Chapter XXIII.—The Gods No Gods.
“They were not gods, then, but representations of tyrants. For a certain tomb is shown among the Caucasian mountains, not in heaven, but in p. 261 earth, as that of Kronos, a barbarous man and a devourer of children. Further, the tomb of the lascivious Zeus, so famed in story, who in like manner devoured his own daughter Metis, is to be seen in Crete, and those of Pluto and Poseidon in the Acherusian lake; and that of Helius in Astra, and of Selene in Carræ, of Hermes in Hermopolis, of Ares in Thrace, of Aphrodite in Cyprus, of Dionysus in Thebes, and of the rest in other places. At all events, the tombs are shown of those that I have named; for they were men, and in respect of these things, wicked men and magicians. 1053 For else they should not have become despots—I mean Zeus, renowned in story, and Dionysus—but that by changing their forms they prevailed over whom they pleased, for whatever purpose they designed.
[Compare the different use of these details in Recognitions, x. 24; also in Homily VI. 21.—R.]