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Greek Methology ARES POSEIDON ATHENA HERA APHRODITE ZEUS was the Greek god of war. He is one of the Twelve Olympians, and the son of Zeus and Hera. In Greek literature, he often represents the physical or violent and untamed aspect of war, in contrast to the armored Athena, whose functions as a goddess of intelligence include military strategy and generalship. Poseidon or Posidon is one of the twelve Olympian deities of the pantheon in Greek mythology. His main domain is the ocean, and he is called the "God of the Sea". Additionally, he is referred to as "Earth-Shaker"due to his role in causing earthquakes, and has been called the "tamer of horses". Goddess of love, beauty, desire, and pleasure. Although married to Hephaestus she had many lovers, most notably Ares, Adonis, and Anchises. She was depicted as a beautiful woman and of all the goddesses most likely to appear nude or seminude. Poets praise the radiance of her smile and her laughter. Her symbols include roses and other flowers, the scallop shell, and myrtle wreath. Her sacred animals are doves and sparrows. Her Roman counterpart was Venus Goddess of intelligence and skill, warfare, battle strategy, handicrafts, and wisdom. According to most traditions, she was born from Zeus's head fully formed and armored. She was depicted crowned with a crested helm, armed with shield and a spear, and wearing the aegis over a long dress. Poets describe her as "grey-eyed" or having especially bright, keen eyes. She was a special patron of heroes such as Odysseus. Her symbol is the olive tree. She is commonly shown accompanied by her sacred animal, the owl. The Romans identified her with Minerva Queen of the heavens and goddess of marriage, women, childbirth, heirs, kings, and empires. She is the wife of Zeus and daughter of Cronus and Rhea. She was usually depicted as a regal woman in the prime of her life, wearing a diadem and veil and holding a lotus-tipped staff. Although she was the goddess of marriage, Zeus's many infidelities drive her to jealousy and vengefulness. Her sacred animals are the heifer, the peacock, and the cuckoo. At Rome she was known as Juno King of the gods, the ruler of Mount Olympus and the god of the sky, weather, thunder, lightning, law, order, and fate. He is the youngest son of Cronus and Rhea. He overthrew Cronus and gained the sovereignty of heaven for himself. In artwork, he was depicted as a regal, mature man with a sturdy figure and dark beard. His usual attributes are the royal scepter and the lightning bolt, and his sacred animals are the eagle and the bull. His counterpart Jupiter, also known as Jove, was the supreme deity of the Romans. HADES King of the underworld and the dead, and god of the earth's hidden wealth, both agricultural produce and precious metals. His consort is Persephone. His attributes are the drinking horn or cornucopia, key, sceptre, and the three-headed dog Cerberus. The screech owl was sacred to him. He was one of three sons of Cronus and Rhea, and thus sovereign over one of the three realms of the universe, the underworld. As a chthonic god, however, his place among the Olympians is ambiguous. In the mystery religions and Athenian literature, Pluto (Plouton, "the Rich") was his preferred name, with Hades more common for the underworld as a place. The Romans translated Plouton as Dis Pater ("the Rich Father") or Pluto. Greek mythology is the body of myths and teachings that belong to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world, and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. It was a part of the religion in ancient Greece and is part of religion in modern Greece and around the world, known as Hellenismos. Modern scholars refer to and study the myths in an attempt to throw light on the religious and political institutions of Ancient Greece and its civilization, and to gain understanding of the nature of myth-making itself DEMETER Goddess of grain, agriculture and the harvest, growth and nourishment. Demeter is a daughter of Cronus and Rhea and sister of Zeus, by whom she bore Persephone. She was one of the main deities of the Eleusinian Mysteries, in which her power over the life cycle of plants symbolized the passage of the human soul through its life course and into the afterlife. She was depicted as a mature woman, often crowned and holding sheafs of wheat and a torch. Her symbols are the cornucopia, wheat-ears, the winged serpent, and the lotus staff. Her sacred animals are pigs and snakes. Ceres was her Roman counterpart. DEMETER Goddess of grain, agriculture and the harvest, growth and nourishment. Demeter is a daughter of Cronus and Rhea and sister of Zeus, by whom she bore Persephone. She was one of the main deities of the Eleusinian Mysteries, in which her power over the life cycle of plants symbolized the passage of the human soul through its life course and into the afterlife. She was depicted as a mature woman, often crowned and holding sheafs of wheat and a torch. Her symbols are the cornucopia, wheat-ears, the winged serpent, and the lotus staff. Her sacred animals are pigs and snakes. Ceres was her Roman counterpart. HEPHASTEUS Crippled god of fire, metalworking, and crafts. The son of Hera by parthenogenesis, he is the smith of the gods and the husband of the adulterous Aphrodite. He was usually depicted as a bearded man with hammer, tongs and anvil the tools of a smiTH and sometimes riding a donkey. His sacred animals are the donkey, the guard dog and the crane. Among his creations was the armor of Achilles. Hephaestus used the fire of the forge as a creative force, but his Roman counterpart Volcanus was feared for his destructive potential and associated with the volcanic power of the earth. APOLLO God of light, music, arts, knowledge, healing, plague and darkness, prophecy, poetry, purity, athletism, manly beauty, and enlightenment. He is the son of Zeus and Leto, and the twin brother of Artemis. As brother and sister, they were identified with the sun and moon; both use a bow and arrow. In the earliest myths, Apollo contends with his half-brother Hermes. In sculpture, Apollo was depicted as a very handsome, beardless young man with long hair and an ideal physique. FAMILY TREE DIONYSUS God of wine, parties and festivals, madness, chaos, drunkenness, drugs, and ecstasy. He was depicted in art as either an older bearded god or a pretty effeminate, long-haired youth. His attributes include the thyrsus (a pinecone-tipped staff), drinking cup, grape vine, and a crown of ivy. He is often in the company of his thiasos, a posse of attendants including satyrs, maenads, and his old tutor Silenus. ARES Ares was the god of war and battle, and cared for almost nothing else. The Greeks believed that the other gods protected them, or helped them in useful ways, and so they loved them. But the only help they could ever expect to get from Ares was that which he might give them when they were at war, and even then he might be on the other side. So, instead of loving him as they did Zeus and Apollo and Athena, they dreaded him, and called him "bloody Ares," and "raging Ares," because of his fierce temper. And although they worshiped him, they did not care to build quite so many temples in his honor as they did for the other gods.