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Io • Io, in Greek mythology, daughter of the river god Inachus, son of Oceanus. She was loved by the god Zeus, who changed her into a white heifer (young cow) to protect her from the jealousy of his wife, Hera. • Suspecting that the animal was really Zeus's mistress, Hera asked for the heifer as a gift and set the 100-eyed monster Argus to guard it.
Argus killed– peacock peas • Because the monster never slept with all his eyes shut, Io was unable to escape until Zeus sent his son, the messenger god Hermes, to rescue her. • Hermes managed to kill the monster after he had put Argus's 100 eyes to sleep with a series of boring stories/syrinx/pandean pipes. • Hera scattered Argus’s eyes on the tail of her peacock, where they remained to this day.
Hera was still angry, however, and next sent a gadfly to torment Io, who wandered over the earth in misery. • Io finally swam across the sea that was later named for her (the Ionian Sea) and at last reached Egypt. • There she was restored to her original physical form, and she bore Zeus a son, Epaphus, who was an ancestor of the Greek hero Hercules.
Europa, in Greek mythology, daughter of Agenor, the Phoenician king of Tyre, son of the god Neptune, and sister of Cadmus, the legendary founder of Thebes. • One morning, when Europa was gathering flowers by the seashore, the god Zeus saw her and fell in love with her.
Assuming the guise of a beautiful chestnut-colored bull, he appeared before her and licking her neck and casting the spell, enticed her to climb onto his back. He then sped away with her across the ocean to the island of Crete (Kríti).
Among the sons she bore him were Minos (king of Crete when alive) and Rhadamanthus, both of whom became judges of the dead. • The abduction of Europa has been the subject of paintings by many artists, including Italians Paolo Veronese and Titian.
Cypris sent a dream: two continents fighting. • Aegis-bearing Jupiter
Semele (mortal), in Greek mythology, the daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia (daughter of Mars and laughter-loving Venus), who were the king and queen of Thebes, and the mother of the god Dionysus.
Hera, the jealous wife of Zeus, realizing that Semele had conceived a child by her husband, tricked Semele into asking to see Zeus in his majesty. • Hera assumed the form of Beroe, the aged nurse of Semele, saying, “are you sure it is Jove who came to you. Ask him to show some proof. Ask him to assume all the splendors as he would in heaven.”
To Jove, Hera asked a favor, which Jove agreed, and swore to the rive Styx. • Then Hera told him what it was, and Jove regretted, but he could not take his promise back. • He assumed the usual splendors, without the terrors (known among the gods as his lesser panoply), as when he overthrew the giants.
Bound by an oath, Zeus appeared before Semele in all his divine glory (thunder and lightning). As she gazed at him, she was consumed by the lightning bolts that radiated from him.
Zeus was nevertheless able to rescue her unborn child, Dionysus, from the ashes, and he hid the fetus in his thigh until it was time for the child to be born. Later the young Dionysus rescued his mother from the underworld and brought her to Olympus.
Callisto, yet another sweetheart of Jupiter’s • Callisto (mythology), in Greek mythology, a nymph beloved by Zeus. She was changed into a bear by his jealous wife Hera. • Hera said, “I will take away the beauty with which you have captivated my husband.”
Down fell callisto on her hands and knees; her arms were covered with black hair. • Her hands grew rounded, became armed with crooked claws, and served for feet. • Her beautiful mouth now a horrid pair of jaws. • Her tender voice a growl, inspiring terror.
Her disposition has not changed. • She bemoaned her fate, standing upright as well as she could, begging for mercy. • She was before a huntress, but now she’s afraid of hunters. • A bear as she was now, she’s afraid of other bears.
One day, a youth (her own son) spied her in hunting, • and as she was about to embrace him, he aimed his spear at her, partly out of fear. • He was about to transfix her, when Jupiter saw this and stopped him.
He snatched them both and placed them in the heavens as the Great and Little Bear.
Leto • of Troy. After the god Zeus had wooed Leda in the guise of a swan, she laid two eggs. • From one were hatched Polydeuces (also known as Pollux) and Helen, who were immortal children of Zeus, and from the other Castor and Clytemnestra, who were mortal children of Tyndareus.
