Over the past few months, I have been introduced to the exciting world of Greek mythology. Most of the myths I have encountered have provided me with exciting accounts about the interactions between gods and mortals. The popularity of Greek mythology is mostly driven by the fact that most myths feature great story telling techniques. It is possible for readers of Greek mythology to transport themselves to the vivid worlds that are described by Greek mythology.
Some characters in the myths are enviable while other characters elicit a lot of spite from readers. It is rare to encounter any ‘boring’ characters in Greek mythology because they are usually well formed to represent their current predicaments and challenges. Assuming I was to visit the ancient world that is described in the Greek mythology, my favorite scenario would be in the story of Apollo while my least favorite placement would be in the Trojan War.
As Apollo’s right hand servant, I always accompany him in all his missions and conquests. I am always amazed by Apollo’s relationship with music, poetry, and the sun. In addition, Apollo has perfect archery skills that he can give to anyone he chooses. Apollo is the son of the mighty Zeus and Leto (Powell, 2004). He has a twin sister named Artemis. This story is about how Apollo lost his beloved son Asclepius. I chose this story because it highlights the most interesting aspects of Apollo and the tricky relationships between Greek gods.
The mother of Asclepius was Coronis, a mortal woman whom Apollo had married but “she had been killed by Apollo’s sister when she was pregnant with Asclepius just because she had been unfaithful to her husband” (Powell, 2004). I witnessed Apollo saving his son from the lifeless body of Coronis.
This event was to account for the close relationship between Apollo and his son Asclepius. One can assume that Artemis’ actions would have destroyed the relationship between Apollo and her sister, but the two siblings just went on with their lives unperturbed.
Apollo was going on with his life when suddenly his own father Zeus, killed Asclepius. It takes a lot of anger for anyone to be able to kill his own kind like Zeus killed his grandson. Asclepius was not entirely a god because his mother was a mortal and this meant he was only half-god.
His mortal half made him susceptible to death but his godly abilities had made him a great medicine man who could raise the dead. Prior to his death, Asclepius had no major disagreements with Zeus. The reason Zeus killed Apollo’s son was because he had raised someone from the dead. This made Zeus angry and he decided to kill his grandson. Zeus actions were not only shocking to me but also to his son Apollo.
Apollo was infuriated by his father’s actions and it took me a lot of effort to calm him down. Apollo had every intention of avenging his son’s death but he chose to go after the lightning god instead of his father. Cyclops the god of lightning was the one who had been used by Zeus to kill Asclepius. Apollo killed Cyclops to avenge for his son’s death but this still angered his father. Consequently, Zeus sentenced Apollo to a year of hard labor.
For a whole year, we spent our time at the king of Thessaly’s estate. The strained relationship between Apollo and his father was to continue until Zeus turned Apollo’s son into a constellation of stars. The constellation is named Ophiochus and every time Apollo looks up in the sky at night, he is consoled.
Hell in Trojan- The Trojan War
The Trojan War caught every resident of Troy by surprise. I have been a gatekeeper at the city’s gates for a long time. Our city is one of the best-guarded fortresses. The walls are tall and impregnable and the only entry to Trojan is through the gates. Many mighty warriors are stationed at the gate and I happen to be one of them. The Trojan War marked one of the darkest moments of our city’s history and nobody would want to relive the events of this war.
The Trojan War was started by our very own Prince Paris. Earlier on, Paris had worked in cahoots with Aphrodite to steal Princess Helen from Menelaus King of Sparta (Homer, 2010). Paris’ actions sparked a war between the Greeks and the Trojans. A few weeks after Paris had arrived in the city with Helen (who was thought to be the most beautiful woman in the world), we got information that King Menelaus was on the way with a battle-fleet of one thousand ships.
The city went into panic mode but by the time the Greeks arrived, our troops had already put up a strong defense all around the wall. When the war started, we all thought that it was only going to last a few months and then there would be a winner. The Greeks’ side was led into the war by five strong and fearsome generals namely Menelaus, Odysseus, Ajax, Agamemnon, and Achilles. On the other hand, our side was led by General Paris and Hector.
Although our strong walls had a lot to do with the lengthy war, the real problem started when the gods joined in the war. Worse still, both sides enlisted the support of gods. The entry of gods into the war did not give any of the two sides a clear advantage. The gods who were behind the Greeks’ side were Athena, Hera, and Poseidon. Our side had Aphrodite, Apollo, and Artemis’ direct support. In addition, we had Zeus’ indirect favor.
The war went on for over ten years and we continued to suffer the aftermath of conflict. Some of the events that delayed the war included the in fighting between war generals of the Greek side. However, at one time it was decided that Paris and Menelaus the two main aggressors engage in a duel and the winner would decide which side won the conflict. This would have helped end the war sooner but Paris ran away from the challenge and this angered the Greeks even more.
Finally, the cunning Menelaus devised a Trojan horse that helped the Greeks defeat us. The Trojan horse was a wooden horse that Menelaus was able to sneak into our city parked with concealed Greek soldiers. Our city was destroyed and it will take a long time before we manage to rebuild it. Even though the times are hard now, it used to be harder for me when I stood guarding the gates to the city while thousands of Greeks lurked around waiting to pounce.
Homer, X. (2010). The Iliad of Homer (Vol. 3). New York, NY: General Books.
Powell, B. B. (2004). Classical Myth. New York, NY: Prentice Hall.