Gaia (mythology)


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Gaia. Detail from the Gigantomachie, taken from an Attic red-figure bowl (410–400 BC).

Gaia or Ge ( ancient Greek Γαῖα Gaía or Γῆ Gḗ , Dorian Γᾶ ), German also Gäa , is the personified earth and one of the first deities in Greek mythology . Her name is of Indo-European origin and possibly means the woman who gave birth . Its counterpart in Roman mythology is Tellus .

myth

Descent and emasculation of Uranus

In Hesiod's theogony , Gaia emerges as one of the first deities out of chaos . Her siblings are Tartaros , Eros , Erebos and Nyx . For the Orphics , hydros (water) is the primordial deity from which, according to their imagination, Gaia emerged as the only deity without fertilization. The mythographer Hyginus names Aither and Hemera as parents of the Gaia .

At Hesiod, Gaia of Uranos gives birth to the titans , the one-eyed Cyclopes and finally the hundred-armed Hekatoncheirs . His children are hated by the father, so he keeps them hidden in Gaia (in the cave of the earth) and rejoices in what he did. Gaia thinks of a ruse, she brings out the unbreakable gray adamant and turns it into a toothed sickle. Then she urges her children to rebel against their father. The Titan Kronos is the only one following her. When Uranos approaches Gaia full of desire, Kronos cuts off his genitals with a sickle and throws it away. The blood flowing from the wound of Uranus fertilizes Gaia and she gives birth to the giants , the Erinyes and the Melian nymphs .

In the library of Apollodorus , Gaia, angry that Uranus has banished the Hekatoncheirs and the Cyclops in Tartarus , persuades the Titans to attack their father. Kronos gives them the sickle, and all titans except Oceanus turn against Uranus. Kronos emasculates him, and Gaia gives birth to the giants and the Erinyes from his blood. The titans free their siblings from Tartaros and appoint Kronos as the highest ruler.

Titanomachy

In the theogony , Uranus and Gaia predict Kronos that one of his descendants would overthrow him, just as he overthrew his father. Kronos then devours every child as soon as it has been born by his wife Rhea . But when Rhea awaits Zeus , she asks Gaia to hide him from Kronos. Instead of the child, Rhea brings him a diapered stone , which he devours, and Gaia secretly raises Zeus in Crete . When Zeus grew up, he persuaded the Oceanid Metis to give Kronos an emetic in his potion, so that he vomited the children along with the stone. As a thank you, these give Zeus the thunder, the fuse and the lightning that Gaia had hidden within. Zeus and his siblings then wage war against the titans for ten years until Gaia shows them the place where the Cyclopes and Hekatoncheirs are held captive. Zeus frees them and together they defeat the titans and ban them to the Tartaros, where they are guarded by the Hekatoncheirs. On Gaia's advice, Zeus is made their ruler by the other gods. According to the library , Zeus can defeat the Titans with the help of the Hekatoncheirs and Cyclops freed from Tartaros.

The Titan Prometheus complains in Prometheus Bound of Aeschylus that he had in vain warned his siblings, this would not listen to the prophecy of Uranus and Gaia.

Gigantomachy

The gigantomachy is described in detail for the first time in the library . Gaia testifies with Tartaros out of anger about the capture of her children, the titans, the giants who are incited by her to storm Olympus. Since the giants, as the Olympians learn from the oracle, cannot be killed by the hand of a god, they bring Zeus' son Heracles to their side. But Gaia goes in search of a plant that will still make the giants invincible. But Zeus asks Eos , Selene and Helios not to give out any more light and finds the herb himself during the night. The gods defeated by Hercules' help the Giants and Gaia testifies, angered by the defeat, with Tartarus the Typhoeos .

In the Dionysiaca of Nonnos , Hera asks her to do something against the deeds of Zeus and Dionysus , who fought the earth-born people of the Indians in their campaign. Gaia is so angry that she sends her children, the titans and giants, to fight Dionysus and bring them to her, alive or dead.

progeny

The birth of Erichthonios: Athena receives the boy Erichthonios from the hands of her mother Gaia . On the left Hephaestus . Attic red-figure stamnos, 470-460 BC Chr.

