Herakles

This collegium and forum are dedicated to the study, discussion, re-creation and application of classical Roman and Greek religion and philosophy.

Moderator: Aldus Marius

Herakles

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Tue May 03, 2005 11:56 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Herakles; cult and mythology of

Introduction
When mentioning of Herakles, most people think of Hercules. Although they are the same hero, the differences lies in the culture they came from. Herakles is rooted in Hellenic culture, while Hercules is defiantly Roman. In fact, most times the two are confused and mixed up with one and another. Herakles is the most famous of heroes who received Pan-Hellenic hero status as deity status. He was the only one to cross the Khthonic- Olympian boundary. When he is received among the Gods on Olympos, Hebe is given to him as his wife and they have children together. In his aspect of Kallinikos, the radiant victor in all forms of contest, he became the national hero of the ancient Hellenes. Among the ordinary people, he was extremely popular as a deity that they could turn to in times of need, and a protector against all sorts of unpleasantness (Alexikalos). Young people saw in him their protector and they called him Herakles Enagonios.
So the title of Hero of heroes is suited for him. Scholars suggest and agree that Herakles is not the real name given to him by his mother Alkmene. It is thought to be Alkaios. The life of Herakles is one of grief, sadness and hardship.
In Ancient Rome, he became the God of trade and traffic of goods. He became a patron of traders. During Rome’s imperial age he was seen as the invincible conqueror of all difficulties (Hercules Invictus) and the benefactor of mankind. He was magnified into the epitome of all the imperious and imperial virtues.

Blessings:

The blessings of Herakles that are bestowed upon the worshipper are strength, discipline and courage. When it seems hopeless and no way to get around the obstacle, Herakles will give us the strength and courage to dig deep and find what it takes to overcome the obstacle. If one is stubborn enough, they can accomplish anything. The fact that he became a God is proof enough of that. But like with all the Gods, even his blessings can be twice-edged swords. It is however important to keep a balance between listen to common sense and to our urges, our instincts and our heart.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Re: Herakles

Postby Horatius Piscinus on Tue May 03, 2005 3:16 pm

Salve Orce

Quintus Aurelius Orcus wrote:In Ancient Rome, he became the God of trade and traffic of goods.


Have you some source for this? The Ara Maximus dedicated to Hercules was in the Forum Boarium, an extramural shrine intended perhaps in Early Rome for foreign traders. But Roman Hercules AFAIK is not a God of commerce and merchants. He is a great cultural hero, attributed with founding shrines and cities. He is also a benefactor in difficult times, as you mentioned. Perhaps He was better known in Rome as a God of virility. Images of Hercules are found associated with lararia where he represented virility in procreation to ensure a family would continue, and also as a guardian of the family. As a general benefactor He may have been called upon to overcome financial difficulties, and He may have been adopted as a patron God for some trade guilds, but I don't recall mention of Hercules as a God of trade.

Vale optime
M Horatius Piscinus

Sapere aude!
User avatar
Horatius Piscinus
Curialis
Curialis
 
Posts: 1194
Joined: Sun Sep 15, 2002 7:39 am
Location: Ohio, USA

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Tue May 03, 2005 6:43 pm

Salve Piscine

Thnx for clearing that up. The source for it is the Dictionary of Gods and Goddesses, devils and demons by Manfred Lurker.
I didn't knew how accurate it was since it did came over as a bit weird to have him being associated with trade and merchants, but it was the only source on Hercules I got at the moment.
vale

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Wed May 04, 2005 10:42 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Blessings:
The blessings of Herakles that are bestowed upon the worshipper are strength, discipline and courage. When it seems hopeless and no way to get around the obstacle, Herakles will give us the strength and courage to dig deep and find what it takes to overcome the obstacle. If one is stubborn enough, they can accomplish anything. The fact that he became a God is proof enough of that. But like with all the Gods, even his blessings can be twice-edged swords. It is however important to keep a balance between listen to common sense and to our urges, our instincts and our heart.

