Countless tears she has cried, lamenting the unceasing conflicts of the world. But perhaps even more painful to Eirene is her parodoxical existence. Although she desires nothing more than peace and end to the unrest, the power she wields is so devastating that she herself becomes the source of strife.
Eirene, or Irene, one of the Horae, was the personification of peace, and was depicted in art as a beautiful young woman carrying a comucopia, sceptre and a torch or rhyton. She is said sometimes to be the daugther of Zeus and Themis.
She was particularly well regarded by the citizens of Athens. After a naval victory over Sparta in 375 BC, the Athenians established a cult of Eirene, erecting altars to her. They held an annual state scarifice to her after 371 BC to commemorate the Common Peace of that year and set up a votive statue in her honour in the Agora of Athens.