In the theogony , Gaia gives birth to Uranos , Ourea and Pontos without fertilization . With Uranos she then fathered the titans Okeanos , Koios , Kreios , Iapetos , Hyperion , Theia , Rhea , Mnemosyne , Themis , Phoibe , Tethys and Kronos , the Cyclopes Brontes , Steropes and Arges as well as the Hekatoncheiren Briareos, Gyges and Kottos. From Uranos' blood, which falls on Gaia after the emasculation of Uranos, grow the giants , the Erinyes and the Melian nymphs , none of which are named. From Pontos she has the children Nereus , Keto , Phorkys , Thaumas and Eurybia . As Zeus later plunges the Kronos and fight with the Titans, Gaia testifies with Tartarus the Typhoeos and sends it out against the Olympian gods. But it has to submit and recognize the supremacy of Zeus. According to other texts attributed to Hesiod, she begets the Laistrygon with Poseidon , and produces the Scorpios . With Epaphos she is also the producer of numerous human peoples, namely the Hemikunoi, Libyes, Aithiopes, Katoudaioi, Pygmaioi, Melanokhrotoi, Skythes, Laistrygones and Hyperboreoi.

In Homer's Odyssey, it brings the Tityos out and in the Iliad she testifies with Hephaestus the Erichthonios . The epic poet Eumelos names the Cyclops and the Hekatoncheirs as descendants of Gaia with Uranus. In the texts of the Orphics, with Hydros, from which she herself emerged, she begets the Kronos and the Ananke .

In archaic poetry, descendants of Gaia are also mentioned. In Alkaios coming Phaiakians from her, when Simonides of Etna and Bacchylides is Aristaios called. The Kabiren , Dysaules , Pelasgos , Alalkomeneos and Jarbas are mentioned in an anonymous fragment .

The tragedy poet Aeschylus names the giant Argos , the titans Prometheus , as descendants of Gaia in his play The Fettered Prometheus , as well as the titans Okeanos, Kronos and Tethys Zephyr is mentioned in Agamemnon and Themis and Phoibe in the Eumenides . In the play Die Schutzpflhenden he also mentions Palaichthon .

According to Apollonios , Gaia gives birth to the dragon Cholkykos , according to Callimachos she and Hephaestus are the mother of Erichthonios and Strabo calls the Korybanten as children. According to Diodorus, she begets the titans with Uranus, whose names are taken from the theogony , as well as the Cyclopes and Hekatoncheirs not mentioned by name, and she gives birth to the corybants.

Family tree based on Hesiod's theogony

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
chaos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gaia
 
 
 
Tartaros
 
 
 
Eros
 
 
 
Erebos
 
 
 
Nyx
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Typhoeos
 
 
 
 
Hekatoncheiren
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Briareos
 
Gyges
 
Kottos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cyclopes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Brontes
 
Steropes
 
Arges
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pontus
 
Ourea
 
Uranus
 
 
 
 
Titans
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Oceanus
 
Kreios
 
 
Hyperion
 
Theia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Giants
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Nereus
 
 
Thaumas
 
Phorkys
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Themis
 
Phoibe
 
 
Kronos
 
Koios
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Erinyes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Keto
 
Eurybia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Iapetos
 
Rhea
 
Mnemosyne
 
Tethys
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
melish nymphs
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

In his epic Aeneis, Virgil names grandadoes and koios, as well as Pheme and Tityos as descendants. After Ovid's Metamorphoses , she gives birth to the python and fertilizes the corybants from a downpour. According to the Fasti , she gives birth to the Ophiotaurus and is fertilized by an ox skin that is soaked with the urine of Zeus, Poseidon and Hermes , and from it produces Orion . In the Thebais of Statius , Gaia is the mother of the dragon Nemeios .

In the library of Apollodorus, with Uranus, she begets the Titans, Cyclops and Hekatoncheirs, who also have the same names as Hesiod's. Another titan is Dione . As with Hesiod, the Erinyes and the giants grow out of the blood of Uranus, but are given names here. The Erinyes are called Tisiphone, Megaira and Alekto and the giants are Alkyoneus , Porphyrion , Enkelados , Ephialtes , Eurytos , Klytios , Mimas , Pallas , Polybotes , Hippolytos , Agrios and Thoon . Okeanos she gets the Triptolemos from Tartarus Typhon and Echidna , the Poseidon Antaeus and Hephaestus she gets the Erichthonios . Out of herself she brings out Orion and Argos .

