Ancient Greece Mythology

Titans of Ancient Greece

Hesiod claimed, the word Titan means "Strainer", because they strained and performed some presumptuous, fearful deed and the vengeance would come after it. Where the Olympians lived in Olympus, the home of the Titans was Othrys, their stronghold.

The exact number of the Titans varied from author to author, and they often included some of the children of the Titans. So there are at least two generations of Titans can be considered.

For a generation, the Titans shared the world and created mankind, with Cronus as their leader. Although a number of the male Titans were imprisoned in Tartarus, when they chose to fight a war against the younger gods, known as the Olympians.

According to the Orphic myth, Zeus destroyed the Titans with his thunderbolts, because the Titans had murdered and devoured his son Zagreus (Dionysus). From the smouldering ashes, mankind were created.

Much of what we know about the Titans is because of Hesiods' Theogony.
The twelve Titans were the children of Uranus and Gaea.
There were 12 Uranides, six sons and six daughters:

Cronus - God of Eternal Time and King of the Titans, until overthrown by his own son Zeus.

(Okeanos) Oceanus - God of the fresh water rivers that bound the earth; including wells, springs, river and rain. Husband of Tethys, a nurse that claimed to have distributed the water to the earth. The Oldest of the twelve Titans

Iapetus - Son of Uranus and Gaea. He married the daughter of Oceanus and Tethys. Iapetus was the father of the Titans, Atlas, Menoetius, Prometheus and Epimetheus. Some say that Iapetus married his own sister Themis, and became the father of Prometheus

Hyperion - God of the Sun, sometimes referred to as 'Helios Hyperion' Sun High one.

Crius - Married his half-sister Eurybia, daughter of Gaea and Pontus, and became father of Perses, Pallas and Astraeus.

Coeus - God of intellect. He married his sister Phoebe, became the father of Leto and Asteria.

Rhea - Titaness and earth-goddess. According to Diodorus Siculus, Rhea was also known as Pandora. She married her brother, Cronus and was the mother of Olympians: Hestia, Poseidon, Hades, Demeter, Hera and Zeus. When it was prophesied that her children would overthrow her brother/husband, Cronus, he took steps to prevent it.

Tethys - Titaness of the sea. She married her brother, Oceanus. She became the mother of all the river gods. She is said to have bore three thousand daughters, known as the Oceanids. The eldest daughter being Styx, who was the only female river goddess; while Amphitrite, who married Poseidon, and Doris, who married Nereus, became sea goddesses.

Theia - Titaness of sorcery. She was sometimes called, EuryphaEssa (Eurtphaessa). Theia was the goddess of light. She married her brother Hyperion, and was the mother of Eos ("Dawn"), Helius ("Sun"), and Selene ("Moon"). By her other brother Oceanus, she was mother of the Cercopes.

Phoebe - Titaness of the Moon, married her brother Coeus (Coeus). Phoebe became the mother of Leto and Asteria, so Phoebe was the grandmother of Apollo, Artemis and Hecate.

Themis - Titaness of justice and Earth-goddess. Later she became known as the goddess of order and justice. Themis was the second wife of Zeus. Themis became the mother of many children, including the Seasons (Horae) - Eunomia ("Order"), Dike ("Justice") and Eirene ("Peace") - and the Fates (Moerae).

Mnemosyne - Titaness of memory. Mnemosyne ("Memory") was the daughter of Uranus and Gaea. She was the abstract personification of memory. In Roman myths, she was called Moneta.
By Zeus, she was the mother of nine daughters, known as the Muses. Zeus had slept with Mnemosyne for nine nights, and one year later, she gave birth to the nine wondrous daughters. Mnemosyne had named them as Cleio, Euterpe, Thaleia, Melpomene, Terpischore, Erato, Polyhymnia, Urania and Calliope being her eldest daughter.

Dione - An obscure goddess, as it was not certain whether she was either Titaness or Oceanid. Most commonly thought to be the goddess of the sea. She was also known as Thalassa, who was a sea deity. Thalassa was also beleived to the wife of the ancient sea god, Pontus.

Second Generation Titans ( Iapetionides )

Atlas - Atlas was the son of the Titan Iapetus by the Oceanid Clymene or Asia. Brother of Menoetius, Prometheus and Epimetheus. When his brother, Prometheus tried to persuade him not to go to war against the Olympians, he did not listen. Zeus punished Atlas, by making the Titan carry the weight of the sky upon his shoulders.

Prometheus - Titan of forethought. Son of the Titan Iapetus and by Iapetus' sister Themis or by Clymene or Asia. Both were Oceanids. Prometheus was the brother of Atlas, Menoetius and Epimetheus. Prometheus married Pronoea and was the father of Deucalion. During the war between the Titans and Olympians, Prometheus sided with Zeus, knowing that the war would end with the younger gods winning the war.
Prometheus unsuccessfully tried to persuade his father Iapetus and his brother Atlas to change side. Iapetus was thrown into Tartarus, while Atlas would be forever burdened with the weight of heaven on his shoulder.

Epimetheus - Titan of afterthought. Epimetheus ("Afterthought") was the son of the Titan Iapetus by the Oceanid Clymene or Asia. Brother of Prometheus, Menoetius and Atlas. Epimetheus married the first mortal woman Pandora and was the father of Pyrrha.

Menoetius: Son of Iapetus and Oceanid Clymene or Asia.Brother of Atlas, Prometheus and Epimetheus.


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