Aphrodite Lesson for Kids: Myths & Facts

Instructor: Elizabeth Diehl

Elizabeth studied to be a special education teacher at Regis University, and received her masters in 2014.

Let's learn about Aphrodite, the ancient Greek goddess of love and beauty. We will learn about what she was like, her favorite people and what made her special as a goddess. You will also learn about some of her symbols, like swans and apples!

Goddess of Swans?

Have you ever seen pictures of swans or doves at weddings, and wondered why a person would want birds on their wedding decorations? The idea that swans and doves are somehow birds of love go back to ancient Greek times. They are connected to the goddess of love herself, Aphrodite.

What do these swans have to do with the goddess of love?
wedding cupcakes with swans

Who Was Aphrodite?

Aphrodite was a powerful goddess of love and beauty. She made many people fall in love with her, but she also helped other people fall in love.

Aphrodite is said to have been born in the sea. She is often described as being 'golden' and as being dressed in beautiful clothing and lovely jewelry. She is also known to be smiling or laughing a lot. The ancient Greeks imagined that Aphrodite traveled in a grand chariot pulled by swans. Some stories said that her chariot was pulled by white doves. For an ancient Greek, seeing swans or doves would remind them of the powerful goddess.

Aphrodite used swans to travel.
Aphrodite on a swan

There were several other symbols of Aphrodite. Roses were considered her flower, and the pomegranate and apple were important fruits that represented her. The Greeks used these things as ways to celebrate love in their own lives. These symbols carried on throughout history, and are still around today!

Aphrodite's Relationships

The leader of the gods, Zeus, had Aphrodite marry someone good, hard working and quiet. He gave her to the god of blacksmithing, Hephaestus. Hephaestus was considered ugly, and he was deformed. Hephaestus was so honored to have Aphrodite as his wife, that he made her a beautiful belt with jewels in it. This made Aphrodite look even more beautiful! Aphrodite loved her new belt, called a girdle, and wore it all the time.

But Aphrodite was not happy being married to Hephaestus. He was her opposite, and they did not have much in common. She had romantic relationships with other men and other gods, and kept them secret from her husband. She spent a lot of time with the god of war, Ares.

Aphrodite had children also. Her son Eros was the most famous. He was the messenger of love. Eros would follow his mother, and would help people fall in love with each other. Usually artists would show him with wings, and a bow and arrow. The Romans called him Cupid.

Eros was the messenger of love.
Eros with his bow and arrow

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