According to Hyginus Praefatio, she begets with Aither the Pontus and the Tartaros as well as the Titans and the Erinyes. He calls the Erinyes Briareos, Gyes and Steropes, and of the titans he names Okeanos, Themis, Hyperion, Koios, Kronos, Rhea, Mnemosyne, Dione, Atlas and Polos . With Tartaros she fathered the giants Enkelados, Koios , Astraios , Peloros , Pallas, Emphytos , Rhoikos , Agrios, Ephialtes, Eurytos, Theomises , Theodamas , Otos , Typhon , Polybotes and Iapetos . As other children of Gaia with Aither he names Dolor, Dolus , Ira, Luctus, Mendacium, Justiurandum, Ultio, Intermperantia, Altercatio, Oblivio, Socordia, Timor, Superbia, Incestum and Pugna. According to Hyginus Fabulae, she begets Antaeus with Poseidon and gives birth to Kekrops . In addition, as with Ovid, she is fertilized by an ox skin and gives birth to Orion. According to Hyginus Astronomica , Gaia gives birth to Scorpios.

In Pausania's travels in Greece she is mentioned as the mother of Anax and Hyllos and Areion . With Antoninus Liberalis she is the mother of Kekrops and with Flavius ​​Philostratos with Poseidon that of Antaios. At Athenaios she is the mother of Sykeus .

In the Dionysiaka of the late antique epic Nonnos , Silenus , Tityos and Argos as well as the corybants and the dactyls are named as descendants . As the mother of the giants, she appears in connection with the giants Alpus and Damasen . With Zeus she fathered the Cypriot Centaurs . and Orion, as in Ovid and Hyginus, fertilized by an ox skin.

Family tree based on Pseudo-Apollodor's library

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gaia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Uranus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Orion
 
 
 
 
Argos
 
 
Hekatoncheiren
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Briareos
 
Gyges
 
Kottos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tartaros
 
 
 
Cyclopes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Brontes
 
Steropes
 
Arges
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Typhon
 
 
 
Echidna
 
 
Titans
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Theia
 
Kreios
 
 
Hyperion
 
Dione
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Poseidon
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Antaeus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Themis
 
Phoibe
 
 
Kronos
 
Koios
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hephaestus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Iapetos
 
Rhea
 
 
Mnemosyne
 
Tethys
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Erichthonios
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Oceanus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Triptolemos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Giants
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alkyoneus
 
Porphyrion
 
 
Grandchildren
 
Ephialtes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Erinyes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eurytus
 
Klytios
 
 
Mimas
 
Pallas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tisiphone
 
Megaira
 
Alecto
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Polybotes
 
Hippolytus
 
Thoon
 
Agrios
 

meaning

Gaia's importance in mythology as in cult lies mainly in the Greeks' idea of ​​the earth. Gaia's main meaning as a mother goddess, who produces and nourishes all living things, as well as that of a death goddess, who takes people into her bosom after death, is derived from this idea. But she was also understood as a revenge deity and oracle deity.

As the earth goddess who gives blessings , Gaia is sung about in one of the Homeric hymns and is worshiped accordingly. In the myths and their representations, this aspect is the most important. Gaia has been the primary goddess in theogonic poetry since Hesiod . From her descend the rulers of the world, the titans and from whom the Olympic gods , as well as their challengers the giants and typhons . In addition, she is the mother of the personified heaven Uranos and the sea Pontos and thus the ancestor of a large part of the Greek gods . Her function as mother goddess , which was already laid out in the ancient Orient , was basically retained throughout antiquity , even if there were modifications. In the theogonies of the Orphics , her and her generation of gods are preceded by earlier beings, or since the Derveni Papyrus Nyx emphasized more strongly. Hesiod's depiction of Gaia is distinctly anthropomorphic, later poets portray it as a natural legory , especially when it comes to the connection between her and Uranus .

