.. ld mayhem as they caused those they pierced to fall in love with the first person they met. In classic arts he is often shown playing a game such as quoits, but sometimes he wears a helmet and carries spear and shield to show that even Mars, God of War, gives way to love. His encounter with Psyche shows him in a more serious aspect (Clayton 63). Psyche would eventually be married to Cupid, after many hardships.
Artemis was the daughter of Zeus and his mistress Leto. Born on the island of Delos with a slightly younger twin brother, Apollo. She was the eternal virgin huntress goddess, even though she had a very vindictive nature. She was responsible for several deaths, including Callisto and Orion. At Ephesus, she was worshiped more as a mother goddess then a huntress.
Bees and stags were animals most often associated with her. Her temple was listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Diana was very similar to the Greek Goddess Artemis. Born on Delos with a twin brother named Apollo, Diana was the Goddess of Hunting. She had two particular shrines in Italy: one at Aricia on the shores of Lake Nemi, where she is known as Diana of the Woods, and the other at Capua under the name of Diana Tifatina, known as the Goddess of the Crossroads (Clayton 69). Her cult allowed human sacrifice, and her priest could be replaced by whom ever killed him.
In Greek mythology the messenger of the gods, son of Zeus and the nymph Maia, was known as Hermes. He also had the role of escorting the dead to the Underworld. He was also the patron of merchants and seamen, of good luck, and of thieves and pickpockets, and was known for his mischief making. Often used by Zeus as an intermediary in various situations, he was rewarded with a winged helmet and a pair of sandals, which he used for walking the roads. Mercury was a Roman god, and son of Jupiter and Maia. He was the messenger of Jupiter.
He was often seen with the caduceus (a wand), broad-rimmed hat, winged sandals and purse. He, like Hermes, protected the merchants. His name has the root word merx meaning merchandise. Apollo, twin brother of Artemis, had Zeus as a father and a nymph as a mother. He was born under the shade of a single palm tree, the only tree on the island.
Apollos major shrine was at Delphi, but before he could have this he had to rid the place of the monster. Python, a dragon or serpent, had terrorized the countryside for a long time. After slaying this creature Apollo initiated the Pythian Games, in honor of Python. Delphi became noted for the pronouncements made by the priests when they were in a hallucinatory state, most likely after chewing on bay laurel leaves. The legendary Heracles, a half god warrior, came to Delphi to seek advice from the oracle.
He was dissatisfied with what he heard and tried to steal the sacred tripod, emblem of Apollo. Heracles and Apollo fought over the tripod, but Zeus separated them and returned the tripod back to Delphi. Apollo was also the God of Music, Fine Arts, Poetry, and Eloquence. Apollo was also the God of Medicine, which was used to cure as well as attack. Apollo was also responsible for the plague that struck the Greeks at Troy.
He had a number of encounters with mankind, working at times for a king as a herdsman. He had several love affairs with mortal girls and nymphs, a number of whom assumed other shapes in an endeavor to escape his attentions. Greek Goddess of Wisdom, Athena, daughter of Metis by Zeus, had a very strange birth. Zeus had been warned that if Metis had a female child that a male child would follow and eventually overthrow him. To avoid this prophecy, Zeus swallowed the infant whole just as Metis was about to give birth. He soon had a very bad headache, so Hephaestus took a double-sided axe and split his skull open and Athena came out fully-grown and fully armored.
Athena won the city of Athens in a contest with Poseidon. The rules were simple; who ever could produce the best gift for mankind would win. Poseidon created a horse out of rock, while Athena caused an olive tree to grow. The judges declared that the olive tree was most useful and hence she won the city. As a warlike goddess she was protector of many heroes and towns.
Her animal familiar was the watch owl. Minerva was the Roman Goddess of Craft and Trade, including the intellect on how to do the particular craft. Together with Juno and Jupiter she was one of the great Capitoline triad and was introduced to Rome by an Etruscan contingent, which came to aid Romulus. Minervas festival was celebrated on March Nineteenth. Demeter was the sister of Zeus and one of the five children that was eaten by Cronus. Demeter was the God of Fertility, and often referred to as the essential mother. Demeter had a baby girl by the name of Persephone.
Her father was Zeus, Heras husband as well as Demeters brother. Hades kidnapped Persephone and took her to the Underworld with him. After searching everywhere for her lost daughter, Helios the God of the Sun, told her he saw what had happened. She vowed not to return to the gods or continue any of her tasks till her daughter was returned. Demeter went to Zeus and demanded that her daughter be returned from the Underworld.
Zeus agreed under the condition that she had not eaten anything while she was down there. Zeus then found out she had eaten something, and told Demeter that he could not bring her back from the Underworld. When she found out she withdrew her support of earth and mankind. Demeter caused the fields to become unfertile, and finally a deadlock was reached. Soon a compromise was reached between Demeter, Zeus, and Hades. Persephone would be allowed to earth during the spring, but she would be required to return to the Underworld during the winter. Ceres, the God of Corn and Harvest, is the Roman equivalent to the Greek Goddess Demeter.
She shares all the same legends and stories. Bibliography Clayton, Peter. Great Figures of Mythology. Brompton Books Corp. NY, NY. 1990. Pinset, John.
Greek Mythology. Peter Bedrick Books. NY. 1982.