Central part of a large floor mosaic, from a Roman villa in Sentinum (now known as Sassoferrato, in Umbria, Italy), ca. 200–250 C.E. Aion, the god of eternity, is standing inside a celestial sphere decorated with zodiac signs, in between a green tree and a bare tree (summer and winter, respectively). Sitting in front of him is the mother-earth goddess, Tellus (the Roman counterpart of Gaea) with her four children, who possibly represent the four seasons.
Myths about Uranus
Uranus, which was discovered
by William Herschel
in 1781, was not known in ancient times. Astronomers continued the practice of naming planets after deities in Greek and Roman mythology and named this new planet after the Greek god Ouranos (Roman Caelus).
Ouranos was the son and husband of Gaea and the first god of the sky. He was the father of many of the early gods and goddesses, but he was frightened of his oldest children and locked them up inside the Earth. This caused Gaea a lot of pain, and her Titan sons decided to fight their father. We don't have art that shows Ouranos, but this image of a Roman mosaic from a villa in Italy does show his wife, Gaea, with the Anatolian god Aion, who was identified with both Chronos and Ouranos, and her children.
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Learn about Earth and space science, and have fun while doing it! The games
section of our online store
includes a climate change card game
and the Traveling Nitrogen game
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