Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Hera : The Queen of the Olympian Deities

Wazzup Pilipinas!

In this picture, Marie Mendoza, a former student from my school, portrays Hera in the English Culminating Activity last year. I chose Goddess Hera because I adore her strength and Beauty. She also protects women from the hands of their unfaithful husbands.

Hera was the queen of the Olympian deities. She is the daughter of Rhea and Cronus. She is the wife and one of the three sisters of Zeus, who saved her from their father Cronus that swallowed her along with her other siblings. The siblings of Hera are Zeus the God of the sky; Poseidon the lord of the Sea; Hades lord of the Underworld; Hestia the goddess of the Hearth; and Demeter the goddess of the Harvest.

The children of Hera and Zeus are the goddess of youth Hebe, the god of war Ares, the goddess of discord Eris , Enyo, Angelos and Eileithyia . Hera was jealous of Zeus' giving birth to Athena , so she gave birth to Hephaestus. In some stories, Hera was said to give birth to Hephaestus without Zeus. Hera was then disgusted with Hephaestus' ugliness and threw him from Mount Olympus.

She was mainly worshiped as the Goddess of women, marriage and childbirth. She was the protector of women, presiding over marriage and childbirth, and she frequently punished offending husbands. She is associated with the pomegranate, symbol of marital love and fruitfulness. The peacock was sacred to her. In Roman mythology, the goddess Hera is also known as Juno.

Hera was so proud of her beauty and strength. She was very jealous to the beauty of anyone else. She would even punish those women that she thought were too beautiful. She would often turn them into animals. She also disliked the Trojans, since Paris of Troy had not given the prize for beauty to her.

Hera was also notable for her jealousy among Zeus’ lovers and offsprings. She punished her rivals and their children, among both goddesses and mortals, with implacable fury. One of her famous victim was Heracles, the child of Zeus and Alcmene. She placed two serpents in the cradle of Heracles. She even drove the foster-parents of Dionysus mad, and tried to prevent the birth of Apollo and Artemis. Even Zeus usually could not stand up to her.

Hera was particularly worshipped at Argos, though she had important shrines also on Samos and Euboea. Hera is a mature and queenly figure, sometimes portrayed with a scepter or staff.

Contributed by: Regine  Mae Cayao

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