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Basic Information

In Greek Mythology, the gods that preceded the familiar Olympian gods; the Titans were children of Ouranos and Gaia. The lord of the Titans was Cronus*, who overthrew his father Ouranos to assume rulership of the universe. The other Titans were:

  • Rhea, wife of Cronus. Later sometimes identified with Cybele. Called 'the mother of gods'.
  • Oceanus. Personification of the ocean that encircles the world (as opposed to the Mediterranean Sea).
  • Tethys. Another ocean deity, wife of Oceanus.
  • Hyperion. Titan of the Sun and light. Father of the later sun deity Helios.
  • Theia. A Titan of light and wife of Hyperion; like Tethys her role does not seem very distinct from her husband's.
  • Coeus. Quite obscure except for being the husband of Phoebe
  • Phoebe. Sometimes associated with the Moon.1
  • Mnemosyne. Titan of memory and mother of the Muses.
  • Themis. Embodiment of divine law/proper order.
  • Crius. Another obscure Titan.
  • Iapetus. Father of Prometheus and Epimetheus. Again little else is known.

The Hekatoncheires and three of the Cyclops are also children of Ouranos and Gaia, making them the older brothers of the Titans.

This first generation of Titans (the children of Ouranos and Gaia) produced children of their own including:

The Titans were thrown down by the Olympian gods led by Zeus in a cosmic war called the Titanomachy. Several of the second generation titans (notably Prometheus) sided with the Olympians during this conflict and received varying degrees of gratitude for it.

Some sources also suggest that the enigmatic deity Hecate may have been a titan - or some other class of primordial entity.

In Mesopotamian Mythology the entities Tiamat and Abzu would appear to have very titan-like characteristics.

Somewhat depressingly, "that RPG" and many of its imitators roll out Titans as merely a high-functioning giant … reputedly when not getting hobo-murdered down dungeons, they spend their time commiserating with the "frost giants".



Game and Story Use

  • Obviously the Titanomachy makes good - and generally unexplored - backstory for your campaign. Of course, Sword and Sorcery's Shattered Lands setting has already gone there…
  • The 4X computer game Fallen Enchantress: Legendary Heroes has a similar premise … and some quite impressive left over Titans as boss monsters.
  • Again, in a fantasy campaign, titan worship may be the purview of pre-human races, weird isolated communities and other liminal societies.
  • Titans might also make a good substitute for more eldritch "outer gods", less concerned with or helpful toward humanity than the current pantheon.
  • Generally having a group of "forgotten gods" may be an interesting addition to a fantasy religion.
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