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14/05/2009

Anteros by Alfred Gilbert (1885), Shaftesbury Memorial, Piccadilly Circus, London


This is a photo (using Deep Red filter) of the statue of Anteros by Alfred Gilbert (1885) from the Shaftesbury Memorial in Picadilly Circus, London. Anteros in this memorial symbolises the selfless philanthropic love of the Earl of Shaftesbury for the poor. The memorial is sometimes given the name The Angel of Christian Charity and is popularly called Eros, both of which are incorrect.
In Greek mythology, Anteros (Αντέρως) was the god of requited love, literally "love returned" or "counter-love" and also the punisher of those who scorn love and the advances of others, or the avenger of unrequited love. Anteros was the son of Ares and Aphrodite, given to his brother Eros, who was lonely, as a playmate, the rationale being that love must be answered if it is to prosper. Physically, he is depicted as similar to Eros in every way, but with long hair and plumed butterfly wings. He has been described also as armed with either a golden club or arrows of lead.
Anteros, with Eros, was one of a host of winged love gods called Erotes, the ever-youthful winged gods of love, usually depicted as winged boys in the company of Aphrodite or her attendant goddesses.

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