Zeus, enraged at Prometheus for giving mankind fire, as well as mankind for accepting it, punished both. Prometheus must endure his punishment for all eternity, but mankind is to be obliterated by a deluge. Prometheus instructed his son to construct a large vessel to sail the raging flood until it subsided and the vessel ran aground on Mount Parnassus; the location of Delphi, Apollo's sacred temple.
Having survived the great flood with his wife, Pyrrha, Deucalion consulted the oracle who informed him that mankind had been wiped out. Deucalion asked how he should go about to restore humanity and the oracle told him to "go with head averted, and throw behind you the bones of your mother." Deucalion and Pyrrha spent the night trying to decipher the oracles cryptic message and by morning they had a solution. They figured that the 'mother' must have meant Mother Earth, Gaia. Her bones would be stones and rocks. Deucalion and Pyrrha descended Mount Parnassus with their heads averted and behind them they tossed stones. The stones that Deucalion tossed became men, while the stones that Pyrrha tossed became women.
The new men and women decided to follow Deucalion and Pyrrha, setting out to restore and repopulate the human race.
|Heracles • Theseus • Perseus • Odysseus • Oedipus • Orpheus • Jason and the Argonauts • Nestor • Atalanta • Cadmus • Hector • Memnon • Achilles • Daedalus • Bellerophon • Deucalion • Peleus • Castor and Pollux • Palamedes • Diomedes • Meleager • Telamon • Ajax • Philoctetes • Laertes|