HOME
The Info List - Heracles


--- Advertisement ---



Heracles
Heracles
(/ˈhɛrəkliːz/ HERR-ə-kleez; Greek: Ἡρακλῆς, Hēraklēs, from Hēra, "Hera"), born Alcaeus[1] (Ἀλκαῖος, Alkaios) or Alcides[2] (Ἀλκείδης, Alkeidēs), was a divine hero in Greek mythology, the son of Zeus
Zeus
and Alcmene, foster son of Amphitryon[3] and great-grandson and half-brother (as they are both sired by the god Zeus) of Perseus. He was the greatest of the Greek heroes, a paragon of masculinity, the ancestor of royal clans who claimed to be Heracleidae
Heracleidae
(Ἡρακλεῖδαι), and a champion of the Olympian order against chthonic monsters. In Rome and the modern West, he is known as Hercules, with whom the later Roman emperors, in particular Commodus
Commodus
and Maximian, often identified themselves. The Romans adopted the Greek version of his life and works essentially unchanged, but added anecdotal detail of their own, some of it linking the hero with the geography of the Central Mediterranean. Details of his cult were adapted to Rome as well.

Contents

1 Origin

1.1 Hero
Hero
or god 1.2 Christian chronology 1.3 Cult

2 Character 3 Mythology

3.1 Birth and childhood 3.2 Youth 3.3 Labours of Heracles 3.4 Further adventures 3.5 Omphale 3.6 Hylas 3.7 Rescue of Prometheus 3.8 Heracles' constellation 3.9 Heracles' sack of Troy 3.10 Other adventures 3.11 Death

4 Lovers

4.1 Women 4.2 Marriages 4.3 Affairs 4.4 Men

5 Children

5.1 Consorts and children

6 Hercules
Hercules
around the world

6.1 Rome 6.2 Egypt 6.3 Other cultures

7 Uses of Heracles
Heracles
as a name 8 Ancestry 9 See also 10 Notes 11 References 12 Further reading

12.1 Primary sources

13 External links

Origin Many popular stories were told of his life, the most famous being The Twelve Labours of Heracles; Alexandrian poets of the Hellenistic age drew his mythology into a high poetic and tragic atmosphere.[4] His figure, which initially drew on Near Eastern motifs such as the lion-fight, was widely known. Heracles
Heracles
was the greatest of Hellenic chthonic heroes, but unlike other Greek heroes, no tomb was identified as his. Heracles
Heracles
was both hero and god, as Pindar
Pindar
says heroes theos; at the same festival sacrifice was made to him, first as a hero, with a chthonic libation, and then as a god, upon an altar: thus he embodies the closest Greek approach to a "demi-god".[4] The core of the story of Heracles
Heracles
has been identified by Walter Burkert as originating in Neolithic hunter culture and traditions of shamanistic crossings into the netherworld.[5] Hero
Hero
or god Heracles' role as a culture hero, whose death could be a subject of mythic telling (see below), was accepted into the Olympian Pantheon during Classical times. This created an awkwardness in the encounter with Odysseus
Odysseus
in the episode of Odyssey
Odyssey
XI, called the Nekuia, where Odysseus
Odysseus
encounters Heracles
Heracles
in Hades:

And next I caught a glimpse of powerful Heracles— His ghost I mean: the man himself delights in the grand feasts of the deathless gods on high... Around him cries of the dead rang out like cries of birds scattering left and right in horror as on he came like night..."[6]

Ancient critics were aware of the problem of the aside that interrupts the vivid and complete description, in which Heracles
Heracles
recognizes Odysseus
Odysseus
and hails him, and modern critics find very good reasons for denying that the verses beginning, in Fagles' translation His ghost I mean... were part of the original composition: "once people knew of Heracles' admission to Olympus, they would not tolerate his presence in the underworld", remarks Friedrich Solmsen,[7] noting that the interpolated verses represent a compromise between conflicting representations of Heracles. Christian chronology In Christian circles a Euhemerist reading of the widespread Heracles cult was attributed to a historical figure who had been offered cult status after his death. Thus Eusebius, Preparation of the Gospel (10.12), reported that Clement could offer historical dates for Hercules
Hercules
as a king in Argos: "from the reign of Hercules
Hercules
in Argos
Argos
to the deification of Hercules
Hercules
himself and of Asclepius
Asclepius
there are comprised thirty-eight years, according to Apollodorus the chronicler: and from that point to the deification of Castor and Pollux fifty-three years: and somewhere about this time was the capture of Troy."

Temple to Heracles
Heracles
in Agrigento

Readers with a literalist bent, following Clement's reasoning, have asserted from this remark that, since Heracles
Heracles
ruled over Tiryns
Tiryns
in Argos
Argos
at the same time that Eurystheus
Eurystheus
ruled over Mycenae, and since at about this time Linus was Heracles' teacher, one can conclude, based on Jerome's date—in his universal history, his Chronicon—given to Linus' notoriety in teaching Heracles
Heracles
in 1264 BCE, that Heracles' death and deification occurred 38 years later, in approximately 1226 BCE. Cult The ancient Greeks celebrated the festival of the Heracleia, which commemorated the death of Heracles, on the second day of the month of Metageitnion (which would fall in late July or early August). What is believed to be an Egyptian Temple of Heracles
Heracles
in the Bahariya Oasis dates to 21 BCE. A reassessment of Ptolemy's descriptions of the island of Malta
Malta
attempted to link the site at Ras ir-Raħeb
Ras ir-Raħeb
with a temple to Heracles,[8] but the arguments are not conclusive.[9] Several ancient cities were named Heraclea in his honor. Character

Greek mythology
Greek mythology
influenced the Etruscans. This vase at Caere
Caere
shows King Eurytus of Oechalia
King Eurytus of Oechalia
and Heracles
Heracles
in a symposium. Krater of corinthian columns called 'Krater of Eurytion', circa 600 B.C.

Extraordinary strength, courage, ingenuity, and sexual prowess with both males and females were among the characteristics commonly attributed to him. Heracles
Heracles
used his wits on several occasions when his strength did not suffice, such as when laboring for the king Augeas
Augeas
of Elis, wrestling the giant Antaeus, or tricking Atlas into taking the sky back onto his shoulders. Together with Hermes
Hermes
he was the patron and protector of gymnasia and palaestrae.[10] His iconographic attributes are the lion skin and the club. These qualities did not prevent him from being regarded as a playful figure who used games to relax from his labors and played a great deal with children.[11] By conquering dangerous archaic forces he is said to have "made the world safe for mankind" and to be its benefactor.[12] Heracles
Heracles
was an extremely passionate and emotional individual, capable of doing both great deeds for his friends (such as wrestling with Thanatos
Thanatos
on behalf of Prince Admetus, who had regaled Heracles
Heracles
with his hospitality, or restoring his friend Tyndareus
Tyndareus
to the throne of Sparta
Sparta
after he was overthrown) and being a terrible enemy who would wreak horrible vengeance on those who crossed him, as Augeas, Neleus and Laomedon
Laomedon
all found out to their cost.

