➊ King Eurystheus Alternate Ending

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King Eurystheus Alternate Ending



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On these festive occasions the whole nation met together, forgetting for the moment all past differences, and uniting in the enjoyment of the same festivities. It will doubtless have been remarked that in the representations of Zeus he is always accompanied by an eagle. This royal bird was sacred to him, probably from the fact of its being the only creature capable of gazing at the sun without being dazzled, which may have suggested the idea that it was able to contemplate the splendour of divine majesty unshrinkingly.

The oak-tree, and also the summits of mountains, were sacred to Zeus. His sacrifices consisted of white bulls, cows, and goats. She was the personification of prudence and wisdom, a convincing proof of which she displayed in her successful administration of the potion which caused Cronus to yield up his children. She was endowed with the gift of prophecy, and foretold to Zeus that one of their children would gain ascendency over [31] him. In order, therefore, to avert the possibility of the prediction being fulfilled he swallowed her before any children were born to them.

His command was obeyed, and out sprang, with a loud and martial shout, a beautiful being, clad in armour from head to foot. She was gifted with wonderful beauty, and was tenderly loved by Zeus, but her lot was far from being a happy one, for Hera, being extremely jealous of her, persecuted her with inveterate cruelty, and sent the dreadful serpent Python [14] to terrify and torment her wherever she went. But Zeus, who had observed with the deepest compassion her weary wanderings and agonized fears, resolved to create for her some place of refuge, however humble, where she might feel herself safe from the venomous attacks of the serpent.

Here she gave birth to her twin-children, Apollo and Artemis Diana , two of the most beautiful of the immortals. According to some versions of the story of Leto, Zeus transformed her into a quail, in order that she might thus elude the vigilance of Hera, and she is said to have [32] resumed her true form when she arrived at the island of Delos. HERA , being the principal wife of Zeus and queen of heaven, a detailed account will be given of her in a special chapter.

In the union of Zeus with most of his immortal wives we shall find that an allegorical meaning is conveyed. His marriage with Metis, who is said to have surpassed both gods and men in knowledge, represents supreme power allied to wisdom and prudence. His union with Themis typifies the bond which exists between divine majesty and justice, law, and order. Eurynome, as the mother of the Charites or Graces, supplied the refining and harmonizing influences of grace and beauty, whilst the marriage of Zeus with Mnemosyne typifies the union of genius with memory.

In addition to the seven immortal wives of Zeus, he was also allied to a number of mortal maidens whom he visited under various disguises, as it was supposed that if he revealed himself in his true form as king of heaven the splendour of his glory would cause instant destruction to mortals. The mortal consorts of Zeus have been such a favourite theme with poets, painters, and sculptors, that it is necessary to give some account of their individual history.

To escape the anger of her father she fled to Sicyon, where king Epopeus, enraptured with her wonderful beauty, made her his wife without asking her father's consent. This so enraged Nicteus that he declared war against Epopeus, in order to compel him to restore Antiope. At his death, which took place before he could succeed in his purpose, Nicteus left his kingdom to his brother Lycus, commanding him, at the same time, to carry on the war, and execute his vengeance.

Lycus invaded Sicyon, defeated and killed Epopeus, and brought back [33] Antiope as a prisoner. On the way to Thebes she gave birth to her twin-sons, Amphion and Zethus, who, by the orders of Lycus, were at once exposed on Mount Cithaeron, and would have perished but for the kindness of a shepherd, who took pity on them and preserved their lives. Antiope was, for many years, held captive by her uncle Lycus, and compelled to suffer the utmost cruelty at the hands of his wife Dirce. But one day her bonds were miraculously loosened, and she flew for shelter and protection to the humble dwelling of her sons on Mount Cithaeron.

During the long period of their mother's captivity the babes had grown into sturdy youths, and, as they listened angrily to the story of her wrongs, they became all impatience to avenge them. Setting off at once to Thebes they succeeded in possessing themselves of the town, and after slaying the cruel Lycus they bound Dirce by the hair to the horns of a wild bull, which dragged her hither and thither until she expired. Her mangled body was cast into the fount near Thebes, which still bears her name. Amphion became king of Thebes in his uncle's stead. He was a friend of the Muses, and devoted to music and poetry.

His brother, Zethus, was famous for his skill in archery, and was passionately fond of the chase. It is said that when Amphion wished to inclose the town of Thebes with walls and towers, he had but to play a sweet melody on the lyre, given to him by Hermes, and the huge stones began to move, and obediently fitted themselves together. The punishment of Dirce at the hands of Amphion and Zethus forms the subject of the world-renowned marble group in the museum at Naples, known by the name of the Farnese Bull.

Her twin-sons, Castor and Polydeuces or Pollux, [15] were [34] renowned for their tender attachment to each other. They were also famous for their physical accomplishments, Castor being the most expert charioteer of his day, and Pollux the first of pugilists. Their names appear both among the hunters of the Calydonian boar-hunt and the heroes of the Argonautic expedition. The brothers became attached to the daughters of Leucippus, prince of the Messenians, who had been betrothed by their father to Idas and Lynceus, sons of Aphareus.

Having persuaded Leucippus to break his promise, the twins carried off the maidens as their brides. Idas and Lynceus, naturally furious at this proceeding, challenged the Dioscuri to mortal combat, in which Castor perished by the hand of Idas, and Lynceus by that of Pollux. Zeus wished to confer the gift of immortality upon Pollux, but he refused to accept it unless allowed to share it with Castor. Zeus gave the desired permission, and the faithful brothers were both allowed to live, but only on alternate days. The Dioscuri received divine honours throughout Greece, and were worshipped with special reverence at Sparta.

She was one day gathering flowers with her companions in a meadow near the sea-shore, when Zeus, charmed with her great beauty, and wishing to win her love, transformed himself into a beautiful white bull, and trotted quietly up to the princess, so as not to alarm her. Surprised at the gentleness of the animal, and admiring its beauty, as it lay placidly on the grass, she caressed it, crowned it with flowers, and, at last, playfully seated herself on its back.

Hardly had she done so than the disguised god bounded away with his lovely burden, and swam across the sea with her to the island of Crete. Europa was the mother of Minos, Aeacus, and Rhadamanthus. Minos, who became king of Crete, was celebrated for his justice and moderation, and after death he was created one of the judges of the lower world, which office he held in conjunction with his brothers. CALLISTO , the daughter of Lycaon, king of Arcadia, was a huntress in the train of Artemis, devoted to the pleasures of the chase, who had made a vow never to marry; but Zeus, under the form of the huntress-goddess, succeeded in obtaining her affections. Hera, being extremely jealous of her, changed her into a bear, and caused Artemis who failed to recognize her attendant under this form to hunt her in the chase, and put an end to her existence.

After her death she was placed by Zeus among the stars as a constellation, under the name of Arctos, or the bear. ALCMENE , the daughter of Electryon, king of Mycenae, was betrothed to her cousin Amphytrion; but, during his absence on a perilous undertaking, Zeus assumed his form, and obtained her affections. Heracles whose world-renowned exploits will be related among the legends was the son of Alcmene and Zeus.

Like the unfortunate Callisto, she was hated by Hera with jealous malignity, and the haughty queen of heaven determined to effect her destruction. Semele, suspecting no treachery, followed the advice of her supposed nurse; and the next time Zeus came to her, she earnestly entreated him to grant the favour she was about to ask. Zeus swore by the Styx which was to the gods an irrevocable oath to accede to her request whatsoever it might be. Semele, therefore, secure of gaining her petition, begged of Zeus to appear to her in all the glory of his divine power and majesty.

As he had sworn to grant whatever she asked of him, he was compelled to comply with her wish; he therefore revealed himself as the mighty lord of the universe, accompanied by thunder and lightning, and she was instantly consumed in the flames. IO , daughter of Inachus, king of Argos, was a priestess of Hera. She was very beautiful, and Zeus, who was much attached to her, transformed her into a white cow, in order to defeat the jealous intrigues of Hera, who, however, was not to be deceived.

Aware of the stratagem, she contrived to obtain the animal from Zeus, and placed her under the watchful care of a man called Argus-Panoptes, who fastened her to an olive-tree in the grove of Hera. He had a hundred eyes, of which, when asleep, he never closed more than two at a time; being thus always on the watch, Hera found him extremely useful in keeping guard over Io. Hermes, however, by the command of Zeus, succeeded in putting all his eyes to sleep with the sound of his magic lyre, and then, taking advantage of his helpless condition, slew him. The story goes, that in commemoration of the services which Argus had rendered her, Hera placed his eyes on the tail of a peacock, as a lasting memorial of her gratitude.

Ever fertile in resource, Hera now sent a gadfly to worry and torment the unfortunate Io incessantly, and she wandered all over the world in hopes of escaping from her tormentor. At length she reached Egypt, where she found rest and freedom from the persecutions of her enemy. On the banks of the Nile she resumed her original form and gave birth to a son called Epaphus, who afterwards became king of Egypt, and built the famous city of Memphis.

