Cupid

Cupid is the mischievous, juvenile, winged child, who shots the heart of his victims with his arrows and making them fall deeply in love. In ancient Greece, he was known as Eros the young son of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. According to the Roman mythology, Cupid was the son of Lord Venus. Venus was supposed to be envious of Psyche and ordered her son Cupid to punish the mortal maiden. But Cupid fell in love with Psyche and they end up in a bitter partition after Psyche committed the fault of throwing a glance at the god of love. Their lovely castle and garden vanished with him and Psyche found her unaided in an open field. Distressed Psyche landed in the temple of Lord Venus for help and malicious Venus instead of providing a helping hand, bombarded her with a series of treacherous and fatal tasks. Her last task was to carry a small box to Proserpine, wife of Pluto and was told to get some beauty of Proserpine and put it inside the box. Slowly locating each of her steps through the overflowing perilous path to her destination, Psyche was lured to open the box where she found poisonous sleep. Cupid found her lifeless on the ground. He assembled the sleep from her body and put it back in the box. Psyche’s intense love and devotion for Cupid rubbed out all the envy and anger of gods and therefore made her a goddess.

Cupid’s cult was strongly allied with Venus and he was worshipped as acutely as Venus. Cupid was known to have more power than his mother. He had command over the dead in Hades, the creatures of the sea and the gods in Olympus. Some of the religious groups of Cupid suggested that Cupid got united with Chaos and created gods and men alike and so gods became the brood of love.

Cupid has been portrayed in various facets in art and literature. In Caravaggio’s Amor Vincit Omni painting and sculpture, Cupid is portrayed as a nude winged boy armed with a bow and quiver of arrows. The conventional Christian illustration of a Cherub is footed on him. On trinkets and other extant pieces, he is usually made known amusing himself with childhood play, sometimes driving a hoop, throwing flits, catching a butterfly, or flirting with a nymph. He is often portrayed with his mother as playing a horn. He is also shown wearing a helmet and hauling a buckler. Cupid is commenced vastly in Ariel poetry, lyrics and of course Ovid’s love and metamorphic poetry. Cupid is not frequently beckoned on epic poetry but he has an existence in Virgil’s Aeneid changed into the shape of Ascanius rousing Dido’s love. In later literature, Cupid is cited more often than not as mischievous, erratic and perverse. Cupid is often depicted as carrying two sets of arrows among which one set is gold-headed which inspire love and the other set is lead-headed which motivate revulsion.

There are some legends which involve Cupid but the best known saga on Cupid is the tale of Cupid and Psyche, first attested in Apuleius’ picaresque novel and The Golden Ass, written in the second century. Cupid’s personality was anything but virtuous. He was reasonably playful and many of his deeds resulted in tragic ending of his victims. Cupid possesses the traditional supremacy of the Olympic Gods such as superhuman power, fortitude and permanence. Cupid can grow wings at will and fly, carrying the weight of others. He is very proud of his skills as God of Love.