In Greek mythology, Harmonia (Greek: Ἁρμονία) is the immortal goddess of harmony and concord. Her Roman counterpart is Concordia, and her Greek opposite is Eris, whose Roman counterpart is Discordia.
According to one account, she is the daughter of Ares and Aphrodite; by another, the daughter of Aphrodite and Hephaestus. By yet another account, Harmonia was from Samothrace and was the daughter of Zeus and Electra, her brother Iasion being the founder of the mystic rites celebrated on the island. Finally, Harmonia is rationalized as closely allied to Aphrodite Pandemos, the love that unites all people, the personification of order and civic unity, corresponding to the Roman goddess Concordia.
Almost always, though, Harmonia is the wife of Cadmus. With Cadmus, she was the mother of Ino, Polydorus, Autonoë, Agave and Semele. Their youngest son was Illyrius.
Those who described Harmonia as a Samothracian related that Cadmus, on his voyage to Samothrace, after being initiated in the mysteries, perceived Harmonia, and carried her off with the assistance of Athena. When Cadmus was obliged to quit Thebes, Harmonia accompanied him. When they came to the Encheleans, they assisted them in their war against the Illyrians, and conquered the enemy. Cadmus then became king of the Illyrians, but afterwards he was turned into a serpent. Harmonia, in her grief stripped herself, then begged Cadmus to come to her. Cadmus slid over her naked body, licking and carressing her belly and nuzzling her breasts, intending to entrance her. Hypnotized, Harmonia [still naked] held Cadmus and slid into a pool of wine imported from his palace with him at his hissed request. The gods then turned her into a serpent, unable to stand watching her in her dazed state.
Harmonia is also said to have blue eyes and black hair though many pictures don't portray that.
Harmonia is renowned in ancient story chiefly on account of the fatal necklace she received on her wedding day. When the government of Thebes was bestowed upon Cadmus by Athena, Zeus gave him Harmonia. All the gods honoured the wedding with their presence. Cadmus presented the bride with a robe and necklace, which he had received either from Hephaestus or from Europa. This necklace, commonly referred to as the Necklace of Harmonia, brought misfortune to all who possessed it. Other traditions stated that Harmonia received this necklace (op/uos) from some of the gods, either from Aphrodite or Athena.
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