On the FOX show Sleepy Hollow, the Big Bad this season calls herself Pandora, and she has a box from which supernatural evil things come, but one of the protagonists says she's from Sumeria. The character herself talks about how her father sold her into slavery, which is not part of the Greek story. Also, in the Greek story, Pandora is clearly an innocent pawn, not an evildoer.

I've tried to research this, but I can't find any equivalents to the Greek Pandora myth (woman is created with many gifts from many gods, including intense curiosity; she is given as a wife to punish someone; she's given a jar/box/container and told "don't open it" but she does, and all manner of evils fly out to plague humanity; hope remains) in Sumerian mythology.

Is this just artistic license, or was there a similar figure or story in the Sumerian mythos?

1 Answer 1


The Pandora story you cite is 100% Greek. There's probably a pre-Hesiodic tradition surrounding it, but as it stands, it's not Mesopotamian.

However, there are parallels with Eve from Hebrew mythology. Both ruin a utopian world through their curiosity, causing misery and strife for humans thereafter. However, both endeavor to explain why the world is toilsome, and since the world is toilsome and women were easy targets for blame (especially in a male-dominated society), it's not impossible these are entirely independent of each other.

And even if there is some relationship between the two, the way the Greek story is told is without parallel.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.