Epithets:
Alexikakos (Averter of Evil/ Ills), Alkaios (his original name), Kustos (Guardian), Hegemonios (Leader of the March), Heros Theos (Hero God), Invictus (Unconquered), Kallinikos (Glorious Conqueror), Kyrios (Lord), Melqart (King of the City), Musagates (Leader of the Muses), Saxanos (Of the Rocks), Soter (Saviour), Victor (Victorious).

Symbols:
lion's head, club

Animal(s):
lion, snake

Sacrifices:
frankincense

Primary Cult Centre(s):
Pan-Hellenic. He was worshipped throughout Hellas. Pan-Hellenic heroes like him didn’t have graves like local heroes who were only worshipped in the immediate area of the grave.

Festivals:
Herakleia: Metageitnion (August-September)
Olympic Games: Hekatombion, 1st year of the Olympiad
4th day of the month

Ways to honor:
Keep fit. Take up a sport, especially boxing, wrestling, running, or the discus. Don't give up, no matter how hard things appear. Enjoy life. Drink, eat, and have lots of sex. Herakles is a God of titanic appetites, and he appreciates watching others take their pleasure - but don't try to outdo him. Only Dionysos has been able to drink Herakles under the table!
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Postby Marcus Pomponius Lupus on Wed May 04, 2005 4:25 pm

Salve Orce,

Do your sources say anything about the link between Roman Stoicism and Hercules ?

Vale bene
Lupus
Marcus Pomponius Lupus
Iurisconsultus
User avatar
Marcus Pomponius Lupus
Eques
Eques
 
Posts: 307
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2002 8:40 pm
Location: Belgica

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Wed May 04, 2005 10:22 pm

Salve Lupe

I have to check the book I bought from Attice a while back, but I'm not sure there was a link. Even so, the text is mostly about Herakles, the Hellenic Heros Theos, not the Roman version even though I think they are one and the same being. It's primarly a closer look at Herakles. Most of my information on Herakles comes most of the time from the internet and I even question that as a source. To be honest, I haven't got to the part of the Roman hero yet in the book Classical Mythology.
vale

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Postby Marcus Pomponius Lupus on Thu May 05, 2005 7:27 pm

Salve Orce,

Thanks for looking; there is a connection between the roman Hercules and Stoicism (for example, Seneca has written 2 tragedies about him, Hercules Furens and another one, Hercules Oetaeus I think). Anyway, I just started reading "The Herakles theme" by Galinsky, so I'll find something about it pretty soon I guess.

Vale bene
Lupus
Marcus Pomponius Lupus
Iurisconsultus
User avatar
Marcus Pomponius Lupus
Eques
Eques
 
Posts: 307
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2002 8:40 pm
Location: Belgica

Herakles in mythology

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Fri May 06, 2005 7:49 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Herakles in mythology

The myths of Herakles go way back. His life was already documented on several artworks before they started to write it down. 400 years passed before anything was written down. Homeros mentions him several times in the Iliad and the Odyssey. Homeros mentions Tlepolemos as the son of Herakles, and Astyokheia, who participated in the Trojan War as the leader of the men of Rhodes. “02.653 ...The son of Herakles (Heracles), Tlepolemos (Tlepolemos), led the men from the island of Rhodes. 02.658 ...Tlepolemos (Tlepolemos), the son of Herakles (Heracles), was born to Astyokheia (Astyokheia) “However Herakles’ participation in the war is limited. He is mentioned during the council of the Gods in during the Iliad and the Odyssey. “11.601 ...While at the entrance to the Underworld, Odysseus sees the ghost of Herakles (Heracles)” When Odysseos enters the Underworld in the Odyssey, he sees the mortal spirit of Herakles wondering around. This is explained through the fact that Herakles was half mortal, half god and at his apotheosis, his mortal spirit went to the Underworld, while his immortal side went to Olympos. These myths written here, all come from Apollodorus’ Library of Greek Mythology, translated by James George Frazer.
Herakles married Megara after the battle with the Minyans. King Kreon offered his eldest daughter as a reward for his bravery and prowess in battle. Herakles accepted it and married her. Together they had somewhere between 3 and 8 children. There are many versions of the doomed marriage of Herakles and Megara with Euripides being the most famous one, but there is still debate around the sequencing of events. According to Euripides, when Herakles returned home from his trip to the underworld to fetch Kerberos, he found Hellas in chaos. During his absence, Lykos had come to Eubea to overthrow Kreon and murdered him. At the precise moment of Herakles’ return, Lykos was about to murder Megara and their children. Herakles rushed to the defense of his family and slew Lycus with an arrow. Just as Herakles was about to sacrifice to Zeus, however Hera interfered, causing Herakles to fall into a state of delusion and rage. Herakles shot their children with his arrows, believing them to be Eurystheos' sons and not his own. (Although Apollodoros reports that Megara escaped and married Iolaus, Euripides reports that Hercules shot Megara too.) As Herakles was about to kill his own adopted father, Amphitryon, thinking him to be Eurystheus' father Sthenelos, Athena intervened and pelted Herakles on the chest with a rock, knocking him out cold and sending him into a deep sleep. Once Herakles awoke and realized what he had done, he was horrified by his actions and wanted to commit suicide. Luckily his friend Theseus was there to calm him down, eventually convincing Herakles to go into exile.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 12 Labors

