Greek (Roman) Olympian Gods Zeus (Jupiter) Zeus, the leader of the gods was born to Cronus (one of the Titans) and Gaea. An oracle had foretold that one of Cronus’ children would overthrow him, so he swallowed each as they were born. When Zeus was born, his wife hid the child, feeding her husband a rock instead, finally allowing the prophecy to be fulfilled and Zeus to kill his father. After the defeat of Cronus, Zeus, and his brothers, Poseidon and Hades, drew lots for their share of the world. Zeus, who became the supreme ruler of the gods, was chosen to be lord of the sky (and weather). Married to Hera but, is famous for his many affairs with mortal women. He is known to appear in various guises, such as a bull, a shower of gold, a swan, a cloud. Children, i.e. Herakles, Perseus, Sarpedon, Helen, etc. His attributes in iconography include the lightning bolt, the eagle, and the sceptre. http://web.uvic.ca/grs/bowman/myth/gods/zeus_i.html http://edweb.sdsu.edu/people/bdodge/scaffold/GG/olympian.html#Zeus Poseidon (Neptune) Brother of Zeus. After the overthrow of their Father Cronus, he drew lots with Zeus and Hades, for shares of the world. He became lord of the sea. Worshiped by seamen. Married Amphitrite, a granddaughter of the Titan Oceanus. At one point he desired Athena (Demeter). To put him off Demeter asked him to make the most beautiful animal that the world had ever seen. So to impress her Poseidon created the first horse. In some accounts his first attempts were unsuccessful and created a variety of other animals in his quest. By the time the horse was created his passion for Demeter had cooled. His weapon is a trident, which can shake the earth, and shatter any object. He is second only to Zeus in power amongst the gods. He has a difficult quarrelsome personality. He was greedy and had a series of disputes with other gods when he tried to take over their cities. Hades Symbols are cornucopia (wealth) and scepter (power) King of the Underworld Brothers are Zeus and Poseidon Is responsible for winter because he kidnapped Persephone, daughter of Demeter (aka, Mother Earth) He was disliked and avoided by the other gods People prayed to Hades for the return of their loved ones by sacrificing black sheep and pouring the blood down deep pits while averting their eyes. Hestia (Vesta) Goddess of the hearth and home and was in general pretty boring. She’s the gentlest, most forgiving and most loving of the greek gods. Both Apollo and Poseidon wanted to marry her but thinking that their courtship of her could lead to disaster, she went to Zeus and declared she wanted to remain a virgin. He was so grateful not to have to deal with her two suitors fighting that he gave her one of the highest positions of honor among the gods and made her the recipient of all the sacrifices for peace. Her symbol is the "sacred fire" and all the pictures I found of her showed her holding like a little lit oil lamp. In art she is usually fully draped and sometimes with her favorite animal, the donkey. Hera (Juno) Zeus's wife and sister and thus the queen of Heaven. Myth suggests they were married in Crete or Euboea. She is the mother to Ares, Hebe, Elithyia, and Hephaestus. She was originally the goddess of the sky but once she was married she became the patron of marriage and maternity, thus controling the detiny of women. Ironically, Zeus broke the sacred vows of marriage quite often and thus Hera is most often know for her vindictive actions to punish those who had affairs with Zeus and/or insulted her. Many sources I read said that Hera did not have unique iconography but did have common depictions. She was depicted in the prime of her life being severely beautiful and young. She is often crowned with a diadem or cylindrical crown and wearing a long tunic and a wedding veil. Her attributes are a sceptre surmounted by a cuckoo and the pomegranate (a symbol of love and fruitfulness). Her animals are the peacock, the cow, and the cuckoo. Ares (Mars) Parents: Zeus and Hera (they didn't like him) o born in Thrace Symbols: Spear, Burning Torch, Vulture, Dog Appearance: Bearded, Gold Helmet, Harnessed in Bronze Role: God of War Loves: War, Aphrodite o Ares and Aphrodite were together one day when Helius saw them. He told Hephaistos who set a trap to catch the couple "in the act." Ares and Aphrodite were snaged in a net during their next encounter. All the gods came to laugh at Ares. * Kids: (Ares wasn't married, but had kids) o (Mortals) Aeropus, Alcippe, Alcon, Ascalaphus, Cycnus, Diomedes, Dragon, Dryas, Evenus, Ialmenus, Melanippus, Meleager, Molus, Nike, Nisus, Oeagrus, Oenomaus, Oxylus, Parthenopaeus, Phlegyas, Phlegyas, Porthaon, Pylus, Tereus, Thestius, and Thrassa, o (Deities) Harmonia--mother of the Amazons Deimos--personification of Panic Phobos--personification of Fear Images: o Leagros Group, Attic Black-figure neck-amphora with lid, c. 515-500 BC o Oltos, Ares and Aphrodite, c. 515-500 BC o Ares and Aphrodite, Roman Wall Painting 1st Century AD o Courtship of Venus and Mars, House of Marcus Lucretius Fronto, Pompeii, c. 30 AD o Botticelli, Mars and Venus, 15th Century o Heemskerck, Martin Van, Mars and Venus Caught in the Net and Shown by Vulcan to Gods, 1536 http://ancienthistory.about.com/cs/grecoromanmyth1/p/Ares.htm http://www.loggia.com/myth/ares.html http://www.theoi.com/Olympioi/Ares.html Athena (Minerva) ORIGIN daughter of Metis who was the first wife of Zeus Zeus saw Metis pregnant and he was worried that his child would be his o doom so he swallowed Metis to prevent the birth of the child, Athena o was born anyway right out of the head of Zeus CHARACTERISTICS o goddess of women and women's crafts, goddess of intellect and invention, goddess of virginity o one of three gods that can resist the charms and spells of Aphrodite o city of Athens named in her honor SYMBOLS o the owl (the goddess is actually known for taking on this form as well) o olive tree: Athena