Latona/ leto • Goddess of darkness, daughter of the titans Coeus and Phoebe • Mother of Apollo and Diana. • Hera decreed that she should not be delivered in any place where the sun shone.
Leto/ latona: mother of Appollo • Leto, in Greek mythology, daughter of the Titans Phoebe and Coeus. Leto was the mother of divine twins: Artemis, goddess of the bow and of hunting, and Apollo, god of prophecy, medicine, and archery. Zeus was their father.
When Leto was about to give birth to the twins, Zeus banished her because he feared the jealousy of his wife Hera. All countries and islands were also afraid of Hera's wrath and refused the desperate Leto a home where her children could be born.
Leto 2 • Finally, in her wanderings, she set foot on a small island floating in the Aegean Sea. The island, which was called Delos, was a rocky, barren place, but when Leto reached it and asked for refuge, it welcomed her hospitably. • At that moment four great pillars rose from the bottom of the sea to hold the island firmly moored forever after.
Leto • In her flee, leto came to Lycia, where thirsty, she saw a pond. • The villagers would not let her drink the water and stirred the mud at the bottom. • She said, “May they never quit that pool but pass their lives there!” • And it came to pass accordingly.
Frogs (leto) • They still live in the water, sometimes totally submerged, • Then raising their heads above the surface • Or swimming upon it; • Sometimes coming out upon the bank, but soon leaping back again into the water.
_______ appearance • Their vices are harsh, their throats bloated, mouths distended by constant railing • Their necks have shrunk up an ddisappeared, and • Their heads are joined to their bodies. • Their backs are green, their disproportioned bellies white. • They dell as _________ in the slimy pool.
Latona, mother of Appollo and Diana • The story of Niobe, queen of the ancient Grecian city of Thebes, serves as an example of the vengeance gods took against prideful humans in Greek and Roman mythology. It told how Niobe boasted of her numerous children to the goddess Latona (known as Leto in Greek mythology), who had only two children. Latona quickly summoned her children, Apollo and Diana (Artemis in Greek legend), to seek revenge for Niobe’s insulting remarks.
…Niobe, the queen of Thebes…had indeed much to be proud of; but it was not her husband's fame, nor her own beauty, nor their great descent, nor the power of their kingdom that elated her. It was her children; and truly the happiest of mothers would Niobe have been if only she had not claimed to be so. It was on occasion of the annual celebration in honour of Latona and her offspring, Apollo and Diana,—when the people of Thebes were assembled, their brows crowned with laurel, bearing frankincense to the altars and paying their vows,—that Niobe appeared among the crowd. Her attire was splendid with gold and gems, and her aspect beautiful as the face of an angry woman can be. She stood and surveyed the people with haughty looks. "What folly," said she, "is this!—to prefer beings whom you never saw to those who stand before your eyes! Why should Latona be honoured with worship, and none be paid to me? My father was Tantalus, who was received as a guest at the table of the gods; my mother was a goddess. My husband built and rules this city, Thebes, and Phrygia is my paternal inheritance. Wherever I turn my eyes I survey the elements of my power; nor is my form and presence unworthy of a goddess. To all this let me add I have seven sons and seven daughters, and look for sons-in-law and daughters-in-law of pretensions worthy of my alliance. Have I not cause for pride? Will you prefer to me this Latona, the Titan's daughter, with her two children? I have seven times as many. Fortunate indeed am I, and fortunate I shall remain! Will any one deny this? My abundance is my security. I feel myself too strong for Fortune to subdue. She may take from me much; I shall still have much left. Were I to lose some of my children, I should hardly be left as poor as Latona with her two only. Away with you from these solemnities,—put off the laurel from your brows,—have done with this worship!" The people obeyed, and left the sacred services uncompleted.
