Universal Flood - Greek Mythology - Myth of the Universal Flood

Universal Flood - Greek Mythology - Myth of the Universal Flood

Deucalion and Pyrrha

Deucalion and Pyrrha
Virgil Solis (1514 - 1562), engraving (note 1)

Zeus, in the Bronze Age, an era in which men were cruel and bloodthirsty and spent their lives killing every living being they encountered, disgusted by the very nature of man, decided to erase humanity from the earth by flooding the whole earth with a universal deluge.

Prometheus, learning of the imminent flood that Zeus had decided to unleash on the world, ran to his son Deucalion to warn him of what was about to happen. Deucalion, who at the time was the king of Thessaly, then built an ark in which he took refuge with his wife Pyrrha before the flood began. for nine days and nine nights. On the tenth day, when the rain stopped, the ark ran aground on Mount Parnassus.

The first thing the two castaways did as soon as they set foot on dry land was to offer a sacrifice in honor of Zeus to thank him for having saved them and they went to pray in Temi by the Cefiso river. Zeus, moved, told Deucalion that he would grant his wish and he then asked that the earth be repopulated. His prayer was so heartfelt that Zeus then advised Deucalion to go to Delphi, to consult the oracle. Once at the oracle, Deucalion questioned him and the latter advised him to walk alongside Pyrrha on a plain and to throw himself behind "the bones of the ancient mother ". (2)

For a long time Deucalion and Pyrrha thought about what they could be the bones of the ancient mother until they understand that surely it was the stones, as both he and Pyrrha descended from Gaea, the Mother Earth and the bones could not be other than her stones.

And so they both veiled their heads and set off throwing stones behind them and from those thrown by Pirra women were born while those thrown by Deucalion were born men.

Thus the earth was repopulated by mankind.

Luciano recounts in the Dialoghi (Dialoghi, V): "(...) So in a moment there was that great abyss at the time of Deucalion, that everything was submerged in the waters: and only a small boat that landed on Mount Licoride, in which the seed of this human race was preserved, which had to regerminate more wicked than before.


(1) Image in the public domain because its copyright has expired
(2) According to another version it was Themes herself who prophesied.

Dr. Maria Giovanna Davoli

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