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sat May 07, 2005 4:03 pm

Salvete

The 12 Labors

Herakles is most famous for his 12 labors. He performed 12 labors in order of Eurystheos as a way to purify himself from the act of murder. By this time, Hera made him insane and made him believe he was killing his enemies (Giants, other adversaries; here one source contradicts another), but in reality he was killing his children. Although other sources say that Herakles killed his first wife, Megara as well, other sources contradicts this by stating that Herakles later gave Megara to his cousin Iolaus for marriage. The story of the killing of his family goes as following. The goddess Hera, determined to make trouble for Herakles, made him lose his mind so that he would commit a crime that would require atonement. In a confused and angry state, he killed his own wife and children. The chronologies of these labors were chaotic at best until Apollodorus Dysklos wrote them down on stone around 140 BCE. It is also mentioned that Herakles was not originally sent out to complete 12 labors, but only 10. Why there were 2 added, is your guess as good as mine. Perhaps the reason was that Eurystheos thought he didn’t put much effort in the first 10 to his or to Hera’s satisfaction so that 2 more were added.
valete

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Death of Herakles' family

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sat May 07, 2005 4:04 pm

Salvete

Death of his family

When he awakened from his "temporary insanity," Herakles was shocked and upset by what he'd done. He prayed to the god Apollo for guidance, and the god's oracle told him he would have to serve Eurystheos, the king of Tiryns and Mycenae, for twelve years, in punishment for the murders.
As part of his sentence, Herakles had to perform twelve Labors, feats so difficult that they seemed impossible. Fortunately, Herakles had the help of Hermes and Athena, sympathetic deities who showed up when he really needed help. By the end of these Labors, Herakles was, without a doubt, Greece's greatest hero. His struggles made Herakles the perfect embodiment of an idea the Greeks called pathos, the experience of virtuous struggle and suffering which would lead to fame and, in Herakles' case, immortality.
Apollodorus version of the event goes as following. Now it came to pass that after the battle with the Minyans Hercules was driven mad through the jealousy of Hera and flung his own children, whom he had by Megara, and two children of Iphicles into the fire; wherefore he condemned himself to exile, and was purified by Thespius, and repairing to Delphi he inquired of the god where he should dwell. The Pythian priestess then first called him Herakles, for he was called Alcides. And she told him to dwell in Tiryns, serving Eurystheus for twelve years and to perform the ten labors imposed on him, and so, she said, when the tasks were accomplished, he would be immortal.
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 1st labor: Nemean Lion

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sun May 08, 2005 9:35 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1) The Nemean Lion

