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Encyclopedia > Pandora (mythology)

In Greek mythology, Pandora ("all gifted") was the first woman, fashioned by Zeus as part of his punishment of mankind for having stolen the secret of fire.


Epimetheus ("hindsight") is responsible for giving a positive trait to each and every animal. However, when it is time to give man a positive trait, there is nothing left. Prometheus ("foresight"), his brother, feels that because man is superior to all other animals, man should have a gift no other animal possesses. So Prometheus sets forth to steal fire from Zeus and hands it over to man.


Zeus is enraged and has Pandora made as a poisoned gift for man. Pandora is given several traits from the different gods: Hephaestus molds her out of clay and gives her form ; Aphrodite gives her beauty; and Apollo gives her musical talent, and a gift for healing. Hermes then gives Pandora a box and tells her never to open it.


Prometheus warns Epimetheus not to take any gifts from the gods. The titan Epimetheus doesn't listen to his brother, however, and when Pandora arrives, he falls in love with her and they are eventually married.


Until then, mankind lived a life in a paradise without a worry in the world. Epimetheus told Pandora never to open the box from Zeus. However, one day, Pandora's curiosity gets the better of her and she opens it anyway releasing all the misfortunes of mankind (plague, sorrow, poverty, crime, etc.) She only shut it in time to keep one thing in the box: hope. So the world is extremely bleak for some unspecified interval, until Pandora "chances" to revisit the box again, at which point Hope then flutters out. Thus mankind always has hope in times of evil, but Hope has a great deal of catching up to do. (See also Garden of Eden.)


The daughter of Epimetheus and Pandora was Pyrrha, who married Deucalion and was one of the two who survived the deluge.


See also

  • Pandora's Box

  Results from FactBites:
 
Pandora 1, Greek Mythology Link - www.maicar.com (700 words)
Pandora 1, the first woman, was so called because each of the OLYMPIANS gave a gift to make her complete.
However, it is also said that Pandora 1 was not a curse sent from heaven, but that she, endowed with all kinds of gifts, was given by the gods to men because they wished to show all mortals that they could do even better than Prometheus 1, who had given them fire.
Pandora 2 is a daughter of Deucalion 1 and Pyrrha 1.
Pandora (443 words)
In Greek mythology, Pandora ("all gifts") was the first woman, fashioned by Zeus as part of his punishment of mankind for having stolen the secret of fire.
Zeus is enraged and has Pandora made as a poisoned gift for man. Pandora is given several traits from the different gods: Hephaestus gives her the gift of life; Aphrodite gives her beauty; Hermes gives her persuasion; and Apollo gives her musical talent.
However, if Pandora is the jar, (and it was common in history to have jars with the image of women on them) then the hope that resides within her "under the lip" is the hope inherent in regeneration.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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