Ganymede was a Trojan prince in Greek mythology, known for his beauty. He was the son of the king Tros of Dardania, after whom Troy took its name, and Callirrhoe.
According to the myth, Zeus spotted Ganymede while the latter was attending to his father’s flocks and he became enchanted with his looks. Therefore, he took the form of turned into an eagle (Source: A Wing and A Day) and abducted Ganymede, bringing him to Mount Olympus.
In Olympus, Zeus granted him eternal youth and immortality and the office of cupbearer to the gods. From then on, Ganymede became water bearer to the Gods.
To compensate his father, Zeus offered him the best horses possible, and told him that his son would now be immortal and serve as a cupbearer for the gods, as well as a lover for him:
“Ganymedes now, mixing the nectar, waits in heaven above, though Juno [Hera] frowns, and hands the cup to Jove [Zeus]”. (Ovid, Metamorphoses 10. 152).~
Almost all gods were content with Ganymede, except for Hera, who felt jealousy.
The idea of Ganymede being the cupbearer of Zeus subsequently gave rise to his identification with the divinity who was believed to preside over the sources of the Nile, and of his being placed by astronomers among the stars under the name of Aquarius, which is associated with that of the Eagle.
Aquarius constellation is symbolized by the water carrier or the water bearer. The sun passes through this constellation from mid February to mid March.
There is another constellation also related to this greek myth, and it is called Aquila, which is the latin word for “eagle”. Needless to say that Aquila was the eagle that in Greek mythology actually bore Ganymede (Aquarius) up to Mt. Olympus. The eagle was also the thunderbolt carrier for Zeus.
Besides, Ganymede is the largest moon of Jupiter and in the Solar System. Still an extra fact is that according to observations made with the Hubble Space Telescope, scientists have recently found that the largest moon in the Solar System is hiding an ocean under its surface.
“[Constellation] Aquila (Eagle). This is the eagle which is said to have snatched Ganymede up and given him to his lover, Jove [Zeus]. And so it seems to fly above Aquarius, who, as many imagine, is Ganymede”. (Pseudo-Hyginus, Astronomica, 2. 16).~
Ganymede was frequently represented as the god of homosexual love, and as such appears as a playmate of the love-gods Eros (Love) and Himeros (Desire)”.
Ganymedes was sometimes describes as the “Eros” of homosexual love and desire. Plato calls him Himeros (Sexual Desire).
“And when his feeling continues and he is nearer to him and embraces him, in gymnastic exercises and at other times of meeting, then the fountain of that stream, which Zeus when he was in love with Ganymede named Himeros (Desire), overflows upon the lover, and some enters into his soul, and some when he is filled flows out again”. (Plato, Phaedrus 255).~
Plato also mentions this myth in his dialogue “Laws”, in which he relates it to homosexuality:
“One certainly should not fail to observe that when male unites with female for procreation the pleasure experienced is held to be due to nature, but contrary to nature, when male mates with male or female with female, and that those first guilty of such enormities were impelled by their slavery to pleasure. And we all accuse the Kretans of concocting the story about Ganymedes. Because it was the belief that they derived their laws from Zeus, they added on this story about Zeus in order that they might be following his example in enjoying this pleasure as well”. (Plato, Laws, 636c).~
On the other hand, the myth was a model for the Greek social custom of Paiderastia, the socially acceptable erotic relationship between a man and a younger man.
Ganymede was depicted in Greek vase painting as a handsome boy. In the abduction scene his attributes were usually a rooster (a lover’s gift), a hoop (a boy’s toy), or a lyre. When portrayed as the cup-bearer of the gods he is shown pouring nectar from a jug.
In poetry, Ganymede became a symbol for the beautiful young male who attracted homosexual desire and love.
In Baldassare Peruzzi´s panel of “The Rape of Ganymede” (*see painting below) in a ceiling at the Villa Farnesina, Rome, Ganymede’s long blond hair and girlish pose make him identifiable at first glance, though he grasps the eagle’s wing without resistance.
I have been nominated for three awards.
Note: For the three awards, I will nominate blogs I have recently came across and like, recent followers and/or plussers. Also, I am changing the logos so that way I can include new awards among mine… And, finally, I will follow the nomination process without answering questions or mentioning facts about me…
►Rules for these Three Awards:
♠ Thank the person who nominated you for the award.
♠ Add the logo to your post.
♠Nominate ten (10) bloggers you admire and inform them of the nomination.
►I) Nominees~One Lovely Blog Award~
1. Crissy Dean 2.Short Stories Diary 3. Italian Home Kitchen Blog 4. Robynchristi 5. Charlotte Bang Bang 6. Before Sundown 7. 100 Ways to Write 8. Yamarella 9. Poetic Darkness 10. From Midnight to Dawnlight.
►II) Nominees~Creative Blogger Award (Pencils Version)~
►III) Nominees~Very Inspiring Blogger Award (Soft Version)~
1.Inside the Life of Moi 2. The Keys 3. Poetry and Chocolate and Books 4. The Writes of Woman 5. Ginger’s Grocery 6. Just Jen 7. Haiku Odyssey 8. Imagery of Light 9. A Little Blog of Books 10. A Writer’s Path.
►Silvina Garré: “Palmas Azules Para Mí”: