in the battlefield for his bravery and courage.After Achilles' death he became one of the two hot contestants for the dead hero's shield and armour,the other being Odysseus.When the weapons were finally judged to his rival,Ajax went mad for grief.Unable to get over the hardships,he took his own life.When,in order to seek the advice of,Odysseus came to visit the lower world,the shade of Ajax frowned uponhim.In the lower world Ajax chose to be a lion,guided clearly by the bitter recollection of his former life.




  Among the pupils of the wise and just Centaur,there wasa boy named Jason.He was by birth a prince.His father Aeson was once king of Iolcus,but was overthrown by his own half brother Pelias.So he sent his baby son Jason to the Centaur for safekeeping.As a boy Jason took part in the boarhunt.When he grew up into a strong youth he was told of the secret of his birth.So he went to avenge his father's??wrongs .

  On his way back to his native city he met a weak old woman waiting to be helped across a mountain stream.Kind and polite,Jason carried the old lady on his back and walked across the stream.Little had he thought that the old woman was just Hera herself .Thus he got the help and protection of a power fulfriend at the beginning of his life.As he lost one shoe in the stream he had to enter Pelias' palace in only one shoe. Pelias was quite scared to see such a stranger because he had been warned by a prophet to be careful of a man wearing only one shoe.He was not surprised when Jason told him who he was and what his business was about.The artful Pelias welcomed hisnephew with false pride and??joy ;he promised to give up the kingdom to one who had proved himself worthy of it.And heurged the youth to bring the golden fleece back from Colchis.He felt quite certain that his nephew would never come back alivefrom the hopeless task.Pelias' prediction was quite right.Jasondied a poor death in the kingdom of Colchis.





  Io was the daughter of a rivergod.She was loved,run after and won by Zeus.Hera became so greeneyed that she flew down from Olympus one day to pay her rival??back .Zeus,however,had foreseen her arrival and changed Io into abeautiful white little cow.Seeing through the trick,Hera asked for the cow as a present and Zeus had to give in to her??wish .Then she left the cow to the care of a hundredeyed monster,Argus.Argus' eyes were ever open and no escape was possible.Unable to bear to see her so unhappy,Zeus sent Hermes down todestroy the monster.Dressed up as a shepherd,Hermes lulled Argus to sleep with his sweet songs and long stories,then killed him and set Io free.But Hera's anger was not to be calmed downyet.She sent a gadfly to attack the cow and drive her from land to land.In her misery the cow passed over the strait which divides Europe and Asia.In this way the strip of water got itsname??Bosporus ,the way of the cow.She wandered over thesea,which by chance got from her its name the Ionian??Sea .In the end she arrived in Egypt where she was turned back into hernatural??form .She settled down and gave birth to a son,Some of her children remained in Egypt and ruled as kings for a longtime.



  The Sirens??

  Far out in the sea there was an island,on the rocky edge of which lived three Sirens,the three sisters of magic song.Half human and half bird,the Siren sisters sat in a field of flowers,singing in voices that excited the hearts of men.The attractive songs were so sweet that ships were attracted to the island and struck to pieces on the rocks.No sailor nor ship had ever been known to pass the Island of the Sirens without being attracted to??disaster .

  Acting on the advice of Circe,Odysseus took careful preparation against the Sirens.Before their ships came to where they could hear the song,Odysseus had himself tied to the??mast ,stopped the ears of his men with wax and ordered them to ignorehis orders and gestures when they were passing the fatal is land .

  Soon they came in sight of the rocky is land,and the attractive song reached the ears of Odysseus.It moved him so much that he struggled in??despair??to free himself and shouted for his men to turn towards the rich and flowery grass land of the singing sisters.But no one paid any attention to him.The sailorskept straight on until they were completely out of hearing.Then his friends freed him and took the wax out of their ears.For once the Sirens had sung with no effects.The eldest of the sisters,Partherope,loved Odysseus so much that she threw herself into the sea after his ships had passed.






  He cuba's life was one of grief and sorrow.She saw withher own eyes her eldest born Hector killed and insulted by Achilles.She saw her son Polites??slain??in front of her by Pyrrhus.And she saw her husband,the aged Priam,dragged towards the household altar and ruthlessly??butchered there.After the fall of Troy she was carried into??slavery .Shehad the misfortune to witness her daughter Polyxena,her soleconsolation in??bondage ,sacrificed at the tomb of Achilles.She had the sad fate to see washed ashore the corpse of her young estson Polydorus,who had been entrusted to the Thracian??king for safekeeping.With her fifty children all dead she became thequeen of sorrows from whom no other woman could obtain the crown .Yet in her distress and despair,she plucked up hercourage to avenge herself upon the Thracian king,who had murdered her son in order to get her son's gold.Later,as Dionysushad prophesied ,she was transformed into a dog with bloodshoteyes and,unable to endure the new misery,she leapt into thesea and thus ended her unfortunate life.



  The Four Ages??

  There had been four ages since the human world first cameinto??being .They are the Golden Age,the Silver Age,the Age of Bronze and the Age of Iron.The Golden Agewas the best of all.It was an age when Kronus sat on thethrone.Generous nature met all the needs of??men .There wereno extremes of cold and heat.And the evils of the human worldwere still kept in the cask.Epimetheus guarded the cask and Pandora was not yet made to open.Men lived a happy life.They were forever young.They were always eating richly and knew neither hard labour nor sorrow.When death came it came like apeaceful sleep.And they became good spirits in??heaven .

  The Silver Age was one in which the human race was somewhat less valuable in body and mind.The period was of helpless be ginning.It lasted a hundred years.And it was the time of manhood,short and troubled.Men spent in ignorance and evil.They no longer admired the gods and offered no sacrifices.However,as the race of the Silver Age was not entirely lack of goodness,they had some honour and lived on as spirits under the earth.

  During the age of Bronze men became further??degenerated .Dressed in bronze and armed with weapons of bronze,they live din the houses of bronze.Cruel and heartless,they delighted inwar and died in endless struggle.When they passed away,they came into the darkness of the lower world.

  The last age,that of Iron,was one of continual care and grief.There was no family love,no sense of respectful duty,no friend ship and hospitality.Nor was there any faith,truth and justice.Evil was widespread,might was right,and the flames of war burnt the surface of the earth.It was a race of men given up by gods .









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