Further details concerning her will be found in the legend of Perseus. The Greeks supposed that the divine ruler of the Universe occasionally assumed a human form, and descended from his celestial abode, in order to visit mankind and observe their proceedings, his aim being generally either to punish the guilty, or to reward the deserving. On one occasion Zeus, accompanied by Hermes, made a journey through Phrygia, seeking hospitality and shelter wherever they went. But nowhere did they receive a [37] kindly welcome till they came to the humble cottage of an old man and his wife called Philemon and Baucis, who entertained them with the greatest kindness, setting before them what frugal fare their humble means permitted, and bidding them welcome with unaffected cordiality.

Observing in the course of their simple repast that the wine bowl was miraculously replenished, the aged couple became convinced of the divine nature of their guests. The gods now informed them that on account of its wickedness their native place was doomed to destruction, and told them to climb the neighbouring hill with them, which overlooked the village where they dwelt. What was their dismay on beholding at their feet, in place of the spot where they had passed so many happy years together, nothing but a watery plain, the only house to be seen being their own little cottage, which suddenly changed itself into a temple before their eyes. Zeus now asked the worthy pair to name any wish they particularly desired and it should be granted.

They accordingly begged that they might serve the gods in the temple below, and end life together. Their wish was granted, for, after spending the remainder of their lives in the worship of the gods, they both died at the same instant, and were transformed by Zeus into trees, remaining for ever side by side. Upon another occasion Zeus, wishing to ascertain for himself the truth of the reports concerning the atrocious wickedness of mankind, made a journey through Arcadia.

Being recognized by the Arcadians as king of heaven, he was received by them with becoming respect and veneration; but Lycaon, their king, who had rendered himself infamous by the gross impiety of himself and his sons, doubted the divinity of Zeus, ridiculed his people for being so easily duped, and, according to his custom of killing all strangers who ventured to trust his hospitality, resolved to murder him. Before executing this wicked design, however, he decided to put Zeus to the test, and having killed a boy for the purpose, placed before him a dish containing human flesh.

But Zeus was [38] not to be deceived. Zeus, as we have seen, often condescends to visit mankind, either as a mortal, or under various disguises, whereas Jupiter always remains essentially the supreme god of heaven, and never appears upon earth. The most celebrated temple of Jupiter was that on the Capitoline Hill in the city of Rome, where he was worshipped under the names of Jupiter-Optimus-Maximus, Capitolinus, and Tarpeius.

The Romans represented him seated on a throne of ivory, holding in his right hand a sheaf of thunderbolts, and in his left a sceptre, whilst an eagle stands beside his throne. Hera, the eldest daughter of Cronus and Rhea, was born at Samos, or, according to some accounts, at Argos, and was reared by the sea-divinities Oceanus and Tethys, who were models of conjugal fidelity. Hera appears to be the sublime embodiment of strict matronly virtue, and is on that account the protectress of purity and married women. Faultless herself in her fidelity as a wife, she is essentially the type of the sanctity of the marriage tie, and holds in abhorrence any violation of its obligations.

So strongly was she imbued with this hatred of any immorality, that, finding herself so often called upon to punish the failings of both gods and men in this respect, she became jealous, harsh, and vindictive. Her exalted position as the wife of the supreme deity, combined with her extreme beauty, caused her to become exceedingly vain, and she consequently resented with great severity any infringement on her rights as queen of heaven, or any apparent slight on her personal appearance. The following story will signally illustrate how ready she was to resent any slight offered to her.

At the marriage of the sea-nymph Thetis with a mortal called Peleus, all the gods and goddesses were present, except Eris the goddess of Discord. Indignant at not being invited, she determined to cause dissension in the assembly, and for this purpose threw into the midst of the guests a golden apple with the inscription on it "For the Fairest. Paris was the son of Priam, king of Troy, who, ignorant of his noble birth, was at this time feeding his flocks on Mount Ida, in Phrygia. Hermes, as messenger of the gods, conducted the three rival beauties to the young shepherd, and with breathless anxiety they awaited his decision. Each fair candidate endeavoured [40] to secure his favour by the most tempting offers.

Hera promised him extensive dominions; Athene, martial fame and glory; and Aphrodite, the loveliest woman in the world. But whether he really considered Aphrodite the fairest of the three, or preferred a beautiful wife to fame and power, we cannot tell; all we know is that to her he awarded the golden apple, and she became ever after universally acknowledged as the goddess of beauty. Hera, having fully expected that Paris would give her the preference, was so indignant that she never forgave him, and not only persecuted him, but all the family of Priam, whose dreadful sufferings and misfortunes during the Trojan war were attributed to her influence.

In fact, she carried her animosity to such an extent that it was often the cause of domestic disagreements between herself and Zeus, who espoused the cause of the Trojans. Among the many stories of these frequent quarrels there is one connected with Heracles, the favourite son of Zeus, which is as follows:—Hera having raised a storm at sea in order to drive him out of his course, Zeus became so angry that he hung her in the clouds by a golden chain, and attached heavy anvils to her feet.

Surprised and grieved at this unlooked-for desertion, Zeus resolved to leave no means untried to win her back again. In this emergency he consulted Cithaeron, king of Platea, who was famed for his great wisdom and subtlety. Cithaeron advised him to dress up an image in bridal attire and place it in a chariot, announcing that this was Platea, his future wife. The artifice succeeded. Hera, incensed at the idea of a rival, flew to meet the procession in great anger, and seizing the supposed bride, she furiously attacked her and dragged off her nuptial attire.

Her delight on discovering the deception was so great that a [41] reconciliation took place, and, committing the image to the flames, with joyful laughter she seated herself in its place and returned to Olympus. Her principal temples were at Argos and Samos. From a remote period she was greatly venerated at Olympia, and her temple there, which stood in the Altis or sacred grove, was five hundred years older than that of Zeus on the same spot. Some interesting excavations which are now going on there have brought to light the remains of the ancient edifice, which contains among other treasures of antiquity several beautiful statues, the work of the famous sculptors of ancient Greece.

At first this temple was built of wood, then of stone, and the one lately discovered was formed of conglomerate of shells. In the Altis races were run by young maidens in honour of Hera, and the fleetest of foot received in token of her victory an olive-wreath and a piece of the flesh of the sacrifices. A beautiful robe, woven by sixteen women chosen from the sixteen cities of Elis, was always offered to Hera on these [42] occasions, and choral songs and sacred dances formed part of the ceremonies.

Hera is usually represented seated on a throne, holding a pomegranate in one hand and a sceptre surmounted by a cuckoo in the other. She appears as a calm, dignified matron of majestic beauty, robed in a tunic and mantle, her forehead is broad and intellectual, her eyes large and fully opened, and her arms dazzlingly white and finely moulded. The first day of every month a ewe-lamb and sow were sacrificed to Hera. The hawk, goose, and more particularly the peacock [17] were sacred to her.

Flocks of these beautiful birds generally surround her throne and draw her chariot, Iris, the Rainbow, being seated behind her. Juno, the Roman divinity supposed to be identical with the Greek Hera, differed from her in the most salient points, for whereas Hera invariably appears as the haughty, unbending queen of heaven, Juno, on the other hand, is revered and beloved as the type of a matron and housewife.

She was worshipped in Rome under various titles, most of which point to her vocation as the protectress of married women. Juno was believed to watch over and guard the life of every woman from her birth to her death. The principal temples dedicated to her were in Rome, one being erected on the Aventine, and the other on the Capitoline Hill. She had also a temple on the Arx, in which she was worshipped as Juno Moneta, or the [43] warning goddess. Adjacent to this shrine was the public mint. Pallas-Athene, goddess of Wisdom and Armed Resistance, was a purely Greek divinity; that is to say, no other nation possessed a corresponding conception.

She was supposed, as already related, to have issued from the head of Zeus himself, clad in armour from head to foot. The miraculous advent of this maiden goddess is beautifully described by Homer in one of his hymns: snow-capped Olympus shook to its foundation; the glad earth re-echoed her martial shout; the billowy sea became agitated; and Helios, the sun-god, arrested his fiery steeds in their headlong course to welcome this wonderful emanation from the godhead. Athene was at once admitted into the assembly of the gods, and henceforth took her place as the most faithful and sagacious of all her father's counsellors. This brave, dauntless maiden, so exactly the essence of all that is noble in the character of "the father of gods and men," remained throughout chaste in word and deed, and kind at heart, without exhibiting any of those failings which somewhat mar the nobler features in the character of Zeus.

This direct emanation from his own self, justly his favourite child, his better and purer counterpart, received from him several important prerogatives. She was permitted to hurl the thunderbolts, to prolong the life of man, and to bestow the gift of prophecy; in fact Athene was the only divinity whose authority was equal to that of Zeus himself, and when he had ceased to visit the earth in person [44] she was empowered by him to act as his deputy. It was her especial duty to protect the state and all peaceful associations of mankind, which she possessed the power of defending when occasion required. She encouraged the maintenance of law and order, and defended the right on all occasions, for which reason, in the Trojan war she espouses the cause of the Greeks and exerts all her influence on their behalf.

