Hermes Facts

Hermes Facts
Hermes was the Greek god of trade, thieves, sports, travelers, athletes, messenger of the gods, and the guide to the Underworld, according to Greek mythology. He was the son of Zeus and Pleiad Maia. He was the second youngest, after Dionysus, of the Gods of Olympia, who loved at Mount Olympus. In some mythological stories Hermes was very cunning and would outwit other gods when necessary for the good of humankind, or sometimes for his own pleasure. Hermes' symbols include the tortoise, winged sandals, a rooster, a winged cap, and a staff. While Hermes did not marry he had several children, Pan, Hermaphroditus, Autolycus, Daphne, Myrtelius, Priapus, and Silenus.
Interesting Hermes Facts:
Hermes was able to move very quickly between the human realm and that of the gods and of the dead.
Hermes is often pictured as an athletic, young god. He has no beard in many depictions as a young man, and in some cases wears a winged cap. He wears winged sandals, and carries a cane entwined by two snakes with wings at the top. The cane is called a caduceus.
Hermes, like other Greek gods, was immortal.
Hermes led the dead to the Underworld.
Hermes is credited with inventing many things in Greek mythology including fire (in some stories), music, boxing, gymnastics, astronomy, and even the Greek alphabet.
Hermes became known as the god of thieves after stealing Apollo's cattle. One myth states that Autolycus sacrificed himself to Hermes and gained his skills as a thief afterwards.
Hermes was a very powerful god but he used his cunning to outwit others more often than his strength.
Hermes was believed to dress as a mortal so that he could test other mortal's hospitality.
Hermes is also known as Atlantiades because Maia, his mother, was the daughter of Atlas.
Hermes is also known as Argus-slayer because he rescued a maiden after slaying the giant, hundred-eyed Argus Panoptes. The maiden's name was Lo and she was one of Zeus' lovers.
Myth states that Hermes was born at Mount Cyllene, in Arcadia. This was the oldest place to worship Hermes. From there temples began to be built in other places including Athens and then all of Greece.
Sacrifices to Hermes included lambs, goats, pigs, cakes, and honey.
The feast for Hermes was Hermaea. The feast involved sacrifices, gymnastics, and athletics and were restricted to young boys.
Hermes son Pan was also the son of the nymph Dryope. Pan resembled a goat at birth and his mother fled.
Hermes son Autolycus was also the son of Choine, a mortal, and became known as the Prince of Thieves.
Hermes was also known as a poetry patron.
Hermes and Athena helped Perseus kill Medusa.
Hermes gave Pandora the ability to lie and seduce others with only her words.
In one of the myths in the Odyssey Hermes was able to avoid being turned into an animal by chewing a magical herb.
Hermes has been portrayed in books and movies and was the subject of a series of essays by French philosopher Michel Serres.


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