Nemea was a valley in southeast Greece, in ancient Argos. According to Hesiod (Theogony, line 327), the Nemean lion was the predatory offspring of the dog, Orthos and the monster, Echidna, and presumably, the sister of the deadly Sphinx of Thebes and the half-sister of Kerberos, the watchdog of the gates of the Underworld. As you can deduce from her family, this was no ordinary beast which terrorized the travelers and livestock in the peaceful countryside around Nemea.
In the Temple of Zeus, built in the mid-fifth century BCE, stand the only metope that depicts Herakles as beardless (i.e. young) is the scene where he stands with his foot on the dead lion of Nemea. For that reason it is understandable why killing of the lion of Nemea was considered to be the First Labor of Herakles. The ordering of the other Labors is not quite so obvious but we will yield to the authority of Apollodorus Dysklos. Perhaps the first labor was a kind of initiatory task to initiate him into manhood. Early artistic renderings of this wrestling match showed the lion on its hind feet fighting Herakles in the same manner that two men would grapple but after circa 530 BCE the lion and Herakles were usually shown on the ground fighting like animals.
The story goes as following according Apollodorus: when Hercules heard that, he went to Tiryns and did as he was bid by Eurystheus. First, Eurystheus ordered him to bring the skin of the Nemean lion;1 now that was an invulnerable beast begotten by Typhon. On his way to attack the lion he came to Cleonae and lodged at the house of a day-laborer, Molorchos; and when his host would have offered a victim in sacrifice, Hercules told him to wait for thirty days, and then, if he had returned safe from the hunt, to sacrifice to Savior Zeus, but if he were dead, to sacrifice to him as to a hero. And having [p. 187] come to Nemea and tracked the lion, he first shot an arrow at him, but when he perceived that the beast was invulnerable; he heaved up his club and made after him. And when the lion took refuge in a cave with two mouths, Hercules built up the one entrance and came in upon the beast through the other, and putting his arm round its neck held it tight till he had choked it; so laying it on his shoulders he carried it to Cleonae. And finding Molorchos on the last of the thirty days about to sacrifice the victim to him as to a dead man, he sacrificed to Savior Zeus and brought the lion to Mycenae. Amazed at his manhood, Eurystheus forbade him thenceforth to enter the city, but ordered him to exhibit the fruits of his labors before the gates. They say, too, that in his fear he had a bronze jar made for himself to hide in under the earth, and that he sent his commands for the labors through a herald, Copreus, son of Pelops the Elean.
This Copreus had killed Iphitus and fled to Mycenae, where he was purified by Eurystheus and took up his abode.
Many times we can identify Herakles in ancient Greek vase paintings or sculptures simply because he is depicted wearing a lion skin. Ancient writers disagreed as to whether the skin Herakles wore was that of the Nemean lion, or one from a different lion, which Herakles was said to have killed when he was 18 years old. The playwright Euripides wrote that Herakles' lion skin came from the grove of Zeus, the sanctuary at Nemea: First he cleared the grove of Zeus of a lion, and put its skin upon his back, hiding his yellow hair in its fearful tawny gaping jaws.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

2nd labor: the Lernaean Hydra

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Mon May 09, 2005 11:40 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2) The Lernaean Hydra

The second labor, Herakles had to complete was to kill the monstrous serpent called the hydra, a child of Ekhidna and Typhon. What makes this serpent so special is the fact that it had 9 heads and only 1 was said to be immortal. Its poison was severe deadly to mortals. The Hydra was known to terrorize the countryside. It would rise up from the murky waters of the swamps in the area and terrorize the man and animal alike. Eurystheos decided that killing this creature would be Herakles’ second labor.
Apollodorus wrote about the labors in his books and this excerpt is from Perseus digital library: As a second labor he ordered him to kill the Lernaean hydra. That creature, bred in the swamp of Lerna, used to go forth into the plain and ravage [p. 189] both the cattle and the country. Now the hydra had a huge body, with nine heads, eight mortal, but the middle one immortal. So mounting a chariot driven by Iolaus, he came to Lerna, and having halted his horses, he discovered the hydra on a hill beside the springs of the Amymone, where was its den. By pelting it with fiery shafts he forced it to come out, and in the act of doing so he seized and held it fast. But the hydra wound itself about one of his feet and clung to him. Nor could he affect anything by smashing its heads with his club, for as fast as one head was smashed there grew up two.
A huge crab also came to the help of the hydra by biting his foot. So he killed it, and in his turn called for help on Iolaus who, by setting fire to a piece of the neighboring wood and burning the roots of the heads with the brands, prevented them from sprouting. Having thus got the better of the sprouting heads, he chopped off the immortal head, and buried it, and put a heavy rock on it, beside the road that leads through Lerna to Elaios. But the body of the hydra he slit up and dipped his arrows in the gall. However, Eurystheos said that this labor should not be reckoned among the ten because he had not got the better of the hydra by himself, but with the help of Iolaus.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 3rd Labor: The Keryneian Hind

