Greek gods and goddesses

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Greek gods and goddesses

  1. 1. Greek Gods and Goddesses
  2. 2. Greek Religion: a family of Deities • Explained why people behaved like that • Why their lives took a certain direction. • More than other civilizations, the Greeks humanized their deities • The Greeks didn’t fear their gods, they approached their gods with dignity – They humanized their gods – Their gods took human form – Their gods possessed super-human powers – Tried to be like –they were role models for the Greeks
  3. 3. Gods and Goddesses • Each community took a particular god or goddess as its patron and protector • Greeks believed 12 most important deities lived on Mount Olympus • Believed that each controlled a specific part of the natural world, e.g. Zeus (right), the chief god ruled the sky, weather and thunderstorms
  4. 4. Gods and Goddesses: Zeus • Zeus was the most important god (“King of the Gods”) • father of Gods and men, ruled them both from Mt. Olympus • god of sky and thunder • oversaw the universe
  5. 5. Gods and Goddesses: Hera • wife of Zeus • goddess of women, marriage and family • jealous and vengeful nature
  6. 6. Gods and Goddesses: Hades • god of the underworld • brother of Zeus • symbols associated with him is the threeheaded dog, Cerberus.
  7. 7. Gods and Goddesses: Demeter • goddess of agriculture • known as the most generous of the great Olympian goddesses: she gives men the gift of the harvest • presented with an ear of wheat
  8. 8. Gods and Goddesses: Hestia • god of hearth and domesticity • she never chose an emblem for herself (no symbol)
  9. 9. Gods and Goddesses: Poseidon • god of the sea • brother of Zeus • he created islands and offered calm seas • sailors prayed to Poseidon for a safe voyage • symbol: trident
  10. 10. Gods and Goddesses: Hephaestrus • god of technology, artisans and fire • lame (grotesque appearance in Greek eyes) • served as the blacksmith of the gods
  11. 11. Gods and Goddesses: Ares • god of war • he often represents the physical or violent aspect of war • he was seen as a dangerous force
  12. 12. Gods and Goddesses: Apollo • Apollo, god of light, drove the sun across the sky every day in his chariot • Apollo considered god of prophecy and beauty – Brought gifts to oracle at Delphi honoring him – Asked for hidden knowledge to be revealed – Priests and priestesses would interpret Apollo’s answers to questions
  13. 13. Gods and Goddesses: Athenea • goddess of wisdom and strength • helper of many heroes in danger • patron of the city of Athens
  14. 14. Gods and Goddesses: Dionysus • god of of the grape harvest, winemaking and wine • his festivals were the origin of Greek theater • usually portrayed with grapes or a glass of wine in his hand
  15. 15. Gods and Goddesses: Aphrodite • goddess of love • known for her extraordinary beauty
  16. 16. Celebrating Gods and Goddesses As Hellenic civilization developed, certain religious festivals became part of Greek life— including the Olympic Games – Held in city of Olympia – “For the greater glory of Zeus” – Drama (a celebration of Dionysus, the god of wine and fertility).
  17. 17. Celebrating Gods and Goddesses – – – – Theatre Celebrated of Dionysus Audience around on hillside Told stories and danced to the flute Permanent amphitheaters appeared

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