The goddess was indignant. On the Cynthian mountain top where she dwelt she thus addressed her son and daughter: "My children, I who have been so proud of you both, and have been used to hold myself second to none of the goddesses except Juno alone, begin now to doubt whether I am indeed a goddess. I shall be deprived of my worship altogether unless you protect me." She was proceeding in this strain, but Apollo interrupted her. "Say no more," said he; "speech only delays punishment." So said Diana also. Darting through the air, veiled in clouds, they alighted on the towers of the city. Spread out before the gates was a broad plain, where the youth of the city pursued their warlike sports. The sons of Niobe were there with the rest,—some mounted on spirited horses richly caparisoned, some driving gay chariots. Ismenos, the first-born, as he guided his foaming steeds, struck with an arrow from above, cried out, "Ah me!" dropped the reins, and fell lifeless. Another, hearing the sound of the bow,—like the boatman who sees the storm gathering and makes all sail for the port,—gave the reins to his horses and attempted to escape. The inevitable arrow overtook him, as he fled. Two others, younger boys, just from their tasks, had gone to the playground to have a game of wrestling. As they stood breast to breast, one arrow pierced them both. They uttered a cry together, together cast a parting look around them, and together breathed their last. Alphenor, an elder brother, seeing them fall, hastened to the spot to render assistance, and fell stricken in the act of brotherly duty. One only was left, Ilioneus. He raised his arms to heaven to try whether prayer might not avail. "Spare me, ye gods!" he cried, addressing all, in his ignorance that all needed not his intercessions; and Apollo would have spared him, but the arrow had already left the string, and it was too late.
The terror of the people and grief of the attendants soon made Niobe acquainted with what had taken place. She could hardly think it possible; she was indignant that the gods had dared, and amazed that they had been able to do it. Her husband, Amphion, overwhelmed with the blow, destroyed himself. Alas! how different was this Niobe from her who had so lately driven away the people from the sacred rites, and held her stately course through the city, the envy of her friends, now the pity even of her foes! She knelt over the lifeless bodies, and kissed now one, now another of her dead sons. Raising her pallid arms to heaven, "Cruel Latona," said she, "feed full your rage with my anguish! Satiate your hard heart, while I follow to the grave my seven sons. Yet where is your triumph? Bereaved as I am, I am still richer than you, my conqueror." Scarce had she spoken, when the bow sounded and struck terror into all hearts except Niobe's alone. She was brave from excess of grief. The sisters stood in garments of mourning over the biers of their dead brothers. One fell, struck by an arrow, and died on the corpse she was bewailing. Another, attempting to console her mother, suddenly ceased to speak, and sank lifeless to the earth. A third tried to escape by flight, a fourth by concealment, another stood trembling, uncertain what course to take. Six were now dead, and only one remained, whom the mother held clasped in her arms, and covered as it were with her whole body. "Spare me one, and that the youngest! O spare me one of so many!" she cried; and while she spoke, that one fell dead. Desolate she sat, among sons, daughters, husband, all dead, and seemed torpid with grief. The breeze moved not her hair, no colour was on her cheek, her eyes glared fixed and immovable, there was no sign of life about her. Her very tongue cleaved to the roof of her mouth, and her veins ceased to convey the tide of life. Her neck bent not, her arms made no gesture, her foot no step. She was changed to stone, within and without. Yet tears continued to flow; and borne on a whirlwind to her native mountain, she still remains, a mass of rock, from which a trickling stream flows, the tribute of her never-ending grief.
The story of Niobe has furnished [19th-century English poet Lord George Gordon Noel] Byron with a fine illustration of the fallen condition of modern Rome: • "The Niobe of nations! there she stands, • Childless and crownless in her voiceless woe; • An empty urn within her withered hands, • Whose holy dust was scattered long ago; • The Scipios' tomb contains no ashes now: • The very sepulchres lie tenantless • Of their heroic dwellers; dost thou flow, • Old Tiber! through a marble wilderness? • Rise with thy yellow waves, and mantle her distress." • Childe Harold, IV. 79.
As an illustration of this story there is a celebrated statue in the imperial gallery of Florence. It is the principal figure of a group supposed to have been originally arranged in the pediment of a temple. The figure of the mother clasped by the arm of her terrified child is one of the most admired of the ancient statues. It ranks with the Laocoön and the Apollo among the masterpieces of art. The following is a translation of a Greek epigram supposed to relate to this statue: • "To stone the gods have changed her, but in vain; • The sculptor's art has made her breathe again." …