Nyx was one of the ancient Protogenoi, the first-born elemental gods. In Greek mythology, she was the goddess of night, and according to the cosmogony of Hesiod, she was the daughter to Chaos (Air), and mother to many Deities. Together, with Erebos (Darkness) she gave birth to Hermera (Day) and Aether (Upper Air). She is today’s topic on #ImmortalMonday.
~She was a figure of exceptional strength and beauty~
It has been said the goddess ruled the night on a chariot pulled by four horses, surrounded by a dark mist. Although, some versions have her painted as having black wings. The goddess of Night lives with the goddess of Day, Hemera, at and above the gate of Tartarus, said to be the source and ends of the heavens, earth, and sea. Tartarus was both a place and her brother. Although the two goddesses lived together they would only greet each other in passing at the threshold where Atlas holds up heavens. Some renditions record Hemera as a sister to Nyx, rather than a daughter.
~Older and more powerful than Zeus~
Nyx may be one of the few, if not the only god Zeus would defer to, especially after a little show of her power. During the Trojan War, Hera managed to talk Hypnos into lulling Zeus to sleep. He hid in a tree in the form of a bird while Hera seduced Zeus and worked his magic, putting the great god into a slumber. Hera used that time to work with Poseidon in turning the tide of the war. When Zeus awoke he realized what had happened. Having lost a son in the war and been deceived, he was angry and looked to take it out on Nyx’s beloved son. She protected her child and sent the furies on Zeus.
~ Nyx is Night~
Those looking to create mischief were appreciative of Nyx, as did thieves and fugitives, for under of darkness is the best time for such acts, treachery and for snares to be cast. Night is the best time for crimes because it was the time for Deceit, Sleep, Doom, Madness, and Death – the children of Nyx. Lovers also enjoy Nyx because night opens up the arms of her child Love. That’s why many budding romances chose to meet when the stars are out. Nyx has her hands in everything.
~Nyx the Mother~
It is written in Hesiod’s Theogony 211, that Nyx lay with none to spawn many of her remaining children (Deities and spirits), of which there were many. They are listed here, in no particular order.
Ker (Fate, Destruction, Death)
Moros (Doom, Destiny)
Thanatos (Non-Violent Death)
Oizys (Woe, Pain, Distress)
Nemesis (Indignation, Retribution)
Geras (Old Age)
The Moirai (The Fates)
*The Erinyes (The Furies)
The Keres (female death-spirits)
*The Oneirio (Spirits of Dreams)
*Hesperides (Goddesses of Evenings)
That’s a lot of children to keep track of. It takes a well-organized woman to handle that. Especially considering this particular lot.
*Other renditions with different possible parentage.
** Fathered by Erebus
*** Most likely mothered by Nyx
Some myths and stories have Nyx and Uranus as the parents for several of the deities, although, Hesiod’s Theogony lists Nyx as mothering them alone.
Some love Nyx. Some fear her. In a YA series, I read she was cast as the villain throughout the entire story. What do you think? Is she just doing her job, on top of being a mom? Or is all that darkness bound to bring a little bit of bad?
I’ve had less available time these past few weeks to keep up on the comments or get to other blogs, I apologize. Family always comes first and that’s where my focus has been. This morning I’ll be visiting with the children’s Psychologist when I would normally be getting in my daily Twitter and Facebook time. As we head into summer, free time will be harder to come by, creating more of a challenge for me and my writing. In addition, I’ve decided to take on two workshops this month, and that will also impact my social visibility. Bare with me. I see summer as a time to organize this site and slow it down. After all, shouldn’t we all be out enjoying the sun?
Thanks for stopping by! I truly appreciate your support. Until next time, au revoir.
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