Elpis is the personification and spirit of hope. Interestingly, Greeks did not see hope as a god, but rather as an extension of suffering. Here are some more facts about Elpis:
Elpis is depicted as a young woman who carries flowers or cornucopia (which is a symbol of plenty that consists of a goat’s horn overflowing with flowers, fruit, and corn) in her arms.
Elpis’ only important role in Greek mythology was in a story of Pandora (the first woman created by the gods), specifically in one of Hesiod’s poems called “Work and Days”. In this story, it was said that the powerful Greek God, Zeus, trapped Elpis and other evil spirits in a jar (or often referred to as Pandora’s box), and then decided to give this jar to Pandora. Zeus then decided to give Pandora to Epimetheus as a gift, which Epimetheus’ brother, Prometheus, warned him not to accept.
After Epimetheus accepted Pandora, she opened the jar, and all of the evil spirits (including sickness and death) escaped except Elpis. Hesiod does not specifically say why Elpis remained in the jar. Due to the lack of reasoning on why she remained in the jar, there are many different interpretations on why Elpis did not escape, and still to this day, there is still great debate on this subject.
In addition to Elpis not escaping Pandora’s jar, she also cannot escape our solar system; Jean Chacornac discovered his final asteroid in 1860, and named his last discovery Elpis 59.
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