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Tue May 10, 2005 11:51 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
3) The Keryneian Hind

As a third labor he ordered him to bring the Kerynitian hind alive to Mycenae. Now the hind was at Oenoe; it had golden horns and was sacred to Artemis; so wishing neither to kill nor wound it,
Hercules hunted it a whole year. But when, weary with the chase, the beast took refuge on the mountain called Artemisius, and thence passed to the river Ladon, Hercules shot it just as it was about to cross the stream, and catching it put it on his shoulders and hastened through Arcadia. But Artemis with Apollo met him, and would have wrested the hind from him, and rebuked him for attempting to kill her sacred animal. Howbeit, by pleading necessity and laying the blame on Eurystheus, he appeased the anger of the goddess and carried the beast alive to Mycenae. Keryneia is a town in Greece, about fifty miles from Eurystheus' palace in Mycenae.
Oenoe is a name for 3 different places. The first one carrying the same name, being a town on the northwest coast of the island of Icaria This town was probably situated in the fertile plain below the modern Messaria. The name of the town seems to be derived from the wine grown in its neighborhood on the slopes of Mount Pramnus, though others believe that the Icarian Oenoë was a colony of the Attic town of the same name.
The second place with the same name was a port-town on the coast of Pontus, at the mouth of the river Genius, which still bears its ancient name of Oenoë under the corrupt form Unieh. The third place with the same name is that of a ancient name for the island of Sicinus.
Which is interesting since one version of the story says the hind was at kerynneia, but another says it was at Oenoë.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 4th Labor: the Erymanthian Boar

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Wed May 11, 2005 9:19 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
4) The Erymanthian Boar
As a fourth labor he ordered him to bring the Erymanthian boar alive; now that animal ravaged Psophis, sallying from a mountain which they call Erymanthos. Every day the boar would come crashing down from his lair on the mountain, attacking men and animals all over the countryside, gouging them with its tusks, and destroying everything in its path. So passing through Pholoe he was entertained by the centaur Pholus, a son of Silenus by a Melian nymph. He set roast meat before Hercules, while he himself ate his meat raw. When Hercules called for wine, he said he feared to open the jar which belonged to the centaurs in common. But Hercules, bidding him be of good courage, opened it, and not long afterwards, scenting the smell, the centaurs arrived at the cave of Pholus, armed with rocks and firs. The first who dared to enter, Anchius and Agrius, were repelled by Hercules with a shower of brands, and the rest of them he shot and pursued as far as Malea. Thence they took refuge with Chiron, who, driven by the Lapiths from Mount Pelion, took up his abode at Malea. As the centaurs cowered about Chiron, Hercules shot an arrow at them, which, passing through the arm of Elatus, stuck in the knee of Chiron.
Distressed at this, Hercules ran up to him, drew out the shaft, and applied a medicine which Chiron gave him. But the hurt proving incurable, Chiron retired to the cave and there he wished to die, but he could not, for he was immortal. However, Prometheus offered himself to Zeus to be immortal in his stead, and so Chiron died. The rest of the centaurs fled in different directions, and some came to Mount Malea, and Eurytion to Pholoe, and Nessus to the river Evenus. The rest of them Poseidon received at Eleusis and [p. 195] hid them in a mountain.
But Pholus, drawing the arrow from a corpse, wondered that so little a thing could kill such big fellows; howbeit, it slipped from his hand and lighting on his foot killed him on the spot. So when Hercules returned to Pholoe, he beheld Pholus dead; and he buried him and proceeded to the boar hunt. And when he had chased the boar with shouts from a certain thicket, he drove the exhausted animal into deep snow, trapped it, and brought it to Mycenae.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 5th Labor: the Augean Stables

