Mythology Introduction This project will focus on the adventures of Dionysus and his interactions with other people. I will also show what Dionysus stands for and is depicted by. You will learn about his lifestyle and the way he affected others lives. I will explain his family and birth and I will tell the story of the few who dare to oppose Dionysus. Family Dionysus father was Zeus(Jupiter), king of the gods.
Zeus played a very important role in Greek mythology as he was the father of many significant gods. He was the ultimate ruler of Heaven and Earth and had control over meteorological phenomenon. In most legends, Semele was the mother of Dionysus while Orphic legends recorded Persephone as being Dionysus mother. Semele was the beautiful daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia. Her affair with Zeus was strictly secret and later caused her death. Hera(Zeus wife) found out that they were having an affair and made Zeus kill Semele.
As an adult, Dionysus rescued Semele from the underworld and made her a goddess known as Thyone. When Semele died, she was still pregnant with Dionysus in her womb. Zeus came along and rescued Dionysus from Semeles ashes and sewed Dionysus into his hip until he was ready to be born. Basic Information Dionysus was mainly recognized as the god of wine. He was almost always drunk, and he made people happy with his wine. He traveled around teaching the art of wine making and the cultivation of the vine.
Dionysus was also fairly well known as an artistic god. Most of the plays and dramas were in his honor. Drama and poetry both play an important role in the worship of Dionysus. His symbols were grapes, rams, thyrsus, and serpents. His domain was vegetation, pleasure, freedom, and civilization.
Dionysus is sometimes referred to as Bacchus and in Roman mythology Dionysus was known as Liber. Dionysus could make people light- hearted and happy or he could make them sad and unhappy. Stories Dionysus Kidnapping This is a story of which I have found in many different books, however, only two versions were somewhat different. One version containing the character of Acetes, and the other without Acetes. Some pirates saw Dionysus and they assumed by his appearance that he had rich parents, so they decided to capture and sell him for ransom.
They took Dionysus onto the ship and attempted to bind him with ropes, however, the ropes broke as soon as they touched Dionysus. One crew member pleaded to let him go, for the breaking of the ropes convinced him that Dionysus was a god, but the other crew members were stubborn and ignored him. The crew members soon found out that Dionysus was angered when he turned into a lion and fragrant wine started flowing down the ships deck. Soon after, vines and ivy spread around the ship and the terrified pirates began to turn into dolphins. One by one they leaped into the sea. END. A group of pirates see a strong, and healthy young man and they figure they could make a good profit selling him as a slave in Egypt.
One pirate, by the name of Acetes, urged the other crew members to sail wherever the visitor(Dionysus) wished. The pirates were greedy and set sail toward Egypt when all of a sudden lions appear and crouch at their feet. In the background, sounds of flutes were heard and each pirate(except for Acetes), gradually transforming into dolphins, leaped into the water. Dionysus told Acetes to sail toward the island of Naxos and Acetes eagerly obeyed. It is on the island of Naxos where Dionysus meets and falls in love with Ariadne. Dionysus Romance With Ariadne After Dionysus was kidnapped by pirates, he was dropped off on the island of Naxos.
While in Naxos, Dionysus met Ariadne who had been abandoned on the island. He took pity on her and they soon fell in love. When Ariadne died, Dionysus took the golden crown he had given her and placed it among the stars. END. Dionysus met Ariadne on Naxos, he quickly wooed her and won her over.
Soon after, they got married and during the wedding celebrations Dionysus took Ariadnes bridal garland and threw it into the sky where it became a glowing cluster of stars, known as the Corona. Fate of Lycurgus This short story shows how passive Dionysus could be and it proves that Dionysus does know people in high places. While Dionysus was in Thrace, King Lycurgus opposed Dionysus worship. Dionysus took this as a great insult but he did not take any action towards it, however, Zeus was angered and struck Lycurgus blind, Lycurgus died soon after. King Midas and his Golden Touch This is probably the most entertaining of the stories involving Dionysus. King Midas entertained and looked after poor Silenus, Dionysus friend. Dionysus offered a reward to Midas, he allowed Midas to choose any one wish.
Midas wish was to have anything he touched turn to gold. Dionysus granted the wish and everything Midas touched was transformed to gold. This wish soon became a terrible burden to King Midas. He could not eat because his food would turn to gold before reaching his mouth. He hugged his daughter and she turned to gold.
Midas, detesting his new ability returned to Dionysus begging to be delivered from this terrible spell. Dionysus sent King Midas to the River Pactolus. The river sands turned to gold but Midas rid himself of the golden touch. Midas dwelt in the country thereafter, and worshipped the god of fields, Pan. Dionysus and Nymphs This story explains a similar phenomenon as the story with Ariadne. After the death of Dionysus mother Semele, Dionysus was sent to live with Semeles sister. After Dionysus no longer lived with his aunt, he was raised by Nysaean nymphs.
The nymphs nourished and brought up Dionysus. To show his gratitude, Zeus took the nymphs and placed them among the stars. Return of Dionysus Mother Dionysus got in a fight with Perseus. Wounded, Dionysus jumped into Lake Lerna and sank down into the underworld. Zeus called Dionysus to come back to Olympus.
Dionysus took with him his mother Semele. He put Semele in a palace he had made for her in high heaven and made her a goddess, known as Thyone. Dionysus, now back on Mt. Olympus, was given a place as one of the 12 high gods at Zeus right hand. Conclusion In this project I have attempted to show what kind of person Dionysus was.
He had two completely different sides. He could make people joyful or he could make them gloomy. He could enrich or ruin their lives. I also added some interesting stories which explain phenomenon such as the story of Ariadne and the story of the nymphs which explain stars in the sky. Bibliography Bulfinch, T.
(1979). Bulfinch Mythology New Jersey: Crown Publishers. Hamilton, E. (1942) Mythology Boston: Little, Brown, and Company Grolier Inc. (1995) Grolier Electronic Encyclopedia 1995.