Cronus: God of Time in Greek Mythology

     Cronus god described in two ways within Greek Mythology, but in both forms he was the representation of time. In one version, Chronos, was the whole, in another version, Cronos, son of Uranus.

Cronus in Greek Mythology:

     Cronus, in Greek Mythology, god of time and king of the titans. At first glance, he is the youngest of the titans, son of Uranus, the starry sky, and Gaia, the earth. Alternatively, for Plato, the gods Fórcis, Cronos and Reia were the eldest sons of Ocean and Thetis. Cronos was the god of time, especially when seen in its destructive aspect, the impregnable time that rules fates and can devour everything. Titan Cronos served as inspiration for the ancient orphic sect to create the figure of Chronos, whom they called the "primordial god of time" It is worth mentioning that the Orphic way of life caused great strangeness among the Greeks and the new theogony created by them was likewise repudiated by the civic and popular cult of the Greek pleis. Which means that, for ordinary Greeks, the titan Cronos (and only he) was the god of time par excellence. 

     Chronos was usually represented with a harp, scythe or scythe, with which he would have castrated and deposed Uranus, your father. In Athens, on the 12th day of the Attic month of Hecatombaion, the Kronia festival was celebrated in honor of Cronos. His brothers and sisters were: Titans: Oceano, Céos, Crio, Iapetus, Hyperion, Titânides: Tethys, Web, Phoebe, Reia, Mnemosine, Themis.

Cronus Myth:

     According to the ancient myth recorded by Hesiod in his Theogony, Cronos (also portrayed as Saturn in Roman mythology) envied the power of his father, Uranus, the ruler of the universe. Uranus conquered the enmity of Gaia, mother of Cronos, by hiding the giant sons of Gaia, Hecatonchires and Cyclops, in Tartarus. So Gaia built a harp and convinced Cronos and his brothers to use it to castrate Uranus. At the request of his mother, he became lord of heaven, castrating his father with a scythe and throwing his testicles into the ocean. From the blood that flowed from Uranus and reached the land, giants, erinias and meliads would have appeared. The testicles would have produced a white foam from which Aphrodite emerged. Uranus swore vengeance and would have called his sons Titenes (Τιτῆνες; which means, according to Hesiod, "the endeavors", for exceeding their limits and daring to commit such an act). 

     After getting rid of Uranus, Kronos arrested the Hecatonchires and Cyclopes again and sent the Champion dragon to guard them. From then on, the world was ruled by the lineage of the Titans, who, according to Hesiod, constituted the second divine generation. It was during the reign of Cronos that humanity (newborn) lived its Golden Age.Cronos and Reia. Reproduction of Roman bas-relief Cronos married his sister Reia, who gave him six children (the Chronids): three women, Hestia, Demeter and Hera and three men, Hades, Poseidon (Poseidon) and Zeus. dethroned by an oracle's curse, Cronos swallowed his children when they were born. He ate everyone except Zeus, who Reia managed to save by deceiving Cronos by wrapping a stone (the omphalan stone) in a cloth, which he swallowed without realizing the exchange.


     Reia hid Zeus in a cave on Mount Ida in Crete. According to some versions, Zeus was breastfed by the goat Amalthea, while a group of coribantes made noise to prevent Cronos from hearing when the baby cried. Other versions of the myth say that Zeus was created by the nymph Adamanteia, who kept Zeus tied on a rope suspended between the land, the sea and the sky, which were the domain of Cronos. Other versions say that Zeus was created by his grandmother, Gaia. 

