Explore mythology and art with information about the classic stories of heroes and gods...from the myths of ancient Greece and Rome, to the legends of the Celts. Mythography presents resources and reference materials about mythology - including recommended books, and lexicons that explain Greek, Roman, and Celtic terms.

Gardner's Art Through the Ages

This book is the classic reference for the study of art. It features a history of artists and their works, as well as lucid and engaging descriptions of the styles and periods of art history. Highly recommended for both students and scholars.

Aphrodite in Art
Aphrodite in Myth
Art Themes

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Legends of Aphrodite

Aphrodite : Page 1, 2, 3

As we have seen, Aphrodite was the Greek goddess of love and desire. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that there are abundant examples of Aphrodite's intimate relationships with both gods and men. Perhaps the most notorious of these legends is of her affair with the war god Ares. According to the myth, Aphrodite was married to the god of smiths, Hephaistos. However, the golden goddess apparently tended to abandon poor Hephaistos as soon as his burly back was turned, for on many occasions she was to be found in the arms of her lover (one consequence of this illicit affair is included in the Odyssey and recounted in the Mythography page devoted to Ares). As a result of these romantic interludes, Aphrodite bore three children to Ares: Deimos ("terror"), Phobos ("fear"), and a daughter named Harmonia ("concord").

In addition, the goddess of love also engaged in other fruitful unions with male deities, including flings with Dionysos and Hermes. You can learn more about these and other affairs on the page devoted to discussing the lovers of Aphrodite.

It was even suggested in the Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite that there were only three deities who could resist the passions that Aphrodite aroused, and they were Athena, Artemis, and Hestia. Note that all three were goddesses, and all were also virgins by choice. With the exception of these goddesses, however, anyone foolish enough to ignore Aphrodite was courting disaster, as the following myth will demonstrate.

According to one legend, Aphrodite used her powers to punish Eos, the goddess of the dawn. You see, Eos made the mistake of engaging in a tryst with Ares. The result of this unfortunate choice on the part of poor Eos was that the jealous Aphrodite punished the dawn goddess with an insatiable appetite for love (in other words, Aphrodite turned Eos into what amounts to a nymphomaniac). This punishment had a profound effect on Eos, for she was compelled to take a series of lovers, including Cephalus, Tithonus, and Orion (indeed, take is the proper term for the affairs, because Eos seemed to prefer abducting her paramours, much to their dismay). The outcome of these unions was often disastrous to the man involved, and so Aphrodite's revenge was complete.

Page 3 : The Lovers of Aphrodite

Aphrodite in Art History

Gallery | For pictures and information about Aphrodite in art, visit the Mythography gallery!

Do you have a specific question about Greek mythology? Then try the Mythography forum!

Sing to me, O Muse, of the works of golden Aphrodite, the Cyprian, who stirs sweet longing in gods and subdues the races of mortal men as well as the birds that swoop from the sky and all the beasts that are nurtured on both land and sea.

- Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite

Who's Who in Classical Mythology

Who's Who in Classical Mythology

This book is a great source for information about Greek and Roman mythology! Organized alphabetically, this who's who features information about over 1200 of the most intriguing characters from Classical myth and legend.

Bulfinch's Mythology

Bulfinch's Mythology

The stories of Classical myth come to life in Bulfinch's book. This edition also features legends from other cultures.

Mythography Forums

Mythography Forums

Do you have a specific question about Greek, Roman, and Celtic mythology? Then try the Mythography forum!