Facts about Prometheus

Born: ?
Birthplace: Ancient Greece
Best known as: The god who gave fire to humans


Prometheus Biography

Prometheus is the “fire-bringer” who (in Greek mythology) gave the secret of fire to humans. Prometheus was the son of a Titan, one of the giant elder gods of Greek mythology. Prometheus was a friend to mortal men; his best-known act was sneaking into the heavens and stealing fire from the gods, which he then delivered to humans on Earth. Prometheus also foretold the doom of Zeus, but refused to tell Zeus the secret of how that doom would occur. Enraged, Zeus had Prometheus chained to a rock in the mountains, where an eagle came every day and gnawed his liver. This went on for 30 years until the hero Hercules slew the bird, ending Prometheus’s torment.

Extra credit

In some tellings of the Prometheus story, it was a vulture rather than an eagle who came daily to eat his liver… The Greek tragedian Aeschylus wrote a famous play about the hero, Prometheus Bound. In the 19th century the poet Shelley replied with his poem Prometheus UnboundPrometheus was also the title of a 2012 sci-fi movie directed by Ridley Scott.


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