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Thu May 12, 2005 9:25 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
5) The Augean Stables
For the fifth labor, Eurystheus ordered Hercules to clean up King Augeas' stables in one day. Hercules knew this job would mean getting dirty and smelly, but sometimes even a hero has to do these things. Then Eurystheus made Hercules' task even harder: he had to clean up after the cattle of Augeas in a single day.
Now King Augeas owned more cattle than anyone in Greece. Some say that he was a son of one of the great gods like Helios or Poseidon, and others that he was a son of a mortal; whosever son he was, Augeas was very rich, and he had many herds of cows, bulls, goats, sheep and horses. Every night the cowherds, goatherds and shepherds drove the thousands of animals to the stables. Hercules accosted him, and without revealing the command of Eurystheus, said that he would carry out the dung in one day, if Augeas would give him the tithe of the cattle. Augeas was incredulous, but promised. Having taken Augeas's son Phyleus to witness, Hercules made a breach in the foundations of the cattle-yard, and then, diverting the courses of the Alpheus and Peneus, [p. 197] which flowed near each other, he turned them into the yard, having first made an outlet for the water through another opening. When Augeas learned that this had been accomplished at the command of Eurystheus, he would not pay the reward; nay more, he denied that he had promised to pay it, and on that point he professed himself ready to submit to arbitration.
The arbitrators having taken their seats, Phyleus was called by Hercules and bore witness against his father, affirming that he had agreed to give him a reward. In a rage Augeas, before the voting took place, ordered both Phyleus and Hercules to pack out of Elis. So Phyleus went to Dulichium and dwelt there, and Hercules repaired to Dexamenus at Olenus. He found Dexamenus on the point of betrothing perforce his daughter Mnesimache to the centaur Eurytion, and being called upon by him for help, he slew Eurytion when that centaur came to fetch his bride. But Eurystheus would not admit this labor either among the ten, alleging that it had been performed for hire.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

6th Labor: the Stymphalian Birds

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Fri May 13, 2005 10:56 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
6) The Stymphalian Birds

The sixth labor he enjoined on him was to chase away the Stymphalian birds. Now at the city of Stymphalos in Arcadia was the lake called Stymphalian, embosomed in a deep wood. To it countless [p. 199] birds had flocked for refuge, fearing to be preyed upon by the wolves. So when Hercules was at a loss how to drive the birds from the wood, Athena gave him brazen castanets, which she had received from Hephaestos. By clashing these on a certain mountain that overhung the lake, he scared the birds. They could not abide the sound, but fluttered up in a fright, and in that way Hercules shot them. Some versions of the legend say that these Stymphalian birds were vicious man-eaters.
The 2nd century A.D. writer, Pausanias, trying to discover what kind of birds they might have been, wrote that during his time a type of bird from the Arabian Desert was called "Stymphalian," describing them as equal to lions or leopards in their fierceness. He speculated that the birds Hercules encountered in the legend were similar to these Arabian birds.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 7th Labor: The Kretan Bull

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sat May 14, 2005 8:17 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7) The Kretan Bull
The seventh labor he enjoined on him was to bring the Cretan bull. At that time, Minos, King of Crete, controlled many of the islands in the seas around Greece, and was such a powerful ruler that the Athenians sent him tribute every year. There are many bull stories about Crete. Zeus, in the shape of a bull, had carried Minos' mother Europa to Crete, and the Cretans were fond of the sport of bull-leaping, in which contestants grabbed the horns of a bull and were thrown over its back. Acusilaus says that this was the bull that ferried across Europa for Zeus; but some say it was the bull that Poseidon sent up from the sea when Minos promised to sacrifice to Poseidon what should appear out of the sea. And they say that when he saw the beauty of the bull he sent it away to the herds and sacrificed another to Poseidon; at which the god was angry and made the bull savage.
To attack this bull Hercules came to Crete, and when, in reply to his request for aid, Minos told him to fight and catch the bull for himself, he caught it and brought it to Eurystheus, and having shown it to him he let it afterwards go free. But the bull roamed to Sparta and all Arcadia, and traversing the [p. 201] Isthmus arrived at Marathon in Attica and harried the inhabitants. The Athenian hero Theseus tied up some loose ends of this story. He killed the Cretan Bull at Marathon. Later, he sailed to Crete, found his way to the centre of the Labyrinth, and killed the Minotaur.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

the 8th Labor: the man-eating horses of Diomedes

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Sun May 15, 2005 8:05 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
8) The Man-Eating Horses of Diomedes

