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Top 10 Greek Mythology Stories

Updated on September 27, 2016
The Horae (Seasons), by Sir Edward John Poynter  (1836-1919)
The Horae (Seasons), by Sir Edward John Poynter (1836-1919)

Greek Myths and Stories: A Charming World

Greek mythology still holds a firm place in academic curricula. As you must have noticed, Greek myths and legends make for some of the most successful movies, books and works of art.

They also make good bedtime stories for kids: I used to read these stories to my daughter when she was little, and she absolutely loved them!

What is it that fascinates us through the ages in studying and relishing those ancient stories? Surely, it's more than the raw fancy of a world full of mythical creatures and superhuman deeds, as entertaining as these may be.

Greek myths speak of timeless elements inherent in human nature, as various schools of psychology have demonstrated time and again.

Parents and educators have always discovered the value of these ancient Greek stories in:

  • Shaping ethics and character.
  • Revealing the workings of the world in simple words and powerful pictures.

The wonderful universe of Greek mythology will unfold its magic for you, just keep reading. This page is a brief introduction to some of the most popular myths, starting from primitive gods with their raw natural forces, scaling down to their demi-god and human offspring, and walking us through beauty, ugliness, and the million faces of the sacred in human life.

Myth #1. Prometheus

The Seer Who Brought Fire

Well far back in human history (let's say, the Paleolithic), Fire was a gift of life. All over the globe, we can trace myths and legends about some god or hero who offered Fire to humans --almost always connected to a perilous adventure-- and was honored as a supreme benefactor.

You see, paleolithic humans absolutely needed fire to:

  • Keep warm during cold seasons and nights.
  • Go to bed a little later than the sunset.
  • Roast meat, make it tender and tasty (except for lovers of steak tartare, perhaps).
  • Scare and keep away wild beasts.
  • Harden their wooden spears and other tools.

Prometheus is Punished for Bringing Fire to Mankind

Prometheus, Thieve of Fire

The "sin" of Prometheus consisted in the fact that he helped humans despite the orders of mighty Zeus. For the Lord of Olympus had decreed that Fire should remain with the gods, and not be given to men. Thing is, Prometheus rooted for humans.

The Titan stole into Hephaistus' workshop, where the godly kilns burned and exquisite artifacts were being created for the heavenly dwellers, in order to take some charcoals with him. Some say he stole some sparks from the chariot of Helios (the Sun). Either way, he carried Fire in the stalk of a fennel plant, and made this life-saving gift to the human race.

In ancient Greek, the name Pro-Metheus means "He Who Has Foresight." Prometheus knew he would be punished for his theft; nevertheless, he went about his self-assigned task of protecting and helping mankind.

Prometheus is a Sufferer / Helper-of-mankind god.

Ages later, Herakles, son of Zeus, obtained permission from dad to finally free the Titan from his chains.

Herakles frees Prometheus, by Christian Griepenkerl (1839-1912)
Herakles frees Prometheus, by Christian Griepenkerl (1839-1912)

Prometheus, Helper of Mankind: Trickster and Craftsman

Greek mythology tells us that, besides stealing fire, Prometheus showed his magnanimous mercy for humans on many occasions:

  1. He was appointed by Zeus to shape humans out of clay. His brother Epimetheus ("He Who Has Hindsight") shaped the animals.
  2. He established animal sacrifice, as practiced henceforth in ancient Greek religion. Zeus' left to Prometheus the decision about which portions of animals would be offered to the gods after sacrifice: the leftover would go to humans. Prometheus deviously covered bones and other animal parts of lesser value with "shiny grease," while he disguised all flesh and nutritious parts and wrapped them with the less appetizing tripe of the animal. Then, he invited the Master of Heavens to choose the portion owed to the gods, and Zeus fell for the trick.

    Prometheus is a thief and a trickster —with the ultimate purpose of helping humans.
  3. When Zeus was planning a deluge with the intention of eliminating mankind, Prometheus warned his son Deucalion of the imminent catastrophe, and he instructed him to build an ark in order to save himself and his wife Pyrrha.
  4. He warned his brother Epimetheus not to receive Pandora and her box (which was actually a jar). Epimetheus thought he was cleverer and received the girl. Male authors of Greek Antiquity never forgave him this mistake. (I'll tell you the story of Pandora in a sec!)

Myth #2: The Odyssey

Odysseus and Polyphemus, by Arnold Böcklin (1827–1901)
Odysseus and Polyphemus, by Arnold Böcklin (1827–1901)

A wanderer of the seas could not be absent from Greek mythology. Greece has an extremely long shoreline, esp. when compared to its overall land area, and hundreds of islands dispersed all over the seas encircling the country.

Odysseus, mariner par excellence, holds a major role in ancient Greek literature and has inspired many artists from Antiquity to our days. His tale was told by a great ancient poet and singer: Homer.

