Pandora’s stories: Ares and Aphrodite

Ares and Aphrodite

Ares and Aphrodite

Both gods and men are ambivalent towards Ares, god of war. In Homer’s Iliad, Zeus his father tells him:

To me you are the most hateful of all the gods who hold Olympos. Forever quarrelling is dear to your heart, wars and battles.

His children Deimos (Terror) and Phobos (Fear) and sister Enyo accompany him in war. The mother of his children is Aphrodite, goddess of love, beauty and sexuality, who was attracted to his violent nature even though she was married to Hephaestus. Born from the sea as an adult, Aphrodite never had a childhood. Her beauty caused such rivalry amongst the gods that Zeus married her to the deformed god Hephaestus who was not considered a threat. Aphrodite was unfaithful to Hephaestus, most famously during her affair with Ares. When Hephaestus found out, he caught them in an invisible net and invited the other gods to come and mock. Divine love and human love are very different, it seems.

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