Hephaestus – The Greek God Of Blacksmiths

Hephaestus – The Greek God Of Blacksmiths  by MadeInTurkey

Hephaestus Ancient Greek: Ἥφαιστος Hēphaistos) is the Greek god of blacksmiths, craftsmen, artisans, sculptors, metals, metallurgy, fire and volcanoes. Hephaestus’ Roman equivalent is Vulcan. In Greek mythology, Hephaestus was the son of Zeus and Hera, the king and queen of the gods. In another version, he was Hera’s parthenogenous child, rejected by his mother because of his deformity and thrown out of heaven and down to earth. As a smithing god, Hephaestus made all the weapons of the gods in Olympus. He served as the blacksmith of the gods, and was worshipped in the manufacturing and industrial centers of Greece, particularly Athens. The cult of Hephaestus was based in Lemnos.

Hephaestus’ symbols are a smith’s hammer, anvil, and a pair of tongs. Hephaestus is probably associated with the Linear B (Mycenean Greek) inscription, A-pa-i-ti-jo, found at Knossos; the inscription indirectly attests his worship at that time because it is believed that it reads the theophoric name Haphaistios or Haphaistion. The name of the god in Greek (Hēphaistos), has a root which can be observed in names of places, of Pre-Greek origin, like Phaistos (Pa-i-to in Linear B). Epithets Mythology The craft of Hephaestus Hephaestus had his own palace on Olympus, containing his workshop with anvil and twenty bellows that worked at his bidding.

Hephaestus crafted much of the magnificent equipment of the gods, and almost any finely-wrought metalwork imbued with powers that appears in Greek myth is said to have been forged by Hephaestus. He designed Hermes’ winged helmet and sandals, the Aegis breastplate, Aphrodite’s famed girdle, Agamemnon’s staff of office, Achilles’ armor, Heracles’ bronze clappers, Helios’ chariot, the shoulder of Pelops, and Eros’ bow and arrows. In later accounts, Hephaestus worked with the help of the chthonic Cyclopes—among them his assistants in the forge, Brontes, Steropes and Pyracmon.

Hephaestus also built automatons of metal to work for him. This included tripods that walked to and from Mount Olympus. He gave to the blinded Orion his apprentice Cedalion as a guide. Prometheus stole the fire that he gave to man from Hephaestus’s forge. Hephaestus also created the gift that the gods gave to man, the woman Pandora and her pithos.

Being a skilled blacksmith, Hephaestus created all the thrones in the Palace of Olympus. The Greek myths and the Homeric poems sanctified in stories that Hephaestus had a special power to produce motion. He made the golden and silver lions and dogs at the entrance of the palace of Alkinoos in such a way that they could bite the invaders. The Greeks maintained in their civilization an animistic idea that statues are in some sense alive. This kind of art and the animistic belief goes back to the Minoan period, when Daedalus, the builder of the labyrinth made images which moved of their own accord. A statue of the god was somehow the god himself, and the image on a man’s tomb indicated somehow his presence.

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