One of the most well-known and important of the Olympian Greek gods, Zeus is an interesting and complex character. In this article we are going to look at the personality of Zeus the Greek god.
The personality of Zeus the Greek god can be described as wise, fair, protective, and merciful. Strong and physically imposing, he is the king of Mount Olympus, represents law and order, and is the highest status and most respected of all the gods. He loves to laugh and is cheerful, but can also become aggressive and violent when confronted.
Zeus is known as the God of sky and thunder and is the king of Mount Olympus, where the Olympian gods live. He became this when he and his brothers revolted against and overthrew their father Kronos, who was the king of the Titans, during the Golden age.
Kronos has been told a prophesy that his children would one day overthrow him as king, just as he had done earlier. In order to avoid this, he swallowed each of his children as they were born. Kronos’s wife Rhea was not happy that her husband was swallowing their children and devised a plan to allow them to live, which involved replacing their latest newborn baby with a rock dressed in baby clothes. Thinking it was the baby, Kronos swallowed the rock, and Rhea went on to hide the baby on an island where he was raised in secret.
The baby would grow up to be Zeus, who once he was old enough returned to the kingdom of his father and tricked him into taking an emetic, which cause his to vomit up his other children, who were Zeus’ siblings. Two of these siblings were Poseidon and Hades, whom joined their brother Zeus in the plot to overthrew their father Kronos.
Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades drew lots to determine would rule over what. It resulted in Poseidon becoming the king of the sea, Hades the king of the underworld, and Zeus the king of the sky and Mount Olympus.
Zeus is a voracious womanizer
The escapades of Zeus are legendary, even by Greek god standards, and he had countless lovers, goddesses and mortals alike. Zeus would go to any length to seduce whom he desired.
One story that demonstrates Zeus’ dedication to obtaining whom he desired involved his sister Hera, who refused his advances. Knowing that she loved animals, Zeus turned himself into a cuckoo bird, and flew outside her window, pretending to be in need of aid because of the cold weather. When Hera saw the distressed bird, she rescued it, bringing it inside her home to warm up. Once inside, Zeus transformed back into himself, forcing himself upon her and raping her. Hera, out of shame of being tricked, agreed to marry Zeus, and together they had four children, Ares, the god of war; Eileithyia, the goddess of childbirth; Hebe, the goddess of eternal youth; and Hephaestus, the god of fire.
In addition to his first wife Metis and his sister Hera, Zeus had five other wives at various times. The list includes Rhea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Eurynome, Demeter, and Leto.
Before, during, and after his various marriages, Zeus continued to have many lovers, both goddesses and mortals. This list includes: Europa,Io, Semele, Ganymede, Callisto, Dione, Persephone, Nemesis, Thaleia, Alkmene, Danae, Leda, Niobe, Aegina, and Cassiopea.
Zeus is highly protective of his authority and can become angry and aggressive
While generally regarded as pleasant, kind, and reasonable, at times Zeus could become extremely aggressive and violent. In particular, if his daughters or wife were ever threatened, or his authority as king was ever threatened, he would become extremely protective.
One of the most famous myths involving Zeus is the birth of his favorite daughter Athena. Zeus wanted to marry Helen, but he was already married to Metis, his first wife who was the goddess of wisdom. In order to get rid of her, Zeus turned Metis into a fly and ate her, but she was already pregnant and the baby began growing inside of Zeus. He developed a terrible headache, and when he ordered his head to be opened up with an axe to inspect the problem, his daughter Athena emerged from his forehead, fully grown. She became the protector of and patron of the city Athens, and had a close relationship with her father, being his favorite daughter.
A story that demonstrates Zeus’s wrath when his authority is threatened is when his wife Hera led a rebellion against him. Upset by his many affairs, and resentful of how their relationship began, Hera joined forces with some other gods who had been on the receiving end of Zeus’ wrath. Hera drugged Zeus, and they tied him to his bed and stole his thunderbolt. However the plot to overthrow Zeus was foiled when Briareus interfered and came to Zeus’ rescue. Briareus was a fifty-headed giant, and had been freed from the Tarturus prison by Zeus, and was therefore loyal to the king. Overhearing the revolt, he snuck in and untied Zeus.
When Zeus woke up from being drugged, he was furious and immediately began his revenge on Hera. He hung her with golden shackles from the heavens, and her pleas for mercy when unanswered for an entire night, as no one dared to stand against the authority of Zeus. Eventually, the following morning, Zeus took mercy on Hera and let her down, on the condition that she promised to never do anything like that again.
Five Facts About Zeus
- Zeus is similar to other sky gods in other ancient myths
- Zeus was the father of Hercules
- The ancient Greeks held the Olympic games in his honor
- Zeus had two servants, named Force and Violence
- Zeus was symbolized by thunder, an eagle, and a bull
The powers of Zeus that make him the strongest god
Amongst the Olympian gods, as well as the mortals, Zeus was regarded as the most powerful of the gods. He was considered the father of gods and men. It was through a series of events that led him to become this, although his innate strength and wisdom indicate that he was the living embodiment of the great sky god, and was born to become the king of the Olympic gods.
His journey to becoming the king started with his birth, and his mother’s decision to spare him from his fate of being swallowed by Kronos. When he drew lots with his brothers and was designated as the god of the sky it was also an important step in his journey, as the sky is senior to the sea and the underworld.
Another critical moment in Zeus becoming the king of the Olympians was when he received his signature weapon, the thunderbolt, as a gift from the cyclops. The Cyclops were three immortal giants, who each only had one eye. They had been locked in the belly of the earth by their father Uranus, and then driven into the pits of Tartaros during the Titan revolution. Zeus released them from their captivity when he became king, and in return they forged his thunderbolt weapon for him. They also made a trident for Poseidon, and a helm of invisibility for Hades.
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