The Areopagus, a court of justice where religious causes and murders were tried, was believed to have been instituted by her, and when both sides happened to have an equal number of votes she gave the casting-vote in favour of the accused. She was the patroness of learning, science, and art, more particularly where these contributed directly towards the welfare of nations. She presided over all inventions connected with agriculture, invented the plough, and taught mankind how to use oxen for farming purposes. She also taught the Greeks how to build the wooden horse by means of which the destruction of Troy was effected.

A divinity who so faithfully guarded the best interests of the state, by not only protecting it from the attacks of enemies, but also by developing its chief resources of wealth and prosperity, was worthily chosen as the presiding deity of the state, and in this character as an essentially political goddess she was called Athene-Polias. The fact of Athene having been born clad in armour, which merely signified that her virtue and purity were unassailable, has given rise to the erroneous supposition that she was the presiding goddess of war; but a deeper [45] study of her character in all its bearings proves that, in contradistinction to her brother Ares, the god of war, who loved strife for its own sake, she only takes up arms to protect the innocent and deserving against tyrannical oppression.

It is true that in the Iliad we frequently see her on the battlefield fighting valiantly, and protecting her favourite heroes; but this is always at the command of Zeus, who even supplies her with arms for the purpose, as it is supposed that she possessed none of her own. In the centre of this shield, which was covered with dragon's scales, bordered with serpents, and which she sometimes wore as a breastplate, was the awe-inspiring head of the Medusa, which had the effect of turning to stone all beholders.

In addition to the many functions which she exercised in connection with the state, Athene presided over the two chief departments of feminine industry, spinning and weaving. In the latter art she herself displayed unrivalled ability and exquisite taste. She wove her own robe and that of Hera, which last she is said to have embroidered very richly; she also gave Jason a cloak wrought by herself, when he set forth in quest of the Golden Fleece. Being on one occasion challenged to a contest in this accomplishment by a mortal maiden named Arachne, whom she had instructed in the art of weaving, she accepted the challenge and was completely vanquished by her pupil.

Angry at her defeat, she struck the unfortunate maiden on the forehead with the shuttle which she held in her hand; and Arachne, being of a sensitive nature, was so hurt by this indignity that she hung herself in despair, and was changed by Athene into a spider. This goddess is said to have invented the flute, [21] upon [46] which she played with considerable talent, until one day, being laughed at by the assembled gods and goddesses for the contortions which her countenance assumed during these musical efforts, she hastily ran to a fountain in order to convince herself whether she deserved their ridicule. Finding to her intense disgust that such was indeed the fact, she threw the flute away, and never raised it to her lips again. Athene is usually represented fully draped; she has a serious and thoughtful aspect, as though replete with earnestness and wisdom; the beautiful oval contour of her countenance is adorned by the luxuriance of her wealth of hair, which is drawn back from the temples and hangs down in careless grace; she looks the embodiment of strength, grandeur, and majesty; whilst her broad shoulders and small hips give her a slightly masculine appearance.

Athene was universally worshipped throughout Greece, but was regarded with special veneration by the Athenians, she being the guardian deity of Athens. Her most celebrated temple was the Parthenon, which stood on the [47] Acropolis at Athens, and contained her world-renowned statue by Phidias, which ranks second only to that of Zeus by the same great artist. This colossal statue was 39 feet high, and was composed of ivory and gold; its majestic beauty formed the chief attraction of the temple.

It represented her standing erect, bearing her spear and shield; in her hand she held an image of Nike, and at her feet there lay a serpent. The tree sacred to her was the olive, which she herself produced in a contest with Poseidon. The olive-tree thus called into existence was preserved in the temple of Erectheus, on the Acropolis, and is said to have possessed such marvellous vitality, that when the Persians burned it after sacking the town it immediately burst forth into new shoots. The owl, cock, and serpent were the animals sacred to her, and her sacrifices were rams, bulls, and cows. Schools were under her especial care, and schoolboys, therefore, had holidays during her festivals the Greater Quinquatria , when they always brought a gift to their master, called the Minerval.

It is worthy of notice that the only three divinities [48] worshipped in the Capitol were Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva, and in their joint honour the Ludi Maximi or great games were held. Themis, who has already been alluded to as the wife of Zeus, was the daughter of Cronus and Rhea, and personified those divine laws of justice and order by means of which the well-being and morality of communities are regulated. She presided over the assemblies of the people and the laws of hospitality.

To her was intrusted the office of convoking the assembly of the gods, and she was also mistress of ritual and ceremony. On account of her great wisdom Zeus himself frequently sought her counsel and acted upon her advice. She is usually represented as being in the full maturity of womanhood, of fair aspect, and wearing a flowing garment, which drapes her noble, majestic form; in her right hand she holds the sword of justice, and in her left the scales, which indicate the impartiality with which every cause is carefully weighed by her, her eyes being bandaged so that the personality of the individual should carry no weight with respect to the verdict.

This elder Themis inherited from her mother the gift of prophecy, and when she became merged into her younger representative she transmitted to her this prophetic power. Hestia was the daughter of Cronus and Rhea. She was the goddess of Fire in its first application to the wants of mankind, hence she was essentially the presiding deity [49] of the domestic hearth and the guardian spirit of man, and it was her pure and benign influence which was supposed to protect the sanctity of domestic life.

Now in these early ages the hearth was regarded as the most important and most sacred portion of the dwelling, probably because the protection of the fire was an important consideration, for if once permitted to become extinct, re-ignition was attended with extreme difficulty. In fact, the hearth was held so sacred that it constituted the sanctum of the family, for which reason it was always erected in the centre of every house. It was a few feet in height and was built of stone; the fire was placed on the top of it, and served the double purpose of preparing the daily meals, and consuming the family sacrifices. Round this domestic hearth or altar were gathered the various members of the family, the head of the house occupying the place of honour nearest the hearth.

Here prayers were said and sacrifices offered, and here also every kind and loving feeling was fostered, which even extended to the hunted and guilty stranger, who, if he once succeeded in touching this sacred altar, was safe from pursuit and punishment, and was henceforth placed under the protection of the family. Any crime committed within the sacred precincts of the domestic hearth was invariably visited by death. In Grecian cities there was a common hall, called the Prytaneum, in which the members of the government had their meals at the expense of the state, and here too was the Hestia, or public hearth, with its fire, by means of which those meals were prepared.

It was customary for emigrants to take with them a portion of this sacred fire, which they jealously guarded and brought with them to their new home, where it served as a connecting link between the young Greek colony and the mother country. Hestia is generally represented standing, and in accordance with the dignity and sanctity of her character, always appears fully draped. Her countenance is distinguished by a serene gravity of expression. Vesta occupies a distinguished place among the earlier divinities of the Romans. Her temple in Rome, containing as it were the hearthstone of the nation, stood close beside the palace of Numa Pompilius.

On her altar burned the never-ceasing fire, which was tended by her priestesses, the Vestal Virgins. The temple of Vesta was circular in form, and contained that sacred and highly prized treasure the Palladium of Troy. The great festival in honour of Vesta, called the Vestalia, was celebrated on the 9th of June. Demeter from Ge-meter , earth-mother was the daughter of Cronus and Rhea. As goddess of agriculture, field-fruits, plenty, and productiveness, she was the sustainer of material life, and was therefore a divinity of great importance. But in later times, when Rhea, like other ancient divinities, loses her importance as a ruling deity, Demeter assumes all her functions and attributes, and then becomes the goddess of the life-producing and life-maintaining earth-crust.

We must bear in mind the fact that man in his primitive state knew neither how to sow nor how to till the ground; when, therefore, he had exhausted the pastures which surrounded him he was compelled to seek others which were as yet unreaped; thus, roaming constantly from one place to another, settled habitations, and consequently civilizing influences, were impossible. Demeter, however, by introducing a knowledge of agriculture, put an end, at once and for ever, to that nomadic life which was now no longer necessary. The favour of Demeter was believed to bring mankind rich harvests and fruitful crops, whereas her displeasure caused blight, drought, and famine.

The island of Sicily was supposed to be under her especial protection, and there she was regarded with particular veneration, the Sicilians naturally attributing the wonderful fertility of their country to the partiality of the goddess. Demeter is usually represented as a woman of noble [52] bearing and majestic appearance, tall, matronly, and dignified, with beautiful golden hair, which falls in rippling curls over her stately shoulders, the yellow locks being emblematical of the ripened ears of corn.

Sometimes she appears seated in a chariot drawn by winged dragons, at others she stands erect, her figure drawn up to its full height, and always fully draped; she bears a sheaf of wheat-ears in one hand and a lighted torch in the other. The wheat-ears are not unfrequently replaced by a bunch of poppies, with which her brows are also garlanded, though sometimes she merely wears a simple riband in her hair. Demeter, as the wife of Zeus, became the mother of Persephone Proserpine , to whom she was so tenderly attached that her whole life was bound up in her, and she knew no happiness except in her society. One day, however, whilst Persephone was gathering flowers in a meadow, attended by the ocean-nymphs, she saw to her surprise a beautiful narcissus, from the stem of which sprang forth a hundred blossoms.

