Andromeda, Who Was She?

We have another character from Greek Mythology to investigate. How did this happen?

Pose practise
Posing, posing and more posing.

Well, we visited Enginuity, a hands on science exploration centre in Coalbrookdale, Shropshire. It is excellent for all ages and we highly recommend it.  First though, we visited the museum next door, The Museum of Iron.

I didn’t expect Kam to show any interest in it because it’s a series of displays and exhibits to show items made of Iron. Great for adults with an interest or children on a school research visit, but for a 4 year old.  Well, a surprise is always lovely.

A few things caught Kam’s eye, particularly a statue of Andromeda chained to a rock.

Andromeda description, Museum of Iron
Andromeda description, Museum of Iron

It struck me that Kam hated this lady being chained to a rock, he repeatedly asked me to read Andromeda’s description card.  I explained this wasn’t really Andromeda, but a statue, to which he replied, I know but it’s what happened to Andromeda and it’s very bad.

Andromeda
Andromeda, John Bell Museum of Iron, Ironbridge.

I can’t believe I didn’t take any photo’s of him and Andromeda  – we’ll visit again and add our own photos, I just hope he has the same inquisitiveness.  We’ve done it!! We’ve taken a photo and Kam was just as curious. He told a staff member that he wasn’t so keen on lots of their stuff, but he was going to see Andromeda at the top of the stairs in the big room.

Kam examined the chain and said he could free her by breaking the rock underneath her.  He looked in a display cabinet where he saw an old cutting utensil.  He said we could use that to unbolt the chain to free her.  Eventually, we left the floor with Andromeda, looked on the next floor and on the way back down he went back to hear Andromeda’s story again and to find more ways to free her.

Kam needed to know why she was in such a predicament. He was puzzled, concerned and then reassured that Andromeda was not left to the clutches of a sea monster, but rescued by Perseus.

He asked about the Gorgon – wasn’t Medusa a Gorgon with snakes for hair.  She was Pegasus’s mum.  Yes, she was and it was Perseus who killed Medusa and rescued Andromeda with her, so to speak.

It amazes me how gruesome Greek mythology is and I try to tame down the gore as I feel it’s all a bit nightmare provoking for an adult, let alone a wee child.

Perseus and Andromeda

So here we go with their story:

Perseus, Andromeda and Cetus: WIKI, Atles Museum Berlin
Perseus, Andromeda and Cetus: WIKI, Atles Museum Berlin

Andromeda was the daughter of King Cepheus and Queen Cassiopeia of Joppa which is present day Palestine.  At that time, Joppa was known as Ethiopia.  It’s said their kingdom reached from the western Red Sea and the south-eastern Mediterranean coasts stretching out as far as the Indian Ocean.

Queen Cassiopeia often boasted that her daughter Andromeda was beautiful.  Then came a fatal mistake, to say Andromeda was more beautiful than the Nereid’s, Poseidon’s daughters. The Nereid’s were angry and Poseidon decided to punish Cassiopeia.

Poseidon’s punishment was to raise havoc on Joppa.  The King sought Zeus, Poseidon’s brother, to intervene.  The compromise was for the King and Queen to sacrifice their daughter Andromeda to the sea monster Cetus (or Kraken).  So, they chained Andromeda to a large rock by the sea to await Cetus the terrible sea monster.

Whilst Andromeda waited in chains on the rocks Perseus flew by – his sandals had wings so he could fly.  With him he carried Medusa’s head.  Remember, any living creature to stare at a Gorgon’s head turned to stone.

Perseus saw Andromeda’s danger.  He pointed Meduas’s head towards Cetus’s eyes.  Cetus turned to stone and shattered in the sea.  Perseus rescued Andromeda.  Perseus had fallen in love with Andromeda and he asked King Cepheus if he could marry her.  They married.  Queen Cassiopeia was not happy about the marriage!

A Note to You and Me

We need to visit The Museum of Iron again as one, I need a photo and two, Kam enjoyed it more than I thought he would.  Done it, but we’ll visit again.

We need to find out about the constellations as Andromeda, Pegasus and Cassiopeia are constellations and I guess there is a connection in the sky.

Thank you for reading this article.  If you enjoyed it, please feel free to look at some of our other posts.

 

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