Then you will see how far I am strongest of all the immortals. Come, you gods, make this endeavor, that you all may learn this. Let down out of the sky a cord of gold; lay hold of it all you who are gods and all who are goddesses, yet not even so can you drag down Zeus from the sky to the ground, not Zeus the high lord of counsel, though you try until you grow weary. Yet whenever I might strongly be minded to pull you, I could drag you up, earth and all and sea and all with you, then fetch the golden rope about the horn of Olympus and make it fast, so that all once more should dangle in mid air. So much stronger am I than the gods, and stronger than mortals.
~ Zeus

Zeus, also known as Jupiter, is the god of thunder, lighting, justice and ruler of the sky in Greek mythology. He ruled as King of the Gods of Mount Olympus along with being the Sovereign of the Heavens and Emperor of Heaven and Earth.

Summary

He was respected as an all-father who was chief of the gods, and assigned the others to their roles: "Even the gods who are not his natural children address him as Father, and all the gods rise in his presence." He was equated with many foreign weather gods.

Appearance

Personality

Zeus was the upholder of the universal order. He gave justice to mortals to help civilize them and was in charge of punishing oath-breakers, liars, and violators of sacred hospitality.

Power and Abilities

History

Cronus, his father, had sired six children in this order with Rhea, his wife: Hestia, Hades, Demeter, Hera, Poseidon and Zeus himself. But Cronos swallowed them all because of a prophecy claiming that he would be overthrown by his son, as he had overthrown his own father. Rhea, seeking revenge, hid Zeus at birth and gave Cronus a rock wrapped in cloth to swallow instead.

After reaching manhood, Zeus forced Cronus to disgorge first the stone then his siblings in reverse order of swallowing. In some versions, Metis gave Cronus an emetic to force him to disgorge the babies, or Zeus cut Cronus's stomach open. Then Zeus released the brothers of Cronus, the Gigantes, the Hecatonchires and the Cyclopes, from their dungeon in Tartarus, killing their guard, Campe.

As a token of their appreciation, the Cyclopes gave him the power of thunder and lightning with his weapon, the Master Bolt, which had previously been hidden by Gaia. Together, Zeus and his brothers and sisters, along with the Gigantes, Hecatonchires and Cyclopes overthrew Cronus and the other Titans, in the combat called the Titanomachy. The defeated Titans were then cast into a shadowy underworld region known as Tartarus. Atlas, one of the titans that fought against Zeus, was punished by having to hold up the sky.

After the battle with the Titans, Zeus shared the world with his elder brothers, Poseidon and Hades, by drawing lots: Zeus got the sky and air, Poseidon the waters, and Hades the world of the dead (the underworld). The ancient Earth, Gaia, could not be claimed; she was left to all three, each according to their capabilities, which explains why Poseidon was the "earth-shaker" (the god of earthquakes) and Hades claimed the humans that died. Gaia resented the way Zeus had treated the Titans, because they were her children. Soon after taking the throne as king of the gods, Zeus had to fight some of Gaia's other children, the monsters Typhon and Echidna. He vanquished Typhon and trapped him under Mount Etna, but left Echidna and her children alive.

Zeus was infamous for his lust of mortals, indeed the king of the gods transcended male or female and even species when it came to his many affairs. His lascivious actions in bed always left a very positive mark on the mortals he slept with  which enraged Hera to no end. Zeus was known to have slept with many women aside from Hera, and he had many sons and daughters. His most well known children are Aphrodite, Hermes, Ares, Apollo, Artemis, Athena, Hephaestus, Dionysus, Eris, Hebe and Heracles.

After the Greek era, Zeus along with the other Olympians stayed in Olympus, now moved to America, while having control of the Greek Heaven under Ouranos.

Quotes

"It is not possible either to trick, escape, or defeat the mind of Zeus."

Extra Information

The ancient Greek interpretation of the world was very different from modern values with gods being held as the center of the universe instead of mortals. Zeus enforced a harsh sense of justice upon humans to keep them in line. Though he usually allowed his fellow gods to do whatever they wanted to mortals he would sometimes intervene to mitigate the damage they caused when they went too far.

Equivalents

Within Religious syncretism Zeus has been equated with the deities Jupiter, Amun, Hadad, Thor, Perun and Indra.

Gallery

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