www.whyville.net Feb 12, 2012 Weekly Issue



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Behind the Myth: Dionysus

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Hi Whyvillians! Here's a new series I like to call "Behind the Myth". Since I consider myself to be a mythology nerd, I decided to take my passion for the Greek gods and turn it into something fundamental for the Times. Each week I'll take a Greek god of choice and write about them and their background.

Today, I decided to start with an Olympian by the name of Dionysus. He's not as well known as his other Olympian counterparts, but he has a seat on Mt. Olympus marked as the God of Fertility and Wine. Dionysus is the son of Zeus and Semele, Zeus being the leader of Mt. Olympus, and Semele being a mortal. Hera became involved in Zeus and Semele's love affair, and convinced Semele that she should see Zeus in her true form. Zeus had gone to Semele and granted her one wish; and her wish was just that. She made him swear on the River Styx, she wanted to see Zeus in his true form. He had known this was coming, and had unwillingly shown her his true form. When he was revealed, he burnt her to a crisp, and she was gone. He managed to rescue his son Dionysus, and stitched his unborn child to his thigh until he was ready to be born. When Dionysus was born from Zeus, he was immediately granted immortality.

Being the love child of her husband's affair, Hera was not pleased with Dionysus' existence. Hera was jealous and had ordered the Titans to destroy Dionysus, and they did; but Rhea, the wife of Chonus, brought Dionysus back to life. In order to protect his son from Hera, Zeus turned his son over to mountain nymphs so that he could be raised without threat. Dionysus had a major achievement as well; he was one of the only to bring someone back from the Underworld. He was worried about his mother, Semele, and fought Thanatos in order to bring her back to Mt. Olympus.

As Dionysus grew, Hera located him once again and drove him to madness. He wandered around the Greek countryside, and acquired the nickname "The Wanderer." He gained popularity with people in the mountains, who threw galas and parties. Hera heard of this, but Dionysus decided to head off to Egypt and other exotic locations. Upon his return, he met Ariadne, who would become his wife. She was a princess who had been a moon goddess during the time that the Titans ruled. She was engaged to Theseus, but he abandoned her. Dionysus heard of her, and then fell in love. They had several children together, Oenopion and Staphylos to name a couple.

If any of you ever want to request a Greek god, just y-mail me and I'll be sure to get to it! If you request a god, they do NOT have to be Olympians, they just need to be Grecian, because I don't know as much about Roman gods.

Author's Note: Sources: Dionysus: Greek God of Wine and Ecstasy. Web. 06 Feb. 2012. .
Greek Mythology. Web. 06 Feb. 2012. .

 

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