In Greek mythology, Ate was the goddess or spirit of delusion, infatuation, blind folly, rash action and reckless impulse who led men down the path to ruin. According to some version, Ate was called eldest daughter of Zeus with no mother mentioned. Other described her as daughter of Eris.
Ate once even induced Zeus, shortly before his son Hercules was born, to take an oath, that the next-born descendant of Perseus should get the kingdom. Hera immediately arranged to delay the birth of Hercules and to bring forth Eurystheus prematurely, so Eurystheus got the power which had been destined for Hercules.
When Zeus discovered his rashness, he threw Ate down to earth forever, forbidding that she ever return to heaven or to Mt Olympus. Ate then wandered about, treading on the heads of men rather than on the earth, wreaking havoc on mortals. Ate power was countered by Litai (prayers) which followed in her wake. In some version Peitho was described as Ate daughter.
Very interesting, Ate is new to me. So Rossetti's painting is of Ate. I will follow this further. Great page thanks!ReplyDelete
I did a whole poster on her, very intersting.ReplyDelete
The Rossetti painting is of Proserpine holding a pomegranate. It was painted in 1874 and currently housed at Tate Britain.ReplyDelete
After her abduction by Pluto, Proserpine ate six pomegranate seeds while in the Underworld. Hence it was decreed that she should remain in Hades for six months of the year and be allowed on Earth for the other six.