Deity Info - Zeus
Zeus is the sky and thunder god in ancient Greek religion, who rules as king of the gods of Mount Olympus. His mythology and powers are similar to those of Jupiter, Perkūnas, Perun, Indra, Dyaus and Thor.
He was respected as an allfather who was chief of the gods and assigned roles to the others: "Even the gods who are not his natural children address him as Father, and all the gods rise in his presence."
Zeus' symbols are the thunderbolt, eagle, bull, and oak. Zeus is frequently depicted by Greek artists in one of two poses: standing, striding forward with a thunderbolt leveled in his raised right hand, or seated in majesty.
Zeus is the child of Cronus and Rhea, the youngest of his siblings to be born, though sometimes referred to as the eldest as the others had to be removed from Cronus's stomach.
Zeus was brother and consort of Hera. By Hera, Zeus sired Ares, Hebe and Hephaestus, though some accounts say that Hera produced these offspring alone. Some also include Eileithyia, Eris, Enyo and Angelos as their daughters. In the section of the Iliad known to scholars as the Deception of Zeus, the two of them are described as having begun their sexual relationship without their parents knowing about it.
The conquests of Zeus among nymphs and the mythic mortal progenitors of Hellenic dynasties are numerous. He is credited with unions with Leto, Demeter, Metis, Themis, Eurynome and Mnemosyne, Dione and Maia. Among mortals were Semele, Io, Europa and Leda and with the young Ganymede (although he was mortal Zeus granted him eternal youth and immortality).
Aside from local epithets that simply designated the deity as doing something random at some particular place, the epithets or titles applied to Zeus emphasized different aspects of his wide-ranging authority:
- Zeus Aegiduchos or Aegiochos: Usually taken as Zeus as the bearer of the Aegis, the divine shield with the head of Medusa across it, although others derive it from "goat" (αἴξ) and okhē (οχή) in reference to Zeus' nurse, the divine goat Amalthea.
- Zeus Agoraeus: Zeus as patron of the marketplace (agora) and punisher of dishonest traders.
- Zeus Areius: either "warlike" or "the atoning one".
- Zeus Horkios: Zeus as keeper of oaths.
- Zeus Olympios: Zeus as king of the gods and patron of the Panhellenic Games at Olympia
- Zeus Panhellenios: Zeus of All the Greeks
- Zeus Xenios, Philoxenon, or Hospites: Zeus as the patron of hospitality (xenia) and guests, avenger of wrongs done to strangers
- Zeus Eleutherios: "Zeus the freedom giver" a cult worshiped in Athens
Additional names and epithets for Zeus are also:
- Abrettenus (Ἀβρεττηνός) or Abretanus: surname of Zeus in Mysia
- Achad: one of his names in Syria.
- Acraeus: his name at Smyrna.
- Acrettenus: his name in Mysia.
- Adad: one of his names in Syria.
- Adultus: from his being invoked by adults, on their marriage.
- Apemius: Zeus as the averter of ills
- Apomyius Zeus as one who dispels flies
- Astrapios ("Lightninger"): Zeus as a weather god
- Bottiaeus: Worshipped at Antioch
- Brontios ("Thunderer"): Zeus as a weather god
- Diktaios: Zeus as lord of the Dikte mountain range
- Ithomatas: Worshipped at Mount Ithome in Messenia
- Zeus Adados: A Hellenization of the Canaanite Hadad and Assyrian Adad
- Zeus Bouleus: Worshipped at Dodona, the earliest oracle, along with Zeus Naos
- Zeus Georgos (Ζεὺς Γεωργός, "Zeus the Farmer"): Zeus as god of crops and the harvest, worshipped in Athens
- Zeus Helioupolites ("Heliopolite" or "Heliopolitan Zeus"): A Hellenization of the Canaanite Baʿal (probably Hadad) worshipped as a sun god at Heliopolis (modern Baalbek)
- Zeus Kasios ("Zeus of Mount Kasios" the modern Jebel Aqra): Worshipped at a site on the Syrian–Turkish border, a Hellenization of the Canaanite mountain and weather god Baal Zephon
- Zeus Labrandos ("Zeus of Labraunda"): Worshiped at Caria, depicted with a double-edged axe (labrys), a Hellenization of the Hurrian weather god Teshub
- Zeus Meilichios ("Zeus the Easily-Entreated"): Worshipped at Athens, a form of the archaic chthonic daimon Meilichios
- Zeus Naos: Worshipped at Dodona, the earliest oracle, along with Zeus Bouleus
- Zeus Tallaios ("Solar Zeus"): Worshipped on Crete
- Hetareios (Ἑταιρεῖος, "of fellowship"). According to the Suda, Zeus was called this among the Cretans.
- Eleutherios (Ἐλευθέριος, "of freedom"). At Athens after the Battle of Plataea, Athenians built the Stoa of Zeus Eleutherios.
- Bottiaios (Βοττιαίος, "of the Bottiaei"). Libanius wrote that Alexander the Great founded the temple of Zeus Bottiaios, in the place Antioch was built.
- Ourios (Οὐριος, "of favourable wind").