Erebus and Tartarus
In ancient Greek mythology and literature the name Erebus was also used to refer to a region of the Underworld where the dead had to pass immediately after dying, and is sometimes used interchangeably with the region more commonly known as Tartarus. The word Erebus is defined as a "place of darkness between Earth and Hades".
Erebus, the dark god of Night and Shadows
Who was Erebus?
He was one of the primeval gods who was born out of Chaos, a casual deity who ruled over confusion in the void of emptiness. At the beginning of time there was only Chaos (Air), Nyx (Night) and Erebus (Darkness). Erebus took Nyx as his consort and became one of the first of the Immortals. Erebus was believed to have reigned in the mysterious, gloomy Underworld where no ray of sunshine, gleam of daylight or anything healthy lived. He created the shadows that filled the deep hollows of the earth. According to ancient Greek mythology Erebus and Nyx inhabited a palace in the dark regions of the Underworld. He is represented in ancient Greek art in a form similar to that of the later god, Hades.
The Children of Erebus
The children of Erebus and Nyx were Aether and his sister Hemera who brought light and day. Their many offspring also included some of the dark gods and goddesses of the Underworld including Doom (Moros), Old Age (Geras), Divine Retribution (Nemesis), Death and Sleep (Thanatos and Hypnos), Strife (Eris), Charon, the Fates, the Keres and other personifications.
Erebus and the Dynasties of Greek Gods
According to mythology, Erebus and the Ancient Greek gods and goddesses consisted of three major dynasties from different generations:
- The First generation of Ancient Greek Gods were the Primordial deities, to which Erebus belonged
- The Primordial, or Primeval, gods were those that existed at or from the beginning of time and resided within the region of the universe known as the Elemental Chaos
- The Second generation were the Titans
- The Third generation of were the famous Olympian gods