Mythology Birth and childhood

Heracles
Heracles
strangling snakes (detail from an Attic red-figured stamnos, c. 480–470 BCE)

A major factor in the well-known tragedies surrounding Heracles
Heracles
is the hatred that the goddess Hera, wife of Zeus, had for him. A full account of Heracles
Heracles
must render it clear why Heracles
Heracles
was so tormented by Hera, when there were many illegitimate offspring sired by Zeus. Heracles
Heracles
was the son of the affair Zeus
Zeus
had with the mortal woman Alcmene. Zeus
Zeus
made love to her after disguising himself as her husband, Amphitryon, home early from war ( Amphitryon did return later the same night, and Alcmene
Alcmene
became pregnant with his son at the same time, a case of heteropaternal superfecundation, where a woman carries twins sired by different fathers).[13] Thus, Heracles' very existence proved at least one of Zeus' many illicit affairs, and Hera
Hera
often conspired against Zeus' mortal offspring as revenge for her husband's infidelities. His twin mortal brother, son of Amphitryon, was Iphicles, father of Heracles' charioteer Iolaus.

The Origin of the Milky Way by Jacopo Tintoretto

On the night the twins Heracles
Heracles
and Iphicles were to be born, Hera, knowing of her husband Zeus' adultery, persuaded Zeus
Zeus
to swear an oath that the child born that night to a member of the House of Perseus would become High King. Hera
Hera
did this knowing that while Heracles
Heracles
was to be born a descendant of Perseus, so too was Eurystheus. Once the oath was sworn, Hera
Hera
hurried to Alcmene's dwelling and slowed the birth of the twins Heracles
Heracles
and Iphicles by forcing Ilithyia, goddess of childbirth, to sit crosslegged with her clothing tied in knots, thereby causing the twins to be trapped in the womb. Meanwhile, Hera caused Eurystheus
Eurystheus
to be born prematurely, making him High King in place of Heracles. She would have permanently delayed Heracles' birth had she not been fooled by Galanthis, Alcmene's servant, who lied to Ilithyia, saying that Alcmene
Alcmene
had already delivered the baby. Upon hearing this, she jumped in surprise, loosing the knots and inadvertently allowing Alcmene
Alcmene
to give birth to Heracles
Heracles
and Iphicles.

Heracles
Heracles
as a boy strangling a snake (marble, Roman artwork, 2nd century CE)

Fear of Hera's revenge led Alcmene
Alcmene
to expose the infant Heracles, but he was taken up and brought to Hera
Hera
by his half-sister Athena, who played an important role as protectress of heroes. Hera
Hera
did not recognize Heracles
Heracles
and nursed him out of pity. Heracles
Heracles
suckled so strongly that he caused Hera
Hera
pain, and she pushed him away. Her milk sprayed across the heavens and there formed the Milky Way. But with divine milk, Heracles
Heracles
had acquired supernatural powers. Athena
Athena
brought the infant back to his mother, and he was subsequently raised by his parents. The child was originally given the name Alcides by his parents; it was only later that he became known as Heracles.[3] He was renamed Heracles
Heracles
in an unsuccessful attempt to mollify Hera. He and his twin were just eight months old when Hera
Hera
sent two giant snakes into the children's chamber. Iphicles cried from fear, but his brother grabbed a snake in each hand and strangled them. He was found by his nurse playing with them on his cot as if they were toys. Astonished, Amphitryon sent for the seer Tiresias, who prophesied an unusual future for the boy, saying he would vanquish numerous monsters. Youth

The choice of Hercules
Hercules
by Annibale Carracci

After killing his music tutor Linus with a lyre, he was sent to tend cattle on a mountain by his foster father Amphitryon. Here, according to an allegorical parable, "The Choice of Heracles", invented by the sophist Prodicus
Prodicus
(c. 400 BCE) and reported in Xenophon's Memorabilia 2.1.21–34, he was visited by two allegorical figures—Vice and Virtue—who offered him a choice between a pleasant and easy life or a severe but glorious life: he chose the latter. This was part of a pattern of "ethicizing" Heracles
Heracles
over the 5th century BCE.[14] Later in Thebes, Heracles
Heracles
married King Creon's daughter, Megara. In a fit of madness, induced by Hera, Heracles
Heracles
killed his children by Megara. After his madness had been cured with hellebore by Antikyreus, the founder of Antikyra,[15] he realized what he had done and fled to the Oracle of Delphi. Unbeknownst to him, the Oracle was guided by Hera. He was directed to serve King Eurystheus
Eurystheus
for ten years and perform any task Eurystheus
Eurystheus
required of him. Eurystheus
Eurystheus
decided to give Heracles
Heracles
ten labours, but after completing them, Heracles
Heracles
was cheated by Eurystheus
Eurystheus
when he added two more, resulting in the Twelve Labors of Heracles. Labours of Heracles

The fight of Heracles
Heracles
and the Nemean lion
Nemean lion
is one of his most famous feats. (Side B from a black-figure Attic amphora, c. 540 BCE)

His eleventh feat was to capture the apple of Hesperides
Hesperides
(Gilded bronze, Roman artwork, 2nd century CE)

Main article: Labours of Hercules Driven mad by Hera, Heracles
Heracles
slew his own children. To expiate the crime, Heracles
Heracles
was required to carry out ten labors set by his archenemy, Eurystheus, who had become king in Heracles' place. If he succeeded, he would be purified of his sin and, as myth says, he would be granted immortality. Heracles
Heracles
accomplished these tasks, but Eurystheus
Eurystheus
did not accept the cleansing of the Augean stables because Heracles
Heracles
was going to accept pay for the labor. Neither did he accept the killing of the Lernaean Hydra
Lernaean Hydra
as Heracles' nephew, Iolaus, had helped him burn the stumps of the heads. Eurystheus
Eurystheus
set two more tasks (fetching the Golden Apples of Hesperides
Hesperides
and capturing Cerberus), which Heracles
Heracles
performed successfully, bringing the total number of tasks up to twelve. Not all writers gave the labours in the same order. The Bibliotheca (2.5.1–2.5.12) gives the following order:

Slay the Nemean Lion. Slay the nine-headed Lernaean Hydra. Capture the Golden Hind of Artemis. Capture the Erymanthian Boar. Clean the Augean stables in a single day. Slay the Stymphalian Birds. Capture the Cretan Bull. Steal the Mares of Diomedes. Obtain the girdle of Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons. Obtain the cattle of the monster Geryon. Steal the apples of the Hesperides
Hesperides
(he had the help of Atlas to pick them after Hercules
Hercules
had slain Ladon). Capture and bring back Cerberus.

