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Greek Mythology. What is mythology?. Oral Tradition : stories passed from group to group for the purpose of entertainment and enlightenment. For a time, the oral tradition was necessary for the growth, development, and maintenance of a culture , as few people could read. Question :

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  • Oral Tradition: stories passed from group to group for the purpose of entertainment and enlightenment



  • Question development, and maintenance of a :

  • Does traditional storytelling, capturing some aspect of culture or society and passed from person to person orally, still have a place in our society? Why or why not? In other words, do you think storytelling is still important in 2013? How/Why?


  • Myth: development, and maintenance of a traditional story that is rooted in a particular culture, is basically religious, and usually serves to explain a belief, a ritual, or a mysterious natural phenomenon.



The story of arachne
The Story of Arachne attempt to discover the underlying truths.

Arachne was truly gifted in the art of weaving. Not only were her finished products beautiful to look at, but the very act of her weaving was a sight to behold.


She challenged Athena to a contest. Arachne created a tapestry showing scenes of Zeus’ various infidelities. Athena tore up the tapestry. Arachne ran away in shame and committed suicide. Athena brought her back to life but transformed her into a spider.


Purposes of myths
Purposes of Myths: tapestry showing scenes of Zeus’ various infidelities. Athena tore up the tapestry. Arachne ran away in shame and committed

1. Myths present guidelines for living.

2. Myths justify a culture’s activities.

3. Myths give meaning to life.

4. Myths explain the unexplainable.

5. Myths offer role models.


  • Mythology tapestry showing scenes of Zeus’ various infidelities. Athena tore up the tapestry. Arachne ran away in shame and committed — a collection of stories that deals with the gods, goddesses, and legendary heroes of a group of people


  • These stories existed so long before tapestry showing scenes of Zeus’ various infidelities. Athena tore up the tapestry. Arachne ran away in shame and committed science and scientific knowledge that many of the ideas seem childish to us today. For example, a myth from Greece three thousand years ago might claim a giant lived under a mountain and breathed fire. Today, we would use geology to understand how fire would spew from a mountain and call it a volcano. In the case of lightning, the ancient Greeks would explain it as Zeus, the chief Greek god, throwing lightning bolts from Olympus to the earth. Now, we understand that it is the buildup of charged particles and how they move through the atmosphere, thanks to scientific knowledge.


Mythology and you today
Mythology and You, Today tapestry showing scenes of Zeus’ various infidelities. Athena tore up the tapestry. Arachne ran away in shame and committed

  • Myths have survived thousands of years because they have something universal (applies to everyone, somehow) to say to each generation. They can be fantastical and entertaining.


  • Many myths have value because of lessons they teach. If you’ve watched Clash of the Titans, Wrath of the Titans, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, Disney’s Hercules, or Troy, then you’ve been entertained by an idea that is over three thousand years old and has simply been recycled for a modern audience.


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