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Poseidon on Authentic Ancient Greek Coins for Sale at Coin Shop  Buy Poseidon Ancient Greek Coins at Best Selection of Coins
Example of Authentic Ancient Coin of:

Macedonia Autonomous Issue
Serrate Bronze Struck 185-168 B.C.
under Greek King: Philip V - King of Macedonia: 221-179 B.C.
& Greek King: Perseus - Macedonian King: 179-168 B.C. -
Reference: SNG Copenhagen 1294; Gaebler I pg. 32, 32; AMNG 32
Diademed head of Poseidon right, trident over shoulder.
Club, legend MAKE / ΔONΩN, and two monograms within oak wreath.

Son of Demetrios II, Philip V came to power in 221 B.C. on the death of Antigonos Doson. He was a vigorous ruler and maintained the power of the Macedonian kingdom in the earlier part of his reign. However, he made the mistake of arousing the enmity of the Romans, and in 197 B.C. his power was crushed at the battle of the Kynoskephalai by the Roman general T. Quinctius Flamininus. After this his power and territory were severely curtailed by Rome, and the days of the Macedonian kingdom were numbered.

The eldest son of Philip V, Perseus was the last king of Macedon. He inherited a kingdom already largely dependent on Rome, but his policies aroused Roman suspicions and armed conflict became inevitable. At the battle of Pydna, in 168 B.C., Perseus lost his kingdom and he died two years later as an exile in Italy.

 


Poseidon or Posidon (Greek: Ποσειδῶν, gen: Ποσειδῶνος) is one of the twelve Olympian deities of the pantheon in Greek mythology. His main domain is the ocean, and he is called the "God of the Sea". Additionally, he is referred to as "Earth-Shaker" due to his role in causing earthquakes, and has been called the "tamer of horses". He is usually depicted as an older male with curly hair and beard.0036MAN Poseidon.jpg

The name of the sea-god Nethuns in Etruscan was adopted in Latin for Neptune in Roman mythology; both were sea gods analogous to Poseidon. Linear B tablets show that Poseidon was venerated at Pylos and Thebes in pre-Olympian Bronze Age Greece as a chief deity, but he was integrated into the Olympian gods as the brother of Zeus and Hades. According to some folklore, he was saved by his mother Rhea, who concealed him among a flock of lambs and pretended to have given birth to a colt, which was devoured by Cronos.

There is a Homeric hymn to Poseidon, who was the protector of many Hellenic cities, although he lost the contest for Athens to Athena. According to the references from Plato in his dialogue Timaeus and Critias, the island of Atlantis was the chosen domain of Poseidon.

Etymology

The earliest attested occurrence of the name, written in Linear B, is Po-se-da-o or Po-se-da-wo-ne, which correspond to Poseidaōn and Poseidawonos in Mycenean Greek; in Homeric Greek it appears as Ποσειδάων (Poseidaōn); in Aeolic as Ποτειδάων (Poteidaōn); and in Doric as Ποτειδάν (Poteidan), Ποτειδάων (Poteidaōn), and Ποτειδᾶς (Poteidas). A common epithet of Poseidon is Γαιήοχος Gaiēochos, "Earth-shaker," an epithet which is also identified in Linear B tablets.

The origins of the name "Poseidon" are unclear. One theory breaks it down into an element meaning "husband" or "lord" (Greek πόσις (posis), from PIE *pótis) and another element meaning "earth" (δᾶ (da), Doric for γῆ ()), producing something like lord or spouse of Da, i.e. of the earth; this would link him with Demeter, "Earth-mother."[10] Walter Burkert finds that "the second element da- remains hopelessly ambiguous" and finds a "husband of Earth" reading "quite impossible to prove."

Another theory interprets the second element as related to the word *δᾶϝον dâwon, "water"; this would make *Posei-dawōn into the master of waters. There is also the possibility that the word has Pre-Greek origin.[12] Plato in his dialogue Cratylus gives two alternative etymologies: either the sea restrained Poseidon when walking as a foot-bond (ποσί-δεσμον), or he knew many things (πολλά εἰδότος or πολλά εἰδῶν).