Further adventures After completing these tasks, Heracles
Heracles
joined the Argonauts
Argonauts
in a search for the Golden Fleece. He also fell in love with Princess Iole of Oechalia. King Eurytus of Oechalia
King Eurytus of Oechalia
promised his daughter, Iole, to whoever could beat his sons in an archery contest. Heracles
Heracles
won but Eurytus abandoned his promise. Heracles' advances were spurned by the king and his sons, except for one: Iole's brother Iphitus. Heracles killed the king and his sons—excluding Iphitus—and abducted Iole. Iphitus became Heracles' best friend. However, once again, Hera
Hera
drove Heracles
Heracles
mad and he threw Iphitus over the city wall to his death. Once again, Heracles
Heracles
purified himself through three years of servitude—this time to Queen Omphale
Omphale
of Lydia. Omphale Main article: Omphale Omphale
Omphale
was a queen or princess of Lydia. As penalty for a murder, imposed by Xenoclea, the Delphic Oracle, Heracles
Heracles
was to serve as her slave for a year. He was forced to do women's work and to wear women's clothes, while she wore the skin of the Nemean Lion
Nemean Lion
and carried his olive-wood club. After some time, Omphale
Omphale
freed Heracles
Heracles
and married him. Some sources mention a son born to them who is variously named. It was at that time that the cercopes, mischievous wood spirits, stole Heracles' weapons. He punished them by tying them to a stick with their faces pointing downward. Hylas While walking through the wilderness, Heracles
Heracles
was set upon by the Dryopes. In Apollonius of Rhodes' Argonautica
Argonautica
it is recalled that Heracles
Heracles
had mercilessly slain their king, Theiodamas, over one of the latter's bulls, and made war upon the Dryopes "because they gave no heed to justice in their lives".[16] After the death of their king, the Dryopes gave in and offered him Prince Hylas. He took the youth on as his weapons bearer and beloved. Years later, Heracles
Heracles
and Hylas joined the crew of the Argo. As Argonauts, they only participated in part of the journey. In Mysia, Hylas
Hylas
was kidnapped by the nymphs of a local spring. Heracles, heartbroken, searched for a long time but Hylas
Hylas
had fallen in love with the nymphs and never showed up again. In other versions, he simply drowned. Either way, the Argo
Argo
set sail without them. Rescue of Prometheus Hesiod's Theogony
Theogony
and Aeschylus' Prometheus
Prometheus
Unbound both tell that Heracles
Heracles
shot and killed the eagle that tortured Prometheus
Prometheus
(which was his punishment by Zeus
Zeus
for stealing fire from the gods and giving it to mortals). Heracles
Heracles
freed the Titan from his chains and his torments. Prometheus
Prometheus
then made predictions regarding further deeds of Heracles. Heracles' constellation On his way back to Mycenae
Mycenae
from Iberia, having obtained the Cattle of Geryon
Geryon
as his tenth labour, Heracles
Heracles
came to Liguria
Liguria
in North-Western Italy
Italy
where he engaged in battle with two giants, Albion and Bergion or Dercynus, sons of Poseidon. The opponents were strong; Hercules
Hercules
was in a difficult position so he prayed to his father Zeus
Zeus
for help. Under the aegis of Zeus, Heracles
Heracles
won the battle. It was this kneeling position of Heracles
Heracles
when he prayed to his father Zeus
Zeus
that gave the name Engonasin ("Εγγόνασιν", derived from "εν γόνασιν"), meaning "on his knees" or "the Kneeler", to the constellation known as Heracles' constellation. The story, among others, is described by Dionysius of Halicarnassus.[17] Heracles' sack of Troy

A fresco from Herculaneum
Herculaneum
depicting Heracles
Heracles
and Achelous
Achelous
from Greco-Roman mythology, 1st century AD

Before Homer's Trojan War, Heracles
Heracles
had made an expedition to Troy
Troy
and sacked it. Previously, Poseidon
Poseidon
had sent a sea monster to attack Troy. The story is related in several digressions in the Iliad
Iliad
(7.451–453, 20.145–148, 21.442–457) and is found in pseudo-Apollodorus' Bibliotheke (2.5.9). This expedition became the theme of the Eastern pediment of the Temple of Aphaea. Laomedon
Laomedon
planned on sacrificing his daughter Hesione
Hesione
to Poseidon
Poseidon
in the hope of appeasing him. Heracles happened to arrive (along with Telamon
Telamon
and Oicles) and agreed to kill the monster if Laomedon
Laomedon
would give him the horses received from Zeus as compensation for Zeus' kidnapping Ganymede. Laomedon
Laomedon
agreed. Heracles
Heracles
killed the monster, but Laomedon
Laomedon
went back on his word. Accordingly, in a later expedition, Heracles
Heracles
and his followers attacked Troy
Troy
and sacked it. Then they slew all Laomedon's sons present there save Podarces, who was renamed Priam, who saved his own life by giving Heracles
Heracles
a golden veil Hesione
Hesione
had made. Telamon
Telamon
took Hesione
Hesione
as a war prize; they were married and had a son, Teucer. Other adventures

This section is in a list format that may be better presented using prose. You can help by converting this section to prose, if appropriate. Editing help is available. (August 2009)

Heracles
Heracles
fighting the servants of the Egyptian King Busiris, Attic Pelike, c.470 BC

Heracles
Heracles
defeated the Bebryces (ruled by King Mygdon) and gave their land to Prince Lycus of Mysia, son of Dascylus. He killed the robber Termerus. Heracles
Heracles
visited Evander with Antor, who then stayed in Italy. Heracles
Heracles
killed King Amyntor of the Dolopes
Dolopes
for not allowing him into his kingdom. He also killed King Emathion of Arabia. Heracles
Heracles
kills the Egyptian King Busiris and his followers after they attempt to sacrifice him to the gods. Heracles
Heracles
killed Lityerses after beating him in a contest of harvesting. Heracles
Heracles
killed Periclymenus at Pylos. Heracles
Heracles
killed Syleus for forcing strangers to hoe a vineyard. Heracles
Heracles
rivaled with Lepreus and eventually killed him. Heracles
Heracles
founded the city Tarentum (modern Taranto
Taranto
in Italy). Heracles
Heracles
learned music from Linus (and Eumolpus), but killed him after Linus corrected his mistakes. He learned how to wrestle from Autolycus. He killed the famous boxer Eryx
Eryx
of Sicily
Sicily
in a match. Heracles
Heracles
was an Argonaut. He killed Alastor and his brothers.

Heracles
Heracles
killing the giant, Antaeus

When Hippocoon overthrew his brother, Tyndareus, as King of Sparta, Heracles
Heracles
reinstated the rightful ruler and killed Hippocoon and his sons. Heracles
Heracles
killed Cycnus, the son of Ares. The expedition against Cycnus, in which Iolaus
Iolaus
accompanied Heracles, is the ostensible theme of a short epic attributed to Hesiod, Shield of Heracles. Heracles
Heracles
killed the Giants Alcyoneus
Alcyoneus
and Porphyrion. Heracles
Heracles
killed Antaeus
Antaeus
the giant who was immortal while touching the earth, by picking him up and holding him in the air while strangling him. Heracles
Heracles
went to war with Augeias
Augeias
after he denied him a promised reward for clearing his stables. Augeias
Augeias
remained undefeated due to the skill of his two generals, the Molionides, and after Heracles
Heracles
fell ill, his army was badly beaten. Later, however, he was able to ambush and kill the Molionides, and thus march into Elis, sack it, and kill Augeias
Augeias
and his sons. Heracles
Heracles
visited the house of Admetus
Admetus
on the day Admetus' wife, Alcestis, had agreed to die in his place. By hiding beside the grave of Alcestis, Heracles
Heracles
was able to surprise Death when he came to collect her, and by squeezing him tight until he relented, was able to persuade Death to return Alcestis
Alcestis
to her husband. Heracles
Heracles
challenged wine god Dionysus
Dionysus
to a drinking contest and lost, resulting in his joining the Thiasus
Thiasus
for a period. Heracles
Heracles
also appears in Aristophanes' The Frogs, in which Dionysus seeks out the hero to find a way to the underworld. Heracles
Heracles
is greatly amused by Dionysus' appearance and jokingly offers several ways to commit suicide before finally offering his knowledge of how to get to there. Heracles
Heracles
appears as the ancestral hero of Scythia
Scythia
in Herodotus' text. While Heracles
Heracles
is sleeping out in the wilderness, a half-woman, half-snake creature steals his horses. Heracles
Heracles
eventually finds the creature, but she refuses to return the horses until he has sex with her. After doing so, he takes back his horses, but before leaving, he hands over his belt and bow, and gives instructions as to which of their children should found a new nation in Scythia. In the fifth book of the New History, ascribed by Photius
Photius
to Ptolemy Hephaestion, mention that Heracles
Heracles
did not wear the skin of the Nemean lion, but that of a certain Lion giant killed by Heracles
Heracles
whom he had challenged to single combat.[18]

