The twelve Olympian gods and goddesses were the major deities with prominent roles in Greek mythology.
Although being an Olympian, god meant a throne on Mt. Olympus, some of the major Olympians spent
most of their time elsewhere. Poseidon lived in the sea and Hades in the Underworld.
1. ZEUS (JUPITER)
- he overthrew the power of his father Cronus
-he drew lots with his brothers Poseidon and Hades.
-he is the supreme ruler of the gods, he is the lord of the sky, the rain god and cloud-gatherer
-his weapon is a thunderbolt which he hurls at those who displease him.
- married to Hera,but ,is famous for many affairs.
- his power was greater than that of all other divinities together.
2. HERA (JUNO)
- queen of the gods
- Zeus’s wife and sister.
- the protector of marriage, and married women were her peculiar care.
3. POSEIDON (NEPTUNE)
- ruler of the sea
-Zeus’s brother and second only to him in eminence
-he was commonly called “Earth-shaker” and was always shown carrying his trident, a three-pronged
spear, which he would shake and shatter whatever he pleased.
-his wife was Amphitrite, a granddaughter of the Titan Ocean
4. HADES (PLUTO)
- the third brother among the Olympians who drew for his share the underworld and the rule over the
- he was the God of Wealth of the precious metals hidden in the earth.
-his wife was Persephone (Proserpine) whom he carried away from the earth and made Queen of the Lower
5. PALLAS ATHENA (MINERVA)
- daughter of Zeus alone, no mother bore her, she sprang from his head.
-she is the goddess of the city,handicrafts and agriculture.
-she was Zeus’s favorite child and was allowed to use his weapons including his thunderbolt.
-her favorite city is Athens, her tree is olive, and owl is her bird.
-a gray-eyed or flashing- eyed.
6. PHOEBUS APOLLO
- son of Zeus and Leto
- he has been called “the most Greeks of all the Gods”
-he was the God of Light, in whom there’s no darkness at all, he is also a God of Truth, no false word ever
came from his mouth.
-depicted as beardless young man
7. ARTEMIS (DIANA)
- Apollo’s twin sister,daughter of Zeus and Leto.
-one of the three maiden goddesses of Olympus
-protector of the young,goddess of the chastityand huntsman of the gods.
- cypress is her tree, all wild animals are scared to her, especially the deer.
8. APHRODITE (VENUS)
- goddess of love,desire and beauty, she’s a laughter-loving goddess
- in later poems she is said to have sprung from the foam of the sea.
-wife of Hephaestus
- myrtle is her tree;dove, sparrows and and swan are her birds
9. HERMES (MERCURY)
- a messenger god in Greek mythology
-son of Zeus and Maia,daughter of Atlas,his mother.
-God of Commerce and Marker , protector of traders
-the fastest of the gods, he wears winged sandals, a winged hat and carries a magic wand.
10. ARES (MARS)
- the god of war
-son of Zeus and Hera , he was disliked by both of his parents
- he is considered murderous and bloodstained but also coward.
- he was caught in act of adultery with Aphroditeher husband Hephaestus is able publically ridicule him.
-his bird is vulture, his animal is dog
11. HEPHAESTUS (VULCAN AND MULCIBER)
-sometimes said to be the son of Zeus and Hera,some says of Hera alone
-among the perfectly beautiful immortals he only was ugly.
- God of Fire, he is patron god of both smiths and weavers.
-he is kind and peace loving.
- his wife is Aphrodite
12. HESTIA (VESTA)
-she is a virgin goddess together with Athena and Artemis
-goddes of Hearth, the symbol of the Home,she almost never leaves home
-she has no distinct personality and plays no part in myth.
Mythology by Edith Hamilton , Little Brown and Company , April 1999