Saturday, 25 October 2008

births of Hermes, Apollo, Artemis and Dionysus

Zeus lay with numerous nymphs and after the creation of man, with mortal women too. He fathered four great Olympian deities:

Hermes on Maia, daughter of Atlas.

Apollo and Artemis on Leto, daughter of Coeus and Phoebe, after Hera decreed that she would not be delivered in any place where the sun shone and sent the serpent Python to pursue her.

Dionysys, whose mother is variously named as Demeter, Io, Dione and Persephone, but the common story is that Zeus, disguised as a mortal, had a love-affair with Semele, daughter of King Cadmus. When she was six months pregnant, Hera spurred her on to demand from her lover to show himself in his true form, so she would know who he was. When Zeus refused, she denied him acces to her bed. In a rage he appeared as thunder and lightning and she was consumed. But Hermes saved the child, sewing it up into Zeus' thigh where it matured for the next three months.

Robert Graves, The Greek Myths. Complete Edition.

That's it for now, my book of myths has been packed and ready to be moved to my new apartment. To be continued.

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