Monday, 12 September 2016

Philip Womack's Mythical Bytes No 3: Anteros (and Nerites)

What's the statue that stands looking down over Piccadilly Circus called? Every Londoner knows - it's Eros. Even at Piccadilly Station, a helpful sign points you in the direction of EROS. I have long resisted the temptation to correct it.

The statue, though, is actually a representation of Anteros - Eros' brother, the god of reciprocal love.  There are two myths that give rise to his origin. In the first, he is the son of Ares, the god of war, and Aphrodite, the goddess of love. In the second, he arises as the result of the mutual love between Poseidon, god of the sea, and Nerites, a beautiful boy sea nymph. The sun god, who also loved the boy, became jealous, and turned him into a shellfish. Something to think about next time you are presented with a plate of prawns.

Read The Double Axe by Philip Womack for more monsters and mythical excitement.

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