Mother Earth, a revered goddess. She and her children, the Giants, represented the primitive occupants of the world, who had to be controlled by the authority and laws of the Olympian gods. The Giants fought unsuccessfully against the gods, and Ge, a matronly figure, is sometimes shown (as in the left-hand picture) pleading on behalf of her defeated children, emerging from the earth. She delivers the infant Erichthonios to Athena.
Above: Detail from an Athenian red-figure clay vase, about 410 BC. Berlin, Antikensammlung F2531 © Berlin, Antikensammlung