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This version of How to Write an Essay Introduction was reviewed by Megan Morgan on December 18, 2015.
The critical interpretation of myth began with the Presocratics .  Euhemerus was one of the most important pre-modern mythologists. He interpreted myths as accounts of actual historical events - distorted over many retellings. Sallustius  divided myths into five categories – theological, physical (or concerning natural laws), animistic (or concerning soul), material, and mixed. Mixed concerns myths that show the interaction between two or more of the previous categories and are particularly used in initiations.
"Myths of origin" or " creation myths " represent an attempt to explain the beginnings of the universe in human language.  The most widely accepted version at the time, although a philosophical account of the beginning of things, is reported by Hesiod , in his Theogony . He begins with Chaos , a yawning nothingness. Out of the void emerged Gaia (the Earth) and some other primary divine beings: Eros (Love), the Abyss (the Tartarus ), and the Erebus .  Without male assistance, Gaia gave birth to Uranus (the Sky) who then fertilized her. From that union were born first the Titans —six males: Coeus , Crius , Cronus , Hyperion , Iapetus , and Oceanus ; and six females: Mnemosyne , Phoebe , Rhea , Theia , Themis , and Tethys . After Cronus was born, Gaia and Uranus decreed no more Titans were to be born. They were followed by the one-eyed Cyclopes and the Hecatonchires or Hundred-Handed Ones, who were both thrown into Tartarus by Uranus. This made Gaia furious. Cronus ("the wily, youngest and most terrible of Gaia's children"  ), was convinced by Gaia to castrate his father. He did this, and became the ruler of the Titans with his sister-wife Rhea as his consort, and the other Titans became his court.