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Hyperion: Titan God of Heavenly Light, Son of Gaia and Uranus


Sep 23, 2022

In Disney’s 1997 movie Hercules, the Titans are portrayed as pure disasters personified within the type of monolithic, horrible beings. In Greek mythology, nonetheless, the Titans had been a part of the primary pantheon of gods. Amongst these Titans was Hyperion, god of heavenly gentle. There was a fantastic warfare between the Titans and the Olympian gods, generally known as the Titanomachy, through which Hyperion and members of his household fought Zeus for management of the earth.

Gaia, Mom Life on Earth, and Mom of Hyperion too

Greek cosmology envisioned the world as a flat disk lined by a dome of brass that was adorned with stars. The river Okeanos ran round its periphery, whereas beneath lay the underworld, Tartarus. Every of those parts was conceived of as a deity: Gaia, the earth; Pontus, the ocean; Uranus (Ouranos), the sky; and Tartarus, the underworld.

Gaia was the mom of all life. She gave start to Hyperion and his eleven Titan siblings by her union with Uranus, personification of the sky, who was additionally created by Gaia. The Gigantes (the Giants who would finally wage warfare on the gods) and the Cyclopes, had been additionally Gaia’s work. And the Greek sea gods got here to Earth by the union of Gaia and Pontus. Lastly, she created a mortal man, Erichthonius of Athens, whom Athena adopted as her personal little one.

Hyperion was the god of heavenly gentle, and his mom, Gaia, was the earth goddess. ( Romolo Tavani / Adobe Inventory)

Hyperion, the Titan God of Gentle and Knowledge

Amongst the pantheon of the Titanic gods, Hyperion was the god of heavenly gentle, whose identify interprets to “he who goes above.” He married his sister Theia (the Titan goddess of the solar and sight) and collectively they birthed three kids: Helios (solar), Selene ( moon), and Eos (daybreak).

In accordance with students, Hyperion was doubtless credited by the traditional Grecians as one of many creators of mankind, who bestowed upon them the reward of eyesight. Moreover, Hyperion was credited with ordering the cycle of daylight, thus creating the circulation of days, months, and years. Collectively, Hyperion and three of his brothers, Coeus, Crius, and Iapetus, fashioned the 4 pillars that held the sky aloft.

In accordance with some mythological tales, Hyperion was one of many 5 Titans who ambushed Uranus after he incurred Gaia’s wrath for imprisoning a number of of her kids, the Cyclopes and the Hecatonchires, in Tartarus. Hyperion and his three brothers held Uranus down from the 4 corners of Earth (north, south, west, and, in Hyperion’s case, east), whereas a fifth brother, Cronus (chief of the Titans) castrated him with a sickle. Cronus took Uranus’s place as ruler of the universe, however his father prophesied that he too would at some point be destroyed by his sons.

This painting by Joachim Wtewael, entitled The Battle Between the Gods and the Titans, was the setting for Hyperion’s greatest heroic act. (Joachim Wtewael / Public domain)

This portray by Joachim Wtewael, entitled The Battle Between the Gods and the Titans, was the setting for Hyperion’s biggest heroic act. (Joachim Wtewael / Public domain )

The Titanomachy: Hyperion Goes to Struggle with Zeus

Within the aftermath of Hyperion and his brothers’ ambush of their father, Cronus was consumed with worry over the prophesy. Cronus as soon as extra imprisoned the Cyclopes and Hecatonchires and commenced consuming his personal kids. Rhea, Cronus’ spouse, nonetheless, saved the youngest little one, Zeus, and hid him in a cave on the island of Crete.

Zeus ultimately rebelled in opposition to Cronus, his father. He pressured him to throw up the youngsters he’d eaten (these we now acknowledge as a number of the Olympian pantheon ) and free these imprisoned in Tartarus. Then Zeus led the Olympians in battle in opposition to the Titans.

The accounts of the Titanomachy which are nonetheless accessible at the moment depart Hyperion as a peripheral character. Students usually agree that he doubtless fought on the facet of the Titans and as such, was defeated alongside most of his siblings.

The shedding Titans had been solid into Tartarus and imprisoned there for eternity, although some sources state Zeus ultimately launched all of them. Hyperion’s kids, nonetheless, weren’t imprisoned, and continued to carry vital roles within the pantheon of the Olympian gods.

Like so many facets of Greek mythology, Hyperion has continued to encourage curiosity and storytelling all through the ages. He has appeared in novels, poetry, and, extra not too long ago, in Marvel comics (although the allusions are delicate and blended with attributes of Helios).

Although not one of many extra well-known or well-known gods in up to date creativeness, Hyperion was an enchanting a part of the creation myths of historical Greece. He ordered the times and months, aided within the creation of mankind, and gave start to the solar, the moon, and the daybreak.

Prime picture: Within the wars between the Olympians and the Titans, generally known as the Titanomachy, Hyperion, the heavenly gentle, does battle with Zeus, the sky and thunder god. Supply: rudall30 / Adobe Inventory

By Mark Johnston


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Atsma, A. J. 2017. Gaia. Out there at: https://www.theoi.com/Protogenos/Gaia.html.

Atsma, A. J. 2017. Kronos. Out there at: https://www.theoi.com/Titan/TitanKronos.html.

Atsma, A. J. 2017. Gigantes. Out there at: https://www.theoi.com/Gigante/Gigantes.html.

Atsma, A. J. 2017. Ouranos. Out there at: https://www.theoi.com/Protogenos/Ouranos.html.

Editors, GreekMythology.com. April 8, 2021. Titanomachy. Out there at: https://www.greekmythology.com/Myths/The_Myths/Titanomachy/titanomachy.html.

Greek Legends and Myths. n.d. The Titan Hyperion in Greek Mythology. Out there at: https://www.greeklegendsandmyths.com/hyperion.html#:~:text=The%20Role%20of%20Hyperion&text=Helios%20would%20subsequently%20be%20more,patterns%20of%20days%20and%20months.  

Luchko, E. 2021. Illustration of the Historic Fantasy About Hyperion in Fashionable Graphic Literature. Out there at: http://pnap.ap.edu.pl/index.php/pnap/article/view/661/628

Vermeulen, M. April 12, 2020. Greek Titans: Who Had been the 12 Titans in Greek Mythology? Out there at: https://www.thecollector.com/greek-titans/.

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