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Zeus was the god of gods and humans and was adored across the ancient world (the Romans called him Jupiter). He was all powerful and dominant, although often temperamental. His promiscuity was notorious, having many offspring with many many partners giving birth to all sorts of tantalizing mythology and stories. Zeus was also the patron of hospitality, and avenger of bad things done to strangers. Hence in ancient Greece travelers were most often treated with respect and it was considered unmanly to harm a traveler who is away from his homeland and might be at temporary disadvantage. 

In origin, Zeus was the son of Titan god Cronus (latin Saturn) and Titan goddess Rhea (meaning Flow)  As Cronus ate most of his children he was saved by Ghea (meaning Earth) who saved him from death. We was then raised by a number of Nymphs, most notably Adamanthea. As Cronos ruled the earth, heavens and sea, Adamanthea hid and saved Zeus as a boy by hanging him from a rope from a tree. Suspended between earth, sea and sky he would thus be invisible to his father.

At manhood after forcing his father to release the brothers of Cronos, Zeus in appreciation was rewarded by the Cyclops with the power of the thunderbolt. The Titans were eventually defeated by the cyclops and were into a dark underworld called Tartarus. Atlas, the titan who had fought against Zeus was punished by having to hold up the sky for eternity.

Zeus was all powerful and dominant and had the power to disguise himself in many ways. The animals which he was associated with was the bull (Minoan cult) and the eagle. In coinage apart from Zeus portraiture (below), he also is frequently seen seated in his throne on the reverse of Alexander the Great coins.  

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Showing 1 - 17 of 17 items


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