The Goddess’ of Olympus. We’ll start with:
Hera, Queen of the Gods. Married to Zeus, she championed marriage and had a very jealous disposition. Which was all the unfortunate as Zeus’ had a never-ending string of love affairs. But Hera tended to punish the object of her husbands’ desire not her husband. As you can imagine, women tended to dread the attentions of Zeus. Not that it stopped him one bit.
The peacock and crow are her animals. In art, she is frequently seen wearing a crown and holding a sceptre – due to her status as Zeus’ wife.
Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. She celebrated youth and beauty. She did not get along with Hera – as Aphrodite tended to embrace hedonism and sins of the flesh. Ironically she was wife to the oldest and most unpleasant (in appearance) of the Gods, Hephaestus. But Aphrodite didn’t let being married get in the way of many amorous endeavors.
The dove is her animal. One of the most famous images of Aphrodite is ‘The Birth of Venus’ by Sandro Botticelli:
Over the next few weeks I’ll continue to give you the skinny on the Big Twelve… Greek Gods and Goddesses, that is. Once we’ve covered who’s who, we’ll delve into some of their myths – some old and some new.
Let me know if there’s someone you’re particularly interested in.