The Fates of Greek Mythology

Decent Essays
Thalia Sharon
Civilization and Society

If “The Fates” predate the Greek Gods and seemingly have control over their destinies in addition to those of humankind, then why are they not glorified figures in Greek mythology?

Greek mythology is centered upon the various Gods and their contributions to every aspect of human life. The people of Ancient Greece worshipped Zeus and his contemporaries and exalted them in several mythological works. In the eyes of the people, the Gods controlled every sector of Greek society. The Moirai, or “Fates”, however, who existed even before the Gods made their mark on the Greek world, determined the fate of humans and deities alike. This consequently raises the question of why the Fates were not
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In fact, “the deathless gods who dwell on Olympus made a golden race of mortal men who lived in the time of Cronus when he was reigning in heaven. And they lived like gods without sorrow of heart, remote and free from toil and grief: miserable age rested not on them.”4 To express their gratitude to Cronus, the Greeks dedicated a harvest festival in his name which was subsequently celebrated every year.5 This deep fondness for Cronus illustrates why the Greeks would disapprove of anyone who might cause him to fail, namely, the Fates. This reasoning further supports why the Fates were drawn as decrepit, ugly figures. The three Fates of Greek Mythology, Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos assigned destinies both to the Greek people and to the Greek divinities. They spun the thread of life at the moment of birth, decided how long each thread should be (namely, how long one should live) and cut the thread at the moment of death. Due to the Fates’ omnipotence, one would think that they should be depicted in Greek mythology as beautiful, respected personas. However, in almost every account of the Fates, their auguries entail an
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