Friday, February 22, 2008

More than just a name

I found this image on the Internet of the Greek goddess Rhea. She was a Titan, daughter of Uranus (the sky) and Gaia (the earth). She married Cronus, a really bad dude who ate all his children for fear they would overthrow him. Well, after Rhea gives birth to Zeus, she hides him away in a cave and hands her husband a stone bundled up like a baby, whom he promptly swallows (not a real smart god). So, Zeus grows up, overthrows Cronus and becomes king of gods. Rhea is usually seated in a throne flanked by lions or in a chariot drawn by lions in all the arwork. Neat, huh? The picture of the lion above is one I took when we visited the Fort Worth Zoo.

There is another character in mythology named Rhea Sylvia, who was daughter to a king. This king was overthrown and his brother took over. He didn't want to be challenged by Rhea Sylvia or possible heirs, so he forced her to become a Vestal Virgin. However, she by the god Mars and conceives twins. The Uncle puts these babies out to die and tries to do in Rhea Sylvia also, but she is rescued by a river god and the twin babies, Romulus & Remus, are rescued by a she-wolf. These twins grow up and found the great city of Rome.

Am I destined to be a mother to great men? I sure hope so. Meanwhile, it's fun to see history in names. I like the interesting mythology more than the Rhea bird (similar to an ostrich).

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