vs. Poseidon gift to Athens, Athena's is the best o often wears helmet and carries spear, the helmet and spear represent that wisdom and strategy are key to victory in war o also has shield on which there are symbols of gorgon heads, the shield is fringed with snakes: the gorgon heads represent Athena's appearanc o to her enemies and the snakes represent creation, fertility, and regeneration Apollo (Apollo) Apollo - Greek and Latin name son of Zeus and Leto brother of Artemis (twins?) "Phoebus" Apollo -- means "light" takes on role of sun god (from Helios) plays the lyre equated with music protection god of the shepherds many moods and passions (terrifying anger) Greek classical restraint contrasted with Dionysus as the rational god depicted as strong and calm, often with lyre most well known tragic love story: Apollo and Daphne Oracle at Delphi Aphrodite (Venus) From (http://www.windows.ucar.edu/cgi- bin/tour.cgi?link=/mythology/aphrodite.html&sw=false&sn=4444&d=/mythology &edu=high&br=graphic&cd=false&fr=f&tour=) Aphrodite was the Greek goddess of love and beauty. She was known to the Romans as Venus. There were actually two different Aphrodites, one was the daughter of Uranus, the other the daughter of Zeus and Dione. The first, called Aphrodite Urania, was the goddess of spiritual love. The second, Aphrodite Pandemos, was the goddess of physical attraction. Aphrodite is the more famous of the two. Aphrodite Pandemos could be both very kind and cruel. One story in particular concerns Pygmalion. The women of Cyprus defied Aphrodite, and so she made them all prostitutes. This sickened Pygmalion, and so he decided to create his own lover. He formed a woman out of ivory, and loved her as if she was his wife. One day Aphrodite heard the prayers of Pygmalion, and she brought the ivory statue to life. She watched as they became happily married. In a separate story, Aphrodite fell in love with Adonis, a beautiful god that was also a hunter. Adonis was once hunting a wild boar, but his arrow did not kill the animal. The boar raced after Adonis, and killed him. Aphrodite mourned her lost love, and a flower grew from nectar she sprinkled on his blood. Aphrodite often boasted about her powers to make all gods fall in love with mortals. Zeus was angry because she considered herself better than other gods and goddesses because she had not slept with any humans. Zeus made Aphrodite fall in love with Anchises, preventing her from further bragging. Hermes (Mercury) The son of Zeus and the nymph Maia, he is best known for being the messenger or herald of the gods. He's most often depicted as an athletic young man wearing a broad-brimmed hat or winged helmet and winged sandals. Often he carries the herald's staff, which is usually depicted as 2 snakes in a figure 8 around a shaft with wings attached. Artemis (Diana) Complex and often contradictory nature, as is typical of most Greek deities Lady of Wild Things, Goddess of the Hunt, protector of the young, Goddess who brings swift death (especially to the young--as I said, contradictory) Goddess of childbirth and fertility—yet also one of the virginal goddesses (like Athena and Hestia); especially in Ephesus she was a fertility goddess The cypress and the deer were sacred to her Along with Apollo, she is the daughter of Zeus and Leto; Artemis is born first and helps with the delivery of her brother, Apollo—hence, her role as a goddess of childbirth Sudden death of the young (girls brought down by Artemis, boys brought down by Apollo) was associated with her and her brother Associated with the moon, and the moon goddess Selene, as well as the darker goddess of fertility and the underworld, Hecate—she is the “goddess of three forms,” Selene in the sky, Artemis on earth, and Hecate in the lower world (Mythology, Edith Hamilton, p. 33) Often portrayed with a bow and arrow, sometimes a short skirt for the hunt “A number of wild animals are sacred to her: hind, bear, boar, goat, zebu, and lion. She is often shown with bow and arrow, mural crown, and a torch. In the classical period she is shown with the crescent moon in her hair.” (http://apk.net/~fjk/artemis.html) Hephaestus/Hephaistos (Vulcan; Mulsiber) Moira: o God of the forge and subterranean fire o Patron of all craftsmen Portrayal: Animated cripple bent over anvil o Ugly, carrying a walking stick o Holding hammer and tongs o Sometimes surrounded by kabeiroi Residence: o Island of Lemnos where he has his palace and forge under a volcano Lineage: o Parthenogenetic (fatherless) son of Hera, who was jealous of Zeus' affair with Metis (which produced Athena) Associated Myths: o He was cast off Mt. Olympus for his ugliness, and after falling either 9 days and 9 nights or 1 day and 1 night he landed on the Island of Lemnos. o He wished to marry Athena, who rejected him, but apparently not before ?? resulting in Erechtheus, a king of Athens. o He created a magic throne for Hera which imprisoned her when she sat on it, causing the Olympiads to allow him to return to the realm of the Gods. o He was married to Aphrodite, who preferred Ares over him. Therefore, he constructed a chain-link net which captured them at an inopportune time. Unfortunately this gave the rest of the gods a good laugh but didn't resolve any marital issues. o He is responsible for the creation of Pandora. o He forged the armour of Achilles, the shield of Athena, the arrows of Eros, and the chariot of Helios Associated festivals: o Chalceia Celebrated on the 30th day of the Pyanopsion month this festival, held by craftsmen and artisans, also honors Athena. o Vulcanilia This Roman festival is celebrated on the 23rd of August and is meant for protection from destructive fire. Temples: o Roman: Located outside of the town because of his association with destructive fire. o Greek: Most famous is the Doric Temple (449 BC) of Hephaestus and Athena. It is located on a hill close to the agora at the foot of the Acropolis in Athens.