Uranus


You are Here by Chris Christner
You are Here by Chris Christner

Uranus (Gk: Ouranos [úːranos] = “sky” or “heaven“)

In astronomy Uranus is the 7th planet orbiting our sun, between Saturn and Neptune.

In Greek myth Uranus personifies the sky or possibly the Greek view of Heaven, although most scholars emphasize the idea of the physical sky.

Uranus’ cultic worship is rare, but Hesiod makes ample reference to him in the Theogony. With Gaia, Uranus’ offspring are the Titans, the Cyclops and the Hecatonchires.

Not exactly the best father, Uranus generally despised his offspring and thrust them down to Tartarus, a dark and gloomy underworld. Uranus was later overpowered and castrated by his son Cronus, on the insistence of Gaia. This act separated Heaven and Earth.

Mutilasi Uranus
Mutilasi Uranus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some variants of the myth say that Uranus’ castration by Cronus led to the birth of Aphrodite because his genitals fell to and churned up the sea.

Pierre Grimal notes another variant of the Uranus tradition recorded by Diodorus Siculus. Here Uranus is portrayed as the first king of the Atlantes. The Atlantes apparently were a fair, God-fearing race living on the shores by an ocean. In this version of the myth, Uranus was also a skilled astronomer. He devised the first calendar that predicted major events. After fathering 45 children and receiving divine honors at his death, he eventually came to be identified with the sky.¹

Related posts » Aphrodite, Aquarius, Athena, Furies, Hesiod, Titans

¹ Pierre Grimal, The Dictionary of Classical Mythology p. 463.

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