As the goddess of death, she can be traced in Attica . In The Persians of Aeschylus , the choir asks the queen to pour donations into the earth, while King Xerxes implores the chthonic gods Gaia, Hermes and Hades to send up the shadow of his father Darius again. In cult and in representations, this meaning is evident in fruit offerings after burials, in reliefs on sarcophagi or idols in Attic graves.

As a vengeance deity, she appears when oaths are sworn in her name, as this only happened with gods from whom vengeance could be expected if the oath was broken. In the Greek religion , the shadows of the deceased are judged underground, which is why oaths were taken especially on deities related to the earth. In Aeschylus' Choephoren , Hermes , all the chthonic gods and finally Gaia are implored by Elektra to take revenge on Aigisthus for the death of their father. According to Pausanias, there was a Gaia statue on Areopagus , where the acquitted made a sacrifice.

As a divine divination, Gaia already appears in Hesiod's theogony when she foretells Kronos' fate. She was considered the original owner of most of the chthonic oracles , as it was assumed that the vapors rising from the earth enabled the priestesses to make their oracles.

presentation

The oldest known representations of the Gaia can be found on Attic black-figure vases from the second half of the 6th century BC. They show her in full figure as a pleading mother in depictions of the gigantomachy and in depictions of the battle between Apollon and Tityos .

It is only depicted in depictions of the Gigantomachy if a large part of the Olympic gods is shown. On fragments of black-figure vases, partial representations of her have been preserved, from which her overall representation can be deduced. Her feet can be seen on two fragments, her arms and hands on one and her face on the last. She wears a peplos and is in a central group of Olympic gods around Zeus, who mounts the chariot. The group moves to the right, Gaia is standing to the left of the car, leans over to Zeus and touches his beard from below.

In depictions of the fight between Apollo and Tityos, it is considered to be depicted with certainty in three cases, and its attribution is uncertain in five other depictions. Once she is named, she stands between Apollon and Artemis on one side and Tityos on the other and intervenes in the fight by raising her arm. In the two other images that are considered to be certain, Leto can be seen on Tityo's side , Gaia standing between the opponents. She holds her veil to Apollo in the way a bride confronts her bridegroom. The mythological background of the scene is unclear. On the two representations from the 6th century that are considered unsafe, the female figure standing next to Tityos can also be Leto instead of Gaia. Against the assignment of Gaia to the three red-figure representations speaks primarily the representation as a full figure, which does not correspond to the representation convention of Gaia in the 5th century, here too the representation of Leto is assumed.

Gaia rises from the ground and hands Erichthonios over to Athena. Kekrops to the right. Melian relief, around 460 BC Chr.

In the 5th century, Gaia is no longer depicted as a full figure, but as a torso rising from the ground. The first known such representations show them in connection with the birth of Erichthonios, which is important for Athenian aitiology . Gaia rises from the ground to hand Athena over to Erichthonios, mostly in the presence of Kekrops and other people, sometimes in the presence of Hephaestus . On the oldest of these vases, she is depicted from the waist and hands the child to Athena, who walks towards her, with Kekrops and Hephaestus standing next to her. Six of the nine other Attic vases are red-figure , the representation is only slightly varied. Two depictions vary only those present, two show them already ascended from the knees or the hips and in one the child has already been handed over. Except for the last depiction, it is always shown frontally. Fragments with this motif have been preserved from three black-figure Loutrophoroi . The representation on these cult vessels, which were used at weddings and funerals, is probably related to Gaia's sanctuary on the Acropolis, where her pre-offerings were made.

In addition to Attic vases, the motif can be found on a kantharos from eastern Greece, on three stone reliefs and a melic relief as well as on a stater by Kyzikos . The stone reliefs date from the Roman era, but it is believed that they are reproductions of around 420 BC. At the foot of the cult statues that were in the Hephaisteion . On the melic relief, Gaia can be seen from the shoulders upwards and shows the scene as a mirror image of other representations, from which it is concluded that it was made with the help of a cast . The relief was found in an Athenian grave. On the stater she can be seen with Erechthonios from the waist up. The motif of the rising from the ground shape was in the classical detached from Gaia in the context of the births of Aphrodite , Pandora and Persephone used.