Odysseus was credited with sacking, along with other "long-haired Acheans" (an ancient name for who we call today "the Greeks"), the castle of Troy, near the entrance of the Black Sea. After leaving Troy, Odysseus took ten years to finally reach his home island, Ithaca. He faced many deadly dangers; he fought with temptations, with gods, monsters, the waves, powerful witches, and men, but he stood firm on his resolution:

To live long enough to see "smoke rising" from the hearths of his homeland.

The Odyssey in Simple Words

Homer's Odyssey is quite easy to get.


Do you trust your Guide?

Let's go then!

Watch the following video & find out:

Plot of the Odyssey: Breakdown of the Story

The Fine Texture of an Epic Poem

Seen more closely, The Odyssey is, of course, more intricate than just the story of an earthly journey.

Homer knew better than to lay out a simple, one-dimensional little story, or he wouldn't have had so many raving audiences to applaude and to glorify him over the centuries.

Homer was a Master poet.

I've read his poem dozens of times. In English, in Modern Greek, and I'm currently reading it in the original language is was recorded for eternity: in Ancient, Homeric Greek. See? There's a whole sub-category of a language to describe the dialect used by Homer!

What's more, the composition as a whole, but also in its minutest parts is an ingenious piece of literary craftsmanship. Everything is tightly interwoven: characters, mini-stories within stories, themes, patterns, living images from ancient life popping out at every turn of the way, ... Oh, when I start speaking abou the Journey of that Man, Odysseus ... it's not easy to shut me up...

Intricate Mythic Patterns Created by Gods, Heroes, and Poets

Penelope at her Loom, by Max Klinger (1857-1920)
Penelope at her Loom, by Max Klinger (1857-1920)

Myth #3: Pandora's Jar

No, It.Was.NOT.A.Box!

Pandora and Eve: a bias against women?

Woman, bestower of all evils, a deceitful vessel of clay, created to bring plagues and misfortune to humanity.

Pandora was all-gifted by the gods in order to tempt poor Man and make him receive her, thus sealing his own damnation.

The similarities with Eve's story are more than evident...

Pandora was not genuinely evil, no. But she was curious and defiant, or that's how the official story told by Hesiod in his Theogony goes:

Pandora's Jar

Pandora, by Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836-1912)
Pandora, by Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836-1912)

Pandora: The All-Gifted

Pandora was forged by the divine blacksmith Hephaestus. All the gods and goddesses showered her with gifts. She was a most derirable female. Then Zeus sent her as a wife to Epimitheus the Hind-Sighted (Prometheus' little bro, remember?), giving her a sealed jar as dowery for he marriage. Pandora was instructed not to open the vessel under any circumstances.

Guess what! Pandora could not refrain from lifting the lid, just a little bit - and then all evils dashed out of the jar to torture man in eternity. Thus, Zeus took his revenge on humans for the gift of fire that her brother-in-law, Prometheus (Foresighted), brought to them despite the interdiction imposed by the king of gods.

Various scholars claim that the story originated from an earlier mythological substratum, in which Pandora was the Great Goddess, provider of the gifts that made life and culture possible. According to them, the swarm jetting out of her urn is not the evils she released upon humanity, but instead the gifts pouring out of her sacred vessel.

The tale of Hesiod may have been a later invention, promoting patriarchal ethics that pushed women to an inferior and dependent position. But his words betrayed the poet. In Hesiod's story, Pandora brought with her a "pithos," a big clay jar when god Hermes escorted her to Epimetheus.

In symbolic language, the earthen jar may often represent the female uterus.

This also points to an interpretation of Pandora as a symbol of fecundity, prosperity, and life. According to this interpretation, we could consider that her name, All-Gifted, actually refers to the gifts she brings men, and not to the gifts that gods bestowed on her.

Myth #4: Heracles

Heracles is the (Greek) name.

Hercules was the Roman guy. We're not concerned with him.

Heracles, The Demi-God who Ascended to Olympus

Heracles literally means "the glory of Hera." The myth goes that Hera, godly wife of Zeus, was extremely jealous of her consort's affair with Queen Alcmene of Thebes, mother of Herakles, and avenged herself by making life miserable for the demi-god.

There are plenty of myths about Heracles. To begin with, he was conceived by Alcmene, queen of Thebes, while her husband was away on an expedition. That did not make her exactly an adulteress though, because Zeus disguised himself as king Amphitryon and impregnated her. Amphitryon arrived later that night and fecundated his wife with Heracles' twin brother, Iphicles.

The two boys were as different as day is to night. Zeus' son was strong and stout and fearless, while his all-human brother, seed of a cheated husband, was small and whiny. One night, wanting to get rid of the boy, Hera sent two large snakes to drown him. Iphikles woke up and started to cry, while Heracles strangled the snakes with his bare hands. A parent can rest reassured with a child like this.

Or not?

The 12 Labors of Herakles

A Penance for His Crime

Herakles married princess of Thebes Megara and had two sons with her. But he was not to rest peaceful of Hera's vengeance. The goddess inflicted him with a fit of madness during which he killed his own children.

