Famous Weapons in Greek Mythology
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In many Greek myths and legends, it is often the weapons that are the most memorable. Sure, the gods and goddesses who wield them certainly stand out. However, it is the weapons that often decide the ending of a story. Here is an overview of the famous weapons that make it into the various Greek myths and legends.
Zeus is most well known for his explosive temper. The thunderbolt was the perfect weapon for his temperament. As his temper flared, he could produce a thunderbolt that was capable of destroying anything in its path. When he was particularly angry he would produce multiple thunderbolts as part of a large storm. The thunderbolt goes well beyond mere lightening bolts. Thunderbolts are more powerful and are accompanied by loud claps of thunder.
The Caduceus is a staff that is most often carried by Hermes but it has also been associated with other heralds such as Iris, Hera’s personal messenger. It is a short staff that is interwoven by two serpents and often has two small wings at its top. In Ancient Greece, the intertwining snakes on the staff represented the nervous system, which pointed to Hermes’ adaptability. Snakes also represented science and healing. These are all things that Hermes is often associated with.
The grotesque image of using Medusa’s decapitated head as a weapon is a part of Greek mythology. Prior to her beheading, Medusa was capable of turning people into stone if they gazed into her eyes. The Greek hero, Perseus, decapitated her and gave her head to Athena to place on her shield. Even in death, Medusa’s gaze was still capable of turning people into stone.
Poseidon’s three-pronged trident is one of the most memorable weapons featured in Greek mythology because he is rarely seen without it. As the brother of Zeus, the King of the Gods, Poseidon was powerful in his own right. Hephaestus forged his trident with Cyclops’s help. When Poseidon struck the ground with his trident, he was capable of bringing water sources to land and also causing earthquakes. So, it was capable of producing life-giving water and causing destruction by earthquakes.
Another weapon that Hephaestus, the blacksmith of the gods, created was the Aegis. This mythological weapon was a polished shield of brass that was also referred to as a “brass” and a “mirror”. It not only protected the bearer but could also be used as a weapon. Zeus, Perseus, and especially Athena used the Aegis at one time or another. After Perseus beheaded Medusa, her head was forged on the Aegis to make it even more powerful.
As you can see, there were many famous weapons in Greek mythology. These weapons were often associated with certain gods and goddesses. For example, Poseidon would not be complete without his trident. The weapons were also a big part of certain stories. For example, the tale of Perseus wouldn’t be complete without talking about the Aegis or Medusa’s head. These weapons are as much a part of the stories as the gods and goddesses themselves.
Categorized in: Greek Mythology
This post was written by Greek Boston