Death

Death of Hercules
Hercules
(painting by Francisco de Zurbarán, 1634, Museo del Prado)

This is described in Sophocles's Trachiniae
Trachiniae
and in Ovid's Metamorphoses
Metamorphoses
Book IX. Having wrestled and defeated Achelous, god of the Acheloos river, Heracles
Heracles
takes Deianira
Deianira
as his wife. Travelling to Tiryns, a centaur, Nessus, offers to help Deianira
Deianira
across a fast flowing river while Heracles
Heracles
swims it. However, Nessus is true to the archetype of the mischievous centaur and tries to steal Deianira
Deianira
away while Heracles
Heracles
is still in the water. Angry, Heracles
Heracles
shoots him with his arrows dipped in the poisonous blood of the Lernaean Hydra. Thinking of revenge, Nessus gives Deianira
Deianira
his blood-soaked tunic before he dies, telling her it will "excite the love of her husband".[19] Several years later, rumor tells Deianira
Deianira
that she has a rival for the love of Heracles. Deianira, remembering Nessus' words, gives Heracles the bloodstained shirt. Lichas, the herald, delivers the shirt to Heracles. However, it is still covered in the Hydra's blood from Heracles' arrows, and this poisons him, tearing his skin and exposing his bones. Before he dies, Heracles
Heracles
throws Lichas
Lichas
into the sea, thinking he was the one who poisoned him (according to several versions, Lichas
Lichas
turns to stone, becoming a rock standing in the sea, named for him). Heracles
Heracles
then uproots several trees and builds a funeral pyre on Mount Oeta, which Poeas, father of Philoctetes, lights. As his body burns, only his immortal side is left. Through Zeus' apotheosis, Heracles
Heracles
rises to Olympus as he dies. No one but Heracles' friend Philoctetes
Philoctetes
( Poeas in some versions) would light his funeral pyre (in an alternate version, it is Iolaus
Iolaus
who lights the pyre). For this action, Philoctetes
Philoctetes
or Poeas received Heracles' bow and arrows, which were later needed by the Greeks to defeat Troy
Troy
in the Trojan War. Philoctetes
Philoctetes
confronted Paris and shot a poisoned arrow at him. The Hydra poison subsequently led to the death of Paris. The Trojan War, however, continued until the Trojan Horse
Trojan Horse
was used to defeat Troy. According to Herodotus, Heracles
Heracles
lived 900 years before Herodotus' own time (c. 1300 BCE).[20] Lovers Women Marriages During the course of his life, Heracles
Heracles
married four times.

His first marriage was to Megara, whose children he murdered in a fit of madness. Pseudo-Apollodorus (Bibliotheke) recounts that Megara was unharmed and given in marriage to Iolaus, while in Euripides' version Heracles
Heracles
also killed Megara.

His second wife was Omphale, the Lydian queen or princess to whom he was delivered as a slave.

His third marriage was to Deianira, for whom he had to fight the river god Achelous
Achelous
(upon Achelous' death, Heracles
Heracles
removed one of his horns and gave it to some nymphs who turned it into the cornucopia). Soon after they wed, Heracles
Heracles
and Deianira
Deianira
had to cross a river, and a centaur named Nessus offered to help Deianira
Deianira
across but then attempted to rape her. Enraged, Heracles
Heracles
shot the centaur from the opposite shore with a poisoned arrow (tipped with the Lernaean Hydra's blood) and killed him. As he lay dying, Nessus plotted revenge, told Deianira
Deianira
to gather up his blood and spilled semen and, if she ever wanted to prevent Heracles
Heracles
from having affairs with other women, she should apply them to his vestments. Nessus knew that his blood had become tainted by the poisonous blood of the Hydra, and would burn through the skin of anyone it touched. Later, when Deianira
Deianira
suspected that Heracles
Heracles
was fond of Iole, she soaked a shirt of his in the mixture, creating the poisoned shirt of Nessus. Heracles' servant, Lichas, brought him the shirt and he put it on. Instantly he was in agony, the cloth burning into him. As he tried to remove it, the flesh ripped from his bones. Heracles
Heracles
chose a voluntary death, asking that a pyre be built for him to end his suffering. After death, the gods transformed him into an immortal, or alternatively, the fire burned away the mortal part of the demigod, so that only the god remained. After his mortal parts had been incinerated, he could become a full god and join his father and the other Olympians on Mount Olympus.

His fourth marriage was to Hebe, his last wife.

Affairs An episode of his female affairs that stands out was his stay at the palace of Thespius, king of Thespiae, who wished him to kill the Lion of Cithaeron. As a reward, the king offered him the chance to perform sexual intercourse with all fifty of his daughters in one night. Heracles
Heracles
complied and they all became pregnant and all bore sons. This is sometimes referred to as his Thirteenth Labour. Many of the kings of ancient Greece
Greece
traced their lines to one or another of these, notably the kings of Sparta
Sparta
and Macedon. Yet another episode of his female affairs that stands out was when he carried away the oxen of Geryon, he also visited the country of the Scythians. Once there, while asleep, his horses suddenly disappeared. When he woke and wandered about in search of them, he came into the country of Hylaea. He then found the dracaena of Scythia
Scythia
(sometimes identified as Echidna) in a cave. When he asked whether she knew anything about his horses, she answered, that they were in her own possession, but that she would not give them up, unless he would consent to stay with her for a time. Heracles
Heracles
accepted the request, and became by her the father of Agathyrsus, Gelonus, and Scythes. The last of them became king of the Scythians, according to his father's arrangement, because he was the only one among the three brothers that was able to manage the bow which Heracles
Heracles
had left behind and to use his father's girdle.[21] In some versions, the Scythian echidna's children by him are known as the Dracontidae and were the ancestors of a House of Cadmus.[citation needed] Men

Heracles
Heracles
and Iolaus
Iolaus
(Fountain mosaic from the Anzio
Anzio
Nymphaeum)

