It was Kronos, or Cronos, a son of Gaia and Ouranos (Uranus), who castrated his father to become ruler of Olympus; and so Kronos was the sire of many of the Gods. It is written that Uranus hid his children away in the bowels of the earth (Tartarus) out of fear of their great strength and power. Her childrens pain and discomfort too much to bear, so Gaia hatched a plan, that would end the leadership of Uranus. But to achieve this she required the help from one of her children. She asked them all, but only her youngest child Cronus was brave enough to answer her call. To help Cronus accomplish his task Gaia gave him a adamantine sickle to serve as his weapon. Cronus lay in wait hidden from view, and when Uranus came to lay with Gaia, Cronus attacked. With one mighty slash from the sickle Cronus severed the genitals from Uranus' body. And from Uranus' blood which fell to the earth Erinyes were born, along with the Giants and Nymphs of the manna ash trees. In another versions Aphrodite was born from the seafoam created from the sex organs of Uranus, after they had been thrown into the sea by Cronus. Once Cronus had castrated Uranus, he and his wife Rhea took the throne. Under their power a time of harmony and prosperity began, which on Earth became known as the "Golden Age"; a time when it was said that people lived without greed or violence, and without toil or the need for laws. But not all was well for Cronus, as it was fated that he would be overthrown by one of his own children. To prevent this from happening he began to swallow his newborn, taking them seconds after they were born, and then swallowing them whole, keeping them inside his own body where they could do him no harm. Rhea did not like the thoughts of losing all her children, and with the help of Gaia she saved Zeus from this fate. Rhea wrapped a stone, or in some versions a horse, in Zeus' swaddling clothes which Cronus took and immediately swallowed thinking it was the child. Gaia and Rhea's plan worked well and the baby Zeus was taken to Crete, where in some versions, the divine goat Amaltheia suckled and raised the infant Zeus. When Zeus had grown into a young man he returned to Cronus' domain, and with the help of Gaia, compelled Cronus to regurgitate the five children he had previously swallowed. Zeus led the revolt against his father and the dynasty of the Titans, defeated and then banished them.
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LAST MODIFIED MAY 10,2006