Bronze Age Greece

Poseidon, Paella Museum

If surviving Linear B clay tablets can be trusted, the name po-se-da-wo-ne ("Poseidon") occurs with greater frequency than does di-u-ja ("Zeus"). A feminine variant, po-se-de-ia, is also found, indicating a lost consort goddess, in effect a precursor of Amphitrite. Tablets from Pylos record sacrificial goods destined for "the Two Queens and Poseidon" and to "the Two Queens and the King". The most obvious identification for the "Two Queens" is with Demeter and Persephone, or their precursors, goddesses who were not associated with Poseidon in later periods. The illuminating exception is the archaic and localised myth of the stallion Poseidon and mare Demeter at Phigalia in isolated and conservative Arcadia, noted by Pausanias (2nd century AD) as having fallen into desuetude; the violated Demeter was Demeter Erinys. In Mycenaean Knossos, Poseidon is already identified as "Earth-Shaker" (e-ne-si-da-o-ne), a powerful attribute (earthquakes had accompanied the collapse of the Minoan palace-culture). In the heavily sea-dependent Mycenaean culture, no connection between Poseidon and the sea has yet surfaced.[citation needed] Homer and Hesiod suggest that Poseidon became lord of the sea following the defeat of his father Kronos, when the world was divided by lot among his three sons; Zeus was given the sky, Hades the underworld, and Poseidon the sea, with the Earth and Mount Olympus belonging to all three.[2][16]

Demeter and Poseidon's names are linked in one Pylos tablet, where they appear as po-se-da-wo-ne and da-ma-te, in the context of sacralized lot-casting.[citation needed]

Given Poseidon's connection with horses as well as the sea, and the landlocked situation of the likely Indo-European homeland, Nobuo Komita has proposed that Poseidon was originally an aristocratic Indo-European horse-god who was then assimilated to Near Eastern aquatic deities when the basis of the Greek livelihood shifted from the land to the sea, or a god of fresh waters who was assigned a secondary role as god of the sea, where he overwhelmed the original Aegean sea deities such as Proteus and Nereus. Conversely, Walter Burkert suggests that the Hellene cult worship of Poseidon as a horse god may be connected to the introduction of the horse and war-chariot from Anatolia to Greece around 1600 BC.[2]

In any case, the early importance of Poseidon can still be glimpsed in Homer's Odyssey, where Poseidon rather than Zeus is the major mover of events.

Poseidon in mythology

Andrea Doria as Neptune, by Angelo Bronzino.

Birth

Poseidon was a son of Cronus and Rhea. In most accounts he is swallowed by Cronus at birth but later saved, with his other brothers and sisters, by Zeus. However in some versions of the story, he, like his brother Zeus, did not share the fate of his other brother and sisters who were eaten by Cronus. He was saved by his mother Rhea, who concealed him among a flock of lambs and pretended to have given birth to a colt, which she gave to Cronus to devour.[18]

According to John Tzetzes the kourotrophos, or nurse of Poseidon was Arne, who denied knowing where he was, when Cronus came searching; according to Diodorus Siculus[20] Poseidon was raised by the Telchines on Rhodes, just as Zeus was raised by the Korybantes on Crete.

According to a single reference in the Iliad, when the world was divided by lot in three, Zeus received the sky, Hades the underworld and Poseidon the sea. In the Odyssey (v.398), Poseidon has a home in Aegae.

The foundation of Athens

Athena became the patron goddess of the city of Athens after a competition with Poseidon. Yet Poseidon remained a numinous presence on the Acropolis in the form of his surrogate, Erechtheus.[2] At the dissolution festival at the end of the year in the Athenian calendar, the Skira, the priests of Athena and the priest of Poseidon would process under canopies to Eleusis. They agreed that each would give the Athenians one gift and the Athenians would choose whichever gift they preferred. Poseidon struck the ground with his trident and a spring sprang up; the water was salty and not very useful, whereas Athena offered them an olive tree.

The Athenians or their king, Cecrops, accepted the olive tree and along with it Athena as their patron, for the olive tree brought wood, oil and food. After the fight, infuriated at his loss, Poseidon sent a monstrous flood to the Attic Plain, to punish the Athenians for not choosing him. The depression made by Poseidon's trident and filled with salt water was surrounded by the northern hall of the Erechtheum, remaining open to the air. "In cult, Poseidon was identified with Erechtheus," Walter Burkert noted; "the myth turns this into a temporal-causal sequence: in his anger at losing, Poseidon led his son Eumolpus against Athens and killed Erectheus."[23]

The contest of Athena and Poseidon was the subject of the reliefs on the western pediment of the Parthenon, the first sight that greeted the arriving visitor.