The motif is also used in Classical to depict Gaia in the Gigantomachy. On a bowl she can be seen at the edge of a battle scene with slightly raised arms from the thighs and on a crater on which the painting of the Parthenos shield is probably reproduced because of the detailed depiction of the battle , she appears at the edge with fully raised arms. The giants are consistently on a lower level than the gods who fight from heaven.

East frieze of the Pergamon Altar : Gaia appears between Athena and Nike , on the left the giant Alkyoneus

In Hellenism , Gaia mostly appears in large-scale depictions of the gigantomachy. On the east frieze of the Pergamon Altar it is depicted as a torso, which is not, however, at the edge of the fight, but rather in the middle of a fight scene, similar to the earliest depictions. The same can be said for the frieze from the Athena shrine in Priene . On an Etruscan relief urn, she stands protectively behind a giant lying on the ground. Since the giant's body covers its lower part, it is unclear whether it was conceived as a whole figure or as an ascending torso.

In Roman art she appears on the above reproductions of the Hephaisteion frieze and in a few other depictions where she is named. In other representations of the Gaia motif, where the assignment by name is not possible, the representation of Tellus is assumed.

cult

There was a cultic worship of Gaia primarily in Athens , where she was also worshiped as Kurotrophos . Apart from Athens, a permanent cult can usually only be found in remote places or at oracle sites. She was worshiped mostly in her blessing meaning as a mother goddess, but also as a death goddess and as an avenging deity.

Map of ancient Athens

Probably the oldest place of worship is the Temenos der Ge Olympia in Athens. It was located in the Peribolos of Hieron of Zeus Olympios next to a temple of Kronos and Rhea. In the Temenos there was a crevice into which the Deucalionic Flood is said to have run and into this a sacrificial mash made of honey and wheat flour was thrown every year. As Kurotrophos she had an altar in the Pandroseion , the sanctuary of Pandrosus on the Acropolis . With Pandrosus and Athena Polias , Ge Kurotrophos formed a triad there , which was sacrificed by the Athenian officials. Probably a chair was set up for her and Pandrosus there at the panathenae so that they could take part in the celebrations. She had a temple next to the temple of Demeter Chloe below the temple of Nikes .

Gaia Kurotrophos was revered in Athens as the breadwinner of the children, who therefore celebrated her with dances. King Erichthonios is said to have introduced that a pre-sacrifice is made to her before each sacrifice, which presumably also consisted of grain and honey. Other sacrifices were made to the maternal Gaia at weddings and celebrations. The avenging goddess was sacrificed by acquittals at her statue on Areopagus and the goddess of death at funerals, where fruits were offered to her. Fruits were also offered to her on the chthonic festival of Genesia and a grain offering was offered to her for Procharisteria . For the thesmophoria she was called as Kurotrophos.

Map of the Sanctuary of Delphi

In Delphi , Gaia was the first owner of the oracle until she had to cede it to Themis , the owner before Apollon . It was assumed that the Pythia was inspired by vapors rising from the earth, which explains Gaia as the first owner. She had a temple near the sanctuary of Apollo, where she was nicknamed Eurusternos .

The priestess of the oracle at Aigai , who was still visited later, is said to have drank ox blood and went down into a cave to ask Gaia for advice. Here she had a temple in which an old Xoanon stood. The priestess of the temple was only allowed to have intercourse with one man and then had to live celibate.

In Olympia there was an ash altar next to an altar of Themis , which, according to Pausanias, had previously been an oracle. She is said to have been venerated next to Zeus in the oracle of Dodona and possibly the earlier possession of the Trophonios oracle of Lebadeia can be attributed to her.

In historical times, Gaia was supplanted as an oracle deity by Zeus and Apollo, except in the oracle of Aigai. It is also possible that some oracle places want to express their claim to age and authenticity by referring to Gaia, without Gaia actually having an oracle there.

Gaia had an altar in the Attic Demos Phlya , where she was worshiped as a god of nature by the nickname Megale . Also here were orgies celebrated for them over the age of the Mysteries of Eleusis should have been. In a shrine in Patrai , she was depicted seated while the fertility goddesses Demeter and Kora stood next to her. Another sanctuary was on the agora of Lakedaimon and another altar in Tegea next to a temple of the goddess of birth Eileithyia .