When he came to, overcome with grief, he took to the Oracle of Delphi to have Pyhtia instruct him on how he would expiate himself. The sentence was that he'd have to serve Eurystheus, king of Tiryns and Mycenae, for a period of twelve years. As part of the hero's servitude, King Eurystheus compelled him to perform twelve feats so hard that they seemed impossible.

The Twelve Labors

Those Twelve Labors involved

  • the killing of ferocious beasts and monsters (the Nemean Lion, the Lernean Hydra, the Stymphalian Birds).
  • He also had to capture magnificent animals, like the Hind of Ceryneia (sacred to goddess Artemis), the Erymantean Boar, the Cretan Bull, Diomedes' Mares (this last sounds easy? well, the mares were a gift from War-God Ares, and they ate human flesh), or the Cattle of Geryon, a big-sized monster with three heads and twice as many hands.
  • He was also assigned a few other tasks, like cleaning the dang created over several years by the innumerable cattle owned by King Augeus (Augean Stables), bringing back the Girdle of Hippolyte, Queen of the Amazons, or the Apples of the Hesperides, located in a far-away Garden towards the East. He was even ordered to fetch Cerberus from Hades (i.e., the ferocious, three-headed dog who guarded the Underworld).

Myth #5: Jason & the Argonauts

A Prince Claiming His Throne, the Golden Fleece, and a Witch

Not to forget 50 Greek heroes and a speaking ship.

Quite a story!

"For well over three millennia, the story of Jason and his fellow Argonauts has enthralled the world. Jason's quest to get the fabled Golden Fleece and bring it back to his homeland is a fabulous story of grit, compassion and revenge. Over the centuries many versions have been recorded, but the essence of the story remains the same; an adventure of epic proportions..."

Read more: Jason, the Golden Fleece and Medea.

Back in 2008, a replica of Jason's ship actually set sail with the purpose of retracing a portion of the legendary journey. Making the whole trip would be absolutely possible, if not for the refusal of the Turkish state to let the ship pass through the Bosporus straight.

Myth #6: The Trojan War. Or Is It History?

What were Agamemnon and Achilles Really Seeking on the Coast of Troy?

Mythology carries seeds of truth, sometimes even more. Despite what people of Medieval and later times believed, Troy (Ilion) did exist on the shores of Asia Minor, and the Trojan War did indeed take place in the early twelfth century, BC.

It is important to understand that all these ancient myths and stories were processed over hundreds of years until people got them down on parchment (paper was not yet invented) and that they contain information that is sometimes obvious or sometimes coded, hidden, or half-forgotten; and that they draw from various historical, genealogical, literary, and ethical sources. Trying to make an outright distinction of those elements is not always easy and may sometimes even prove misleading.

Archaeology suggests that peaceful commercial exchanges interspersed with intervals of war were quite common in the North Aegean during the Bronze Age. We must also bear in mind that the area had developed a thriving civilization based on metallurgy (the island of Lemnos was home to god Hephaistos) and that it was a route towards the Black Sea, rich in metals and other goods. That was, of course, during the early Bronze Age (around 3,000 BC). Later on, the advent and growth of the Mycenean kingdoms on mainland Greece gave rise to rivalries and attempts—as is always the case—to gain dominion over the financial networks in the area.

Troy was built near the coast of Hellespont, the entrance to the Black Sea. Newer evidence indicates that it was inhabited by a people of Hittite descent at the time of the Trojan War. Homer's Troy was a thriving city that was gaining power and wealth in the North Aegean area, thus being an enviable prize for a strong army.

Many things have also been said about the abduction of Helen, queen of Sparta, or Helen of Troy as she was later called. Besides giving a very good pretext for declaring a war, the story may well contain an element of truth. Commercial ethics of the time deemed piracy a quite legitimate means of making oneself a fortune, and the stealing of women and treasures was very common on the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea.

All the above leads us to view the Trojan War in the wider context of the epoch's life and historical movements, rather than as an isolated episode in time.

You can read more about the historicity of the Iliad.

Myth #7: Theseus and the Minotaur

Theseus' Voyage To Crete, early 16th century
Theseus' Voyage To Crete, early 16th century

Slayer of Brigands & Monsters; Womanizer; Founding Hero

Theseus was a hero of the House of Athens, long before Pericles immortalized the city's power by erecting classical Parthenon and the other great monuments on Acropolis.

In fact, Theseus preceded by a generation the Trojan War. His two sons, Acamas and Demophon, fought under the ultimate command of King Agamemnon.

Theseus is said to have been fathered by both King Aegeus and Poseidon.

Now, this is not as strange as it seems, for the name of Aegeus, or "Aigeus" as is its Greek spelling, is closely associated with Poseidon's territory (a word on this below).

Is this perhaps the rock from which King Aegeus, Theseus' human father, flung himself to the waves? And, what's most important...

