Nyx Divinity the Greek Goddess of the Night
In Greek mythology, the Greek Goddess of the Night, called Night (Nyx) is the personification of darkness. Nyx (Νύξ / Nyx in Greek, Nox in Latin) is the goddess of the night personified, it means that the Greeks believed that Nyx was the goddess of the night but they also believed that Nyx was the night.
Like many primordial deities, the Greek Goddess of the Night has no precise representation and description. However, we know that she lives on the edge of the world and has the gift of prophecy. She is a rather benevolent (kind-hearted) goddess, especially towards her children of whom she is very protective. His power is feared because, although Zeus fought the titans, he fears Nyx and never took the risk of having to face him. For example: one day to attack Heracles, Hypnos put Zeus to sleep and took refuge with his mother; Zeus gave up revenge because he would be forced to measure himself against Nyx who would protect his son.
In more recent periods than antiquity, she appears as a woman with wings, wearing a midnight blue veil over her face. Sometimes she is on a black chariot drawn by dark horses.
Painting of La Nuit by William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1884). William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
This goddess is important not only because of her seniority and her role, but also because she is the mother of many beings. Among the main ones, with Erebus, she gives birth to Ether, primordial god of the air, and to Hemera the light and Epiphron the prudence.
Alone, she engenders several divinities. The most famous are the twin brothers Thanatos, god of death and Hypnos, god of sleep. Also born Eris, goddess of discord and Nemesis, goddess of revenge. The Hesperides and the Moires are also his daughters. Some sources refer to her as the mother of the goddess Hecate, as well as of Charon the ferryman of the Styx (river) who would be her son in some versions). Other children are sometimes attributed to him, but the authors do not agree on those.
The goddess Nyx (“Night”; Greek: Νύξ, Núx; Latin: Nox) in a 10th-century Greek manuscript, the Paris Psalter. According to 8th-century BC Greek poet Hesiod, Nyx was the daughter of Chaos. Here Nyx is labelled and shown nimbate with a dark complexion, with dark clothes and a starry mantle, and holding an inverted flaming torch. Bibliothèque nationale de France, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
The Children of Nyx
She engendered in turn without the presence of the male element of abstractions and allegories however Hyginus and Cicero (De natura rerum 3.17) indicates Erebus as the father.
Nyx give birth to the odious Moros (Spell), Kèr the black and Thanatos (Death); She gave birth to Hypnos (Sleep) and, with him, all the race of Dreams, the thousand Oneiroi, and yet this tenebrous goddess was united with no other god.
Then she begot Momos (Sarcasm), Oizys full of sorrows (Distress), the Hesperides, who beyond the illustrious Ocean, keep the golden apples and the trees laden with these beautiful fruits, the Moires and the inhuman Kères, Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos who dispense good and evil to nascent mortals, pursue the crimes of men and gods and only lay down their terrible wrath after having exercised on the culprit a terrible vengeance. The fatal Nyx conceived again Némésis (Vengeance), this scourge of mortals, then Apate (Deceit), Philotès (Sexual love), the sad Geras (Old age), Eris (Discord) with an obstinate heart.
She is also said to be the mother of Styx but in general the parents are Ocean and Tethys.
Zeus had wanted to chase Hypnos from Olympus and throw his son into the sea because he had put him to sleep while Hera killed Heracles. His mother had successfully intervened on behalf of her son.
In art, Nyx is depicted as a winged or chariot-riding goddess among the stars, her head crowned with a halo of mist.
The goddess Nyx (“Night”; Greek: Νύξ, Núx; Latin: Nox) in a 10th-century Greek manuscript, the Paris Psalter. Here Nyx is labelled and shown nimbate with a dark complexion, with dark clothes and a starry mantle.