Helios, the all-seeing sun-god, and Hecate, a mysterious and very ancient divinity, alone heard her cries for aid, but were powerless to help her. When Demeter became conscious of her loss her grief was intense, and she refused to be comforted. She knew not where to seek for her child, but feeling that repose and inaction were impossible, she set out on her weary search, taking with her two torches which she lighted in the flames of Mount Etna to guide her on her way. For nine long days and nights she wandered on, inquiring of every one she met for tidings of her child. Neither gods nor men could give her the comfort which her soul so hungered for.

At last, on the tenth day, the disconsolate mother met Hecate, who informed her that she had heard her daughter's cries, but knew not who it was that had borne her away. Indignant with Zeus for having given his sanction to the abduction of his daughter, and filled with the bitterest sorrow, she abandoned her home in Olympus, and refused all heavenly food. Disguising herself as an old woman, she descended upon earth, and commenced a weary pilgrimage among mankind. One evening she arrived at a place called Eleusis, in Attica, and sat down to rest herself near a well beneath the shade of an olive-tree. The youthful daughters of Celeus, the king of the country, came with their pails of brass to draw water from this well, and seeing that the tired wayfarer appeared faint and dispirited, they spoke kindly to her, asking who she was, and whence she came.

Demeter replied that she had made her escape from pirates, who had captured her, and added that she would feel grateful for a home with any worthy family, whom she would be willing to serve in a menial capacity. The princesses, on hearing this, begged Demeter to have a moment's patience while they returned home and consulted their mother, Metaneira. They soon brought the joyful intelligence that she was desirous of securing her services as nurse to her infant son Demophoon, or Triptolemus. When Demeter arrived at the house a radiant light suddenly illumined her, which circumstance so overawed Metaneira that she treated the unknown stranger with the greatest respect, and hospitably offered her food and drink. But Demeter, still grief-worn and dejected, refused her friendly offers, and held herself apart from the social board.

At length, however, the maid-servant Iambe succeeded, by means [54] of playful jests and merriment, in somewhat dispelling the grief of the sorrowing mother, causing her at times to smile in spite of herself, and even inducing her to partake of a mixture of barley-meal, mint, and water, which was prepared according to the directions of the goddess herself. Time passed on, and the young child throve amazingly under the care of his kind and judicious nurse, who, however, gave him no food, but anointed him daily with ambrosia, and every night laid him secretly in the fire in order to render him immortal and exempt from old age.

But, unfortunately, this benevolent design on the part of Demeter was frustrated by Metaneira herself, whose curiosity, one night, impelled her to watch the proceedings of the mysterious being who nursed her child. When to her horror she beheld her son placed in the flames, she shrieked aloud. Demeter, incensed at this untimely interruption, instantly withdrew the child, and throwing him on the ground, revealed herself in her true character. The bent and aged form had vanished, and in its place there stood a bright and beauteous being, whose golden locks streamed over her shoulders in richest luxuriance, her whole aspect bespeaking dignity and majesty.

She told the awe-struck Metaneira that she was the goddess Demeter, and had intended to make her son immortal, but that her fatal curiosity had rendered this impossible, adding, however, that the child, having slept in her arms, and been nursed on her lap, should ever command the respect and esteem of mankind. She then desired that a temple and altar should be erected to her on a neighbouring hill by the people of Eleusis, promising that she herself would direct them how to perform the sacred rites and ceremonies, which should be observed in her honour.

With these words she took her departure never to return. Your sceptre of the god and your wreath shall profit you nothing. I will not free her. She shall grow old in my house at Argos far from her own home, busying herself with her loom and visiting my couch; so go, and do not provoke me or it shall be the worse for you. The old man feared him and obeyed. Not a word he spoke, but went by the shore of the sounding sea and prayed apart to King Apollo whom lovely Leto had borne. If I have ever decked your temple with garlands, or burned your thigh-bones in fat of bulls or goats, grant my prayer, and let your arrows avenge these my tears upon the Danaans.

Thus did he pray, and Apollo heard his prayer. He came down furious from the summits of Olympus, with his bow and his quiver upon his shoulder, and the arrows rattled on his back with the rage that trembled within him. He sat himself down away from the ships with a face as dark as night, and his silver bow rang death as he shot his arrow in the midst of them. First he smote their mules and their hounds, but presently he aimed his shafts at the people themselves, and all day long the pyres of the dead were burning.

For nine whole days he shot his arrows among the people, but upon the tenth day Achilles called them in assembly—moved thereto by Juno, who saw the Achaeans in their death-throes and had compassion upon them. Then, when they were got together, he rose and spoke among them. Let us ask some priest or prophet, or some reader of dreams for dreams, too, are of Jove who can tell us why Phoebus Apollo is so angry, and say whether it is for some vow that we have broken, or hecatomb that we have not offered, and whether he will accept the savour of lambs and goats without blemish, so as to take away the plague from us.

With these words he sat down, and Calchas son of Thestor, wisest of augurs, who knew things past present and to come, rose to speak. He it was who had guided the Achaeans with their fleet to Ilius, through the prophesyings with which Phoebus Apollo had inspired him. With all sincerity and goodwill he addressed them thus:—. A plain man cannot stand against the anger of a king, who if he swallow his displeasure now, will yet nurse revenge till he has wreaked it. Consider, therefore, whether or no you will protect me.

Thereon the seer spoke boldly. He will not deliver the Danaans from this pestilence till Agamemnon has restored the girl without fee or ransom to her father, and has sent a holy hecatomb to Chryse. Thus we may perhaps appease him. With these words he sat down, and Agamemnon rose in anger. You have brought me neither comfort nor performance; and now you come seeing among Danaans, and saying that Apollo has plagued us because I would not take a ransom for this girl, the daughter of Chryses. I have set my heart on keeping her in my own house, for I love her better even than my own wife Clytemnestra, whose peer she is alike in form and feature, in understanding and accomplishments.

Still I will give her up if I must, for I would have the people live, not die; but you must find me a prize instead, or I alone among the Argives shall be without one. This is not well; for you behold, all of you, that my prize is to go elsewhither. We have no common store from which to take one. Those we took from the cities have been awarded; we cannot disallow the awards that have been made already. Give this girl, therefore, to the god, and if ever Jove grants us to sack the city of Troy we will requite you three and fourfold.

You shall not overreach and you shall not persuade me. Are you to keep your own prize, while I sit tamely under my loss and give up the girl at your bidding? Let the Achaeans find me a prize in fair exchange to my liking, or I will come and take your own, or that of Ajax or of Ulysses; and he to whomsoever I may come shall rue my coming. But of this we will take thought hereafter; for the present, let us draw a ship into the sea, and find a crew for her expressly; let us put a hecatomb on board, and let us send Chryseis also; further, let some chief man among us be in command, either Ajax, or Idomeneus, or yourself, son of Peleus, mighty warrior that you are, that we may offer sacrifice and appease the anger of the god.

With what heart can any of the Achaeans do your bidding, either on foray or in open fighting? I came not warring here for any ill the Trojans had done me. I have no quarrel with them. They have not raided my cattle nor my horses, nor cut down my harvests on the rich plains of Phthia; for between me and them there is a great space, both mountain and sounding sea.

We have followed you, Sir Insolence! You forget this, and threaten to rob me of the prize for which I have toiled, and which the sons of the Achaeans have given me. Never when the Achaeans sack any rich city of the Trojans do I receive so good a prize as you do, though it is my hands that do the better part of the fighting. When the sharing comes, your share is far the largest, and I, forsooth, must go back to my ships, take what I can get and be thankful, when my labour of fighting is done.

Now, therefore, I shall go back to Phthia; it will be much better for me to return home with my ships, for I will not stay here dishonoured to gather gold and substance for you. I have others here who will do me honour, and above all Jove, the lord of counsel. There is no king here so hateful to me as you are, for you are ever quarrelsome and ill-affected. What though you be brave? Was it not heaven that made you so? Go home, then, with your ships and comrades to lord it over the Myrmidons.

I care neither for you nor for your anger; and thus will I do: since Phoebus Apollo is taking Chryseis from me, I shall send her with my ship and my followers, but I shall come to your tent and take your own prize Briseis, that you may learn how much stronger I am than you are, and that another may fear to set himself up as equal or comparable with me. The son of Peleus was furious, and his heart within his shaggy breast was divided whether to draw his sword, push the others aside, and kill the son of Atreus, or to restrain himself and check his anger.

While he was thus in two minds, and was drawing his mighty sword from its scabbard, Minerva came down from heaven for Juno had sent her in the love she bore to them both , and seized the son of Peleus by his yellow hair, visible to him alone, for of the others no man could see her. Achilles turned in amaze, and by the fire that flashed from her eyes at once knew that she was Minerva. To see the pride of Agamemnon, son of Atreus? Let me tell you—and it shall surely be—he shall pay for this insolence with his life. Juno has sent me, who cares for both of you alike. Cease, then, this brawling, and do not draw your sword; rail at him if you will, and your railing will not be vain, for I tell you—and it shall surely be—that you shall hereafter receive gifts three times as splendid by reason of this present insult.

