Whether it’s the sun that rises in the morning or the heavens above, the ancient Greeks believed that there was a god or goddess responsible for everyday occurrences in the sky. In this article, you will encounter some of the oldest gods worshipped for their connection to the sky, such as the Titan god of stars and planets.
Ouranos , ancient god of the heavens
Ouranos (or better known as Uranus) represented one of the first gods of the heavens. Known as Father Sky, he was the personification of the son and husband of Gaia , Mother Earth. Uranus and Gaia were ancestors of the majority of the ancient Greek gods. However, evidence of worship into Classical times shows that the god faded into the shadows and does not appear in the typical themes of painted pottery found in Greece.
The majority of Greeks saw Uranus as a primordial god , one that had no parentage. Philosophers, such as Cicero, believed that he was the child of ancient gods Aether (Air) and Hemera (Day). If you read the Orphic Hymns, Uranus is said to be the son of the personification of night (Nyx).
Aether , primeval god of the upper air
In Greek myths, Aether appears as one of the first-born elemental gods and the personification of the upper sky, space, and heaven. It is said that humans (or mortals) breathe “normal” air, while the gods take in “pure upper air” associated with Aether. Hesiod wrote in ‘Theogony’ that Aether was the son of Erebus and Nyx. The god produced many offspring, including Aergia (the goddess of sloth and laziness), who he had with Gaia. In the Orphic hymns, Aether is viewed as the soul of the world from which all life emanates.
Astraeus , Titan god of stars and planets
In addition to being the Titan god of stars and planets, Astraeus is known as representing the art of astrology. His original Greek name of Astraios translates as ‘dawn of the stars’ when the stars emerge or better known as the dusk. Hesiod described Astraeus as a Titan of the second generation, who was related to Crius and Eurybia.
As god of the dusk, Astraeus took Eos (goddess of the dawn) as his wife and as nightfall and daybreak , they had many children that became associated with the events that take place in the sky during twilight. They also gave birth to the four wind gods known as the Anemoi: Boreas, Notus, Eurus, and Zephyrus. The five “Wandering Stars” were also children of Astraeus and Eos, who became known as the Astra Planeta: Mercury, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, and Venus.