According to Greek myth, Ancient Greek Zeus God was the king of all the gods. He is the sky god and controls lightning, which he uses as a weapon and thunder. Later, he became the omnipotent supreme god, dispensing both good and evil. He was generally compassionate, punishing only the wicked and acting as the protector of all Greece.
He was known by many titles: Lord of the Sky, the Cloud-gatherer, the Rain-god and Zeus the Thunderer, all of which show which force of nature was considered to be the most important in Ancient World – rain.
Zeus birth and growing up
Ancient Greek Zeus God was the sixth son of the Titans Cronos and Rhea. Cronos was warned by an oracle that one of his sons will overthrow him, just as he did with his father Uranium. To prevent this, he swallowed all his five children born to Rhea and would have done the same to Zeus. Rhea hid the newborn Zeus in a cave in Crete, and she tricked Cronos into swallowing a rock wrapped in blankets. Zeus was raised in secret on the island of Crete by a female goat named Amalthaea and was guarded by young warriors known as Curetes, who disguised the cries of baby Zeus by the noise of their clashing swords. After growing up to his manhood, he overthrew his father, Cronus as according to the prophecy along with his brothers, Poseidon and Haedes.
Family of Zeus
Zeus was the son of the Titan known as Cronus when he had to defeat in order to establish the rule of the Olympians. He was the youngest of the three brothers who won the war with the Titans. The elder brother was the god of the underworld, Hades, and then Poseidon, the God of the sea. Apart from his brothers he also had three sisters, Hestia, Demeter, and Hera(who was also his wife).
He He married Hera, whom he wooed by becoming a cuckoo. She was the most famous and also the last of his wives and also ruled as the queen of the Olympians. He is said to have had seven wives according to Hesiod and Oceanid Metis was said to be his first. Apart from his marriages he also had sexual relationships with a number of other women, gods, or humans and one of them being his daughter.
This left quite a number of children who became famous and powerful, roaming around as demigods. He had swallowed the children born of Metis and Athena was said to have been born of his forehead. Other famous children included the God of war, Ares, Heracles, the Greek hero, Dionysus, the God of fertility, and some more.
Rise to king
Zeus grew up in hiding from his father, Cronus and then in disguise himself to feed his father with a special potion he vomited his 5 siblings which included Poseidon and Hades. This led to the war known as the Titanomachy between the Olympians from Mount Olympus and the Titans fighting from Mount Othrys.
He set the Cyclopes free who in the form of gratitude gave the thunderbolt to Zeus, the trident to Poseidon, and a helm to make Hades invisible which made them formidable. The war went on for almost 10 years without any clear results emerging and finally, Zeus released the giants known as Hundred handers. Zeus in a final attack defeated the titans and the hundred-handers imprisoned Cronus beneath the earth.
But this made mother Earth angry and sent a fearsome monster known as Typhon to destroy the Olympians. Zeus bravely fought and imprisoned him under Mount Etna which also made the myth of the volcano under Mount Etna. This made Zeus the king of the gods and ruled from Mount Olympus as the god of the sky.
Zeus: The God of
If we look at Greek mythology, their gods have all been symbolized or personified with some elements of nature, like fire, sea, etc. Even emotions of life and death were also similarly used to portray God. Similarly, Zeus, residing in mount Olympia was the god of the sky and thunder. He was also known to be the king of the gods who had established the rule of the Olympians by defeating the Titans.
Zeus was known to be the most powerful and fearsome among the Greek gods. He was quite an angry figure who could punish others by turning them into animals or insects if they displeased him. He also had the power to shape-shift himself and could turn himself into anything, a person or an animal. He could also mimic others’ voices making a perfect disguise.
Other than shape-shifting he was a ferocious warrior who had the ability to throw lightning bolts which were devastating. He rode his winged horse, Pegasus, and also had a trained eagle. As a god of the sky, he could control the weather and bring terrifying storms and heavy rain. Other than all this he was an omnipresent god who could see and hear everything all around the world, with people having no secrets from him.
King of the Greek Gods
As the king of the Greek Gods, Zeus has been portrayed endlessly in art, often with specific aspects or symbols to identify him and his purpose. Zeus was the guardian of political order and peace. Aside from the endless affairs, Zeus was different from other gods in that he did not participate in the arguments and the resulting petty scheming that made up the daily activities of other gods.
His attributes were: the thunderbolts, the shield and sometimes the eagle. Zeus was however vengeful, as can be seen in the creation of man by Prometheus. His weapon is, of course, the thunderbolt which he hurled at whoever displeased him. His bird is the Eagle, his tree – the Oak. Dodona was his oracle. His will was revealed by the rustling of oak leaves which was interpreted by his priests.
Zeus had a number of wives, who bore him many Ancient Greek children, forming much of the Greek Pantheon. Zeus had a quick temper, a big sense of humor, and lots of girlfriends. He was not afraid of anything except Hera, his wife. It is not incorrect to say of Zeus that his primary occupation is the seducer. In order to seduce, he sometimes changed his shape into that of an animal or bird.
Ancient Greek Honor Zeus
The Greek Olympic Games in Greece were held to honor Zeus. Some people saw Zeus as a way of explaining why sometimes good things happen to you and sometimes bad things: if good things happened, they would say, that was because you had done something that pleased Zeus, and if bad things happened you had done something wrong.
Facts about Zeus
- The ancient Olympics in Greece which had inspired the beginning of the modern Olympic games today was originally started in 776 BCE in honor of Zeus every four years.
- Zeus was known to be an omnipresent God who overviewed all that was on in the world and was present everywhere.
- Zeus went to marry a number of people. His main wife was Hera who ruled as the queen of the gods. But he had also carried others like his sister Demeter, his aunt Mnemosyne, his cousin, and one of the daughters of his cousin. Other than marriage he was very active in his sexual activities and even had an affair with Aphrodite, his own daughter, and left a huge number of children in his trail
- Zeus has a lot of similarities with the gods of other cultures like Hindu deities, Dyaus, Roman gods, and Jupiter who were the sky Gods and many scholars have argued about all getting influenced by the myths of Zeus.
- The statue of Zeus at the sanctuary of Olympia by famous artist Phidias is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. It was built in the temple of Zeus with ivory plates and gold panels over a wood framework. Though it had been destroyed by the Roman emperor, Theodosius, its description and details have been found in many Greek texts and coins.
- He successfully led and defeated the titans to establish the rule of the Olympians.