Hold, therefore, and obey. This will be best, for the gods ever hear the prayers of him who has obeyed them. He stayed his hand on the silver hilt of his sword, and thrust it back into the scabbard as Minerva bade him. Then she went back to Olympus among the other gods, and to the house of aegis-bearing Jove. But the son of Peleus again began railing at the son of Atreus, for he was still in a rage. You shun this as you do death itself. You had rather go round and rob his prizes from any man who contradicts you.

You devour your people, for you are king over a feeble folk; otherwise, son of Atreus, henceforward you would insult no man. Therefore I say, and swear it with a great oath—nay, by this my sceptre which shalt sprout neither leaf nor shoot, nor bud anew from the day on which it left its parent stem upon the mountains—for the axe stripped it of leaf and bark, and now the sons of the Achaeans bear it as judges and guardians of the decrees of heaven—so surely and solemnly do I swear that hereafter they shall look fondly for Achilles and shall not find him. In the day of your distress, when your men fall dying by the murderous hand of Hector, you shall not know how to help them, and shall rend your heart with rage for the hour when you offered insult to the bravest of the Achaeans.

With this the son of Peleus dashed his gold-bestudded sceptre on the ground and took his seat, while the son of Atreus was beginning fiercely from his place upon the other side. Then uprose smooth-tongued Nestor, the facile speaker of the Pylians, and the words fell from his lips sweeter than honey. Two generations of men born and bred in Pylos had passed away under his rule, and he was now reigning over the third. With all sincerity and goodwill, therefore, he addressed them thus:—. Surely Priam with his sons would rejoice, and the Trojans be glad at heart if they could hear this quarrel between you two, who are so excellent in fight and counsel. I am older than either of you; therefore be guided by me.

Moreover I have been the familiar friend of men even greater than you are, and they did not disregard my counsels. Never again can I behold such men as Pirithous and Dryas shepherd of his people, or as Caeneus, Exadius, godlike Polyphemus, and Theseus son of Aegeus, peer of the immortals. These were the mightiest men ever born upon this earth: mightiest were they, and when they fought the fiercest tribes of mountain savages they utterly overthrew them. I came from distant Pylos, and went about among them, for they would have me come, and I fought as it was in me to do. Not a man now living could withstand them, but they heard my words, and were persuaded by them. So be it also with yourselves, for this is the more excellent way.

Therefore, Agamemnon, though you be strong, take not this girl away, for the sons of the Achaeans have already given her to Achilles; and you, Achilles, strive not further with the king, for no man who by the grace of Jove wields a sceptre has like honour with Agamemnon. You are strong, and have a goddess for your mother; but Agamemnon is stronger than you, for he has more people under him. Son of Atreus, check your anger, I implore you; end this quarrel with Achilles, who in the day of battle is a tower of strength to the Achaeans.

Granted that the gods have made him a great warrior, have they also given him the right to speak with railing? Achilles interrupted him. Order other people about, not me, for I shall obey no longer. Furthermore I say—and lay my saying to your heart—I shall fight neither you nor any man about this girl, for those that take were those also that gave. But of all else that is at my ship you shall carry away nothing by force. Try, that others may see; if you do, my spear shall be reddened with your blood. When they had quarrelled thus angrily, they rose, and broke up the assembly at the ships of the Achaeans. The son of Peleus went back to his tents and ships with the son of Menoetius and his company, while Agamemnon drew a vessel into the water and chose a crew of twenty oarsmen.

He escorted Chryseis on board and sent moreover a hecatomb for the god. And Ulysses went as captain. These, then, went on board and sailed their ways over the sea. But the son of Atreus bade the people purify themselves; so they purified themselves and cast their filth into the sea. Then they offered hecatombs of bulls and goats without blemish on the sea-shore, and the smoke with the savour of their sacrifice rose curling up towards heaven. Thus did they busy themselves throughout the host. But Agamemnon did not forget the threat that he had made Achilles, and called his trusty messengers and squires Talthybius and Eurybates. He charged them straightly further and dismissed them, whereon they went their way sorrowfully by the seaside, till they came to the tents and ships of the Myrmidons.

They found Achilles sitting by his tent and his ships, and ill-pleased he was when he beheld them. Agamemnon is mad with rage and knows not how to look before and after that the Achaeans may fight by their ships in safety. Patroclus did as his dear comrade had bidden him. He brought Briseis from the tent and gave her over to the heralds, who took her with them to the ships of the Achaeans—and the woman was loth to go. Then Achilles went all alone by the side of the hoar sea, weeping and looking out upon the boundless waste of waters.

It is not so. Agamemnon, son of Atreus, has done me dishonour, and has robbed me of my prize by force. As he spoke he wept aloud, and his mother heard him where she was sitting in the depths of the sea hard by the old man her father. What is it that grieves you? Keep it not from me, but tell me, that we may know it together. We went to Thebe the strong city of Eetion, sacked it, and brought hither the spoil. So he went back in anger, and Apollo, who loved him dearly, heard his prayer.

Then the god sent a deadly dart upon the Argives, and the people died thick on one another, for the arrows went everywhither among the wide host of the Achaeans. At last a seer in the fulness of his knowledge declared to us the oracles of Apollo, and I was myself first to say that we should appease him. Whereon the son of Atreus rose in anger, and threatened that which he has since done. The Achaeans are now taking the girl in a ship to Chryse, and sending gifts of sacrifice to the god; but the heralds have just taken from my tent the daughter of Briseus, whom the Achaeans had awarded to myself. Go to Olympus, and if you have ever done him service in word or deed, implore the aid of Jove. It was you, goddess, who delivered him by calling to Olympus the hundred-handed monster whom gods call Briareus, but men Aegaeon, for he is stronger even than his father; when therefore he took his seat all-glorious beside the son of Saturn, the other gods were afraid, and did not bind him.

Go, then, to him, remind him of all this, clasp his knees, and bid him give succour to the Trojans. Let the Achaeans be hemmed in at the sterns of their ships, and perish on the sea-shore, that they may reap what joy they may of their king, and that Agamemnon may rue his blindness in offering insult to the foremost of the Achaeans. Would indeed that you had lived your span free from all sorrow at your ships, for it is all too brief; alas, that you should be at once short of life and long of sorrow above your peers: woe, therefore, was the hour in which I bore you; nevertheless I will go to the snowy heights of Olympus, and tell this tale to Jove, if he will hear our prayer: meanwhile stay where you are with your ships, nurse your anger against the Achaeans, and hold aloof from fight.

For Jove went yesterday to Oceanus, to a feast among the Ethiopians, and the other gods went with him. He will return to Olympus twelve days hence; I will then go to his mansion paved with bronze and will beseech him; nor do I doubt that I shall be able to persuade him. On this she left him, still furious at the loss of her that had been taken from him. Meanwhile Ulysses reached Chryse with the hecatomb. They then got out upon the sea-shore and landed the hecatomb for Apollo; Chryseis also left the ship, and Ulysses led her to the altar to deliver her into the hands of her father. So saying he gave the girl over to her father, who received her gladly, and they ranged the holy hecatomb all orderly round the altar of the god.

They washed their hands and took up the barley-meal to sprinkle over the victims, while Chryses lifted up his hands and prayed aloud on their behalf. Even as thou didst hear me aforetime when I prayed, and didst press hardly upon the Achaeans, so hear me yet again, and stay this fearful pestilence from the Danaans. When they had done praying and sprinkling the barley-meal, they drew back the heads of the victims and killed and flayed them. They cut out the thigh-bones, wrapped them round in two layers of fat, set some pieces of raw meat on the top of them, and then Chryses laid them on the wood fire and poured wine over them, while the young men stood near him with five-pronged spits in their hands.

When the thigh-bones were burned and they had tasted the inward meats, they cut the rest up small, put the pieces upon the spits, roasted them till they were done, and drew them off: then, when they had finished their work and the feast was ready, they ate it, and every man had his full share, so that all were satisfied. As soon as they had had enough to eat and drink, pages filled the mixing-bowl with wine and water and handed it round, after giving every man his drink-offering.

Thus all day long the young men worshipped the god with song, hymning him and chaunting the joyous paean, and the god took pleasure in their voices; but when the sun went down, and it came on dark, they laid themselves down to sleep by the stern cables of the ship, and when the child of morning, rosy-fingered Dawn, appeared they again set sail for the host of the Achaeans. Apollo sent them a fair wind, so they raised their mast and hoisted their white sails aloft. As the sail bellied with the wind the ship flew through the deep blue water, and the foam hissed against her bows as she sped onward. When they reached the wide-stretching host of the Achaeans, they drew the vessel ashore, high and dry upon the sands, set her strong props beneath her, and went their ways to their own tents and ships.