     When Zeus grew up, he decided to take revenge on his father, requesting, for this feat, the support of Métis - Prudência - daughter of the Titan Oceano. She offered Cronos a magic potion that made him vomit the children he had devoured. Then came the titanomachy, a struggle between Zeus, his brothers and sisters, hecatonchirps and cyclops on one side, and Cronos and the other titans on the other. Then Zeus became lord of heaven and supreme deity of the third generation of gods of Greek mythology, by banishing the Titans to Tartarus and removing the father from the throne. 
     In Homer's words, Zeus bound him with chains in the underworld, where he was found, after ten years of fierce struggle, by his brothers, the Titans, who had thought they could regain the power of Zeus and the Olympian gods. In some variants of the myth, Cronos and the Titans are reached by the mercy of Zeus, liberated from Tartarus and each one resumes its cosmological function in the universe. With the permission of his son, Hades, Cronos became the ruler of the Champs Elysées (which is located in the underworld), a resting place for the blessed dead. According to Aeneida de Virgílio, Cronos, after being defeated by Zeus, takes refuge in Lazio, where he becomes king and legislator.


     It is said in Greco-Roman mythology that Cronos and the oceanic Filira were the parents of the wise centaur Chiron, Dolops and Aphrus, the ancestor and eponym of the Aphroi, that is, the Africans. They are all the children of Cronos: Hestia, Chiron, Demeter, Hera, Hades, Poseidon and Zeus.


     Chronos also called Aeon, in Greek Mythology, it was the personification of time eternal and immortal, and ruled over the destiny of immortal gods. Chronos was a deity created by the Orphic sect (it is the name given to a set of religious beliefs and practices originating in the Greek Hellenistic world as well as by the Thracians, associated with the literature attributed to the mythical poet Orpheus, who went down to Hades and returned), being essentially a copy of the Titan Cronos, who, in the popular cult of the ancient Greeks, was the god of time par excellence. 

     During antiquity, Chronos was occasionally mistaken for the Titan Cronos. According to Plutarch, the ancient Greeks believed that Cronos was an allegorical name for Chronos. Which means that, in fact, the figure of Chronos was fundamentally the same as that of the Titan Cronos, the god of the time of hesiodic theogony and the common cult of the Greeks.
     In addition to the name, the story of Cronus eating his children was also interpreted as an allegory of a specific aspect of time, the sphere of influence of Chronos. Chronos represented the destructive characteristics of time, which consumed all things, a concept that was definitely illustrated when the Titan king consumed the Olympian gods - the past consuming the future, the older generation suppressed by the next generation. During the Renaissance, the identification of Cronos and Chronos gave rise to "Pai Tempo", an anthropomorphic representation of time wielding the scythe of the harvest. The original meaning and etymology of the word Chronos are still uncertain.

Concept of Time:

     The ancient Greeks had three concepts for the time: khrónos, kairós and aiônôn. Khrónos refers to the chronological, or sequential, time that can be measured, associated with the linear movement of earthly things, with a beginning and an end. Kairós refers to an indeterminate moment in time, when something special happens, the time of opportunity. Aion was already a sacred and eternal time, without a precise measure, a time of creativity where the hours do not pass chronologically, also associated with the circular movement of the stars, and which in modern theology would correspond to the time of God.


     According to Orphic theogony, Chronos emerged in the beginning of time, formed by itself, or born from the union of Hydros and Gaia. He was an incorporeal and serpentine being with three heads, one for man, one for bull and one for lion. He joined his companion Ananque (the inevitability) in a spiral around the firstborn egg separating it, then forming the Universe ordered with Gaia, Ponto (the deep sea) and Uranus (the starry sky). With Ananque he was the father of Erebus or Skotos, Ether or Akmon and Chaos or Aer, as well as Fanes, born from the firstborn egg. Some authors make him the father of Hemera or Amara and Moiras with Nix, as well as the Twelve Hours. 

     He remained as a remote and disembodied god of time, who surrounded the Universe, leading the rotation of the heavens and the eternal walk of time, occasionally appearing before Zeus in the form of an elderly man with long hair and white beards, although he remained the most of the time in the form of a force beyond the reach and power of the younger gods. One of Chronos' representations is that of a god who devours his own children. This representation is due to the fact that the ancient Greeks took Chronos as the creator of time, therefore, of everything that exists and can end, being, for this reason, considered themselves as children of time (Chronos), and once that it is impossible to escape time, everyone would sooner or later be defeated (devoured) by it. 

