Once up a time, a long
time ago, Zeus ordered Hephaestus
(Aphrodite's husband) to make him a daughter. It was the first woman
made out of clay. Hephaestus made a beautiful woman and named her
Zeus sent his new
daughter, Pandora, down to earth so that she could marry Epimetheus,
who was a gentle and lonely man.
Zeus was not being kind. He was
getting even. Epimetheus and Prometheus were brothers. Zeus was mad at
one of the brothers, Prometheus, for giving people fire without asking
Zeus gave Pandora a little box
with a big heavy lock on it. He made her promise never to open the box. He
gave the key to Pandora’s husband and told him to never open the box. Zeus
was sure that Epimetheus' curiosity would get the better of him, and that
either Epimetheus or his brother would open the box.
Pandora was very curious. She
wanted to see what was inside the box, but Epimetheus said no. Better not.
"You know your father," Epimetheus sighed, referring to Zeus.
"He’s a tricky one."
One day, when Epimetheus lay
sleeping, Pandora stole the key and opened the box.
Out flew every kind of disease
and sickness, hate and envy, and all the bad things that people had never
experienced before. Pandora slammed the lid closed, but it was too late. All
the bad things were already out of the box. They flew away, out into the
Epimetheus woke up at the sound
of her sobbing.
“I opened the box and all these ugly things flew out,”
Pandora cried. “I tried to catch them, but they all got away!” Pandora opened the
box to show him how empty it was. But the box was not quite empty. One tiny
bug flew quickly out before Pandora could slam the lid shut again.
“Hello, Pandora,” said the
bug, hovering just out of reach. “My name is Hope.” With a nod of thanks
for being set free, Hope flew out into the world, a world that now held Envy,
Crime, Hate, and Disease – and Hope.