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The Legend of the Titan Prometheus

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Helios
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« on: January 02, 2008, 01:10:31 am »

The Legend of the Titan Prometheus
Prometheus was the wisest Titan. His name means "forethought" and he was able to foretell the future. He was the son of Lapetus. When Zeus revolted against Cronos, Prometheus deserted the other Titans and fought on Zeus side.

By some accounts he and his brother Epimetheus were delegated by Zeus to create man. In all accounts, Prometheus is known as the protector and benifactor of man. He gave mankind a number of gifts including fire. He also tricked Zeus into allowing man to keep the best part of the animals scarificed to the gods and to give the gods the worst parts.

For this Zeus punished Prometheus by having him chained to a rock with an eagle tearing at his liver. He was to be left there for all eternity or until he agreed to disclose to Zeus which of Zeus's children would try to replace him. He was eventually rescued by Hercules without giving in to Zeus.
The Creation of Man by Prometheus
Prometheus and his brother, Epimetheus, whose names mean "forethought" and "afterthought." They were the sons of Lapetus and Clymene. Epimetheus had already given all the best gifts to animals and discovered he had nothing left to give man. So he asked his brother for help. Prometheus agreed and thought of ways to make man superior to animals. So, he made them walk upright like the gods and gave them fire. And for a long time, only man roamed the earth. There were no women...yet.

Prometheus and Epimetheus were spared imprisonment in Tatarus because they had not fought with their fellow Titans during the war with the Olympians. They were given the task of creating man. Prometheus shaped man out of mud, and Athena breathed life into his clay figure. Prometheus loved man more then the Olympians, who had banished most of his family to Tartarus. So when Zeus decreed that man must present a portion of each animal they scarified to the gods Prometheus decided to trick Zeus.

He created two piles, one with the bones wrapped in juicy fat, the other with the good meat hidden in the hide. He then told Zeus to pick, Zeus picked the bones. Since he had given his word Zeus had to accept that as his share for future sacrafices. In his anger over the trick he took fire away from man. However, Prometheus lit a torch from the sun and brought it back again to man. Zeus was enraged that man again had fire. He decided to inflict a terrable punishment on both man and Prometheus. To punish man, Zeus had Hephaestus create a mortal of stunning beauty from clay . The gods gave the mortal many gifts of wealth.

He then had Hermes give the mortal a deceptive heart and a lying tongue. This creation was Pandora, which means "gift to all," and she was the first woman. A final gift was a jar which Pandora was forbidden to open. Thus, completed Zeus sent Pandora down to Epimetheus who was staying amongst the men. Prometheus had warned Epimetheus not to accept gifts from Zeus but, Pandora's beauty was too great and he allowed her to stay. Eventually, Pandora's curiosity about the jar she was forbidden to open became to great. She opened the jar and out flew all manor of evils, sorrows, plagues, and misfortunes.

However, the bottom of the jar held one good thing...hope. Zeus was angry at Prometheus for three things: being tricked on scarifices, stealing fire for man, and for refusing to tell Zeus which of Zeus's children would dethrone him. Zeus had his servants, Force and Violence, seize Prometheus, take him to the Caucasus Mountains, and chain him to a rock with unbreakable adamanite chains. Here he was tormented day and night by a giant eagle tearing at his liver. Zeus gave Prometheus two ways out of this torment. He could tell Zeus who the mother of the child that would dethrone him was. Or meet two conditions: First, that an immortal must volunteer to die for Prometheus. Second, that a mortal must kill the eagle and unchain him. Eventually, Chiron the Centaur agreed to die for him and Heracles killed the eagle and unbound him.

Prometheus was immortal, so he could not die. However, he could suffer the most hideous pain forever. He was Titan. When his brother and his cousins fought Zeus to keep Cronos in power, Prometheus, who considered Cronos a tyrant, had sided with Zeus and had even stood by while his friends and relative were exiled or killed after Cronos's defeat. http://www.ussprometheusnx59650.0catch.com/The%20Legend%20of%20the%20Titan%20Prometheus.htm


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