This myth is construed by Robert Graves and others as reflecting a clash between the inhabitants during Mycenaean times and newer immigrants. It is interesting to note that Athens at its height was a significant sea power, at one point defeating the Persian fleet at Salamis Island in a sea battle.

The walls of Troy

Poseidon and Apollo, having offended Zeus by their rebellion in Hera's scheme, were temporarily stripped of their divine authority and sent to serve King Laomedon of Troy. He had them build huge walls around the city and promised to reward them well, a promise he then refused to fulfill. In vengeance, before the Trojan War, Poseidon sent a sea monster to attack Troy. The monster was later killed by Heracles.

Consorts and children

Poseidon on an Attic kalyx krater (detail), first half of the 5th century BC.

Poseidon was said to have had many lovers of both sexes (see expandable list below). His consort was Amphitrite, a nymph and ancient sea-goddess, daughter of Nereus and Doris.

Poseidon was the father of many heroes. He is thought to have fathered the famed Theseus.

A mortal woman named Tyro was married to Cretheus (with whom she had one son, Aeson) but loved Enipeus, a river god. She pursued Enipeus, who refused her advances. One day, Poseidon, filled with lust for Tyro, disguised himself as Enipeus, and from their union were born the heroes Pelias and Neleus, twin boys. Poseidon also had an affair with Alope, his granddaughter through Cercyon, his son and King of Eleusis, begetting the Attic hero Hippothoon. Cercyon had his daughter buried alive but Poseidon turned her into the spring, Alope, near Eleusis.

Poseidon rescued Amymone from a lecherous satyr and then fathered a child, Nauplius, by her.

After having raped Caeneus, Poseidon fulfilled her request and changed her into a male warrior.

A mortal woman named Cleito once lived on an isolated island; Poseidon fell in love with the human mortal and created a dwelling sanctuary at the top of a hill near the middle of the island and surrounded the dwelling with rings of water and land to protect her. She gave birth to five sets of twin boys(the firstborn who being named Atlas) became the first rulers of Atlantis.[24][5] [25][26]

Not all of Poseidon's children were human. In an archaic myth, Poseidon once pursued Demeter. She spurned his advances, turning herself into a mare so that she could hide in a herd of horses; he saw through the deception and became a stallion and captured her. Their child was a horse, Arion, which was capable of human speech. Poseidon also had sexual intercourse with Medusa on the floor of a temple to Athena.[27]

Medusa was then changed into a monster by Athena. When she was later beheaded by the hero Perseus, Chrysaor and Pegasus emerged from her neck. There is also Triton (the merman), Polyphemus (the cyclops) and, finally, Alebion and Bergion and Otos and Ephialtae (the giants).


 