Since she was venerated above all in her meaning as mother goddess, the sacrifices made to her usually consisted of grain, fruits or honey and occasionally animal sacrifices. As the goddess of vengeance, a black lamb is sacrificed to her alone in the Iliad before the battle between Paris and Menelaus . In Attica she was sacrificed at weddings and funerals, and when it was dry, she was called upon as Gaia Karpophoros as a mediator to Zeus instead of the vegetation goddess Demeter, according to an inscription on the Acropolis . Cicero attributes the introduction of sacrifice to funerals to Kekrops . In the Attic Tetrapolis a pregnant cow was sacrificed to her in the month of Poseideon , a sheep in the Gamelion and a black ram on the 10th of Elaphebolion . It is said from Mykonos that every year on the 12th of the month of Lenaion (January – February), sacrifices were made to Dionysus Lenaios , Zeus Chthonios and Ge Chthonia . Strangers were not allowed to participate in this sacrifice.

As cult names of the Gaia are handed down:

  • Ἀνησιδώρα (Anēsidora) in Phlya.
  • Ἐν γύαις (En guais) in the Attic Tetrapolis.
  • Εὐρυόδεια (Euryodeia) in Skarpheia.
  • Εὐρύστερνος (Eurysternos) in Achaia.
  • Θέμις (Themis) in Athens.
  • Καλλιγένεια (Kalligeneia) probably in Athens.
  • Καρποφόρος (Karpophoros) in Athens. The Cyclists made sacrifices to her in Delphi.
  • Κουροτρόφος (Kurotrophos) in Athens.
  • Μεγάλη (Megale) in Phlya.

reception

Up to modern times, visual artists have dealt with Gaia and tried to give it a form.

Based on Greek mythology, the scientists Lynn Margulis and James Lovelock called their approach to equating the earth with an organism, the Gaia hypothesis . This choice certainly contributed to the great popularity of the hypothesis, but it also led to esoteric interpretations from which the authors have distanced themselves.

