The Twelve Titans:
Oceanus and Tethys,
Hyperion and Theia,
Coeus and Phoebe,
Cronus and Rhea,
Children of Oceanus:
Children of Hyperion:
Helios, Selene, Eos
Daughters of Coeus:
Leto and Asteria
Sons of Iapetus:
Sons of Crius:
Astraeus, Pallas, Perses
Sons and daughters of Cronus and Rhea:
Zeus, Hera, Poseidon, Demeter, Hades, Hestia
Greeks of the Classical age knew of several poems about the war between the gods and many of the Titans. The dominant one, and the only one that has survived, is the Theogony attributed to Hesiod. A lost epic, Titanomachia, attributed to the blind Thracian bard Thamyris, himself a legendary figure, was mentioned in passing in an essay On Music that was once attributed to Plutarch. The Titans also played a prominent role in the poems attributed to Orpheus. Although only scraps of the Orphic narratives survive, they show interesting differences from the Hesiodic tradition.
These Greek stories of the Titanomachy fall into a class of similar myths throughout Europe and the Near East, where one generation or group of gods by and large opposes the dominant one. Sometimes the Elder Gods are supplanted. Sometimes the rebels lose, and are either cast out of power entirely or incorporated into the pantheon. Other examples might include the wars of the Æsir with the Vanir and Jotuns in Scandinavian mythology, the Babylonian epic Enuma Elish, the Hittite "Kingship in Heaven" Kumarbi narrative, the struggle between the Tuatha Dé Danann and the Fomorians in Celtic mythology, and the obscure generational conflict in Ugaritic fragments.
The stage for this important battle was set after the youngest Titan, Cronus, overthrew his own father, Uranus (Ουρανός, the Heaven itself and ruler of the cosmos), with the help of his mother, Gaia (Γαία, the earth).
Uranus drew the enmity of Gaia when he imprisoned her children the Hecatonchires and Cyclopes in Tartarus. Gaia created a great sickle and gathered together Cronus and his brothers to convince them to castrate Uranus. Only Cronus was willing to do the deed, so Gaia gave him the sickle and placed him in a bush and in doing so he became the King of the Titans.
When Uranus met with Gaia, Cronus attacked Uranus and, with the sickle, cut off his genitals, casting them into the sea. As Uranus lay dying, he made a prophecy that Cronus' own children would rebel against his rule, just as Cronus had rebelled against his own father. Uranus' blood that had spilled upon the earth, gave rise to the Gigantes, Erinyes, and Meliae, and from his semen from his cut genitalia, Aphrodite arose from the sea:
"...so soon as he had cut off the members with flint and cast them from the land into the surging sea, they were swept away over the main a long time: and a white foam spread around them from the immortal flesh, and in it there grew a maiden..."Cronus took his father's throne after dispatching Uranus. He then secured his power by re-imprisoning his siblings the Hecatonchires and Cyclopes, and his (newly-created) siblings the Gigantes, in Tartarus.
Cronus now turned into the terrible king his father Uranus had been, swallowing each of his children whole as they were born from his sister-wife Rhea. Rhea, however, managed to hide her child Zeus, by tricking Cronus into swallowing a rock wrapped in a blanket instead.
Rhea brought Zeus to a cave in Crete, where he was raised to adulthood by Amalthea. Later, Metis gave Cronus a mixture of mustard and wine which would cause him to vomit up his swallowed children. Zeus then led his released brothers and sisters in rebellion against the Titans.
According to Hyginus, the cause of the Titanomachy is as follows: "After Hera saw that Epaphus, born of a concubine, ruled such a great kingdom (Egypt), she saw to it that he should be killed while hunting, and encouraged the Titans to drive Zeus from the kingdom and restore it to Cronus, (Saturn). When they tried to mount heaven, Zeus with the help of Athena, Apollo, and Artemis, cast them headlong into Tartarus. On Atlas, who had been their leader, he put the vault of the sky; even now he is said to hold up the sky on his shoulders."
A lost Titanomachy that dealt with the struggle that Zeus and his siblings, the Olympian Gods, had in overthrowing their father Cronos and his divine generation, the Titans, was traditionally ascribed to Eumelus of Corinth, a semi-legendary bard of the Bacchiad ruling family in archaic Corinth, who was treasured as the traditional composer of the Prosodion, the processional anthem of Messenian independence that was performed on Delos.
Even in Antiquity many authors cited Titanomachia without an author's name. M. L. West in analyzing the evidence concludes that the name of Eumelos was attached to the poem as the only name available. From the very patchy evidence, it seems that "Eumelos"' account of the Titanomachy differed from the surviving account of Hesiod's Theogony at salient points. The eighth century BCE date for the poem is not possible; M.L. West ascribes a late seventh-century date as the earliest.
The Titanomachy was divided into two books. The battle of Olympians and Titans was preceded by some sort of theogony, or genealogy of the Primeval Gods, in which, the Byzantine writer Lydus remarked, the author of Titanomachy placed the birth of Zeus, not in Crete, but in Lydia, which should signify on Mount Sipylus.