Who was Oceanus?
Oceanus was the Titan lord of the ocean and one of the extraordinary number of gods and goddesses worshipped by the Ancient Greeks. The Titans were the descendents of the first gods or divinities, called the primordial or primeval gods, who were born out of Chaos. The first 12 Titans, that included Oceanus were a race of powerful, giant gods from the union of the primordial deities Gaia and Uranus. Oceanus was the eldest son who married his sister Tethys. Their children were the Oceanides (three thousand daughters) and the Potamoi, the river gods (three thousand sons). The legend and myth about Oceanus, the lord of the ocean, and the Titans has been passed down through the ages and plays an important role in the history of the Ancient World of Greece and the study of the Greek classics.
Facts about Oceanus
Oceanus features in the Creation myth of the ancient Greeks which are based on the idea that these supernatural beings resembled mortals but were of gigantic proportions and possessed great magical and mystic powers.
Alternate Names: Okeanos
Role & Function: The function of Oceanus is described as being the Titan lord of the ocean
Status: A principle god in the first dynasty of Titans
Name of Wife / Consort: Tethys
Name of Father: Uranus
Name of Mother: Gaia
Names of Brothers (Titans): Hyperion, Coeus, Cronus, Crius and Iapetus
Names of Sisters (Titanides): Mnemosyne, Tethys, Theia, Phoebe, Rhea and Themis
Names of Children: The Oceanides and the Potamoi
The Children of Oceanus and Tethys
The children of Oceanus and Tethys were the Oceanides and the Potamoi. The Oceanides were their 3000 daughters who were goddesses and water nymphs. The Potamoi were the three thousand sons of Oceanus and Tethys who were river-gods.
Facts about Oceanus in Greek Mythology
Discover interesting information and facts about Oceanus, the Titan lord of the ocean.
Oceanus took the side of the Olympians in the War of the Titans
He was represented as a powerful but kindly old man or having the upper body of a man with a long beard and horns (often represented as the claws of a crab or lobster), and the lower torso of a sea serpent
Oceanus came to represent the unknown waters of the Atlantic Ocean and a god of the next generation of deities
Oceanus alone was the only one of the primeval divinities permitted to retain his dominion under the new dynasty
He was a direct descendent of Pontus the primeval god of the sea.
He was the personification of the mythical ever-flowing stream, which, encircled the world, and from which sprang all the rivers and streams that watered the earth
He separated the earth and mortals from Hades, the world of the dead
He was the eldest Titan
The Imprisonment of Oceanus and the Titans
According to the ancient Greek Creation myth Uranus, the father of Oceanus and the other Titans, was terrified of the massive size and strength of his gigantic children and to prevent them rebelling against him, Uranus seized them immediately after their birth and hurled them down into a dark abyss called Tartarus, where he kept his Titan children in chains. Their mother, Gaia, helped them to escape and, led by Cronus, they overthrew their father and took power as the Titan gods. Cronus was no better than his father which led to the War of the Titans.
The Titanomachy in Greek Mythology
The Battle of the Titans, called the Titanomachy, was a 10 year war and power struggle that was fought between the Titans and the gods and goddesses who would become known as the Olympians. In ancient Greek mythology Mount Othrys was the base of the Titans during the Battle of the Titans and Mount Olympus was the base of the Olympian gods and goddesses led by Zeus. Mnemosyne, Themis, Oceanus, and Hyperion choose to join the Olympians. The male Titans were eventually all deposed by Zeus and cast into the pit of Tartarus. Oceanus alone was the only one of the primeval divinities permitted to retain his dominion under the new dynasty.