Pandora's Box - originsWhat type of myth is this? Zeus wishes to punish mankindPandora’s box is an origin myth – the attempt to explain the beginning of something.
People have always wanted to know why things happen in the world the way they do. Before there was much science, they did not have much understanding of how the world works, but they still wanted to know, just as much as we do. Human curiosity always asks why .. and then human creativity finds ways of giving an answer.
There are many myths, across all cultures, which attempt to explain the beginnings of human beings and why there are evil things like disease, hate and war in the world. In many stories, these evils are released because humans disobey gods.
You may like to compare the story of Pandora with the story of Adam and Eve. Do you know any other similar stories from other cultures?Are there other versions of the story? Pandora CreationThe story of Pandora and her box comes from Ancient Greece and is very old. Because of this, there are several versions of the myth.
In Greek mythology, Pandora (meaning ‘all-giving’) was the first woman on earth. Before humans there were the immortals (the Gods and Titans). The brothers, Prometheus and Epimetheus were Titans (Giant people) who had fought on the Gods’ side in a war. Some say they were cousins of Zeus, king of the gods; he asked Prometheus to create man out of clay and water (in many versions Hephaestus helps in this). Epimetheus had to create the animals and give them their gifts of courage, swiftness etc. He gave out all the gifts and had none left for Man. So Prometheus decides to make man stand upright, like the gods, and give them fire (which Zeus did not want them to have – some say he had removed it as a punishment). So Prometheus stole fire – some say from Zeus’ lightning, others from the sun and yet others from Hephaestus’ forge.
Most agree that Zeus asked Hephaestus to make Pandora (the first woman)...