As a symbol of masculinity and warriorship, Heracles
Heracles
also had a number of male lovers. Plutarch, in his Eroticos, maintains that Heracles' male lovers were beyond counting. Of these, the one most closely linked to Heracles
Heracles
is the Theban Iolaus. According to a myth thought to be of ancient origins, Iolaus
Iolaus
was Heracles' charioteer and squire. Heracles
Heracles
in the end helped Iolaus
Iolaus
find a wife. Plutarch
Plutarch
reports that down to his own time, male couples would go to Iolaus's tomb in Thebes to swear an oath of loyalty to the hero and to each other.[22][23] One of Heracles' male lovers, and one represented in ancient as well as modern art, is Hylas. Though it is of more recent vintage (dated to the 3rd century) than that with Iolaus, it had themes of mentoring in the ways of a warrior and help finding a wife in the end. There is nothing in Apollonius's account that suggests that Hylas
Hylas
was a sexual lover as opposed to a companion and servant.[24] Another reputed male lover of Heracles
Heracles
is Elacatas, who was honored in Sparta
Sparta
with a sanctuary and yearly games, Elacatea. The myth of their love is an ancient one.[25] Abdera's eponymous hero, Abderus, was another of Heracles' lovers. He was said to have been entrusted with—and slain by—the carnivorous mares of Thracian Diomedes. Heracles
Heracles
founded the city of Abdera in Thrace
Thrace
in his memory, where he was honored with athletic games.[26] Another myth is that of Iphitus.[27] Another story is the one of his love for Nireus, who was "the most beautiful man who came beneath Ilion" (Iliad, 673). But Ptolemy
Ptolemy
adds that certain authors made Nireus out to be a son of Heracles.[28] Pausanias makes mention of Sostratus, a youth of Dyme, Achaea, as a lover of Heracles. Sostratus was said to have died young and to have been buried by Heracles
Heracles
outside the city. The tomb was still there in historical times, and the inhabitants of Dyme honored Sostratus as a hero.[29] The youth seems to have also been referred to as Polystratus. There is also a series of lovers who are either later inventions or purely literary conceits. Among these are Admetus, who assisted in the hunt for the Calydonian Boar,[30] Adonis,[31] Corythus,[31] and Nestor who was said to have been loved for his wisdom. His role as lover was perhaps to explain why he was the only son of Neleus to be spared by the hero.[32] A scholiast on Argonautica
Argonautica
lists the following male lovers of Heracles: "Hylas, Philoctetes, Diomus, Perithoas, and Phrix, after whom a city in Libya
Libya
was named".[33] Diomus is also mentioned by Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
as the eponym of the deme Diomeia of the Attic phyle Aegeis: Heracles
Heracles
is said to have fallen in love with Diomus when he was received as guest by Diomus' father Collytus.[34] Perithoas and Phrix are otherwise unknown, and so is the version that suggests a sexual relationship between Heracles
Heracles
and Philoctetes. Children Main article: Heracleidae

Heracles
Heracles
and his child Telephus. (Marble, Roman copy of the 1st or 2nd century CE)

All of Heracles' marriages and almost all of his heterosexual affairs resulted in births of a number of sons and at least four daughters. One of the most prominent is Hyllus, the son of Heracles
Heracles
and Deianeira or Melite. The term Heracleidae, although it could refer to all of Heracles' children and further descendants, is most commonly used to indicate the descendants of Hyllus, in the context of their lasting struggle for return to Peloponnesus, out of where Hyllus and his brothers—the children of Heracles
Heracles
by Deianeira—were thought to have been expelled by Eurystheus. The children of Heracles
Heracles
by Megara are collectively well known because of their ill fate, but there is some disagreement among sources as to their number and individual names. Apollodorus lists three, Therimachus, Creontiades and Deicoon;[35] to these Hyginus[36] adds Ophitus and, probably by mistake, Archelaus, who is otherwise known to have belonged to the Heracleidae, but to have lived several generations later. A scholiast on Pindar' s odes provides a list of seven completely different names: Anicetus, Chersibius, Mecistophonus, Menebrontes, Patrocles, Polydorus, Toxocleitus.[37] Other well-known children of Heracles
Heracles
include Telephus, king of Mysia (by Auge), and Tlepolemus, one of the Greek commanders in the Trojan War (by Astyoche). According to Herodotus, a line of 22 Kings of Lydia
Lydia
descended from Hercules
Hercules
and Omphale. The line was called Tylonids after his Lydian name. The divine sons of Heracles
Heracles
and Hebe are Alexiares and Anicetus. Consorts and children

Megara

Therimachus Creontiades Ophitus Deicoon

Omphale

Agelaus Tyrsenus

Deianira

Hyllus Ctesippus Glenus Oneites Macaria

Hebe

Alexiares Anicetus

Astydameia, daughter of Ormenius

Ctesippus

Astyoche, daughter of Phylas

Tlepolemus

Auge

Telephus

Autonoe, daughter of Piraeus / Iphinoe, daughter of Antaeus

Palaemon

Baletia, daughter of Baletus

Brettus[38]

Barge

Bargasus[39]

Bolbe

Olynthus

Celtine

Celtus

Chalciope

Thessalus

Chania, nymph

Gelon[40]

The Scythian dracaena or Echidna

Agathyrsus Gelonus Skythes

Epicaste

Thestalus

Lavinia, daughter of Evander[41]

Pallas

Malis, a slave of Omphale

Acelus[42]

Meda

Antiochus

Melite (heroine) Melite (naiad)

Hyllus (possibly)

Myrto

Eucleia

Palantho of Hyperborea[43]

Latinus[41]

Parthenope, daughter of Stymphalus

Everes

Phialo

Aechmagoras

Psophis

Echephron Promachus

Pyrene

none known

Rhea, Italian priestess

Aventinus[44]

Thebe (daughter of Adramys) Tinge, wife of Antaeus

Sophax[45]

50 daughters of Thespius

50 sons, see Thespius#Daughters and grandchildren

Unnamed Celtic woman

Galates[46]

Unnamed slave of Omphale

Alcaeus / Cleodaeus

Unnamed daughter of Syleus (Xenodoce?)[47] Unknown consorts

Agylleus[48] Amathous[49] Azon[50] Chromis[51] Cyrnus[52] Dexamenus[53] Leucites[54] Manto Pandaie Phaestus or Rhopalus[55]

Hercules
Hercules
around the world Rome Main article: Hercules
Hercules
in ancient Rome In Rome, Heracles
Heracles
was honored as Hercules, and had a number of distinctively Roman myths and practices associated with him under that name. Egypt Herodotus
Herodotus
connected Heracles
Heracles
to the Egyptian god Shu. Also he was associated with Khonsu, another Egyptian god who was in some ways similar to Shu. As Khonsu, Heracles
Heracles
was worshipped at the now sunken city of Heracleion, where a large temple was constructed. Most often the Egyptians identified Heracles
Heracles
with Heryshaf, transcribed in Greek as Arsaphes or Harsaphes (Ἁρσαφής). He was an ancient ram-god whose cult was centered in Herakleopolis Magna. Other cultures See also: Hercules
Hercules
in popular culture

Hellenistic-era depiction of the Zoroastrian
Zoroastrian
divinity Bahram as Hercules
Hercules
carved in 153 BCE at Kermanshah, Iran.

The protector Vajrapani
Vajrapani
of the Buddha
Buddha
is another incarnation of Heracles
Heracles
(Gandhara, 1st century CE)

The Mathura Herakles, strangling the Nemean lion.[56] Also: [1]. Today in the Kolkota
Kolkota
Indian Museum.

