►Greek Mythology: “Eros, God of Love and Son of Goddess Aphrodite”:
Eros was the Greek God of Love. His roman equivalent was Cupid.
In Hesiod’ s “Theogony” he is represented as a cosmic force which emerged self-born at the beginning of time to spur procreation.
Hesiod was making reference to the Protogenos (primordial deity) of procreation who emerged self-formed at the beginning of time. He was the driving force behind the generation of new life in the early cosmos.
According to Hesiod, Eros was the fourth god to come into existence, coming after Chaos, Gaia and Tartarus (the Abyss or the Underworld).
The Orphic and Eleusinian Mysteries featured Eros as an original God, but not quite primordial, since he was one of the sons of Nyx.
The Orphics knew him as Phanes, a primal being hatched from the World Egg at creation.
Hesiod also describes two love-gods, Eros and Himeros (Desire), accompanying Aphrodite at her birth from the sea-foam.
This second and later sense is related to Younger Eros, a boy-god armed with bow and arrows.
A minion who, according to Ovid, was son of Aphrodite, the Greek Goddess of Beauty and Ares, the Greek God of War, whose love affair represented an allegory of Love and War.
Anteros was also the son of Ares and Aphrodite and therefore Eros’ brother.
Eros and Anteros were related to the notion of “Love returned”. But, originally, Anteros was a being opposed to Eros, and fighting against him. This conflict, however, was also conceived as the rivalry existing between two lovers, and Anteros accordingly punished those who did not return the love of others
Anteros, with Eros, was one of a host of winged love gods called Erotes, the ever-youthful winged gods of love, usually depicted as winged boys in the company of Aphrodite or her attendant goddesses.
►Eros, Greek God of Love: Attributes and Themes:
•Eros (Or Cupid), The Honey Thief: In “Idylls” of Theocritus (3rd century BC), the poet tells the tale of Cupid the honey thief, the child-god is stung by bees when he steals honey from their hive. He cries and runs to his mother, who laughs, and tells him that he also delivers the sting of love.
•Eros and the Dolphin: In later art, Eros is often shown riding a dolphin. This may be a symbol representing how swiftly love moves.
•Eros, the Blinfolded Minion: In the later satirical poets, he is represented as a blindfolded child, and this is a symbol of Love being blinkered and arbitrary.
•Eros, the winged boy: He is also described a winged boy. This may suggest that lovers are flighty and likely to change their minds. He is just a boy, because love is irrational.
•Eros’ symbols: The Arrow and the Torch: His symbols are the arrow and torch, because love is said to wound and inflame the heart”.
According to Ovid, Cupid carries two kinds of arrows, one with a sharp golden point, and the other with a blunt tip of lead.
A person wounded by the golden arrow is filled with uncontrollable desire, but the one struck by the lead feels aversion and desires only to flee.