Persephone

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PERSEPHONE
Location: The Greek Theatre
Marshall Fredericks
1965

This reflecting pool was originally intended to serve as the family swimming pool. The bronze sculpture at the end of the pool is Persephone, goddess of fertility, it was created by renowned Michigan sculptor Marshall Fredericks specifically for this spot in 1965. Marshall Fredericks studied under Carl Milles here at Cranbrook, and also sculpted The Spirit of Detroit on Woodward Avenue at the Civic Center and the work in the center of Shain Park in Birmingham.

According to the legend, Persephone, the daughter of Zeus and Demeter, was abducted by Hades, god of the underworld. Demeter eventually persuaded Hades to let Persephone return to earth, but before doing so, Hades tricked her into eating a pomegranate, the food of the dead, forcing her to remain in the underworld for half of each year. When she left the earth, the flowers withered and died and when she returned, they blossomed.