I love reading and sharing about goddesses - feminine power that has elevated my life but so overlooked by today's society.
Who Is Eos and Why Is She the Goddess of Dawn?
According to the Greek methodology, Eos was a goddess born in the Titan clan, who was the second generation of gods and were considered to be the gods of nature. Eos was the daughter of Hyperion and Theia and had two siblings Helios and Selene. While Hyperion was one of the gods of the sun, Helios was another Sun god and Selene was the god of the moon. Eos is one of the oldest Greek goddesses and is considered to have existed even long before the Greek culture developed.
According to linguistics, Eos has been considered the goddess of dawn by both the Sanskrit as well as the Latin culture. However, the name and traditions might have changed with time as new cultures started growing but the characteristics remained the same. Eos was known as the goddess of dawn as every day she would rise into the sky from the river at the start of each day and would disperse the rays of light.
10 Facts of Eos And Her Desire for Handsome Men
Eos was a very popular greek goddess in art and was often associated with feelings of love and desire due to her never-ending desire for young men. According to some sources, her unending desire for men was due to a curse given to her by Aphrodite, who was the goddess of love, pleasure, and beauty. Eos had many love interests, some of which will be discussed below.
1. Curse of Eos
The goddess of love, Aphrodite cursed Eos that her desire for men will never end after she heard that Eos had spent a night with her lover, Ares. Although Eos did not think she did anything wrong by sleeping with Ares as Aphrodite was already married to Hephaestus.
2. Love of Eos and Orion
Orion was a hunter who was later transformed into stars after his death. Eos was madly in love with Orion however the two were not married. Eos would take him to the islands of Delos and as per a few myths about Orion, it has been said that this could be one of the possible reasons for Orion’s death as an envious Artemis might have killed him over this.
3. Eos and Cephalus
Cephalus was a Greek prince, married to the daughter of the king of Athens. According to the Greek methodology, Cephalus was kidnapped by Eos however he never truly stopped loving his wife, Procris. After eight years of togetherness, Eos agreed to return Cephalous to his wife. Eos and Cephalous also gave birth to a son named Phaeton.
4. Eos and Tithonus
One of the most famous of Eos’s lovers was Tithonus, a Trojan prince. The two of them were apparently said to be happy together but as Tithonus was also a human being who was mortal, Eos was tired of seeing her lovers dying or leaving her so she asked Zeus, the god of the sky to make Thitonus immortal so that the two of them could live together forever. Zeus did grant her request but Eos’s request was misunderstood as Thithonus did not die but he continued to age like all human beings. With age, he grew older and weaker and pain started wrecking through his body. Eos went to Zeus again but he told her that Tithonus cannot return to being young neither can Zeus take away his immortality now. Tithonus was later transformed into a cicada.
5. Eos and Astraeus
Most of Eos’ relationships and love affairs were with princes who were all mortal beings. As mentioned above, Eos was tired of seeing her lover die. The only immortal romantic relationship Eos had was with Astraeus, who was the Greek god of dusk associated with stars as well as planets. Eos and Astraeus had five children together known as the Astra Planeta. Astra Planeta were the five sons of Eos and Astraeus named, Stilbon meaning mercury, Eosphorus meaning Venus, Pyroeis meaning Mars, Phaethon meaning Jupiter and Phainon meaning Saturn.
6. Memnon and Emathion: Sons of Eon
We have discussed Eos’s love affairs with various men and how and why each of her relationships ended. Eon had two sons with Tithonus, with whom she wanted to stay immortal. Memnon and Emathion were the two sons she gave birth to with Tithonus. Emotion had been killed earlier by Heracles and could not be a king for too long. Memnon was the more popular of the two sons. In the Trojan battle, Memnon was killed by his enemies. Eos mourned the loss of her son and even asked Zeus, the god of the skies to grant Memnon a special kind of immorality. The smoke from Memnon’s funerals pyre was converted into a special bird by Zeus. These birds would migrate from Aethopia to Troy every year and mourn the death of Memnon at his tomb.
7. Worship of Eos
As per the Greek methodology and religion, they did not worship their Gods only out of devotion. They always expected something in return from the gods in the form of a blessing or healing. Moreover, they also made sacrifices in return for something given to them in the form of the blessing. Since Eos was the goddess of dawn, she did not have a lot of blessings to offer to the worshippers. This is the reason she was not too popular religiously however she would receive collective worship along with the other Gods.
8. Eos, the Rose Fingered
Eos was often known as the rose fingered or the rose armed due to the different colors of the sunrise and how she would rise from the river to the sky to rise the sun. This reference is basically a poetic reference and does not have much to do with the religion. In poetry, she is also called the dawn bringer.
9. Eos as a Symbol of Art
Eos is more popular in art than religiously. She plays a major part in common myths about the world, for example, a Roman poet, Ovid credits Eos saying that her tears formed dew. Moreover, she is also credited for creating the stars by Hesiod, one of the ancient Greek poets. We also know how Eos is famous for her desire for men and love. In Athens, pots were painted with images of Eos and Cephalous and were spread all over Greece.
10. Eos as a Symbol of Beauty
Eos was also considered to be a symbol of beauty by a lot of writers and poets from the Greek literature. To date, she is more popular for her beauty and her relationships with different men. Another popular fact about Eos was that she had wings and could fly anywhere she wanted to and would take young men along with her.
Get inspired by Eos for
- Recovering over grief
- Learning to let go, especially when for things beyond your power
- Appreciation in beauty
Eos had been in love with a lot of men and saw them die in front of her eyes. She even saw both her sons, Memnon and Emathion die but she couldn’t do anything to save them despite being a goddess. As both these sons were from Tithonus, a human being, the sons were also human beings and were mortal. This tells us how Eos was a strong goddess who did mourn the loss of her lovers and sons but did not indulge in hatred or revenge. Moreover, the beautiful colors of dawn tell us about the liveliness of Eos. She would rather spread love, colors, wisdom and divination than revenge or hatefulness.
Eos was the goddess of dawn born in the family of Gods of the Sun. Her desire for men was given to her as a curse from the goddess of beauty when Eos spent the night with Ares, the lover of the goddess of beauty. All her life, Eos kept falling in love and being in relationships with both mortal and immortal beings. She had five sons, the planets, with her immortal partner Astraeus and two sons with her human partner, Tithonus. She lost both her human sons in different battles. Eos is more popular today as a symbol of art than for religious reasons.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Muriel B Tewes