Cronus was the son of Gaiea and Uranus1 He conspired with Gaeia to kill his father, afterwards becoming her consort, which is the Greek way of saying they were “doing it.” Later mythographers said he married Rhea, not Gaeia, but that was just trying to make the gods look better adjusted than they really were. 2 Gaiea gave birth to three children by Cronus 3 but Cronus, fearing one of his children would murder him 4 swallowed each as soon as it was born. The fourth child, Zeus, she hid, giving Cronus a large rock to swallow instead. Cronus was a god, but he wasn’t very bright. Zeus was raised in secrecy in a mountain on
Crete. 5 When he reached adulthood, he confronted his father and sliced his belly open with a sickle, which may have symbolized the annual death of the sacred king. 6 Out of Cronus’ stomach, fully grown, came Zeus’ siblings, Poseidon, Hades, and Hera. Gaiea offered to become Zeus’ consort as well, but he’d already seen what came of consorting with her, so instead he took his sister Hera as his wife.7
1. No jokes, please.
2. It didn’t do much good.
3. I know, ick, but remember, it’s just a myth.
4. And who can blame him?
5. By a she-goat, which somehow seems symbolic of something.
6. On the other hand, it may just be a handy way to kill someone.
7. That marriage didn’t work out so well either.