     Like the one God and creator of Christians, Jews and Muslims, creator of the universe and final judge. One possible explanation for this representation is the confusion with the titan Cronos, who ate his children so that they would not rebel against him and take him the power of the Earth as he did with his father, Uranus.


     In Greco-Roman philosophy, Kairós is the experience of the right moment. The Pythagoreans considered Kairós as an "opportunity". Kairos is potential time, eternal and nonlinear time, while Chronos is the linear measure of a movement or period. In rhetoric, Kairos was a central notion, as it characterized "the fleeting moment when an opportunity / opening presents itself and must be faced with strength and dexterity for success to be achieved". In the practical philosophy of medicine attributed to Hippocrates, diseases, for a certain time, evolve silently until they reach the crucial moment, called krisis (crisis), when the disease defines itself, towards a cure or not. 

     The good doctor must identify the kairós (opportune time) to act. This time (kairós) does not last long (khronos) and, therefore, the doctor has no time to lose. For the atomist philosophers of antiquity (like Democritus, Epicurus and Lucretius), who reject all teleology in nature, the formation of the world is the result of the combination and dissociation of innumerable atoms by which each thing emerges immanently at the "opportune moment" when some of infinite atoms, which collide at random by the infinitude of time, combine consistently, lasting for a time until decomposition, until death. Kairós Relief of Lysippus, 4th century antique copy in TrogirIn mythology, Kairós was usually considered the minor son of Zeus and the goddess of prosperity, Tyche.
     Kairós was fast, walked naked and had only a lock of hair on his forehead. It was only possible to grab it by holding it by that tuft. If this were not the case, it would be impossible to follow him or bring him back. Kairós was seen in the intelligence of Athena, in the love of Eros and even in the wine of Dionysus. Later, in the genealogy of the gods, it seems to be associated with all of them, as a manifestation of a specific moment. Kairós could be (or be manifested in) Chronos (Tempo), already in Christian theology, in the notion of Aeon (eternity). At no time would Kairós reflect the past or envision the future; it symbolizes the best moment in the present: the moment when chaos can be removed and happiness embraced.

Check Now:

Erebus is, in Greek Mythology, the God of Darkness and the personification of evil and darkness; he is Nix's brother and lives in a dark and empty place called Void, check.

Meet the Goddess of Night: Nix and her relevant role within Greek Mythology. Nix was also known to be a primordial and very powerful Titaness. Check everything about this goddess.

Chaos is a Greek God and was considered by Hesiod as the first deity to appear in the universe, therefore he is the oldest of the Gods and Titans. He is also known as the primordial God of Creation in Greek Mythology.

Selene is, in Greek Mythology, the Goddess of the Moon. But unlike Artemis (who is of the new generation), Selene is the Old Goddess who represents the moon star. This deity was very dear among ancient peoples.

Neptune or Netune is the name given, in Roman Mythology, to the Greek God Poseidon (or Posídon). Neptune is the Sea King. He is also considered the god of animals and even of the earth.

Pluto, is the name given, in Roman Mythology, to the Greek God Hades. Pluto is the King of the Underworld and has as a pet, Cerberus, the three-headed Hound and guardian of the underworld.

Jupiter is the name given - in Roman Mythology to Zeus, the Greek God of Thunder and King of the Gods. Zeus was the most relevant deity in Greek and Roman mythologies, learn more about this icon below.

Thalia is, in Greek Mythology, one of dozens of daughters of the thunder god Zeus. This "demigod" appears in the Percy Jackson movie saga and became well known from there. Learn more about Thalia below.

Phanes is a little known deity in Greek Mythology and is associated with the God of Life. He is often associated with Chaos as well as the deity of creation. He was the son of Chronos, check below.

Aurora was, in Roman Mythology, the Goddess of the Dawn. This deity (theoretically) was a plagiarism of the Greek Goddess "Eos" and also of the Hindu Goddess Hausus, check out the article below.