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Greek Love Stories
Orpheus and Eurydice

 

Orpheus was son of Apollo, the Olympian god and Calliope, the oldest and most beautiful of the nine muses. He plays the lyre and had an enchanting voice. He could charm beasts, trees and even rocks to do whatever he wanted with his musical talent.

He fell in love with a nymph named Eurydice and before long, the two were married. They became practically inseparable and could not live without each other.

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One day, a satyr saw and pursued Eurydice. She ran in terror and accidentally stepped on a poisonous snake. Eurydice died and her spirit went to the Underworld. Orpheus was devastated. He decided to go down into the underworld to bring her back

Once inside the Underworld, Orpheus charmed Cerberus, the three-headed dog of Hades who guards the Underworld to sleep using his lyre and beautiful voice. He also played music so sweet and moving that Hades and his cold Queen Persephone relented and allowed Orpheus to bring Eurydice back to the surface of the earth to enjoy the light of day. However, they warned Orpheus to walk in front of Eurydice for the journey back and not look back at her until they are out of the underworld.

Orpheus readily agreed and began his ascent. Throughout the journey, he listened closely for her footfalls behind him but he could hear nothing. Fearing that Hades had tricked him to get him out of the Underworld, Orpheus turned around when he was only a few feet from leaving the Underworld. He caught sight of Eurydice for a brief moment before she was whisked back down into the land of the dead.

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Orpheus tried to enter the Underworld again but failed. He spent the rest of his days not willing to love another so as to stay true to the memory of Eurydice.

 

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