Why would Theseus' father kill himself?

While Theseus was at Crete slaying the Minotaur and bringing a Cretan princess home (he finally lost Ariadne to god Dionysos, but this is another story), his father used to go to Cape Sounion and stare at the sea, waiting for his son to come home.

The deal was this: the ship sailed from Athens wearing black sails as a token of mourning. If Theseus was on that ship, safe and sound, upon its return, he would change them to white ones, a happy signal. Theseus forgot. Romantic holidays make you lose your mind sometimes...

When Aegeus saw the black sails, he flung himself into the sea, which is still called Aigaion, the Aegean Sea.

Back to Theseus' story:

Theseus is largely known today for slaying the Minotaur, the half-man half-bull monster that dwelt inside the Labyrinth. Minos, king of Crete and ruler of the Easten Mediterranean until the rise in power of Mycenean cities of mainland Greece (one of which was Athens), had imposed to the defeated king Aegeus a cruel homage. Every seven (or nine) years Athenians had to send fourteen youths to be eaten by the Minotaur.

The third time this was about to happen, Theseus convinced his father to send him along as one of them. As everybody knows, the Athenian prince killed the Bull-Man (Bull being the symbol of Crete) and Athens set on her way to gradually becoming the new thalassocrat Greek state.

Theseus' Enigmatic Parentage

Some Quick Academics

Greek mythology is a corpus of stories created throughout a long period of time, often in various places by neighboring, though different tribes. The lack of consistency is apparent in many cases, as for example there may be two, three or more versions of a certain myth, most usually differing in minor points.

The parentage of Greek heroes is often problematic. Different areas and royal houses may contest their affiliation to a famous hero; or, the myth may have become so popular, re-told so many times, that various versions circulated depending on the storytellers' imagination; or, the thread of the myth was lost somehow and, when resuscitated, parts of it had become obscure for the newer generations.

Sometimes, however, differences are illusory. This is the case in Theseus' story.

Tradition wants either Poseidon, Olympian god of the Sea, Earthquakes and Horses, or Aegeus, king of Athens, to be the hero's father. Well... there may be no difference whatsoever between the two... Etymology (=the study of the origin of words) gives us some keys:

In Greek, Aegeus is actually written Aigeus.

Now, the root "aig-" is used up to our days and it's found in a variety of words, such as

-- aig--ialos: the seashore

-- aig--is: Zeus' aegis

-- aig--a: a goat

-- kat--aig--ida: impetuous storm, gale

What do all these words have in common?

The root "aig-" comes from the ancient Greek verb "aïsso", which is used for a rapid, dashing, impetuous motion, meaning "shoot; dart; glance, as light."

Like the rushing in of waves to the aigialos.

Like the furious motion of the waters and the winds in a kataigida.

Like when Zeus shakes his terrible aigis and turmoil and uproar break upon the earth.

Like the brisk gambol of the aiges and their swift disappearance among the rocks and cliffs of Greek islands.

So, Aegeus and the Sea are somehow connected. Science suggests so.

Myth #8: Demeter And Persephone

One more Vegetation Rite

The myth of Persephone is, once more, a story of death and rebirth -- of loss and recovery of what is dearest to our soul.

Persephone, also called Kore (Maiden), was the daughter of Demeter, Olympian goddess of Vegetation, Agriculture, and Cereals. She was the light of her mother's eyes, treasured by humans too—for she was a personification of the sprouting crop that would sustain their lives.

One day, as she was out in the fiends of Sicily gathering flowers with her girlfriends, she was abducted by Plouton, the sinister lord of Hades (the Underworld). And Demeter was so grieved that, he... Read the whole story.

Myth #9: Orpheus And Eurydice

Orpheus was a legendary musician, poet and prophet of ancient Greece. According to ancient Greek poet Simonides, Orpheus' music and singing could charm the birds, fish and wild beasts, coax the trees and rocks into dance, and divert the course of rivers.

When his wife Eurydice got bitten by a snake and died, Orpheus decided to claim his fair lady back from the Underworld. He made it to the throne of Hades and the power of his music persuaded the King of the Dead to release Eurydice. The only condition was that Orpheus should not turn to look back until they both set foot under the sun and out of the dark kingdom. Guess what happened?

Yes, Orpheus was hasty, turned his head and Eurydice sank once again in the darkness—only permanently this time.

Orpheus was unconsolable. He roamed the wildrness singing sorrowful, pathetic songs about his forever lost love. One of his excursions ended tragically, as he was perceived by raging Maenads and was shred to pieces. His head and lyre were thrown into river Hebrus, still singing mournful songs.

Myth #10: Oedipus the Theban

The King Who Thought He Could Befool Fate

The story of Oedipus is placed among a rich mythical tradition dated from prehistoric times—the Theban Cycle, as this mythological corpus is called.