Via the Greco-Buddhist
Greco-Buddhist
culture, Heraclean symbolism was transmitted to the Far East. An example remains to this day in the Nio
Nio
guardian deities in front of Japanese Buddhist temples. Herodotus
Herodotus
also connected Heracles
Heracles
to Phoenician god Melqart. Sallust
Sallust
mentions in his work on the Jugurthine War
Jugurthine War
that the Africans believe Heracles
Heracles
to have died in Spain
Spain
where, his multicultural army being left without a leader, the Medes, Persians, and Armenians
Armenians
who were once under his command split off and populated the Mediterranean coast of Africa.[57] Temples dedicated to Heracles
Heracles
abounded all along the Mediterranean coastal countries. For example, the temple of Heracles
Heracles
Monoikos (i.e. the lone dweller), built far from any nearby town upon a promontory in what is now the Côte d'Azur, gave its name to the area's more recent name, Monaco. The gateway to the Mediterranean Sea from the Atlantic Ocean, where the southernmost tip of Spain
Spain
and the northernmost of Morocco face each other is, classically speaking, referred to as the Pillars of Hercules/Heracles, owing to the story that he set up two massive spires of stone to stabilise the area and ensure the safety of ships sailing between the two landmasses. Uses of Heracles
Heracles
as a name In various languages, variants of Hercules' name are used as a male given name, such as Hercule in French, Hércules in Spanish, Iraklis (Greek: Ηρακλής) in Modern Greek and Irakliy in Russian. Also, there are many teams around the world which have this name or have Heracles
Heracles
as their symbol. The most popular in Greece
Greece
is G.S. Iraklis Thessaloniki. Ancestry

Source:[58]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zeus

 

Danaë

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Perseus

 

Andromeda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Perses

 

 

Alcaeus

 

Hipponome

 

 

 

 

 

Electryon

 

Anaxo

 

Sthenelus

 

Menippe

 

Mestor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anaxo

 

 

Amphitryon

 

Alcmene

 

Zeus

 

 

 

Licymnius

 

 

Eurystheus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iphicles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Megara

 

Heracles

 

Deianira

 

Hebe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iolaus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Children

 

 

Hyllus

 

Macaria

 

Others

See also

Greek mythology
Greek mythology
portal Hellenismos portal

Other figures in Greek mythology
Greek mythology
punished by the gods include

Atlas Ixion Medusa Prometheus Sisyphus Tantalus The Danaides

Figures resembling Heracles
Heracles
in other mythological traditions

Agilaz Beowulf Gilgamesh Lugalbanda Samson

Notes

^ Schmitz, Leonhard (1867). "Alceides". In William Smith. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. 1. Boston: Little, Brown and Company. p. 98. Archived from the original on 2008-05-27.  ^ Bibliotheca ii. 4. § 12 ^ a b By his adoptive descent through Amphitryon, Heracles
Heracles
receives the epithet Alcides, as "of the line of Alcaeus", father of Amphitryon. Amphitryon's own, mortal son was Iphicles ^ a b Burkert 1985, pp. 208–9 ^ Burkert 1985, pp. 208–212. ^ Robert Fagles' translation, 1996:269. ^ Solmsen, Friedrich (1981). "The Sacrifice of Agamemnon's Daughter in Hesiod's' Ehoeae". The American Journal of Philology. 102 (4): 353–358 [p. 355]. JSTOR 294322.  ^ Ptol. iv. 3. § 37 ^ Ventura, F. (1988). "Ptolemy's Maltese Co-ordinates". Hyphen. V (6): 253–269.  ^ Pausanias, Guide to Greece, 4.32.1 ^ Aelian, Varia Historia, 12.15 ^ Aelian, Varia Historia, 5.3 ^ Compare the two pairs of twins born to Leda and the "double" parentage of Theseus. ^ Andrew Ford, Aristotle as Poet, Oxford, 2011, p. 208 n. 5, citing, in addition to Prodicus/Xenophon, Antisthenes, Herodorus (esp. FGrHist 31 F 14), and (in the 4th century) Plato's use of " Heracles
Heracles
as a figure for Socrates' life (and death?): Apology 22a, cf. Theaetetus 175a, Lysis 205c." ^ Pausanias Χ 3.1, 36.5. Ptolemaeus, Geogr. Hyph. ΙΙ 184. 12. Stephanus of Byzantium, s.v. «Ἀντίκυρα» ^ Richard Hunter, translator, Jason
Jason
and the Golden Fleece (Oxford:Clarendon Press), 1993, p 31f. ^ Dionysius of Halicarnassus, i. 41 ^ Ptolemy
Ptolemy
Hephaestion, New History Book 5 " Heracles
Heracles
did not wear the skin of the Nemean lion, but that of a certain Lion, one of the giants killed by Heracles
Heracles
whom he had challenged to single combat." ^ Ovid, Metamorphoses, IX l.132–3 ^ Herodotus, Histories II.145 ^ Herodotus, Histories IV. 8–10. ^ Plutarch, Erotikos, 761d.The tomb of Iolaus
Iolaus
is also mentioned by Pindar. ^ Pindar, Olympian Odes, 9.98–99. ^ Apollonius of Rhodes, Argonautica, 1.1177–1357; Theocritus, Idyll 13. ^ Sosibius, in Hesychius of Alexandria's Lexicon ^ Bibliotheca 2.5.8; Ptolemaeus Chennus, 147b, in Photius' Bibliotheca ^ Ptolemaeus Chennus, in Photius' Bibliotheca ^ Ptolemaeus Chennus, 147b. ^ Pausanias, Description of Greece, 7. 17. 8 ^ Plutarch, Erotikos, 761e. ^ a b Ptolemaeus Chennus ^ Ptolemaeus Chennus, 147e; Philostratus, Heroicus 696, per Sergent, 1986, p. 163. ^ Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica, 1. 1207 ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Diomeia ^ Apollodorus, Bibliotheca, 2. 4. 11 = 2. 7. 8 ^ Fabulae 162 ^ Scholia on Pindar, Isthmian Ode 3 (4), 104 ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Brettos ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Bargasa ^ Servius
Servius
on Virgil's Georgics 2. 115 ^ a b Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities, 1. 43. 1 ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Akelēs ^ Solinus, De mirabilia mundi, 1. 15 ^ Virgil, Aeneid, 7. 655 ff ^ Plutarch, Life of Sertorius, 9. 4 ^ Diodorus Siculus, Library of History, 5. 24. 2 ^ So Conon, Narrationes, 17. In Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 2. 6. 3 a daughter of Syleus, Xenodoce, is killed by Heracles ^ Statius, Thebaid, 6. 837, 10. 249 ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Amathous ^ Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Gaza ^ Statius, Thebaid, 6. 346 ^ Servius
Servius
on Virgil's Eclogue 9. 30 ^ Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities, 1. 50. 4 ^ Hyginus, Fabulae, 162 ^ In Stephanus of Byzantium
Stephanus of Byzantium
s. v. Phaistos, Rhopalus is the son of Heracles
Heracles
and Phaestus his own son; in Pausanias, Description of Greece, 2. 6. 7, vice versa (Phaestus son, Rhopalus grandson) ^ The Art and Architecture of the Indian Subcontinent, James C. Harle, Yale University Press, 1994 p.67 ^ Sallust
Sallust
(1963). The Jugurthine War/The Conspiracy of Catiline. Translated by S.A. Handford. Penguin Books. p. 54.  ^ Morford, M. P. O.; Lenardon R. J. (2007). Classical Mythology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 865.

References

Heracles
Heracles
at Theoi.com Classical literature and art Timeless Myths – Heracles
Heracles
The life and adventure of Heracles, including his twelve labours. Heracles, Greek Mythology Link Heracles
Heracles
(in French) Vollmer: Herkules (1836, in German) Burkert, Walter, (1977) 1985. Greek Religion (Harvard University Press). Kerenyi, Karl (1959). The Heroes of the Greeks. New York/London: Thames and Hudson. 

