to the Romans as Hercules, was a Greek hero whose most well known feature was
his enormous strength inherited from his father, Zeus. Many of his exploits can
be read as being historical representations of actual sociological development,
for example the transition from a matriarchal society to a patriarchal one.
These include descriptions of earlier ceremonies and rituals and their
Heracles' Birth and Childhood:
Heracles' mother - was the celibate and pious wife of Amphitryon, who had gone
off to avenge the deaths of her eight brothers. Zeus went to Alcmene in
disguise, pretending to be her husband Amphitryon (who had by this point avenged
Zeus persuaded Helios, the Sun god, to take some time off, which meant the Moon
had to orbit slowly, and thus the night was extended to 36 hours. Zeus could not
keep his mouth shut and nine months later was boasting that his child was about
to be born and that it would be called 'Heracles', literally, 'Glory of Hera'
(his wife's name). Hera was none too pleased on hearing these rumours. Zeus
wanted his new son to be High King of the House of Perseus.
Hera made him swear
an unbreakable oath that any prince born before nightfall would become High King
and managed to delay Heracles' birth and bring about the birth of the child of
Nicippe (then seven months pregnant and wife of King Sthenelus) who was named
Eurystheus. On finding out that Eurystheus had been born an hour before
Heracles, Zeus fell into a towering rage. Although he
could not go back on his oath and let Heracles rule the House of Perseus, he
persuaded Hera to agree to Heracles becoming a god, if he could perform any 12
labours that Eurystheus might set him (see below). Exposed in a field by his
mother, who feared Hera's jealousy, Heracles was found by Athene (who had been
primed by Zeus) and Hera. Put to the breast of Hera, the child sucked so hard
that Hera threw him off and a spurt of milk flew into the air, becoming the
Milky Way. However, Heracles had now become immortal and was returned to Alcmene
by a smiling Athene...
Apollo drew his bow and fired arrow after arrow into the deadly pythondragon guarding the sacred ground of Ge, the goddess of the earth. With his victory, Apollo gained the right to call the slopes of Delphi his earthly sanctuary. It is a beautiful myth. Out of it grew the story of the Oracle of Delphi, a soothsayer who inhaled the breath of Apollo. The Pythia, the priestess who sat on a tripod inhaling fumes from the bowels of the earth, went into trances and muttered incomprehensible phrases, ...Zeus devotees worship in Athens
Worshippers who believe in the 12 gods of ancient Greece have held a ceremony at the Temple of Zeus in Athens. This is a landmark event to celebrate official recognition of their religion by a court last year. The Greek Orthodox Church has said they are miserable resuscitators of a degenerate dead religion. But the ceremony went ahead, with crowds watching priests and priestesses, who said the event was a symbol of their civic rights. In 2003, white-clad worshippers performedan illicit ceremony ...Legend of Perseus
Archaeologists have discovered the place where Aeneas is believed to have first set foot in Italy. It is the closest point on the Italian peninsula to Albania and, until efforts by the coastguard some years ago, was the destination of choice for Albanians fleeing poverty for the glamour and prosperity of their wealthy neighbour. But suddenly, the little town of Castro in the province of Lecce has something much more exciting to shout about. Archaeologists at the University of Lecce have discover...Evidence of pre-Zeus deity found
Submitted by Da Verminator: Before Zeus hurled his first thunderbolt from Olympus, the pre-Greek people occupying the land presumably paid homage and offered sacrifices to their own gods and goddesses, whose nature and identities are unknown to scholars today. But archaeologists say they have now found the ashes, bones and other evidence of animal sacrifices to some pre-Zeus deity on the summit of Mount Lykaion, in the region of Greece known as Arcadia. The remains were uncovered last summer at ...Oriclae of Delphi
Most of the well-known constellations are associated with stories from classical mythology. Often the stories are intertwined, and several groups of stars enter into a single tale. One such fable, "Apollo and the Crow," features three constellations: the Crow, the Cup and the Watersnake. You can watch the story unfold on any evening in early spring.Once the crow was much different than the bird we know today. It had white, lustrous feathers; its voice was sweet and melodiou...Legend of Hercules
Legends about the Amazons - a
warlike tribe of women warriors - have existed in various cultures throughout
the world. Not many people realize, however, that Amazons are closely associated
with Azerbaijan. Yes, ancient Greeks believed that Caucasian Albania was the
native land of the Amazons. Perhaps, much of what has been written about Amazons
is only a legend; however, it is true that many Albanian women really did serve
in the armies of Caucasian Albania wh...