The eighth labor he enjoined on him was to bring the mares of Diomedes the Thracian to Mycenae. Now this Diomedes was a son of Ares and Cyrene, and he was king of the Bistones, a very warlike Thracian people, and he owned man-eating mares. So Hercules sailed with a band of volunteers, and having overpowered the grooms who were in charge of the mangers, he drove the mares to the sea.
When the Bistones in arms came to the rescue, he committed the mares to the guardianship of Abderos, who was a son of Hermes, a native of Opus in Lokris, and a minion of Hercules; but the mares killed him by dragging him after them. But Hercules fought against the Bistones, slew Diomedes and compelled the rest to flee. And he founded a city Abdera beside the grave of Abderos who had been done to death, [p. 203] and bringing the mares he gave them to Eurystheus. But Eurystheus let them go, and they came to Mount Olympus, as it is called, and there they were destroyed by the wild beasts.
Euripides gives two different versions of the story, but both of them differ from Apollodorus's in that Hercules seems to be performing the labor alone, rather than with a band of followers. In one, Diomedes has the four horses harnessed to a chariot, and Hercules has to bring back the chariot as well as the horses. In the other, Hercules tames the horses from his own chariot.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

The 9th Labor: The Belt of Hippolyta

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Mon May 16, 2005 8:29 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The ninth labor he enjoined on Hercules was to bring the belt of Hippolyte. She was queen of the Amazons, who dwelt about the river Thermodon, a people great in war; for they cultivated the manly virtues, and if ever they gave birth to children through intercourse with the other sex, they reared the females; and they pinched off the right breasts that they might not be trammelled by them in throwing the javelin, but they kept the left breasts, that they might suckle. Now Hippolyte had the belt of Ares in token of her superiority to all the rest. Hercules was sent to fetch this belt because Admete, daughter of Eurystheus, desired to get it. So taking with him a band of volunteer comrades in a single ship he set sail and put in to the island of Paros, which was inhabited by the sons of Minos, to wit, Eurymedon, Chryses, Nephalion, and Philolaus. But it chanced that two of those in the ship landed and were killed by the sons of Minos. Indignant at this, Hercules killed the sons of Minos on the spot and besieged the rest closely, till they sent envoys to request that in the room of the murdered men he would take two, whom he pleased. So he raised the siege, and taking on board the sons of Androgeus, son of Minos, to wit, Alcaeus and Sthenelus, he came to Mysia, to the court of Lycus, son of Dascylus, and was entertained by him; and in a battle between him and the king of the Bebryces Hercules sided with Lycus and slew many, amongst others King Mygdon, brother of Amycus. And he took much land from the Bebryces and gave it to Lycus, who called it all Heraclea.
Having put in at the harbor of Themiscyra, he received a visit from Hippolyte, who inquired why he was come, and promised to give him the belt. But Hera in the likeness of an Amazon went up and down the multitude saying that the strangers who had arrived were carrying off the queen. So the Amazons in arms charged on horseback down on the ship. But when Hercules saw them in arms, he suspected treachery, and killing Hippolyte stripped her of her belt. And after fighting the rest he sailed away and touched at Troy.
But it chanced that the city was then in distress consequently on the wrath of Apollo and Poseidon. For desiring to put the wantonness of Laomedon to the proof, Apollo and Poseidon assumed the likeness of men and undertook to fortify Pergamum for wages. But when they had fortified it, he would not pay them their wages. Therefore Apollo sent a pestilence, and Poseidon a sea monster, which, carried up by a flood, snatched away the people of the plain. But as oracles foretold deliverance from these calamities if Laomedon would expose his daughter Hesione to be devoured by the sea monster, he exposed her by fastening her to the rocks near the sea. Seeing her exposed, Hercules promised to save her on condition of receiving from Laomedon the mares which Zeus had given in compensation for the rape of Ganymede. On Laomedon's saying that he would give them, Hercules killed the monster and saved Hesione. But when Laomedon would not give the stipulated reward, Hercules put to sea after threatening to make war on Troy.
And he touched at Aenus, where he was entertained by Poltys. And as he was sailing away he shot and killed on the Aenian beach a lewd fellow, Sarpedon, son of Poseidon and brother of Poltys. And having come to Thasos and subjugated the Thracians who dwelt in the island, he gave it to the sons of Androgeus to dwell in. From Thasos he proceeded to Torone, and there, being challenged to wrestle by Polygonus and Telegonus, sons of Proteus, son of Poseidon, he killed them in the wrestling match. And having brought the belt to Mycenae he gave it to Eurystheus.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