literature

Web links

Commons : Gaia  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Hesiod: Theogony 116-124.
  2. a b Orpheus : Fragments 54 & 57 core
  3. a b c Hyginus : Praefatio
  4. a b Hesiod : Theogony 154-187.
  5. Libraries of Apollodorus 1, 1-5.
  6. Hesiod: Theogony 453-506.
  7. Hesiod: Theogony 617-735.
  8. Hesiod: Theogony 881-884.
  9. ^ Libraries 1, 6.
  10. Aeschylus: Prometheus Fettered, 206 ff.
  11. ^ Libraries 1, 34-39.
  12. ^ Nonnos : Dionysiaka 48, 6.
  13. Hesiod: Theogony 126-138.
  14. Hesiod: Theogony 228-234.
  15. a b Hesiod: Catalog of Women , Fragment 40A.
  16. Hesiod: Astronomy. Fragment 4.
  17. Homer: Odyssey 11,580.
  18. Homer: Iliad
  19. Eumelos : Titanomachia Fragment 1.
  20. Alkaios of Lesbos, fragment 441.
  21. Simonides von Keos, fragment 52.
  22. Bakchylides Fragment 45. In: David A. Campbell: Greek Lyric: Bacchylides, Corinna, and others, Volume 4 . Harvard University Press, 1992.
  23. Anonymous Fragment 985. In: Greek lyric, Volume 5. Harvard University Press, 1993.
  24. Aeschylus: Prometheus Bound 566.
  25. ^ Aeschylus: Prometheus Bound, 211.
  26. Aeschylus: Prometheus Fettered 207.
  27. ^ Aeschylus: Agamemnon 690.
  28. Aeschylus: Eumenids 1.
  29. Aeschylus: The Protectors 250.
  30. Apollonios of Rhodes 2, 1215.
  31. Callimachus : Hekale Fragment 260.
  32. Strabo : 10, 3, 9.
  33. Diodorus 5, 65-66.
  34. ^ Virgil : Aeneid 4, 174.
  35. Virgil: Aeneid 6, 595.
  36. ^ Ovid : Metamorphoses 1, 438.
  37. ^ Ovid: Metamorphoses 4, 282.
  38. ^ Ovid: Fasti 3, 793.
  39. ^ Ovid: Fasti 5, 493.
  40. ^ Statius : Thebais 5, 505.
  41. Libraries 1, 2.
  42. Libraries 1, 3; 1, 34.
  43. ^ Libraries 1, 39.
  44. a b Libraries 2, 4.
  45. ^ Libraries 2, 115.
  46. ^ Libraries 3, 188.
  47. ^ Libraries 1, 25.
  48. ^ Hyginus: Fabulae 31.
  49. ^ Hyginus: Fabulae 48.
  50. Hyginus: Fabulae 140; Astronomica 2, 34.
  51. ^ Hyginus: Astronomica 2, 26.
  52. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 1, 35, 6f.
  53. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 8, 25, 8–9.
  54. ^ Antoninus Liberalis 6.
  55. Flavius ​​Philostratos 2, 21.
  56. ^ Athenaios 78a.
  57. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 29, 243.
  58. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 4, 33.
  59. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiacs 20, 35.
  60. Nonnos: Dionysiaka 13, 135; 14, 23.
  61. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 14, 23.
  62. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 45, 174.
  63. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 25, 452.
  64. Nonnos: Dionysiaka 14, 193; 32, 65.
  65. ^ Nonnos: Dionysiaka 13, 96.
  66. Homer : Hymn 30 .
  67. Aeschylus : The Persians 621 ff.
  68. Aeschylus Choephoren 118 ff.
  69. ^ Pausanias : Travels in Greece 1, 28, 6.
  70. Thucydides : The Peloponnesian War 2, 15.
  71. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 1, 18, 7.
  72. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 1, 22, 3.
  73. Suda , keyword Kourotrophos gê ( Κουροτρόφος γῆ ), Adler number: kappa 2193 , Suda-Online
  74. Aristophanes : Die Thesmophoriazusen 295 ff.
  75. Aeschylus: Eumenids 2-4.
  76. Pliny the Elder : Naturalis historia 28, 41.
  77. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 7, 25, 13.
  78. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 5, 14, 10.
  79. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 10, 12, 10.
  80. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 1, 31, 4.
  81. ^ Hippolyt : Refutatio omnium haeresium 5, 20.
  82. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 7, 21, 11.
  83. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 3, 12, 8.
  84. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 8, 48, 8.
  85. Homer: Iliad 3,103.
  86. ^ Proclus : Commentary on Timaeus 293.
  87. ^ Inscriptiones Graecae III 1 166
  88. ^ Cicero : De legibus 2, 25.
  89. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 1, 31, 4.
  90. Diodorus: 4, 70.
  91. Hesych : Εὐρυόδεια .
  92. ^ Pausanias: Travels in Greece 7, 25, 13.
  93. Corpus Inscriptionum Atticarum III 5, 318 and 350.
  94. Hesych: Καλλιγένεια .
  95. Manetho 1, 207.

