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Myth 1 The magical girdle of Aphrodite had the power to inspire the passion of desire. Hera, in her role as the goddess of marriage, occasionally borrowed it from Aphrodite to reunite quarreling spouses in love and to inspire the bridal contests of suitors. Myth 2 Hephaestus, suspecting his wife of cheating on him, made a chain-net trap, which he set up on the bed. When Aphrodite and Ares were in a compromising position on the bed, the trap was sprung, and they couldn't break out of it. He then went and showed them off in front of all the other gods, until he was persuaded to let them go in exchange for Ares paying a fine Are those to myths related to Hephaestus and do the chain-net made of Adamant or girdle have anything to do with each other? Please clarify. Thanks corax.

Hello, kristine.

Keeping in mind that consistency, logic and continuity play no great role in Greek mythology, I am not aware of any direct connection between Aphrodite's girdle and the net of Hephaestus (which was usually held to have been made of very fine bronze); certainly there is no suggestion that the Smith-god had been responsible for both items.

After the adulterous couple were discovered and the male gods summoned (the female gods found the whole thing indelicate and stayed away), Hephaestus at first demanded the return of his bride-price from Zeus, who disclaimed any responsibility. Finally, Poseidon intervened on behalf of Ares, guaranteeing that the latter would pay an equivalent fine - which, of course, he never did.

Another use of the girdle was as a kind of celestial shield. When King Anchises unwisely boasted of having slept with the goddess, Zeus hurled a thunderbolt at him, but Aphrodite interposed her girdle and saved his life.



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I can answer questions and offer advice or, at least, an educated opinion on a range of questions concerning Greek culture. Particular areas of expertise include: Modern Greek language & literature; Greek history, ancient to contemporary; contemporary "high" culture; Greek politics; Greek society. I am unable to answer questions on the following: Ancient Greek language; Greek music; popular culture; sports and athletics; tourism and holiday issues.


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