|Author||Charles River Editors|
|Publisher||CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform|
|Publication Date||June 4, 2017|
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*Includes ancient descriptions of the goddess and myths
*Includes online resources and a bibliography for further reading
“However impious the apotheosis of sexuality may seem in the light of the Christian tradition, modern sensibility can nevertheless also appreciate how in the experience of love the loved one and indeed the whole world appears transfigured and joyously intensified, making all else seem insignificant, a tremendous power is revealed, a great duty.”
Attempting to cover all the forms the “Goddess of Love” encapsulates is no small affair. The roles she played in romance, marriage, procreation, and all of the other desires of humanity were myriad, but the aim of this book is to paint a slightly different, perhaps more esoteric version of Aphrodite from the usual image of her in mythology books.
The fact is that Aphrodite, as an ancient Greek goddess, was not the anthropomorphic personage modern aficionados see painted on canvas and hewn out of stone. In addition to that, she was also so much more, which can be a difficult concept for the modern reader to discern. In fact, it was difficult for certain ancient readers to discern too; the 5th century BCE philosopher Plato expressed disgust at the idea that his gods would debase themselves in the adulterous, murderous, and mischievous ways they were said to have in their myths. However, it is important to remember that Plato represented a very small proportion of ancient Athenian society, and the rest of the populace didn’t seem to have much of a problem including the “personal” anthropomorphic aspect of the gods into their more “elemental” and “essential” beings. As the scholar Leopold Schmidt put it, “For anyone born a Greek and thinking like a Greek, the idea of a clean antithesis between unity and plurality is put aside where the supernatural beings are concerned. He has no difficult in conceiving unity of action divorced from any unity of person.”
This is a very important point to remember when considering any of the ancient Greek gods, which can help the modern reader realize the depth of “character” that Aphrodite embodied for the ancient Greeks. Hers was more than the wooing gifts, more than the marriage bed, and more than the “propriety of women”. She was an elemental force and not one to be underestimated.
Aphrodite: The Origins and History of the Greek Goddess of Love looks at the story of the legendary deity and the various roles she played in Greek mythology. Along with pictures depicting important people, places, and events, you will learn about Aphrodite like never before.
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