But Achilles abode at his ships and nursed his anger. He went not to the honourable assembly, and sallied not forth to fight, but gnawed at his own heart, pining for battle and the war-cry. Now after twelve days the immortal gods came back in a body to Olympus, and Jove led the way. Thetis was not unmindful of the charge her son had laid upon her, so she rose from under the sea and went through great heaven with early morning to Olympus, where she found the mighty son of Saturn sitting all alone upon its topmost ridges.

She sat herself down before him, and with her left hand seized his knees, while with her right she caught him under the chin, and besought him, saying:—. King Agamemnon has dishonoured him by taking his prize and keeping her. Honour him then yourself, Olympian lord of counsel, and grant victory to the Trojans, till the Achaeans give my son his due and load him with riches in requital. Jove sat for a while silent, and without a word, but Thetis still kept firm hold of his knees, and besought him a second time. Go back now, lest she should find out. I will consider the matter, and will bring it about as you wish.

See, I incline my head that you may believe me. This is the most solemn promise that I can give to any god. I never recall my word, or deceive, or fail to do what I say, when I have nodded my head. As he spoke the son of Saturn bowed his dark brows, and the ambrosial locks swayed on his immortal head, till vast Olympus reeled. When the pair had thus laid their plans, they parted—Jove to his house, while the goddess quitted the splendour of Olympus, and plunged into the depths of the sea. The gods rose from their seats, before the coming of their sire. Not one of them dared to remain sitting, but all stood up as he came among them. There, then, he took his seat.

You are always settling matters in secret behind my back, and have never yet told me, if you could help it, one word of your intentions. You are my wife, but you would find it hard to understand them. When it is proper for you to hear, there is no one, god or man, who will be told sooner, but when I mean to keep a matter to myself, you must not pry nor ask questions. Pry and ask questions? I let you have your own way in everything. I believe, therefore, that you have been promising her to give glory to Achilles, and to kill much people at the ships of the Achaeans. You will take nothing by it, for I shall only dislike you the more, and it will go harder with you. Granted that it is as you say; I mean to have it so; sit down and hold your tongue as I bid you for if I once begin to lay my hands about you, though all heaven were on your side it would profit you nothing.

On this Juno was frightened, so she curbed her stubborn will and sat down in silence. But the heavenly beings were disquieted throughout the house of Jove, till the cunning workman Vulcan began to try and pacify his mother Juno. If such ill counsels are to prevail, we shall have no pleasure at our banquet. Let me then advise my mother—and she must herself know that it will be better—to make friends with my dear father Jove, lest he again scold her and disturb our feast. If the Olympian Thunderer wants to hurl us all from our seats, he can do so, for he is far the strongest, so give him fair words, and he will then soon be in a good humour with us.

I love you dearly, and should be very sorry to see you get a thrashing; however grieved I might be, I could not help, for there is no standing against Jove. Once before when I was trying to help you, he caught me by the foot and flung me from the heavenly threshold. All day long from morn till eve, was I falling, till at sunset I came to ground in the island of Lemnos, and there I lay, with very little life left in me, till the Sintians came and tended me.

Then Vulcan drew sweet nectar from the mixing-bowl, and served it round among the gods, going from left to right; and the blessed gods laughed out a loud applause as they saw him bustling about the heavenly mansion. Thus through the livelong day to the going down of the sun they feasted, and every one had his full share, so that all were satisfied. Apollo struck his lyre, and the Muses lifted up their sweet voices, calling and answering one another.

So Jove, the Olympian Lord of Thunder, hied him to the bed in which he always slept; and when he had got on to it he went to sleep, with Juno of the golden throne by his side. Jove sends a lying dream to Agamemnon, who thereon calls the chiefs in assembly, and proposes to sound the mind of his army—In the end they march to fight—Catalogue of the Achaean and Trojan forces. Now the other gods and the armed warriors on the plain slept soundly, but Jove was wakeful, for he was thinking how to do honour to Achilles, and destroyed much people at the ships of the Achaeans. Tell him to get the Achaeans instantly under arms, for he shall take Troy.

There are no longer divided counsels among the gods; Juno has brought them to her own mind, and woe betides the Trojans. The dream went when it had heard its message, and soon reached the ships of the Achaeans. It sought Agamemnon son of Atreus and found him in his tent, wrapped in a profound slumber. It hovered over his head in the likeness of Nestor, son of Neleus, whom Agamemnon honoured above all his councillors, and said:—.

Hear me at once, for I come as a messenger from Jove, who, though he be not near, yet takes thought for you and pities you. He bids you get the Achaeans instantly under arms, for you shall take Troy. There are no longer divided counsels among the gods; Juno has brought them over to her own mind, and woe betides the Trojans at the hands of Jove. Remember this, and when you wake see that it does not escape you. The dream then left him, and he thought of things that were surely not to be accomplished. He thought that on that same day he was to take the city of Priam, but he little knew what was in the mind of Jove, who had many another hard-fought fight in store alike for Danaans and Trojans. Then presently he woke, with the divine message still ringing in his ears; so he sat upright, and put on his soft shirt so fair and new, and over this his heavy cloak.

He bound his sandals on to his comely feet, and slung his silver-studded sword about his shoulders; then he took the imperishable staff of his father, and sallied forth to the ships of the Achaeans. The goddess Dawn now wended her way to vast Olympus that she might herald day to Jove and to the other immortals, and Agamemnon sent the criers round to call the people in assembly; so they called them and the people gathered thereon. But first he summoned a meeting of the elders at the ship of Nestor king of Pylos, and when they were assembled he laid a cunning counsel before them. Hear me at once, for I am a messenger from Jove, who, though he be not near, yet takes thought for you and pities you.

Remember this. Let us now, therefore, arm the sons of the Achaeans. But it will be well that I should first sound them, and to this end I will tell them to fly with their ships; but do you others go about among the host and prevent their doing so. But he who has seen it is the foremost man among us; we must therefore set about getting the people under arms. With this he led the way from the assembly, and the other sceptred kings rose with him in obedience to the word of Agamemnon; but the people pressed forward to hear. They swarmed like bees that sally from some hollow cave and flit in countless throng among the spring flowers, bunched in knots and clusters; even so did the mighty multitude pour from ships and tents to the assembly, and range themselves upon the wide-watered shore, while among them ran Wildfire Rumour, messenger of Jove, urging them ever to the fore.

Thus they gathered in a pell-mell of mad confusion, and the earth groaned under the tramp of men as the people sought their places. Nine heralds went crying about among them to stay their tumult and bid them listen to the kings, till at last they were got into their several places and ceased their clamour. Then King Agamemnon rose, holding his sceptre. This was the work of Vulcan, who gave it to Jove the son of Saturn. Jove gave it to Mercury, slayer of Argus, guide and guardian. King Mercury gave it to Pelops, the mighty charioteer, and Pelops to Atreus, shepherd of his people. Atreus, when he died, left it to Thyestes, rich in flocks, and Thyestes in his turn left it to be borne by Agamemnon, that he might be lord of all Argos and of the isles.

Leaning, then, on his sceptre, he addressed the Argives. Cruel Jove gave me his solemn promise that I should sack the city of Priam before returning, but he has played me false, and is now bidding me go ingloriously back to Argos with the loss of much people. Such is the will of Jove, who has laid many a proud city in the dust, as he will yet lay others, for his power is above all.

It will be a sorry tale hereafter that an Achaean host, at once so great and valiant, battled in vain against men fewer in number than themselves; but as yet the end is not in sight. Think that the Achaeans and Trojans have sworn to a solemn covenant, and that they have each been numbered—the Trojans by the roll of their householders, and we by companies of ten; think further that each of our companies desired to have a Trojan householder to pour out their wine; we are so greatly more in number that full many a company would have to go without its cup-bearer.

But they have in the town allies from other places, and it is these that hinder me from being able to sack the rich city of Ilius. Our wives and little ones at home look anxiously for our coming, but the work that we came hither to do has not been done. Now, therefore, let us all do as I say: let us sail back to our own land, for we shall not take Troy. With these words he moved the hearts of the multitude, so many of them as knew not the cunning counsel of Agamemnon. They cheered each other on to draw the ships into the sea; they cleared the channels in front of them; they began taking away the stays from underneath them, and the welkin rang with their glad cries, so eager were they to return.

Then surely the Argives would have returned after a fashion that was not fated. Go about at once among the host, and speak fairly to them, man by man, that they draw not their ships into the sea. Minerva was not slack to do her bidding. Down she darted from the topmost summits of Olympus, and in a moment she was at the ships of the Achaeans. There she found Ulysses, peer of Jove in counsel, standing alone. Will you leave Priam and the Trojans the glory of still keeping Helen, for whose sake so many of the Achaeans have died at Troy, far from their homes?

Ulysses knew the voice as that of the goddess: he flung his cloak from him and set off to run. His servant Eurybates, a man of Ithaca, who waited on him, took charge of the cloak, whereon Ulysses went straight up to Agamemnon and received from him his ancestral, imperishable staff. With this he went about among the ships of the Achaeans. Whenever he met a king or chieftain, he stood by him and spoke him fairly. Stand to your post, and bid your people also keep their places.