Thebes was founded by Cadmus, Phoenician prince brother of Europa (the one kidnapped by Zeus) and great-grandson of Egyptian king Epaphus, in around the fourteenth century, BC. One should remember that the prominent city of ancient Egypt, which rose to capital status under the 18th dynasty (c. 1550-1290 BC), bore the same name. We should also note that the Theban Cycle is separate from southern Greece's Mycenean legends (Theseus, Pelops, etc.) for Thebes was at the time powerful enough to withstand pressures from these kingdoms.

The tragedy of Oedipus is about hubris, and a multifold one too.

First king Laios, Oedipus' father and descendant of Cadmus, betrayed his host's and protector's trust as follows: When an usurpation of power took place in Thebes, Laios found refuge near Pelops, king of Pisa in Peloponnesos. To pay him back, he though fit to kidnap and rape his son and carry him off to Thebes.

Laios should get his rightful punishment, and he was even warned about it when his wife Jocasta bore him a son. The Oracle of Delphi pronounced that the child would kill his father and marry his mother. Laios then committed a second hybris, by thinking he could outsmart the gods. Not even wanting to stain his own hands with his son's blood, he gave the baby to a shepherd to abandon on mount Cithaeron. The shepherd took pity of the little boy and the latter ended up adopted by King Polybos of Corinth.

The string of hubris does not finish here. In his own turn, Oedipus, triggered by some rumours, visits the Oracle only to be warned that he would kill his father and marry his mother. Believing Polybos and his wife Merope to be his blood parents, he decides not to return to Corinth. Once more in this family, a mere human believes he can go against fate. On his way to the nearby city of Thebes, he meets an elder contesting his right to passing first and, after a short scuffle, he kills him. The elder was Laios, but this would be revealed many years later. He then solves the riddle of the Sphinx, marries his mother, and the rest is something between history and mythology.

Which is your favourite Greek myth?

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    • profile image

      AngryBaker 5 years ago

      Fantastic! You put an amazing amount of work into this. My favorite Greek myth? Artemis, especially the story with Orion.

    • MelRootsNWrites profile image

      Melody Lassalle 5 years ago from California

      This is a wonderful lens! I don't really have a favorite. I think Pandora's Box may have haunted me as a child though.

    • profile image

      happynutritionist 5 years ago

      Being Greek makes you an expert, and I love all the information...I have heard of a few of these but not all, and am having a hard time deciding which is my favorite...Enjoyed the pictures very much!

    • auntjennie profile image

      Jen 5 years ago from Canada

      One of my favorite Greek myth stories is Pandora.

    • jmsp206 profile image

      Julia M S Pearce 5 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      Wonderful lens.Greek mythology is always so interesting.

    • profile image

      GiftsBonanza 5 years ago

      I will have to come back when I have more time to read the stories properly and enjoy them :)

    • simplyoasis profile image

      simplyoasis 5 years ago

      Wonderful lens.Greek mythology has always been one of my many interest.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Like every ancient civilization has their own fabulous fables and epics, the Greek epics are forever fascinating. They make a lovely read and never fail to kindle the imagination. Thanks for sharing a brilliant lens. :)

    • profile image

      hamshi5433 5 years ago

      This is actually the first time am hearing such stories! ha they were so interesting to read and you surely have put a lot of effort into writing them. Those pictures are amazing!! just so different and beautiful...they say an image can talk 1000 words and these kind of pictures are the proof for it!

      Well done :)

    • profile image

      lumpy22 5 years ago

      Great lens very interesting and great images.


    • profile image

      Pete Schultz 5 years ago

      An excellent lens, very informative and interesting with great graphics. I've visited your lenses before and should have expected nothing but the best effort. nicely done.

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      These stories are always fascinating.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Beautifully done, interesting and, of course, so very fascinating!

    • profile image

      Nicole_Anderson 5 years ago

      Really loved this lens, in fact am so impressed I may have to link it to my own Greek Holiday lens... Thank you for sharing.



    • profile image

      YourGreenHouse 5 years ago

      We can learn so much from Greek myths thanks for making them so accessible.

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 5 years ago

      Very interesting, and the art is fantastic!

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      What a wonderful lens! Really fantastic stuff here - I think Herakles is probably my favorite myth. Either that or Jason's Argonauts.

    • profile image

      Jerrad28 5 years ago

      Great stories!

    • andhag profile image

      andhag 5 years ago

      great job helenee! Hopefully there would be movies based on these stories!

    • vauldine profile image

      vauldine 5 years ago

      All cultures have myths. From what I have seen and read Greek mythology is similar to Hindus myths originating from India. I enjoyed yiour delivery. Thanks

    • pheonix76 profile image

      pheonix76 5 years ago from WNY

      Mythology was such an important part of culture and identity (and still is in many parts of the world). Thanks for putting this fascinating lens together.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      i just love to know more n more about history...........thnx 4 putting it...