Library resources about Heracles

Online books Resources in your library Resources in other libraries

Further reading

Brockliss, William. 2017. "The Hesiodic Shield of Heracles: The Text as Nightmarish Vision." Illinois Classical Studies 42.1: 1–19. doi:10.5406/illiclasstud.42.1.0001. JSTOR 10.5406/illiclasstud.42.1.0001. Burkert, Walter. 1982. " Heracles
Heracles
and the Master of Animals." In Structure and History in Greek Mythology and Ritual, 78–98. Sather Classical Lectures 47. Berkeley: Univ. of California Press. Haubold, Johannes. 2005. " Heracles
Heracles
in the Hesiodic Catalogue of Women." In The Hesiodic Catalogue of Women: Constructions and Reconstructions. Edited by Richard Hunter, 85–98. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press. Karanika, Andromache. 2011. "The End of the Nekyia: Odysseus, Heracles, and the Gorgon
Gorgon
in the Underworld." Arethusa 44.1: 1–27. Padilla, Mark W. 1998. "Herakles and Animals in the Origins of Comedy and Satyr
Satyr
Drama". In Le Bestiaire d'Héraclès: IIIe Rencontre héracléenne, edited by Corinne Bonnet, Colette Jourdain-Annequin, and Vinciane Pirenne-Delforge, 217–30. Kernos Suppl. 7. Liège: Centre International d'Etude de la Religion Grecque Antique. Padilla, Mark W. 1998. "The Myths of Herakles in Ancient Greece: Survey and Profile". Lanham, Maryland: University Press of America. Papadimitropoulos, Loukas. 2008. " Heracles
Heracles
as Tragic Hero." Classical World 101.2: 131–138. doi:10.1353/clw.2008.0015 Papadopoulou, Thalia. 2005. Heracles
Heracles
and Euripidean Tragedy. Cambridge Classical Studies. New York: Cambridge Univ. Press. Segal, Charles Paul. 1961. "The Character and Cults of Dionysus
Dionysus
and the Unity of the Frogs." Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 65:207–242. doi:10.2307/310837. JSTOR 310837. Stafford, Emma. 2012. Herakles. Gods and Heroes of the Ancient World. New York: Routledge. Strid, Ove. 2013. "The Homeric Prefiguration of Sophocles' Heracles." Hermes
Hermes
141.4: 381–400. JSTOR 43652880. Woodford, Susan. 1971. "Cults of Herakles in Attica." In Studies Presented to George M. A. Hanfmann. Edited by David Gordon Mitten, John Griffiths Pedley, and Jane Ayer Scott, 211–225. Monographs in Art and Archaeology 2. Mainz, Germany: Verlag Philipp von Zabern.

Primary sources

Homer, Odyssey, 12.072 (7th century BCE) Sophocles, Women of Trachis
Women of Trachis
(c. 450 BC) Euripides, Herakles (416 BCE) Theocritus, Idylls, 13 (350–310 BCE) Callimachus, Aetia (Causes), 24. Thiodamas the Dryopian, Fragments, 160. Hymn to Artemis
Artemis
(310–250? BCE) Apollonios Rhodios, Argonautika, I. 1175–1280 (c. 250 BCE) Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1.9.19, 2.7.7 (140 BCE) Sextus Propertius, Elegies, i.20.17ff (50–15 BCE) Ovid, Metamorphoses
Metamorphoses
(AD 8) Ovid, Ibis, 488 (AD 8–18) Gaius Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica, I.110, III.535, 560, IV.1–57 (1st century) Hyginus, Fables, 14. Argonauts
Argonauts
Assembled (1st century) Philostratus the Elder, Images, ii.24 Thiodamas (170–245) First Vatican Mythographer, 49. Hercules
Hercules
et Hylas

External links

Media related to Heracles
Heracles
at Wikimedia Commons Heracles
Heracles
at Encyclopædia Britannica

v t e

Ancient Greek deities by affiliation

Primordial deities

Achlys Aether Aion/Chronos Ananke Chaos Erebus Eros/Phanes Gaia Hemera Nyx The Ourea Pontus/Thalassa Tartarus Uranus Fates

Atropos Clotho Lachesis

Titan deities

Titanes (male)

Coeus Crius Cronus Hyperion Iapetus Oceanus Ophion

Titanides (female)

Dione Eurybia Mnemosyne Phoebe Rhea Tethys Theia Themis

Hyperionides

Eos Helios Selene

Koionides

Asteria Leto

Krionides

Astraeus Pallas Perses

Iapetionides

Atlas Epimetheus Menoetius Prometheus

Mousai (Muses)

Aoide Arche Melete Mneme

Olympian deities

Dodekatheon

Aphrodite Apollo Ares Artemis Athena Demeter Dionysus Hephaestus Hera Hermes Hestia Poseidon Zeus

Theoi Olympioi

Asclepius Deimos Ganymede Eileithyia Enyo Eris Iris Harmonia Hebe Heracles Paean Pan Phobos

Mousai (Muses)

Daughters of Zeus

Calliope Clio Euterpe Erato Melpomene Polyhymnia Terpsichore Thalia Urania

Daughters of Apollo

Apollonis Borysthenis Cephisso

Muses
Muses
of the Lyre

Hypate Mese Nete

Muses
Muses
at Sicyon

Polymatheia

Charites
Charites
(Graces)

Aglaea Antheia Euphrosyne Hegemone Pasithea Thalia

Horae
Horae
(Hours)

Dike Eirene Eunomia

Styktides

Bia Kratos Nike Zelos

Aquatic deities

Theoi Halioi

Amphitrite Benthesikyme Brizo Calypso Ceto Glaucus The Ichthyocentaurs Kymopoleia Leucothea Melicertes Nereus Nerites The Nesoi Oceanus Phorcys Pontus/Thalassa Poseidon Proteus Rhodos Tethys Thaumas Thetis Triton

Oceanids

Acaste Admete Adrasteia Amalthea Asia Callirrhoe Ceto Clytie Dione Dodone Doris Electra Eurynome Idyia Melia Metis Nemesis Perse Pleione Plouto Styx Telesto Zeuxo

Nereides

Amphitrite Arethusa Dynamene Galatea Galene Psamathe Thetis

Potamoi

Achelous Almo Alpheus Anapos Asopus Asterion Axius Caanthus Cebren Cephissus Clitumnus Enipeus Kladeos Meander Nilus Numicus Phyllis Peneus Rivers of the Underworld

Cocytus Eridanos Lethe Phlegethon Styx

Sangarius Scamander Simoeis Strymon

Naiads

Aegina Achiroe Aganippe The Anigrides Argyra Bistonis Bolbe Caliadne Cassotis Castalia Cleocharia Creusa Daphne Drosera Harpina The Ionides Ismenis Larunda Lilaea Liriope Melite Metope Minthe Moria Nana Nicaea Orseis Pallas Pirene Salmacis Stilbe The Thriae

Corycia Kleodora Melaina

Tiasa

Chthonic deities

Theoi Chthonioi

Angelos Demeter Gaia Hades Hecate The Lampads Macaria Melinoë Persephone Zagreus

Erinyes
Erinyes
(Furies)

Alecto Megaera Tisiphone

Earthborn

Cyclopes Gigantes Hecatonchires Kouretes Meliae Telchines Typhon

Apotheothenai

Trophonius Triptolemus Orpheus Aeacus Minos Rhadamanthus

Personifications

Children of Nyx

Achlys Apate Dolos Eleos Elpis Epiphron Eris Geras Hesperides Hybris Hypnos Ker The Keres The Moirai

Aisa Clotho Lachesis

Momus Moros Oizys The Oneiroi

Epiales Morpheus Phantasos Phobetor

Nemesis Philotes Sophrosyne Thanatos

Children of Eris

Algos Amphillogiai Ate The Androktasiai Dysnomia Horkos Hysminai Lethe Limos Machai Phonoi Ponos Neikea Pseudea Logoi

