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Statue of young Zeus in Zeus Ephesos in Megaris

Zeus is the Greek god of the sky, thunder and lightning, as well as the king of the gods. He is regarded as husband of Hera and the brother of Hades, Poseidon, Demeter, and Hestia.

His equivalent in Roman mythology is Jupiter.


According to the Greek mythology, Zeus was born as the youngest son of the Titan Kronos and his wife Rhea. In fear of a prophecy foretelling his overthrow by his child, Kronos devoured all of his children, save for Zeus, who was hidden by Rhea.[1]

In time, Zeus fulfilled the prophecy and cast Kronos out, creating a new world order with his siblings and other gods, settling on Mount Olympus with eleven other mightiest deities.[1]

Zeus is infamous for his various relationships with multiple individuals, divine and mortal alike. Via these unions, Zeus is considered to have fathered multiple heroes of Greek mythology, including Herakles, Perseus and Polydeukes as well as Greek deities, including Persephone, Dionysos, Charites, Ares, Eris, Hebe, Hephaistos, Pan, Apollo and Artemis.[1]



The banner of Elis featuring the stylized lightning bolt

Zeus' main emblem was lightning bolt, and in the 5th century BCE, a stylized version of it graced the banner of Elis as well as the drachmae. The god was also associated with the eagle, often standing for the god himself, or perched near him.[1]


During the 5th century BCE, multiple locations related to the stories told of Zeus' life were named after him throughout the Peloponnese and the Aegean Sea.[1]

Several statues of him also graced locations like Mount Ainos on the island of Kephallonia, though most notable among them was the statue made by the Athenian sculptor Phidias in Temple of Zeus within the Sanctuary of Olympia in Elis. The Spartan misthios Kassandra visited a number of them over the course of her journeys.[1]




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