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      kimmanleyort 5 years ago

      Fantastic job on this lens. You have made the best known Greek myths very accessible. Especially intrigued by the different interpretations of Pandora's box. Blessed.

    • gideon43 profile image

      gideon43 5 years ago

      Absolutely brilliant Lens. Greek Mythology is always fascinating. Jason and the Argonauts is one of my favourite storys of all time.

    • whoisbid lm profile image

      whoisbid lm 5 years ago

      Excellent work!

    • GypsyPirate LM profile image

      GypsyPirate LM 5 years ago

      Of the ten you list here, I choose "Pandora". I've loved mythology for a very long time (Bullfinch's is on my lens of top ten favorite books), and I thoroughly enjoyed reading these again here.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      you've got a really unique lens and I found it very educational, I liked all of them, probably the child holding the snake was my favorite. Gave your lens a 'thumbs up' too!

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 5 years ago

      Heh, I'd forgotten all about Herakles - that little dickens!

    • SoniaCarew profile image

      SoniaCarew 5 years ago

      This is an amazing lens! So informative!

    • profile image

      marsha32 5 years ago

      A look ahead for me. My daughter and I are reading a lot of books about Greece that I am putting in my Learning About Greece lens. The myths book is next on our reading list.

    • EileenSmith LM profile image

      EileenSmith LM 5 years ago

      I know we all colliqually call it "Greek mythology", but do children from Greece know it as that?

      Anyway, great lens. My favorite myth (though I'm not a fan of mythology) is actually Ekho's. It's so morbid.

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 5 years ago

      @EileenSmith LM: Yep, we call it 'Greek mythology' alright!

      You should read Oscar Wilde's "Poems in Prose" - he has a very good adaptation of Narcissus' myth. Really unexpected ending!

    • profile image

      antoniow 5 years ago

      What a great lens! Thank you for sharing! Thumbs up

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Joyfully returning with fresh angel dust to sprinkle over the top 10 Greek myths that continue to charm and captivate us....once again, so very beautifully presented!

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      ikoniatis 5 years ago

      Kali sou mera Eleni!

      Great lens and most educational.

      I always adored the myth of Odyssey. I believe, it is the spirit of man who tries to confront any obstacles in his life in order to achieve his goals, by using his brains. Odysseas may seem to be a tricky bastard but certainly an ingenious one.

      And of course I always fall for Orpheus and Eurydice. Going to Hades to claim the love of your life! I just love it!

    • domain19 profile image

      domain19 5 years ago

      i really enjoyed read this story... great lens... :D

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      jeremykim2011 5 years ago

      I remember reading Edith Hamilton's Mythology as a child. Thanks for reliving those moments!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Greek mythology makes up so much of our present day fiction in one way or another. It's always a good idea to make it a resource for ideas. Great lens.

    • esvoytko lm profile image

      esvoytko lm 5 years ago

      It's incredible just how deeply Greek myths and motifs have permeated all of the world's literature since. You can't escape the influence of Greece even if you want to (which you totally shouldn't). Cheers!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      i really enjoyed this lens, thanks for sharing

    • Thrinsdream profile image

      Thrinsdream 5 years ago

      Another well written article! Again, my thanks. Cathi x

    • Ram Ramakrishnan profile image

      Ram Ramakrishnan 5 years ago

      Know this, O worthy and diligent lensmaster;

      With accomplishment youâve earned a tryster.

      As a token of immense appreciation expressed,

      A squid angel leaves this lens heartily blessed.

      On a rendering that is sparkling in its own right,

      Propagating an appealing thought well and quite;

      If you were to notice a slender shimmering crust;

      From the angelâs wand, it is a spill of stardust.

    • YsisHb profile image

      YsisHb 5 years ago

      @Ram Ramakrishnan: What a wonderful poem, so worthy of Heleni's work!

    • YsisHb profile image

      YsisHb 5 years ago

      The god Pan, who has been my first love.

      Then Phaethon, who has been my second love.

      Narcissus whom I felt very sorry for.

      And ORPHEUS, a prefigurement of Jesus Christ.

      (I have many more favorites......)

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 5 years ago

      @YsisHb: I guess I need to write a sequel! :)

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 5 years ago

      Wonderful, wonderful lens. I hope it was as fun for you to write as it was for me to read. I just read of Demeter and her lovely daughter recently, and I agree Pandora has been set up! Angel Blessed, many times.

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 5 years ago

      And your creative commons photos are exquisite, and I truly appreciate the attribution.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      My favorite mythological tales are the Iliad and the Odyssey. From that story, we see the epitome of the Greek myth soap opera: Paris abducts Helen, Menelaus goes to take her back, Odysseus builds a horse... just some awesome stuff. :)

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 4 years ago

      @anonymous: ...and much, much more!

      I love Greek mythology, and I can assure you it contains much more than just tales!

