An Oceans Abcdarium created by the University of Applied Sciences in Mainz, Germany


Zoe Branczyk

Aphrodite, Greek goddess of love, passion, and procreation, was said to have come from the oceans, hence her name, meaning ʻfoam-arisenʼ. Maybe the ancient Greeks had a good intuition about the origin of life, as modern scientific findings appear to confirm the idea that life began in the sea. Rich microbial communities dwell around deep sea hydrothermal vents. Their CH4-producing and acetate-producing geochemistry is mirrored in modern microbial metabolism, and might have been its abiogenic precursor.

Sources: Hansen, William F., “Foam-Born Aphrodite and the Mythology of Transformation”, American Journal of Philology, vol. 121, no. 1, (2000).

Martin, W., et al., “Hydrothermal vents and the origin of life”, Nature Reviews Microbiology vol. 6, (2008): 805–814.