Children of other gods

Aergia Aidos Alala Aletheia Angelia Arete Bia Caerus The Younger Charites

Eucleia Eupheme Euthenia Philophrosyne

Corus Deimos The Erotes

Anteros Eros Hedylogos Hermaphroditus Hymen

Eupraxia Hedone Homonoia Iacchus Kratos The Litae Homonoia Nike Peitho Phobos Tyche Zelos

Others

Adephagia Alala Alke Amechania Anaideia Alastor Apheleia Aporia The Arae Dikaiosyne Dyssebeia Ekecheiria Eulabeia Eusebeia Gelos Heimarmene Homados Horme Ioke Kakia Kalokagathia Koalemos Kydoimos Lyssa The Maniae Methe Nomos Palioxis Peitharchia Penia Penthus Pepromene Pheme Philotes Phrike Phthonus Pistis Poine Polemos Poros Praxidike Proioxis Prophasis Roma Soter Soteria Techne Thrasos

Other deities

Sky deities

The Anemoi The Astra Planeti

Stilbon Eosphorus Hesperus Pyroeis Phaethon Phaenon

Aura Chione The Hesperides The Hyades Nephele The Pleiades

Alcyone Sterope Celaeno Electra Maia Merope Taygete

Agricultural deities

Aphaea Ariadne Carmanor Demeter Despoina Eunostus Philomelus Plutus

Health deities

Asclepius Aceso Epione Iaso Hygieia Panacea Telesphorus

Rustic deities

Aetna The Alseids The Auloniads Amphictyonis The Anthousai Aristaeus Attis Britomartis The Cabeiri Comus The Dryades

Erato Eurydice The Hamadryades

Chrysopeleia

The Epimeliades Hecaterus Leuce Ma The Maenades The Meliae The Napaeae The Nymphai Hyperboreioi The Oreads

Adrasteia Echo Helike Iynx Nomia Oenone Pitys

The Pegasides Priapus Rhapso Silenus Telete

Others

Acratopotes Adrasteia Agdistis Alexiares and Anicetus Aphroditus Astraea Circe Eiresione Enyalius Harpocrates Ichnaea Palaestra

v t e

The Twelve Labours
The Twelve Labours
of Heracles

Nemean lion Lernaean Hydra Ceryneian Hind Erymanthian Boar Augean Stables Stymphalian birds Cretan Bull Mares of Diomedes Girdle of Hippolyte Cattle of Geryon Apples of the Hesperides Cerberus

v t e

Hercules
Hercules
(Heracles)

Hercle Ercole Hercule Alcide

Family

Zeus
Zeus
(father) Alcmene
Alcmene
(mother) Megara, Omphale, Deianira, and Hebe (wives) Heracleidae
Heracleidae
(children)

Films

Italian series

Hercules
Hercules
(1957) Hercules
Hercules
Unchained (1959) Goliath and the Dragon
Goliath and the Dragon
(1960) The Loves of Hercules
Hercules
(1960) Hercules
Hercules
and the Conquest of Atlantis (1961) Hercules
Hercules
in the Haunted World (1961) Hercules
Hercules
in the Valley of Woe (1961) The Fury of Hercules
Hercules
(1962) Hercules, Samson
Samson
and Ulysses (1963) Hercules
Hercules
vs. Moloch (1963) Hercules
Hercules
the Invincible (1964) Hercules
Hercules
Against Rome (1964) Hercules
Hercules
Against the Sons of the Sun (1964) The Triumph of Hercules
Hercules
(1964) Samson
Samson
and His Mighty Challenge (1964) Hercules
Hercules
and the Tyrants of Babylon (1964) Hercules
Hercules
and the Princess of Troy
Troy
(1965) Hercules
Hercules
the Avenger (1965)

Other Live-action films

The Warrior's Husband (1933) Herakles (1962) The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
Hercules
(1962) Jason
Jason
and the Argonauts
Argonauts
(1963) Hercules
Hercules
Against the Moon Men (1964) Hercules
Hercules
in New York (1970) Hercules
Hercules
(1983) The Adventures of Hercules
Hercules
(1985) Jason
Jason
and the Argonauts
Argonauts
(2000) Immortals (2011) The Legend of Hercules
Hercules
(2014) Hercules
Hercules
(2014)

Animated films

Hercules
Hercules
(1995) Hercules
Hercules
(1997) The Amazing Feats of Young Hercules
Hercules
(1997) Hercules: Zero to Hero
Hero
(1998) Hercules
Hercules
and Xena
Xena
– The Animated Movie: The Battle for Mount Olympus (1998)

Television

The Mighty Hercules The Sons of Hercules

Mole Men Against the Son of Hercules
Hercules
(1961) Fire Monsters Against the Son of Hercules
Hercules
(1962) Ulysses Against the Son of Hercules
Hercules
(1962)

Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (1995)

Hercules
Hercules
and the Amazon Women (1994) Hercules
Hercules
and the Lost Kingdom (1994) Hercules
Hercules
and the Circle of Fire (1994) Hercules
Hercules
in the Underworld (1994) Hercules
Hercules
in the Maze of the Minotaur
Minotaur
(1994)

Hercules: The Animated Series (1998) Young Hercules
Hercules
(1998)

" Hercules
Hercules
and the Arabian Night" (1999)

Hercules
Hercules
(2005 miniseries) Atlantis (2013)

Literature

Poems

Heracles
Heracles
Papyrus Shield of Heracles Catalogue of Women L'Atlàntida

Plays

Herakles Women of Trachis

Other

The Labours of Hercules Hercules
Hercules
and the Wagoner

Comics

Hercules
Hercules
(Marvel Comics) Hercules
Hercules
(DC Comics) Hercules
Hercules
(Radical Comics) Spiff and Hercules

Games

The Return of Heracles (1983) Hercules
Hercules
(1984) Disney's Hercules
Hercules
(1997) Herc's Adventures (1997) Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (2000) Glory of Heracles
Glory of Heracles
(2008)

Opera

Ercole amante
Ercole amante
(1662) Alcide (1693) Ercole su'l Termodonte
Ercole su'l Termodonte
(1723) Admeto
Admeto
(1727) Laßt uns sorgen, laßt uns wachen, BWV 213
Laßt uns sorgen, laßt uns wachen, BWV 213
(1733) Hercules
Hercules
(1744) Le nozze d'Ercole e d'Ebe
Le nozze d'Ercole e d'Ebe
(1747) The Choice of Hercules
Hercules
(1750) Hercule mourant
Hercule mourant
(1761) Le Rouet d' Omphale
Omphale
(1871) Déjanire
Déjanire
(1911) Hercules
Hercules
vs. Vampires (2010) Atlántida

Art

Hercules
Hercules
of the Forum Boarium (2nd century BCE) Farnese Hercules
Hercules
(216) The Choice of Hercules
Hercules
(1596) Hercules' Dog Discovers Purple Dye
Hercules' Dog Discovers Purple Dye
(1636) Hercules
Hercules
in the Garden of the Hesperides
Hesperides
(1638) Hercules
Hercules
the Archer (1909)

Other

Hercules
Hercules
in popular culture Hercules
Hercules
(franchise) Labours of Hercules Pillars of Hercules Maczuga Herkulesa Hercules
Hercules
in ancient Rome Hercules' Club Xena: Warrior Princess Shirt of Nessus

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 32789

.