      I'll come back with more mythology -- shortly!! :))

    • bilafond lm profile image

      bilafond lm 4 years ago

      Helenee thank you so much for posting this. I am new on Squidoo 6-7 weeks may be but every day I see the magic of lens and how much it teaches. This lens is excellent well researched. I now know what is Pandoras Box (Jar), 95% people have actually no idea what it is. I clicked like and am going to more of your lens. I like Greek cuisine as well.

    • Oikouros profile image

      Oikouros 4 years ago

      There are so many beautiful stories, but Jason has always been my favorite character...

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 4 years ago

      The Odyssey, Oedipus, and Trojan War

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      My fave greek myth is the one with the boy who fell in love with himself after getting punnished because he made fun of a nmymth named Echo Because Echo really liked him.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      I love the one when the boy gets punished for making fun of the nymth Echo.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      @auntjennie: I <3 this 1 2!!!! Do u hav another 1?? I <3 the one about the boy who got punished 3 mKING FUN OF THE NYMTH eCHO!

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      anonymous 4 years ago


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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Where is narcissus and echo?????

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      my favorite was the Minotaur one: the Theseus one

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      jvcronje 4 years ago

      Hi Helenee. When I was in my early twenties I had to read "Prometheus Vinctus" as well as the "Iliad" of Homer in the original Greek as part of my post-graduate studies. Since that time I have been in love with Greek mythology. I entertained my children with them and will soon start doing so with my grandchildren! I like your list. I have recently published "Odysseus Journey of Endurance" at Kindle as part of a Series ("Timeless Greek Mythology").

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 4 years ago

      @jvcronje: They say that reading fairy tales to children makes them smarter. Greek myths are definitely great material for that purpose!

      Thanks for letting me know about your book, I'll check it out. I'm actually re-writing the Odyssey as a novel, and I read anything that gets into my hands on the subject.

    • SkipARockRecords profile image

      SkipARockRecords 4 years ago

      the art work is phenomenal!

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Greek mythology is awesome. My favorite god is Zuez. Lol.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      I love all this Greek stuff.....Coooool!

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      what about perseus and medusa

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hi, I'm currently working on a research project for my English class about the Creation Myths of Greek Mythology and I was wondering if you might happen to have a date at which this list was posted? Thank you so much for your help by the way.

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      greek-flavor 4 years ago

      Mpravo!Excellent Lens.My favorite Greek myth is the Odyssey .

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      acneanswers 4 years ago

      I always liked greek mythology. I just finished reading plato which is always good.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Congrats on hitting tier one - good work - the pictures are just... wow :)

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thank you, oh thank you, LoL

      I love blending writing with art.

    • Rankography profile image

      Rankography 4 years ago

      Great lens. I learned a lot here! Blessed

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      nice lens

    • Scarlet Spider profile image

      Scarlet Spider 4 years ago

      Great lens, I used to love reading Greek mythology as a kid. My favorite myths were the ones about Jason and the Argonauts, Heracles, Perseus, and Theseus. A lot of adventure to be had in these stories =P

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 4 years ago

      I read a very few Greek mythology stories! I hope i would read more :)

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      AnimalHouse 4 years ago

      Demeter And Persephone always has been one of my favorites. Great lens. :)

    • ixodoi profile image

      ixodoi 4 years ago

      Great lens. Very interesting. Thank you.

    • PinkstonePictures profile image

      PinkstonePictures 4 years ago from Miami Beach, FL

      I think I need to revisit this - there's a wealth of interesting information and a great read.

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      othellos 4 years ago

      Excellent lens. I know everyone of the myths featured above. I am surprised that someone could put so much work on a lens. I enjoyed it very much. Thanks for sharing:)

    • EliasZanetti LM profile image

      EliasZanetti LM 3 years ago

      Excellent lens! Prometheus is my all time favorite myth.

    • castelloautore profile image

      castelloautore 3 years ago

      A great lens filled with many stories for all ages. We like Myth 7, the Trojan war. Stop in to visit us.

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      anonymous 3 years ago

      Good nice list, with good quick overview information. This is more for someone who is wanting to look into mythology but isn't 100% which stories to start with.

      Personally I love basic lists like this, but this has more depth to it than just a quick list. I would call it a short list, with short information for you to make a decision. Although I don't recommend reading about the Myth here if you plan on reading the real thing, you don't want any spoilers now would you!!

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @anonymous: Thank you for the suggestion!

      I keep working on the page, and I'll be adding more links to the actual Myths -- after checking out which of them tell the story like it is, of course!

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      webscribbler 3 years ago

      Wonderfully informative lens. The time and effort you have put into it really shows.

    • rstaveley lm profile image

      Richard Staveley 3 years ago from Burley in Wharfedale, Yorkshire, England

      Terrific lens. The Greek myths are still great stories, as are the Norse sagas. I used to love reading about them as a child, and I still do now.

