Prométhée enchaîné (Prometheus bound). Marble, reception piece for the French Royal Academy, 1762. Nicolas-Sébastien Adam, also known as Adam the Younger.
PROMETHEUS AND THE THEFT OF FIRE
Throughout world mythology, there are various stories of how fire was brought to the world, usually through trickery or by theft. In Greek mythology, the fire thief was Prometheus, the Titan god of forethought. One version of that myth follows.
Zeus, chief god of all the gods, had tired of the human race. He determined to deny humanity all blessings until the last mortal had died out. Prometheus, however, felt great compassion for humanity. One day he stole fire from Mount Olympus and bestowed it on mankind so that they might have perpetual warmth and light. On the night following the fire theft Zeus looked down from Mount Olympus and saw the glow of many fires. He was so incensed that he chained Prometheus to a mountain where a giant eagle fed on his ever-regenerating liver. Prometheus was an immortal and would have suffered for all eternity had Hercules not rescued him several generations later.