More on Dionysus: Wine as a gift of the God

More on Dionysus: Wine as a gift of the God

“When Dionysus was a guest at Oineias’ palace, the former fell in love with his host’s wife, Althea.  However, when Oineias came to realize this, he decided that he should not mess with the God and so he let them be. From Dionysus love with Althea, Dieanira and Meleagros were born.

God Dionysus, to reward Oineias for his understanding, he taught him how to take care of grape vines and gave their juice the name of the mortal (οίνος).” [1]

big-dionysus

May I just comment on how cool Oineias was? I mean, I’m so glad that there were humans that actually understood how powerful a God can be and just backed the heck off before they committed a crime against an immortal. At least, have one God on your side if you’re planning on making another your enemy, like think of anyone involved with Zeus… even a female cat would be Hera’s victim if she got all honey-dovey with the Father of the Gods. It wouldn’t be Hera’s fault though, as Zeus really couldn’t keep it in his pants but that’s not the point. The point is that in most myths, some naïve mortal won’t accept the fact that by having a God around means trouble. Concluding, once a God sets eyes on you, you got to be his or else death awaits (or in the case of Zeus, both).

[1] Source : Ρίσπεν Ζ., Ελληνική Μυθολογία, Εκδόσεις Τριήρης, Τόμος 3ος, σ.398

The Birth of Dionysus

The Birth of Dionysus

There are actually many versions about the way Dionysus was born but you will allow me to only convey the juicy one. Just like every juicy myth involving Zeus, this too includes his adultery and flirting with mortals as always.

This story begins in Thebes with the daughter of Kadmius and Harmony, Semelis. Her beauty attracted the erotic gaze of the Father of the Gods and she gave herself to him in Kadmius’ palace. However, Hera who was informed of her husband’s adventure swore to annihilate her love rival (like that was a first). Thus, she took the form of a house-helper and convinced the easily persuaded Semelis to ask of her God lover to show her all his power.

Without any suspicion, Zeus’ lover first made him swear that he would succumb to her one and only request and then revealed what it was. Zeus willingly promises to fulfill any wish but once he hears what she wanted, he tries to convince her to let go of this demand. She insists, though, and Zeus has no other choice than to stand by his word.

He appears before her in all his power, on his chariot with all his thunder around him. One of his bolts unintentionally hits her and she dies immediately, while also setting the palace on fire.

Semelis was already pregnant to Dionysus but because her pregnancy was not as long as it should have been, Zeus cut her and from her insides extracted the little God, whom he kept sewed in his thigh to grow.

Source : Ρίσπεν Ζ., Ελληνική Μυθολογία, Εκδόσεις Τριήρης, Τόμος 3ος, σ.396