List of Poseidon's consorts and children

Female lovers and offspring

  1. Amphitrite
    1. Triton
    2. Benthesikyme
    3. Rhode (possibly)
  2. Aphrodite
    1. Rhode (possibly)
    2. Herophile the Sibyl (possibly)
  3. Demeter
    1. Despoina
    2. Areion, the talking horse
  4. Gaea
    1. Antaeus
    2. Charybdis
  5. Hestia (wooed her unsuccessfully)
  6. Aba, nymph
    1. Ergiscus[29]
  7. Agamede
    1. Dictys
  8. Aethra
    1. Theseus
  9. Alistra[30]
    1. Ogygus
  10. Alcyone
    1. Aethusa
    2. Hyrieus
    3. Hyperenor
    4. Hyperes
    5. Anthas
  11. Alope
    1. Hippothoon
  12. Amphimedusa, Danaid
    1. Erythras
  13. Amymone
    1. Nauplius
  14. Arene
    1. Idas (possibly)
  15. Arne / Melanippe
    1. Aeolus
    2. Boeotus
  16. Arethusa
    1. Abas
  17. Ascre
    1. Oeoclus[31]
  18. Astydameia, daughter of Phorbas
    1. Caucon
  19. Astypalaea
    1. Ancaeus
    2. Eurypylus of Kos
  20. Beroe (daughter of Aphrodite)
  21. Boudeia / Bouzyge
    1. Erginus
  22. Caenis
  23. Calchinia
    1. Peratus
  24. Canace
    1. Hopleus
    2. Nireus
    3. Aloeus
    4. Epopeus
    5. Triopas
  25. Celaeno (Pleiad or daughter of Ergeus)
    1. Lycus
    2. Nycteus
    3. Eurypylus (Eurytus) of Cyrene
    4. Lycaon
  26. Celaeno, Danaid
    1. Celaenus
  27. Cerebia[32]
    1. Dictys
    2. Polydectes
  28. Ceroessa
    1. Byzas
  29. Cleodora
    1. Parnassus
  30. Chione
    1. Eumolpus
  31. Chrysogeneia
    1. Chryses, father of Minyas
  32. Corcyra, nymph
    1. Phaeax
  33. Coronis
  34. Diopatra, nymph of Mount Othrys
  35. Euryale, daughter of Minos
    1. Orion (possibly)
  36. Eurycyda
    1. Eleius
  37. Eurynome (Eurymede), daughter of Nisos
    1. Bellerophon
  38. Euryte / Bathycleia
    1. Halirrhothius
  39. Halia
    1. Rhode (possibly)
    2. six sons
  40. Harpale / Scamandrodice / Calyce
    1. Cycnus
  41. Helle
    1. Almops
    2. Edonus
    3. Paion
  42. Hermippe
    1. Minyas (possibly)
  43. Hippothoe
    1. Taphius
  44. Iphimedeia
    1. The Aloadae
  45. Laodice[33]
  46. Larissa
    1. Achaeus
    2. Pelasgus
    3. Pythius
  47. Leis, daughter of Orus
    1. Altephus[34]
  48. Libya
    1. Agenor
    2. Belus
    3. Lelex
  49. Lysianassa / Anippe
    1. Busiris
  50. Mecionice / Europa, daughter of Tityos
    1. Euphemus, Argonaut
  51. Medusa
    1. Pegasus
    2. Chrysaor
  52. Melantheia, daughter of Alpheus
    1. Eirene
  53. Melantho (daughter of Deucalion)
    1. Delphus
  54. Melia
    1. Amycus
    2. Mygdon
  55. Melissa, daughter of Epidamnus
    1. Dyrrhachius[35]
  56. Mestra
  57. Mideia
    1. Aspledon
  58. Molione
    1. The Molionides
  59. Mytilene
    1. Myton[36]
  60. Oenope
    1. Megareus of Onchestus (possibly)
  61. Olbia, nymph
    1. Astacus[37]
  62. Ossa
    1. Sithon (possibly)
  63. Peirene
    1. Cenchrias
    2. Leches
  64. Periboea
    1. Nausithous
  65. Pero, nymph / Kelousa, nymph
    1. Asopus (possibly)
  66. Pitane, nymph / Lena
    1. Euadne
  67. Phoenice
    1. Torone[38]
  68. Pronoe, daughter of Asopus
    1. Phocus
  69. Rhode[39]
    1. Ialysus
    2. Cameirus
    3. Lindus
  70. Rhodope, daughter of Strymon
    1. Athos[40]
  71. Salamis, daughter of Asopus
    1. Cychreus
  72. Satyria, nymph of Taras
    1. Taras (eponym of the location)[41]
  73. Syme
    1. Chthonius
  74. Themisto
    1. Leucon (possibly)
  75. Theophane
    1. The Ram of the Golden Fleece
  76. Thyia
  77. Tyro
    1. Pelias
    2. Neleus
  78. Thoosa
    1. Polyphemus
  79. Daughter of Amphictyon, unnamed
    1. Cercyon
  80. Nymph of Chios, unnamed
    1. Chios
  81. Nymph of Chios, unnamed (another one)
    1. Melas
    2. Agelus
  82. unknown consorts
    1. Amphimarus[42]
    2. Amyrus, eponym of a river in Thessaly[43]
    3. Aon, eponym of Aonia[44]
    4. Astraeus and Alcippe of Mysia[45]
    5. Calaurus[46]
    6. Corynetes (possibly)
    7. Cymopoleia
    8. Cromus (eponym of Crommyon)[47]
    9. Geren, eponym of a town or village Geren on Lesbos[48]
    10. Dicaeus, eponym of Dicaea, a city in Thrace[49]
    11. Euseirus (father of Cerambus)
    12. Ialebion (Alebion) and Dercynus (Bergion) of Liguria[50]
    13. Laestrygon, eponym of the Laestrygonians
    14. Lamus, king of the Laestrygonians
    15. Lotis (possibly)
    16. Messapus
    17. Onchestus[51]
    18. Ourea[52]
    19. Palaestinus[53]
    20. Phorbas of Acarnania
    21. Poltys
    22. Procrustes
    23. Proteus
    24. Sarpedon of Ainos
    25. Sciron
    26. Syleus
    27. Taenarus (possibly)