You do not yet know the full mind of Agamemnon; he was sounding us, and ere long will visit the Achaeans with his displeasure. We were not all of us at the council to hear what he then said; see to it lest he be angry and do us a mischief; for the pride of kings is great, and the hand of Jove is with them. You are a coward and no soldier; you are nobody either in fight or council; we cannot all be kings; it is not well that there should be many masters; one man must be supreme—one king to whom the son of scheming Saturn has given the sceptre of sovereignty over you all.

Thus masterfully did he go about among the host, and the people hurried back to the council from their tents and ships with a sound as the thunder of surf when it comes crashing down upon the shore, and all the sea is in an uproar. The rest now took their seats and kept to their own several places, but Thersites still went on wagging his unbridled tongue—a man of many words, and those unseemly; a monger of sedition, a railer against all who were in authority, who cared not what he said, so that he might set the Achaeans in a laugh.

He was the ugliest man of all those that came before Troy—bandy-legged, lame of one foot, with his two shoulders rounded and hunched over his chest. His head ran up to a point, but there was little hair on the top of it. Achilles and Ulysses hated him worst of all, for it was with them that he was most wont to wrangle; now, however, with a shrill squeaky voice he began heaping his abuse on Agamemnon. The Achaeans were angry and disgusted, yet none the less he kept on brawling and bawling at the son of Atreus. Your tents are filled with bronze and with fair women, for whenever we take a town we give you the pick of them.

Would you have yet more gold, which some Trojan is to give you as a ransom for his son, when I or another Achaean has taken him prisoner? It is not well that you, the ruler of the Achaeans, should bring them into such misery. Weakling cowards, women rather than men, let us sail home, and leave this fellow here at Troy to stew in his own meeds of honour, and discover whether we were of any service to him or no.

Achilles is a much better man than he is, and see how he has treated him—robbing him of his prize and keeping it himself. Achilles takes it meekly and shows no fight; if he did, son of Atreus, you would never again insult him. Thus railed Thersites, but Ulysses at once went up to him and rebuked him sternly. Each of his attacks is a fatal blow that needs to be blocked or dodged. Despite his large body and sword, he is easily able to overwhelm Saber under Shirou with speed exceeding her own. Heracles' Noble Phantasm is God Hand , which represents the immortality he received after death thanks to completing the Twelve Labours. It also has the effect of automatic resurrection after death.

Because the resurrection effect has 11 uses, Heracles cannot perish unless killed 12 times. Due to having Ilya as a Master, he is able to also regenerate lost lives over time. He is still instinctively able to tell that a dangerous attack is incoming. He ignores Archer's Caladbolg II at first after having shrugged of his earlier attacks but immediately intercepts it after sensing the danger to him. Powerful attacks such as Excalibur or Caliburn can take multiple of his lives with a single strike. Though his mind is dead, his willpower that should no longer exist supports his invincible body until it finally fades away. Regardless of how powerful is the Noble Phantasm that defeated Heracles, it would be completely nullified after he resurrects.

As such, she easily corners and overwhelms Heracles even in a direct battle activating the True Name of her Noble Phantasm until the very end of their fight when her lips are shown muted. As a Heroic Spirit, Heracles' most trusted Noble Phantasm is Nine Lives , however, it cannot be used in the Berserker class due to a lack of motor skills. There were a number of changes throughout the design process.

His Master was originally Sancraid Phahn , a murderous maniac sent by the Church, but Takeuchi suggested a young girl instead. They were originally experimenting with his design to make him seem "inhuman", and the elbow spikes are a remnant of that process. Rider originally recognized him as Heracles at first glance due to their shared background in Greek mythology. She would have rammed him to death once or twice with Bellerophon before being killed. Against Gilgamesh's Noble Phantasm at the time, which was "will absolutely survive", the two concepts of the abilities clashed and the paradoxical situation had to be resolved.

Berserker eventually died even though he won, while Gilgamesh lost but survived. As long as Berserker lived, she was immortal and unable to be killed even if other Servants tried to avoid Berserker to strike at his Master. The idea was scrapped after they thought it was too strong. He essentially had to play the role of a stepping stone for Saber, but the player knew Berserker's identity was Heracles so it was hard to convince anyone that such a powerful titan should ever be portrayed as weak in any way. Saber may have an unparalleled set of abilities, but in terms of sheer strength and skill as a warrior, Berserker is far superior to her. The whole point was that we wanted the player to feel helpless when first encountering Berserker, as if they had just hit an insurmountable wall.

Berserker's concept may have remained the same since early development, but his visual side went through quite a change. Nasu: Did it? Takeuchi: We went through a lot of trial and error before arriving at Berserker's current form. Nasu: When you take a hero of Greek mythology and put him in a giant body, you're pretty much always guaranteed to end up with a design like this. Still, it can be pretty embarrassing to work with this "genre" of designs Takeuchi seemed to struggle the most with preventing Berserker from coming off as a simple barbarian. Takeuchi: I even considered going with a sharper image at one point. Nasu: We also tossed around the possibility of basing him on Talos, the bronze giant of Crete Takeuchi: Even Nasu suggested making half of his body out of stone or metal because he's supposed to be a superhuman existence, but we eventually settled on him being a superhuman existence in a relatively humanoid form.

The protrusions on his elbows are remnants from the days when we were toying with the idea of making him a non-human character. Nasu: We wanted the player to feel like a jackhammer on legs was barreling down on them, and you need a certain amount of power behind a character in order to pull that off. The tricky part was drawing a hulking, intimidating mass of a character without making him look like a common barbarian. Takeuchi: I think Berserker became such a formidable presence in "Stay Night" because his colouring and shading made him look really dense, and everything about him portrayed him as a god of destruction.

In the Japanese entertainment world, characters like Berserker are almost always designed to be defeated. Everyone loves that "David and Goliath" feeling you get from taking down a behemoth. Working on Berserker definitely taught me a thing or two about the different techniques and instincts you need to employ in order to build up a character who can pull that off successfully. Can you imagine heading home one night only to run into a giant, half-naked man standing in your path?

You would barely have time to scream "pervert! Takeuchi: Yeah, because Illya wasn't present in old "Fate". At any rate, I wouldn't worry too much about it. Most urban legends thrive on the notion that just about anything can happen in residential neighbourhoods at night. Nasu: Maybe in Shinjuku. Rin's route, on the other hand, sees you encountering him in Shinto. The Shinto setting is a little better since it's near the church site, with almost no residential homes in the area. Takeuchi: Can you imagine seeing a giant like Berserker strolling through a residential zone in a place like Miyama Town?

Nasu: No one saw him strolling! But still, I want everyone to imagine what it would be like to come home and see that thing standing in front of your house That's a total "Yep, my life's over Takeuchi: I don't know I doubt most people would even register seeing a sight like that. Nasu: True enough. I imagine most people would avert their eyes or do whatever they needed to in order to "not notice" something like that. But Takeuchi suggested making Berserker's new master a Lolita character, I have to admit I was really excited by the idea. Takeuchi: Berserker is like a blank state when it comes to his master, isn't he? Nasu: You could say that. When we crafted the Noble Phantasm God Hand, I knew I didn't want a man who had accomplished such great feats to do anything below his dignity.

Among all the summoned Servants, Heracles was a true hero. While Berserker still had a bit of awareness as Heracles, any thoughts he had spinning around in his head were constantly being channeled toward destruction. His new existence was consumed entirely by his Master's commands. Takeuchi: I do wonder why Einzbern chose the Berserker class for Heracles. I'm pretty sure there was a special spell for the Berserker class, so does that mean it was a conscious choice. Nasu: It's probably because Einzbern thinks the Berserker class is the best. When you take into consideration what happened during the previous Holy Grail War, it also makes sense that he might have wanted a pawn who wouldn't be burdened with the distraction of personal thoughts and feelings.

I'd guess the selection was a result of Eizbern's notion that both Master and Servant are mere tools and nothing more. With Berserker's God Hand promising victory for 11 battles in old "Fate", and only six other Servants participating in the Holy Grail Wars, it seemed as if Berserker's Noble Phantasm all but guaranteed his victory. This theory was proven wrong in old "Fate" by Gil, who was able to counteract Berserker's God Hand with a Noble Phantasm that guaranteed Gil would survive. Due to the paradox created by a clash between an entity who "cannot lose" and an entity who is "certain to live", Berserker did not technically lose the fight but he did lose his life.

When we were working on "stay night", we decided to change God Hand's effect to one that essentially casts a revive spell 11 times. Even with this change though, Berserker is still a pretty overpowered servant. Takeuchi: That's why Rider was evading him. As with Saber, Rider had a way to kill Berserker for sure in Bellerophon, but she knew that Berserker would kill her as soon as she killed him.

