Erebus, one of the children of Chaos, is the personification of darkness. With his sister Nyx (Night), he fathered Hemera (Day) and Aether (Light, or the air). Erebus is also described as the three circles of darkness surrounding Tartarus.

Back to the Family Tree of the Gods of Greek Mythology

In, "Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare, Erebus is mentioned by Brutus:

"... Not Erebus itself were dim enough,
To hide thee from prevention."
- Brutus, Act 2, Scene 1

In this context, Erebus means the place of darkness through which the dead must pass (look at Webster1913's first definition below). The entire quote (it should be noted that "thee" in the above quote is conspiracy) refers to the fact that not even death can cover a man's tracks and that his plots will eventually be discovered. This is a cruel forshadowing, because Antony, the man who betrays Brutus, later says during the Burial Oration the exact same thing, but this time against Brutus:

"... The evil that men do lives after them," - Antony, Act 3, Scene 2

Er"e*bus (?), n. [L., fr. Gr. .]

1. Greek Myth.

A place of nether darkness, being the gloomy space through which the souls passed to Hades. See Milton's "Paradise Lost," Book II., line 883.

2. Greek Myth.

The son of Chaos and brother of Nox, who dwelt in Erebus.

To the infernal deep, with Erebus and tortures vile. Shak.


© Webster 1913.

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