A2Z Challenge: N is for Nyx

I have done some writing and reading about darkness and night. So, I picked this goddess to review. I am also a fan of another Nicks, the lady called Stevie. It made sense to me.

 

Nyx is the Greek goddess of the night. By some accounts, Nyx is the offspring of Chaos; by others, she precedes him. Varying accounts have Nyx, in mating with her brother Erebus (Darkness and Shadows), as the mother of many deities. All this Greek deity myth stuff is very confusing and conflicting. Kind of makes me wonder why someone didn’t just decide on one omnipotent god and leave it at that. Anyway, Nyx had a bunch of kiddoes as well as other brothers and sisters.

Other sibling of Nyx, children of Chaos include Gaea (Earth), Tartarus (Underworld), and Eros (Love).

Disregarding paternity (we don’t care who the daddy was), Nyx was the mother of Hypnos (Sleep), Thanatos (Death), Aether, (Brightness), Hemera (Day), Moirai (the Fates), Geras (Old Age), Moros (Doom), Keres (Destruction), Oneiroi (Dreams), Monus (Blame), Oizys (Pain), Hesperides (Daughters of the evening), Nemesis (Retribution), Apate (Deceit), Philotes (Friendship), and Eris (Strife).

I find it interesting that Eros, god of love or sexual desire (think an adultish Cupid), is a direct offspring of Chaos. Yet, unlike other primordial siblings, he is not a physical world deity, but a god for the condition of procreation. Thus, while accounts may vary, ancient Greek mythology elevated the god of love to a primary level. I like that. I have heard love and sex referred to as primordial desires. Now I know why. I plan to use this information when I get back to writing about the paradox of love.

Nyx appearances are sparse in mythology, but they grant the goddess of night such exceptional power and beauty that she was feared even by Zeus. The story goes that Hypnos (her mischievous son and god of sleep) put Zeus to sleep, allowing Heracles to have a very bad day. Can you imagine, the god Zeus sleeping on the job?

Zeus was pissed and would have tossed Hypnos into the sea. But the sleep-god ran to his mama, Nyx, for protection. Even gods did that. Zeus did not want trouble with Nyx, so he chilled and let Hypnos off easy. Tenuous relationships followed.

The vision of Nyx’s power in the cosmos is further enhanced in poems by Orpheus. In one, the entire universe dances to the tune of Nyx singing or chanting. Now that goddess has a voice better than any angel. Right?

Each night Nyx emerges with Erebus. They block the light emitted from Aether, bringing night and darkness to the world. The next morning Hemera emerges to sweep away the darkness of night. Nyx briefly returns to her abode. Mother Nyx and daughter Hemera are never in the same place at the same time. Things may have changed in later Greek mythology, but Nyx is never subjugated.

Look both ways, especially at night.
Find the gaps and mind them well.

6 thoughts on “A2Z Challenge: N is for Nyx

  1. Wow! That Nyx family tree is quite impressive! Interesting chic, this goddess of darkness! I’m learning so much from your series on fantasy and mystical creatures. 🧞‍♀️🧚‍♂️🧜🏻‍♂️

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