Because of this, simply killing Berserker once or twice would not be enough to ensure true victory for Rider. Nasu: Though they existed at different times in history, Rider was also a Heroic Spirit rooted in Greek mythology, so she knew Berserker was Heracles. Due to this knowledge, one glance at Berserker was enough to tell Rider that she would not be able to defeat him, and she therefore decided to target his Master instead. Takeuchi: Do the 11 stacks of God Hand recharge over time? Nasu: Yes, since Illya's prana pool is absolutely ridiculous.

If Berserker's Master was instead a mage of common power, they could spend their entire life generating prana and still fail to muster up enough to power even a single revive spell. For this reason, a less formidable master would mean Berserker would have to fight his way through the Holy Grail War with only 11 revivals. Of course, that's still plenty of lives by any standard. With a Master of Illya's caliber, though, Berserker is able to be revived 11 times in a single encounter. On top of that, once Berserker has been wounded by a specific attack, that same attack will not be effective a second time.

Takeuchi: What an annoying ability Nasu: Another thing that was briefly mentioned by Rin in Saber's route was the fact that there was a Servant who was said to share its life force with its Master. This was actually a reference to an early concept we had for Berserker. The idea was that Berserker and Illya basically shared a life pool, which essentially meant that targeting Illya instead of Berserk was a futile tactic. As long as Berserker was alive, Illya could not truly be killed.

Of course, all logic dictated that Illya and Berserker formed an invincible pair in this case. It didn't take us long to realize that this would completely destroy any semblance of balance in the game, so the idea was ditched. This alteration to Berserker's concept is something that we can reveal now. We wanted everyone to feel a very real kind of terror at the prospect of a mammoth-sized muscle man moving super fast. When the strongest enemy is also the fastest and is capable of attacking multiple times, the usual tactic of taking down the behemoth with agility and rapid strikes simply will not work. Takeuchi: The combination of physical strength granted through birth and masterful skills acquired through training truly does forge the ultimate warrior.

Add to that the fact that only A-rank attacks or above will be effective, and Nasu: Hacks. Total hacks. In a normal game, it's like the legendary artifact you'd expect to find right at the end You basically can't so much as damage Berserker without a legendary weapon. Takeuchi: On paper, I imagine there are many Servants who can't even touch Berserker under normal circumstances. He is quite literally a killer of mediocre heroes. Takeuchi: Yeah, you'd have to be a top class hero to stand toe-to-toe with Berserker. Nasu: Back when I wrote old "Fate" and indeed for quite a duration between the '80s and '90s, Heracles was the most popular and well known Greek hero in Japan.

I first head of Cu Chulainn through "Megami Tensei" and took an interest in Irish mythology, but Greek mythology was more commonly known, and within that Greek mythology Heracles was of course hailed as the strongest hero. I was actually quite surprised when I recently found out that some of our "stay night" players didn't know who Heracles was. Even more shocking was when I found out that some players had never even heard of King Arthur.

Takeuchi: guess they fell through the cracks when the entertainment industry started diversifying their cultural sources. Nasu: "Saint Seiya" was one of the most popular animes of our generation, but it had plenty of predecessors who referenced Greek mythology as well. Don't you remember getting excited over Harryhousen's "Jason and the Argonauts" as a child? Caster's Dragon Tooth Warriors were an homage to the skeletal soldiers I saw in that movie.

I just loved the unsettling movements of those skeletal soldiers and found them very inspiring. Takeuchi: With Greek mythology enjoying another boom of popularity in , it's easy to see how history and the entertainment industry's fads repeat in cycles. He received the violent hatred of Zeus' wife Hera because of his origins and was tormented by the goddess at every turn. However, he entirely overcame the difficulties he had been given, and was enshrined as a god in the end. Heracles had an extremely violent temperament as an infant, and grew up as a shepherd in order to obtain a gentle heart. Having grown into a fine adult, Heracles was recognized for several feats, and gained two children as well as the right of succession to the throne.

However, Hera made Heracles go temporarily insane and he killed his wife and children, ending up in the role of a slave to the king to atone for his sins. Here the jealous king gave him a challenge, the famous Twelve Labors. The Labors were all things that a human could not achieve but Heracles completed them safely, and at the same time he was freed from slavery, he received an immortal body. However, the adventures of Heracles and Hera's hatred did not end there. Hera's numerous artifices resulted in Heracles' poisoning by his own wife from his second marriage. In his final moments, Heracles cremated himself, surrendering to Zeus's judgment. The gods after consulting recognize Heracles' feats, and he was recruited as a god like his father, becoming a constellation.

Tactics An excellent warrior, he possesses the qualifications corresponding to six classes excluding Caster. Other than specializing with the bow, he has mastered every weapon. However, all that is talk about times when he is not Berserker. Heracles as a Berserker has lost his rationality, and exists only to utterly defeat the enemy from the front as directed by Illya. Naturally, there is no such thing as detailed tactics, leaving it to physical ability and brandishing an axe-sword to strike. Astonishingly, with just that, it is a fact that he demonstrates hand-to-hand combat abilities superior to every Servant.

Without breaking to even think about defense, he leaves it to his Noble Phantasm "God Hand. As Heracles' possesses the skill at Rank B, in compensation for losing most of his sanity, the levels of all his abilities rise. Heracles beat his harp instructor to death when he was a child, and had many episodes when he killed people in his rage without even hearing them speak. It seems that for Heracles, Berserker that receives "Mad Enhancement" was an easy class to adapt to. Focusing on controllability when out of combat, the rank of "Mad Enhancement" is suppressed by Illya. Being close to the strongest Heroic Spirit, even restricted to simple direct melee as consequence of Mad Enhancement, Heracles was undoubtedly the strongest among the Servants.

However, because of Mad Enhancement, a variety of sword techniques and skills, and a part of his Noble Phantasms was lost. Having his emotions also sealed off and not able to perform any personally motivated actions, only the reason within his core was not lost, having occasions when he felt something like the will to protect Illya. Personal Abilities Battle Continuation: A A skill that allows for the continuation of combat after sustaining mortal wounds.

It will also reduce mortality rate from injury. The best result is achieved when a resilient body is combined with this skill. When crossing swords with a seasoned swordsman like Artoria, he would not fall for half-hearted feints. Although monstrous in size, Hercules has the highest rank in Agility. As a result, it is very difficult to corner him. However, under the influence of Mad Enhancement, this skill is unable to take effect. While operating correctly, Bravery also increases the damage inflicted upon the opponent during melee combat.

This skill allowed Herakles to defeat several monsters empty-handed. Divinity: A Being a mixed-race child of the King of Gods Zeus and a human, and becoming a god after death, Herakles naturally possessed the highest level of the Divinity skill. However, this matter became a disaster, ending with his complete entrapment in Gilgamesh's Noble Phantasm "Chains of Heaven" that grows in strength proportionate to the enemy's Divinity.

It is a Noble Phantasm given to Heracles, representing immortality. This Noble Phantasm does not have an overt external manifestation such as a weapon or armour, but if you hazard to put a shape to it, the body itself can be called the Noble Phantasm. Resurrection as well as attack-nullification. Besides these two effects, God Hand also possesses a third effect: rendering an attack that it has experienced before useless. Regardless how powerful is the Noble Phantasm that defeated Heracles, it would be completely nullified after he resurrects.

It was the Noble Phantasm which Hercules used to slay the immortal nine-headed serpent Hydra once upon a time, taking the form of bow and arrow. After killing the Hydra, Hercules could even utilise techniques that emulate the ability of this Noble Phantasm when wielding other weapons. Even when delivered via sword, spear, or axe, this technique still boasts power on the level of Noble Phantasms. While summoned as a Berserker, Hercules could not use Nine Lives. Q: Would Heracles still be so huge even if he wasn't Mad Enhanced? A: He'd still be huuuge! However, the stuff like the projections on his arms wouldn't be there. His muscles would become a little softer, and his face would show more humanity than it does now.

Berserker [Servant] The mad warrior Heroic Spirit. In the case of a normal Master, Berserker can cancel the control of Command Spells.

When this belief existed there were no religious teachers whatever; but in King Eurystheus Alternate Ending of time temples were raised in honour of the different gods, and priests appointed to offer sacrifices to them and conduct their worship. King Eurystheus Alternate Ending group kill Heracles, but he resurrects King Eurystheus Alternate Ending to God Hand. Each fair candidate endeavoured [40] to secure his King Eurystheus Alternate Ending by the most tempting offers. The nose is large King Eurystheus Alternate Ending finely formed, and the slightly-opened lips impart an air of sympathetic kindliness which invites confidence. King Eurystheus Alternate Ending was like a lion that some mountain shepherd has King Eurystheus Alternate Ending, but not Film Analysis Of John Steinbecks Of Mice And Men, as he is springing over the wall of King Eurystheus Alternate Ending sheep-yard to attack the sheep. The youthful daughters of Celeus, King Eurystheus Alternate Ending king of King Eurystheus Alternate Ending country, came with their pails of brass King Eurystheus Alternate Ending draw water from this well, and seeing King Eurystheus Alternate Ending the tired wayfarer appeared faint King Eurystheus Alternate Ending dispirited, they spoke kindly to her, asking Movie Analysis: Lone Survivor she was, and whence she came.