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      Pinnsvin 3 years ago

      I absolutely love Greek Mythology. My Mum read many stories to me when I was a kid and the one with Pandora was always my favorite. Wonderful lens!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image

      Melissa Miotke 3 years ago from Arizona

      I'm not sure that I have a favorite but I do enjoy Greek mythology very much. It was fun to visit Greece a couple years ago and studying their history and mythology.

    • marktplaatsshop profile image

      marktplaatsshop 3 years ago

      Orpheus And Eurydice, is one of my favorits, I think Greece is a great country, it's my favorite holiday destination, the people are so kind and helpful and I always try to talk a little bit greek, and they seem to like that.

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      soaringsis 3 years ago

      Outstanding lens.Thanks for sharing.

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      anonymous 3 years ago

      I like Jason & The Argonauts since we have the same name!

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @anonymous: LoL

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      RoSelou 3 years ago

      Pandora's box was a jar! that is a news for me. I love all myth they are just wonderful!

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      anonymous 3 years ago

      trojan war

    • Legenden profile image

      Legenden 3 years ago

      Very good lens.! :)

    • Rosanna Grace profile image

      Rosanna Grace 3 years ago

      The Odyssey

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      SteveKaye 3 years ago

      Rather than pick one, I'll note that all of them are memorable. Outstanding lens.

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @SteveKaye: I'm glad you enjoyed, Steve.

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      anonymous 3 years ago

      There is no best one.

    • kju385 profile image

      kju385 3 years ago

      Fantastic lens, great job

    • Alberto-K profile image

      Alberto-K 3 years ago


    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @kju385: Thank you, car-lover! :)

    • SimonJay profile image

      SimonJay 3 years ago

      I have always been interested in learning more about Greek mythology so this lens was a fantastic read thanks you for putting this in easy chunks.

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @SimonJay: So glad you found it useful, SimonJay! :)

    • SBPI Inc profile image

      SBPI Inc 3 years ago


      I cannot believe that I missed your lens as it is beautiful. Since college, minoring in philosgsgsophy, I have devoured every Greek Philosophical writing I could get my hands on and absolutely loved the readings.

      Great lens. Thank you - quite invigorating.


    • MelaniePaige13 profile image

      Melanie Paige 3 years ago from Adelaide, South Australia

      Love this lens! I love history. "The Adventures of Hercules" (with Kevin Sorbo) and "Xena The Warrior Princess" are my all time favourite shows, I even liked "Young Hercules". They're probably not very factual but they are still awesome! I have a list of places to visit, and Greece is on there as my great, great grandfather (I think) was from Greece.

      Thank you so much for sharing, this lens was very interesting to read :)

    • Spirality profile image

      Spirality 3 years ago

      The Odyssey is my favorite Greek myth.

    • alienbritt profile image

      alienbritt 3 years ago

      Greek Mythology is so much more interesting than the Bible! Great lens

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 3 years ago

      @Spirality: Mine too!

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      Niktravelfit 2 years ago

      Great lens - I really enjoyed it!

      Thanks for sharing.

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      Emily 22 months ago

      Best thing ever when you read this

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      shah nawaj 17 months ago

      thank u for helping me so much to get information

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      Bing bang 14 months ago

      It's all fake! God made the world not this stuff!

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      Marius 8 months ago

      This story is not real. God didnt made this stuff

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      James vulpin 7 months ago

      Nice work! I got a lot of information and my project is now a breeze..

      Thank you and good luck for more articles!

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      Eranda 6 months ago

      where is the Eastern mythologies ? i mean China, India, Sri Lanka, Japan . This stories are present in European ideologies. how can we explain as a whole world like this ? Europe is not a whole world. add some mythologies from like Indian. I think Modern world becomes in after the Mythologies. so there is no Eastern stories . so someone can explaining Europe is not modern till Today :D

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      jeff fa fa 6 months ago

      i like it

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      samanvita 6 months ago


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      :) 5 months ago

      i agree with marius

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      KHALIA SINSUAT 5 months ago

      i like it

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      merry lilyrose 5 months ago

      I love it its so wonderful helps me understand and find more new stories keep it up woohoo loving it good job i love greek myths and legends..

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      Lol 4 months ago


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      4 months ago

      is it heracles or herakles?

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      Debbie Cragg 3 months ago

      I had forgotten some of the terrific stories in Greek Mythology.....this was a great refresher. My interest has been sparked again. Thanks

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      annynomys 3 months ago

      I recommend these stories if you are needing them for school.

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      Bob Stone 2 months ago

      Bruh these stories are set up weird

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      Mark weber 8 weeks ago

      Fascinating work. Always a fun reading Greek mythology.

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      popcorn is better 2 weeks ago

      where Apollo flays Marsyas alive in front of the crowd for challenging him in a music contest.

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      erich dowdem 11 days ago

      @noyouarenot may I have your name for citation purposes

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      Denise 43 hours ago

      Proud to say I grew up studying and learning about each and every one of the stories as a Greek student. Always fascinated and perplexed as if these were true facts or not......but made our little minds wonder ......BIG!!!!!!

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