Poseidon is similar in appearance to his brother Zeus, but is generally more severe and rough He is the god of water and the sea and carries the trident (three-pronged fork resembling a fisherman’s spear) He is called the “Earthshaker” and exhibits his violence by the rending of the land and the surge of the sea By a mere stroke of his trident, he may destroy and kill
Jupiter established himself as lord of gods and men, but he shares his powers with his brothers, Neptune and Pluto Jupiter assumes the sky; Neptune, the sea; Pluto, the Underworld
The Flood Set upon destroying humankind, Jupiter decided on a great flood He sent the Winds and rain to destroy the human race and called on Neptune to bring waves as reinforcements
The Flood Neptune called together the seas and rivers and ravaged the land in a terrible flood, leaving only one man and one woman left alive
In the Iliad Poseidon favors the Greeks, and on several occasion takes an active part in the battle against the Trojan forces. However, he later rescues Aeneas after the Trojan prince is laid low by Achilles.
In the Aeneid, Neptune is still resentful of the wandering Trojans, but is not as vindictive as Juno, He rescues the Trojan fleet from the goddess's attempts to wreck it, although his primary motivation for doing this is his annoyance at Juno's having intruded into his domain.
In the Odyssey, Odysseus blinds Poseidon’s Cyclops son Polyphemus, earning Poseidon’s unrelenting hatred
Poseidon and Amphitrite Amphitrite was a Nereid (mermaid) and Poseidon’s wife
As husband and wife, they play similar roles to Zeus and Hera: Poseidon has a weakness for women, and Amphitrite is angry and vengeful
Poseidon and Demeter Poseidon pursued Demeter while she was searching for her daughter and to avoid him she turned herself into a mare. In his lust for her, Poseidon transformed himself into a stallion and captured her.
Their procreation resulted in a horse, Arion. This union tells of the origin of Poseidon as a male spirit of fertility
They have a son, Triton (a merman) Neptune and Triton, marble by Gian-Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680)
Scylla and Charybdis Poseidon made advances to Scylla, Amphitrite became jealous and threw magic herbs into Scylla’s bathing place Scylla was transformed into a terrifying monster, encircled with a ring of dogs’ heads
Scylla and Charybdis Scylla’s home was a cave in the Straits of Messina between Sicily and Italy With her was Charybdis, daughter of Poseidon and Gaia Charybdis was cast into the sea by Zeus’ thunderbolt and three times daily she drew in mountains of water and spewed them out again
Medusa and Poseidon Medusa was the most important of the three Gorgon sisters; Poseidon was her lover
When the hero Perseus beheaded Medusa, she was pregnant; from her corpse sprang a winged horse, Pegasus, and a son, Chrysaor (He of the Golden Sword)
Contest for Athens Athena became the patron goddess of the city of Athens after a competition with Poseidon. The people of Athens agreed that Poseidon and Athena would give the Athenians one gift and the Athenians would choose whichever gift they preferred.
Contest for Athens Poseidon struck the ground with his trident and a spring sprang up; the water was salty and not very useful
Contest for Athens Athena offered them an olive tree. The Athenians accepted the olive tree and along with it Athena as their patron, for the olive tree brought wood, oil and food.
Contest for Athens In his anger over the decision, Poseidon flooded the Attic Plain. Eventually, Athena and Poseidon worked together by combining their powers: even though Poseidon was the god of horses, Athena built the first chariot.