Classic all-time favorite love stories (no wonder it has inspired artists for centuries!).
Here’s how it goes…
Psyche was a mortal woman of exceptional beauty who attracted hundreds of admirers.
The word of her popularity spread and caused Aphrodite (the Goddess of Love) to fly into a jealous rage.
To restore her position as the world’s most loved woman, Aphrodite sent her son, Eros to poison the souls of men so they would no longer desire Psyche.
But, instead of fulfilling her wish, Eros himself fell madly in love with Psyche.
Knowing his mother would be displeased, he kept his feelings a secret.
Many years passed and Psyche remained unmarried, unable to find her true love.
Her desperate parents went to Apollo to ask for his advice.
Apollo, who knew about Eros’ secret love for their daughter, told them that Psyche must wed a beast who was waiting on the mountain for her.
He also told Psyche that, because the beast was so ugly, she must never look at his face and that she could only visit him at night.
To the great disappointment of her parents, Psyche married the monster.
Much to her surprise however, she found great happiness with her new husband as he showered her with his unfailing love and tenderness.
When she told her sisters how happy she was, they became jealous and hatched a plan.
They warned Psyche that her monster-husband would kill her if she did not kill him first.
The next night, Psyche went to see her husband, armed with a knife and an oil lamp.
When she shone the lamp on her husband, she was shocked to see Eros’ beautiful face rather than that of the ugly beast.
Startled by her discovery, Psyche accidentally spilled the oil from the lamp on Eros.
He screamed and flew away, shouting that she had betrayed him and their relationship.
When Aphrodite heard this story, she became furious and imprisoned her son.
Anxious to see her true love again, Psyche begged Aphrodite to release him.
Aphrodite replied that she would only release Eros if Psyche completed 3 difficult tasks.
Fueled by deep love and desperation, Psyche completed 2 out of the 3 tasks but almost died trying to complete the third.
Hearing this, Eros escaped from prison, pleading with Zeus to save his love.
Greatly touched by the couple’s devotion to each other, Zeus granted Psyche immortality so that their great love would never die.
Together at last, Eros and Psyche quite literally lived happily ever after.
Love is in the air.