Skip to main content
Select Source:

Graces

Graces

In Greek and Roman mythology the Graces (or Charites) were minor goddesses who symbolized beauty charm, and goodness. The number of Graces varied, though most myths included three sisters: Aglaia (brightness or splendor), Thalia (good cheer or blossoming one), and Euphrosyne (mirth or joyfulness). Other Graces sometimes mentioned were Cleta (sound), Pasithea (shining), and Peitho (persuasion).

According to most stories, the Graces were the children of Zeus* and Eurynome, a daughter of the Titans Oceanus and Tethys. In some myths, however, the Graces' parents were Zeus and Hera*. The Graces always appeared as a group rather than as separate individuals. They were also frequently linked with the Muses, another group of female goddesses.

The main role of the Graces was to bestow beauty, charm, and goodness on young women and to give joy to people in general. They were usually associated with Aphrodite, the goddess of love, and appeared among the attendants of the gods Apollo*, Dionysus*, and Hermes*. They entertained the gods by dancing to the music of Apollo's lyre. At times, the Graces were considered patrons of music, dance, and poetry.

The Graces provided inspiration to artists throughout the centuries. Most works of art portray them with their hands entwined and their bodies either nude or partially draped with flowing robes. One of the most famous paintings of the Graces is Primavera by Botticelli, an Italian artist of the late 1400s.

See also Apollo; Greek Mythology; Muses; Roman Mythology .

Titan one of a family of giants who ruled the earth Until overthrown by the Greek gods of Olympus

lyre stringed instrument similar to a small harp

patron special guardian, protector, or supporter

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Graces." Myths and Legends of the World. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Graces." Myths and Legends of the World. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/graces

"Graces." Myths and Legends of the World. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/graces

Graces

Graces, in Greek mythology, personifications of beauty, charm, and grace; daughters of Zeus and the oceanid Eurynome. Also known as the Charites, they were usually three in number and were called Aglaia, Thalia, and Euphrosyne. The Graces were associated with Aphrodite and those gods associated with the arts, such as the Muses. In Rome they were called Gratiae.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Graces." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Graces." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/graces

"Graces." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/graces

Graces

Graces In Greek mythology, three goddesses who represented intellectual pleasures: beauty, grace, and charm. Associated especially with poetry, Aglaia, Euphrosyne and Thalia were often linked with the Muses. They were also described as daughters or granddaughters of Zeus.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Graces." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Graces." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/graces

"Graces." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/graces

graces

graces be in someone's good (or bad) graces be regarded by someone with favour (or disfavour).

See also the Three Graces at three.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"graces." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"graces." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/graces

"graces." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/graces