Pandora's Box

In books, on television and in conversations with people, one can often hear the expression "Pandora's Box." However, what is meant by this phrase and why is it used in a negative sense?

Pandora's Box Secret

Pandora's Box is found in the ancient Greek legend of Pandora. Inside Pandora's box were innumerable woes that could be released outside if opened.

Actually it also means this popular expression.

What is Pandora's Box

Pandora's box is a box (or casket) presented by Zeus to a woman named Pandora, which cannot be opened. Otherwise, a lot of troubles will fall upon people.

In a figurative sense, this expression denotes the source of misfortunes and great disasters.

But let us, without running ahead, consider this interesting story from ancient Greek mythology in order.

Pandora's Box Myth

This myth is described in the poem "Works and Days" by the Greek poet Hesiod. The story began with the fact that Prometheus stole fire from the gods and gave it to people, wanting to ease their difficult life. In addition, he taught people different crafts and arts, and also gave them a variety of knowledge. When Zeus found out about this, he became enraged.

The main god of Olympus punished Prometheus, and also decided to punish all mankind. For this, Zeus ordered Hephaestus (the blacksmith god) to create a beautiful woman who would look like a man and have incomparable attractiveness.

Athena dressed her in a beautiful outfit, Aphrodite presented her with charm and magnificence, and Hermes gave her wisdom and deceit. The woman was called Pandora, which means "all gifted."

As conceived by Zeus, Pandora was supposed to bring much grief to the world.

Hermes led Pandora to Prometheus's brother, Epimetheus, who was distinguished by stubbornness and stupidity. When he saw the beautiful Pandora, he forgot all the instructions of Prometheus, who implored him not to accept any gifts from the gods.

As a result, fascinated by the beauty of Pandora, Epimeteus forgot about everything and took her as his wife.

There are 2 options for the development of further events.

  • According to one version, the gods presented Pandora with a skillfully decorated casket or drawer, which in no case could not be opened.
  • According to another version, this box was located in the house of Epimetheus. It was never opened, as it could bring misfortune on people.

Seeing the box, Pandora was consumed with curiosity, decided to open it. As soon as she did this, evil spirits spread from the box all over the world, bringing with them misfortune.

When Pandora realized what she had done, she immediately closed the drawer with a lid, before she could let go of the Hope that lay at the bottom of it. Thus, people were deprived of this feeling.

Before the opening of Pandora’s box, all the people on earth lived happily, not knowing the misfortunes, illnesses and exhausting labor. However, after this, the evil quickly spread throughout the world.

An interesting fact is that Zeus created the misfortunes and illnesses of the dumb, so that they could not warn people of their appearance.

According to ancient Greek mythology, the daughter of Epimetheus and Pandora, Pyrrha, and the son of Prometheus, Deucalion, were able to survive in the flood and become the progenitors of all humanity.

The meaning of the expression "Pandora's Box"

The phrase "Open Pandora's Box" means a serious warning. It is used in cases when they want to warn a person against erroneous actions.

Speaking "You can open Pandora's box" imply any thoughtless act that can lead to serious consequences.

In fact, the legend of Pandora’s box can be considered a parable that helps people reflect on their actions.

An interesting fact is that there are sayings in Russian folklore with a similar meaning. For example:

  • Do not wake famously while it is quiet
  • Do not blow the flame if you do not want a fire.

Interesting facts about Pandora

  • The name of Pandora and Epimetheus are 2 Saturn's moons.
  • An asteroid is named after Pandora (55).
  • Pandora was the virus found in the lakes of Australia and South America.

Now you know what is remarkable pandora's secret box and how to use this catch phrase.