In Plato's myth of Atlantis, Poseidon consorted with Cleito, daughter of the autochthons Evenor and Leucippe, and had by her ten sons: Ampheres, Atlas, Autochthon, Azaes, Diaprepes, Elasippus, Euaemon, Eumelus (Gadeirus), Mestor, Mneseus.[54]

Male lovers of Poseidon

Worship of Poseidon

Poseidon holding a trident. Corinthian plaque, 550-525 BC. From Penteskouphia.

Poseidon was a major civic god of several cities: in Athens, he was second only to Athena in importance, while in Corinth and many cities of Magna Graecia he was the chief god of the polis.[2]

In his benign aspect, Poseidon was seen as creating new islands and offering calm seas. When offended or ignored, he supposedly struck the ground with his trident and caused chaotic springs, earthquakes, drownings and shipwrecks. Sailors prayed to Poseidon for a safe voyage, sometimes drowning horses as a sacrifice; in this way, according to a fragmentary papyrus, Alexander the Great paused at the Syrian seashore before the climactic battle of Issus, and resorted to prayers, "invoking Poseidon the sea-god, for whom he ordered a four-horse chariot to be cast into the waves."

According to Pausanias, Poseidon was one of the caretakers of the oracle at Delphi before Olympian Apollo took it over. Apollo and Poseidon worked closely in many realms: in colonization, for example, Delphic Apollo provided the authorization to go out and settle, while Poseidon watched over the colonists on their way, and provided the lustral water for the foundation-sacrifice. Xenophon's Anabasis describes a group of Spartan soldiers in 400–399 BC singing to Poseidon a paean—a kind of hymn normally sung for Apollo.

Like Dionysus, who inflamed the maenads, Poseidon also caused certain forms of mental disturbance. A Hippocratic text of ca 400 BC, On the Sacred Disease[57] says that he was blamed for certain types of epilepsy.

Epithets

Poseidon was known in various guises, denoted by epithets. In the town of Aegae in Euboea, he was known as Poseidon Aegaeus and had a magnificent temple upon a hill.[58][59][60] Poseidon also had a close association with horses, known under the epithet Poseidon Hippios. He is more often regarded as the tamer of horses, but in some myths he is their father, either by spilling his seed upon a rock or by mating with a creature who then gave birth to the first horse.[2]

In the historical period, Poseidon was often referred to by the epithets Enosichthon, Seischthon and Ennosigaios, all meaning "earth-shaker" and referring to his role in causing earthquakes.

Genealogy of the Olympians in Greek mythology

Poseidon in literature and art

Jacob de Gheyn II: Poseidon and Amphitrite.

In Greek art, Poseidon rides a chariot that was pulled by a hippocampus or by horses that could ride on the sea. He was associated with dolphins and three-pronged fish spears (tridents). He lived in a palace on the ocean floor, made of coral and gems.

In the Iliad Poseidon favors the Greeks, and on several occasion takes an active part in the battle against the Trojan forces. However, in Book XX he rescues Aeneas after the Trojan prince is laid low by Achilles.

In the Odyssey, Poseidon is notable for his hatred of Odysseus who blinded the god's son, the cyclops Polyphemus. The enmity of Poseidon prevents Odysseus's return home to Ithaca for many years. Odysseus is even told, notwithstanding his ultimate safe return, that to placate the wrath of Poseidon will require one more voyage on his part.

In the Aeneid, Neptune is still resentful of the wandering Trojans, but is not as vindictive as Juno, and in Book I he rescues the Trojan fleet from the goddess's attempts to wreck it, although his primary motivation for doing this is his annoyance at Juno's having intruded into his domain.

A hymn to Poseidon included among the Homeric Hymns is a brief invocation, a seven-line introduction that addresses the god as both "mover of the earth and barren sea, god of the deep who is also lord of Helicon and wide Aegae,[61] and specificies his twofold nature as an Olympian: "a tamer of horses and a saviour of ships."

Poseidon appears in Percy Jackson and the Olympians as the father of Percy Jackson and Tyson the Cyclops.

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