Ancient Greek Stories: Ancient Greek death deals more with the afterlife or the other side. Living persons are expected to place a coin under the tongue of the dead to prepare and speed up his or her journey across the Styx River which is said to be the gateway to the afterlife.
Greek Mythology Characters
The river crossing takes place on a ferry manned by a miserly character called Charon who had to be paid a fare for the dead soul to cross the river.
Ancient Greek Stories
The common belief in ancient Greece was that the souls would keep returning to haunt people for not paying the fare. Ancient Greek death has much more in beliefs and rituals as well. After crossing the river successfully, the dead-faced a huge gated wall that was constantly under the watch of the three-headed dog, Cerberus.
The dog was always on the hunt and very ferocious, always wanting to taste the blood of all living beings. Getting into the gate would take them through shaded trees and on to the field called Asphodel.The field is the place where the dead would be judged by Aeacus, Minos, and Rhadamanthys and until then, the dead are supposed to wander across the field. It is like waiting for judgment.
Greek Mythology Short Stories
Spirits not bad or good or of mixed character were made to wait in the field forever. Those who were known for their disbelief and arrogance to the gods were selected for special punishments and there are vivid examples in Greek mythology about the kind of treatment meted out.
Inside a stream full of water, an extremely thirsty Tantalus was put in, but the water ebbed as soon as he lowered his chin to drink. Sisyphus was made to take a rock uphill, but as soon as he lumbered up, the weight of the rock brought him down again and again.
He had to repeat the tedious task over and over again. Neither Tantalus could quench his thirst, nor could Sisyphus go uphill with the huge rock and these were some of the common beliefs about ancient Greek death.
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