You can’t get anything past Rick Riordan’s fanbase! It was brought to our attention that we left a VIG (that’s Very Important Goddess) out of our Guide to the Springtime Gods. After some careful consideration (and the threat of six more months of winter), we decided to make up for our lapse in judgment. Presenting the true goddess of springtime herself, Persephone!
Despite being the daughter of Zeus himself, Persephone never had a place among the gods of Olympus. Instead, her mother, Demeter, decided to raise her in the wilderness. A good decision, considering Persephone’s eventual mastery over all plant life. An even better decision once you learn of all the gods who were obsessed with her after she reached adulthood.
Yes, we should thank Persephone for all that she’s done. But especially for creating Spring Break.
That’s One Way to Meet Your Future Husband
On the long list of gods who crushed on Persephone, most notable was Hades, ruler of the dead. He didn’t care that he was her uncle, or that her mom never allowed her to talk to boys—Hades fell in love with her at first sight. So, he did the most reasonable thing he could think of: he kidnapped her and held her captive in the Underworld until she liked him back. She was understandably upset, but eventually appreciated being away from her helicopter mom.
Birth of the Seasons
With her daughter missing, the furious Demeter neglected to take care of the Earth, resulting in widespread famine—even though it totally wasn’t our fault! Zeus stepped in and forced Hades to return Persephone to her mother. By then Persephone just wanted to hang out with her goth boyfriend. She got her wish after Hades tricked her into eating pomegranate seeds that brought her back to the Underworld for six months each year. That’s why we have summer and winter, by the way, in case you were wondering.
Persephone is famously unhappy during the six months a year she spends away from Hades, because she knows he will probably be unfaithful to her. Of Hades’s mortal lovers, Persephone especially hated Maria di Angelo. Maria is out of the picture now, but Persephone has stepson Nico as a reminder of Hades’s affairs. We’ve heard that she’s been more patient and kind to Nico. If only he could let go of that one time she turned him into a dandelion.
Helpful When It Counts
We don’t want you to think that Persephone is merely a jealous, pampered goddess with a bad case of Stockholm Syndrome. She’s actually clever, wise, and powerful. And she has helped heroes like Percy Jackson on several occasions—usually by standing up to her husband. Let’s not forget that when Hades was planning to off Percy, Persephone convinced him to spare the boy’s life. Yes, we should thank Persephone for all that she’s done. But especially for creating Spring Break.