When Adonis was an infant, Aphrodite placed him in a chest and gave him to the Greek goddess of the underworld, Persephone, to nurse.
Persephone, however, was so enchanted by Adonis' extraordinary beauty that she refused to return him to Aphrodite when he reached manhood.
To be just, Zeus (or, according to another myth, the Muse Calliope) allowed Persephone to keep Adonis in the underworld for four months each year. Adonis was also to spend four months with Aphrodite and the remaining four months he could stay with the one his heart longed for. Adonis chose Aphrodite.
The Adonia were festivals held to commemorate the death and resurrection of Adonis, to celebrate nature. The festivals were held throughout Greece, usually in the spring. They lasted two days and only women were allowed to attend.
-On the first day, women opened their hair and freed their breasts and mourned the death of Adonis. The god was represented by wax figures, which were thrown into nearby rivers at the end of the day.
- On the second day the mourning came to an end and the resurrection of Adonis was celebrated with great joy and wild dances.
It is said that the blood-red anemone, commonly known as the poppy, was created by the blood of Adonis, when Aphrodite sprinkled it with nectar at the moment of his death.
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