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Illustrated by the students of the Primary School of Dimitritsi, Greece for the eTwinning science project

1. Medusa, Perseus and‌. Mirrors

Medusa was a terrible monster. On her head she had snakes instead of hair and she was so hideous that anyone who looked at her turned into stone.

Many brave men tried to slain this cunning creature but failed.

Perseus, the son of Zeus and the princess Danae, decided to confront the notorious monster.

He put on his magic sandals and flew to the island where Medusa lived.

With him, Perseus carried

Athena, from Acropolis

the shinny shield of the goddess Athena. Once he found Medusa, Perseus did not look directly at the creature’s face but instead used his shield as a mirror to see through it.

He thus cut the monster’s head, put it in a sack and returned home victorious.

2. Narcissus and the…. Mirror

Narcissus or Narkissos (Greek: Νάρκισσος), was a very handsome hunter He was so headsome that every girl he met fell in love with him. Unfortunately, he liked nobody but himself. In the end he was punished for his arrogance and his cold heart. One day as Narcissos hunted in the woods, he came to a quit pool.

He was very thirsty and he bent down to drink. Suddenly, he stopped and stared, for in the mirroring surface of the water he saw the handsomest face he had ever seen. He smiled and the handsome face smiled back at him. Joyfully he nodded and so did the stranger in the water.

“I love you,� said Narcissus to the handsome face. He could not do anything else. He was spellbound by the handsome stranger in the water. He did not know that it was his own image that he had fallen in love with and he sat smiling at himself, forgetting to eat, forgetting to drink, until he wasted away and died.

In the place where Narcissus had been sitting the lovely Narcissus flower sprang up. Until now it blooms early in the spring and is often found in damp soil nearto a pond. The stem bends just before the blossom, tilting it so the blossom faces out or down rather than up. According to myth, this is because Narcissus was gazing down at his reflection when he was transformed into the flower.

Narcissism is named after Narcissus, and both derive from the Greek word narke "numb" from which we also get the word narcotic. This myth teaches us how the ancient Greek gods had used the water as a mirror to punish Narcissus for vanity, callousness and insensitivity, as he was emotionally numb to the entreaties of those who fell in love with his beauty.

For the eTwinning science project

Greek myths about mirrors  

a study for the eTwinning project PHENOMENA

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