Proof of representation

  1. a b Attic red-figure bowl. Aristophanes and Erginos . Berlin, F 2531. 410-400 v. Chr.
  2. a b Attic red-figure stamnos . Munich, Antikensammlung 2413. Around 460 BC. Chr.
  3. Attic black-figure amphora (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 2211, 560-550 BC. Chr.
  4. Attic black-figure dinosaurs (fragments). Lydos . Athens, NM Akr. 607. Around 540 BC Chr.
  5. Attic black-figure kantharos (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 2134. Around 550 BC Chr.
  6. Attic black-figure kylix (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 1632. Around 540 BC Chr.
  7. Attic black-figure neck amphora . Paris, Louvre E 864. Around 560 BC. Chr.
  8. Attic black-figure neck amphora. Tarquinia, NM RC 1043. Around 560 BC. Chr.
  9. Attic black-figure neck amphora. Rome, Villa Giulia . Around 540 BC Chr.
  10. Attic black-figure plate (fragment). Athens, NM Akr. 2406, 560-550 BC. Chr.
  11. Attic black-figure column crater (fragments). Lydos. Athens, NM Akr. 631. Around 550 BC Chr.
  12. Attic red-figure neck amphora. Eucharides Painter . London, BM E 278. Around 490 BC. Chr.
  13. Attic red-figure calyx krater . Aigisthus painter . Paris, Louvre G 164. 470-460 BC. Chr.
  14. ^ Attic red-figure kylix. Munich, Antikensammlung 2689. 460–450 BC. Chr.
  15. a b Melisches relief. Berlin, TC 6281. Around 460 BC. Chr.
  16. ^ Attic black-figure lekythos . Palermo, Coll. Mormino. 490-480 BC Chr.
  17. Attic red-figure hydria . London, BM E 182, 470-460 v. Chr.
  18. Attic red-figure bowl. Antikensammlung Berlin , F2537 . 440-430 BC Chr.
  19. Attic red-figure calyx krater. Palermo, Mus. Reg. 2365. Around 400 BC. Chr.
  20. Attic red-figure pelike . University of Leipzig, T 654. 470-460 v. Chr.
  21. Attic black-figure Loutrophoros (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 1191. 2nd half of the 5th century BC Chr.
  22. Attic black-figure Loutrophoros (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 1188-1189. 2nd half of the 5th century BC Chr.
  23. Attic black-figure Loutrophoros (fragments). Athens, NM Akr. 1195. 2nd half of the 5th century BC Chr.
  24. Kantharos. Copenhagen NM 7603. Around 470 BC. Chr.
  25. ↑ Stone relief (fragment). Ostia site. Vatican inv. 247th 1st century BC Chr.
  26. ↑ Stone relief (fragment). Location Villa Adriana . Vatican Inv. 1285 2nd century AD
  27. ↑ Stone relief (fragment). Paris, Louvre MA 579, 2nd century AD
  28. Stater of Kyzikos. Around 400-350 BC Chr.
  29. Attic red-figure calyx krater. Naples, NM 2045. 410-400 BC. Chr.
  30. Frieze from the Athena shrine Priene (fragment). London, BM 1175. 3rd or 2nd century BC Chr.
  31. Urn. Site of Villa Bordoni. Perugia, Museo Archeologico. 2nd century BC Chr.

Bibliography

  1. Michael Meier-Brügger : To the Greek γῆ and γαῖα. In: Munich Studies in Linguistics. 53, 1992, pp. 113-116.
  2. ^ Wilhelm Heinrich Roscher : Gaia , Sp. 1570 ff. (Digitized version)
  3. a b Fritz Graf : Gaia. In: The New Pauly . Edited by Hubert Cancik , Helmuth Schneider , Manfred Landfester . Brill , 2009. Brill Online. Retrieved October 2, 2009.
  4. ^ Eduard Gerhard : Collected academic treatises and small writings. Reimer, Berlin 1866, p. 232 (digitized version)
  5. a b c Mary B. Moore: Ge . In: LIMC . Pp. 175-177.
  6. Theodora Hadzisteliou Price: Kourotrophos. Cults and representations of the Greek nursing deities . Brill, Leiden 1978, p. 117.
  7. Erika Simon : Festivals of Attica. An Archaeological Commentary . University of Wisconsin Press, 2002, ISBN 0-299-09184-8 , p. 70.
  8. Erika Simon: Festivals of Attica. An Archaeological Commentary . University of Wisconsin Press, 2002, ISBN 0-299-09184-8 , p. 69.
  9. August Mommsen : Heortologie. Antiquarian investigations into the urban festivals of the Athenians . Leipzig 1864, p. 210 (digitized version)
  10. August Mommsen: Heortologie. P. 8 (digitized version)
  11. Martin Persson Nilsson , p. 159.
  12. Friedrich Gottlieb Welcker : Greek gods teaching. Volume 1 . Göttingen 1857, p. 325. (digitized version)
  13. ^ Wilhelm Heinrich Roscher: Gaia . Sp. 1572.
  14. ^ Jaroslav Tkáč : Gaia. In: Paulys Realencyclopadie der classischen Antiquity Science (RE). Volume VII, 1, Stuttgart 1910, Col. 469.
  15. ^ Wilhelm Dittenberger : Sylloge inscriptionum Graecarum. Volume 1. Leipzig 1883, p. 373 (digitized version)