the 10th Labor: the Cattle of Geryon

Postby Quintus Aurelius Orcus on Tue May 17, 2005 9:44 am

Salvete
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
10) The Cattle of Geryon

As a tenth labor he was ordered to fetch the kine of Geryon from Erythia. Now Erythia was an island near the ocean; it is now called Gadira. This island was inhabited by Geryon, son of Chrysaor by Callirrhoe, daughter of Ocean. He had the body of three men grown together and joined in one at the waist, but parted in three from the flanks and thighs. He owned red kine, of which Eurytion was the herdsman and Orthus, the two-headed hound, begotten by Typhon on Echidna, was the watchdog. So journeying through Europe to fetch the kine of Geryon he destroyed many wild beasts and set foot in Libya, and proceeding to Tartessus he erected as tokens of his journey two pillars over against each other at the boundaries of Europe and Libya. But being heated by the Sun on his journey, he bent his bow at the god, who in admiration of his hardihood gave him a golden goblet in which he crossed the ocean. And having reached Erythia he lodged on Mount Abas. However the dog, perceiving him, rushed at him; but he smote it with his club, and when the herdsman Eurytion came to the help of the dog, Hercules killed him also. But Menoetes, who was there pasturing the kine of Hades, reported to Geryon what had occurred, and he, coming up with Hercules beside the river Anthemus, as he was driving away the kine, joined battle with him and was shot dead.
And Hercules, embarking the kine in the goblet and sailing across to Tartessus, gave back the goblet to the Sun.
And passing through Abderia he came to Liguria, where Ialebion and Dercynus, sons of Poseidon, attempted to rob him of the kine, but he killed them and went on his way through Tyrrhenia. But at Rhegium a bull broke away and hastily plunging into the sea swam across to Sicily, and having passed through the neighboring country since called Italy after it, for the Tyrrhenians called the bull italus, came to the plain of Eryx, who reigned over the Elymi. Now Eryx was a son of Poseidon, and he mingled the bull with his own herds. So Hercules entrusted the kine to Hephaestus and hurried away in search of the bull. He found it in the herds of Eryx, and when the king refused to surrender it unless Hercules should beat him in a wrestling bout, Hercules beat him thrice, killed him in the wrestling, and taking the bull drove it with the rest of the herd to the Ionian Sea. But when he came to the creeks of the sea, Hera afflicted the cows with a gadfly, and they dispersed among the skirts of the mountains of Thrace. Hercules went in pursuit, and having caught some, drove them to the Hellespont; but the remainder were thenceforth wild. Having with difficulty collected the cows, Hercules blamed the river Strymon, and whereas it had been navigable before, he made it unnavigable by filling it with rocks; and he conveyed the kine and gave them to Eurystheus, who sacrificed them to Hera.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valete optime

Quintus
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Rector ColRel
Rogator
Princeps gentis Aureliae
User avatar
Quintus Aurelius Orcus
Senator
Senator
 
Posts: 937
Joined: Sat Sep 14, 2002 5:05 pm
Location: Ghent, Belgica

Next

Return to Collegium Religionum et Philosophiarum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 1 guest

cron