The story of Pandora's box teaches an interesting lesson to readers, like many myths do. It's a tale that warns of the dangers of letting your curiosity control your actions. Continue with this lesson to learn more!
If you have a question, how do you find the answer? Of course, you could look on Study.com, search in your library, or do a simple Internet search. Sometimes, you may even ask your parents, teachers, or friends. Ancient Greeks - who were just as curious as we are - could have asked asked around, too, but they didn't have the Internet to give them quick and easy answers.
The need to answer unanswered questions is why the Greeks created their own myths - or stories - to explain the things that they did not have firm answers to, like why the seasons change or why the sun rises and sets. The story of Pandora is a Greek myth that explains why there is bad in the world, and it warns of the danger of being too curious.
The Story of Pandora's Box
Greek myth has it that Zeus, the most powerful of all Greek gods, was angry with another god, Prometheus, for stealing fire and giving it to humans. In fact, Zeus punished Prometheus by chaining him atop a mountain, where eagles pecked out his liver every day.
But that wasn't enough punishment! Zeus had to punish humans, too, so he ordered the creation of a stunningly beautiful yet very silly woman: Pandora. All the gods and goddesses work together to create Pandora. One god carved her out of marble and gave her gemstones for eyes, while goddesses dressed her up in expensive jewelry and gowns.
Pandora's creation was a success - she was almost as beautiful as the goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite. But Zeus added a major flaw to Pandora: He gave her curiosity as well as a sealed box that she was forbidden from ever opening. (In the Greek story, the box is actually a jar.)
Pandora Gives in to Curiosity
Have you ever heard the saying, 'Curiosity killed that cat?' This phrase warns you of the dangers of letting your curiosity take hold of you and get you into dangerous situations. Well, the story of Pandora and her box gives the same warning.
Pandora just couldn't control her curiosity, and she opened the box she was forbidden to open. When she opened it just a tiny bit, all the evils of humankind, like envy, hate, greed, and death, spilled out and infected the world. Shocked at what happened, Pandora snapped the box closed, and all that remained inside was hope.
Because of Pandora's actions, the world was introduced to war, and people began to be unkind to each other, steal from one another, and lie. Though this was Zeus' plan all along, it became too much even for him. He drowned all of the evils in a flood and restored order on Earth.
In Greek mythology, Pandora was a woman created by Zeus and other gods to punish humanity. She was given curiosity and a sealed box that she must never open. Unable to fight her curiosity, she opened the box, unleashing all of the evils of the world.