I. Οὐρανὸς πρῶτος τοῦ παντὸς ἐδυνάστευσε κόσμου. γήμας δὲ Γῆν ἐτέκνωσε πρώτους τοὺς ἑκατόγχειρας προσαγορευθέντας, Βριάρεων Γύην1 Κόττον, οἳ μεγέθει τε ἀνυπέρβλητοι καὶ δυνάμει καθειστήκεσαν, χεῖρας μὲν ἀνὰ ἑκατὸν κεφαλὰς 2δὲ ἀνὰ πεντήκοντα ἔχοντες. μετὰ τούτους δὲ
I. Sky was the first who ruled over the whole world.1 And having wedded Earth, he begat first the Hundred-handed, as they are named: Briareus, Gyes, Cottus, who were unsurpassed in size and might, each of them having a hundred hands and fifty heads.2 After these, Earth bore him the Cyclopes,
- 1According to Hesiod (Theog. 126 sqq.), Sky (Uranus) was a son of Earth (Gaia), but afterwards lay with his own mother and had by her Cronus, the giants, the Cyclopes, and so forth. As to the marriage of Sky and Earth, see the fragment of the Chrysippus of Euripides, quoted by Sextus Empiricus, p. 751, ed. Bekker (Tragicorum Graecorum Fragmenta, ed. A Nauck,2 Leipsic, 1889, p. 633); Lucretius i. 250 sq., ii. 991 sqq.; Virgil, Georg. ii. 325 sqq. The myth of such a marriage is widespread among the lower races. See E. B. Tylor, Primitive Culture2 (London, 1873), i. 321 sqq., ii. 270 sqq. For example, the Ewe people of Togo-land, in West Africa, think that the Earth is the wife of the Sky, and that their marriage takes place in the rainy season, when the rain causes the seeds to sprout and bear fruit. These fruits they regard as the children of Mother Earth, who in their opinion is the mother also of men and of gods, see J. Spieth, Die Ewe-Stämme (Berlin, 1906), pp. 464, 548. In the regions of the Senegal and the Niger it is believed that the Sky-god and the Earth-goddess are the parents of the principal spirits who dispense life and death, weal and woe, among mankind. See Maurice Delafosse, Haut-Sénégal-Niger (Paris, 1912), iii. 173 sqq. Similarly the Manggerai, a people of West Flores, in the Indian Archipelago, personify Sky and Earth as husband and wife; the consummation of their marriage is manifested in the rain, which fertilizes Mother Earth, so that she gives birth to her children, the produce of the fields and the fruits of the trees. The sky is called langīt; it is the male power: the earth is called alang; it is the female power. Together they form a divine couple, called Moerī Kraéng. See H. B. Stapel, “Het Manggeraische Volk (West Flores),” Tijdschrift voor Indische Taal- Land- en Volkenkunde, lvi. (Batavia and the Hague, 1914), p. 163.
- 2Compare Hesiod, Theog 147 sqq. Instead of Gyes, some MSS. of Hesiod read Gyges, and this form of the name is supported by the Scholiast on Plato, Laws, vii. p. 795 c. Compare Ovid, Fasti, iv. 593; Horace, Odes, ii. 17. 14, iii. 4. 69, with the commentators.