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Hermes is the messenger of Zeus and the God of Boundaries, transitions, travelers, roads, commerce, trade, thieves, sports, invention, literature and poetry, messenger of the Gods and guide to the underworld.[1] He is the son of Zeus and Maia.[2] He is also a psychopomp, meaning he leads the souls of the dead to the Underworld, ruled by his uncle, Hades.

In mythology[]

Stealing Apollo's cattle[]

As an infant, Hermes snuck away while his mother slept. He went out to Apollo's golden sun cattle. He picked the fifty best cows, and fasted a broom on their tails and bark on their hooves. To confuse Apollo further, he herded them backwards, and fastened bundles of branches unto his feet, making it look as if a giant herded something in, but nothing out.

He sacrificed the cattle to the Olympians, including himself, and took the entrails of the sacrificed cows and made the lyre. Apollo stormed into the cave, because he had just realized what had happened, and demanded Hermes to give him his cattle. Hermes told him there were no cattle in his mothers cave. Apollo stormed up to Olympus and told the problem to Zeus. The Olympians laughed. Zeus told Hermes to take Apollo to his cattle, and so he did.

Apollo forgave him, but counted his cows. There were two missing, and his anger flared back. Before he could do anything, Hermes played his lyre. Apollo calmed and asked for the lyre. Hermes drove a hard bargain, asking for his Caduceus and his whole herd. Apollo grudgingly agreed.

Messenger of Zeus[]

When Hermes arrived on Olympus to become an Olympian, Zeus needed someone to leave Olympus to bring the gods' words to the mortals. Hermes chose Athena, and Athena chose Hermes. His argument was settled by a vote upon the Olympians and Hermes. Aphrodite, Hephaistos, Apollo, and Ares chose Hermes. Hermes had left and went down to earth, helping mortals. Hermes was given magic sandals, a golden winged hat, and a cape to hide his things in. He was made Zeus's messenger.

Rescuing Io from Argus[]

Zeus told Hermes to set free Io from Hera's secret garden. He went there, and sang a song to Argus. After this, told him a long, boring story. Argus closed fifty eyes, then the other fifty. He had died of boredom.

Not only did he set Io free, he had killed Hera's servant, making her very angry. And so Hera called for a vote to kill him. Hera tossed a pebble at Hermes, and the others threw pebbles at him. He was soon covered in pebbles. Hermes was then forgiven, and all was right again.

In the Odyssey[]

In Homer's Odyssey, Hermes intervenes at certain times, and the words he says always are in the form of a poem.

Family[]

Olympian Genealogy in Greek mythology
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Chaos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gaia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Uranus
 
Gaia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Iapetus
 
Clymene
 
 
 
 
Cronus
 
Rhea
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Coeus
 
Phoebe
 
 
 
 
 
Themis
 
Zeus
 
Dione
 
 
Mnemosyne
 
Zeus
 
Eurynome
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Atlas
 
Pleione
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Metis
 
Zeus
 
 
Leto
 
Zeus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Aphrodite
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Muses
 
Graces
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Athena
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Moirai
 
Hours
 
Nemesis
 
Tyche
Zeus
 
Maia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hermes
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Artemis
 
Apollo
 
Coronis
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Asclepius
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hera
 
Zeus
 
Demeter
 
Poseidon
 
Amphitrite
 
Hades
 
Persephone
 
Hestia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Persephone
 
 
 
 
 
 
Triton
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Arion
 
Despoina
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hebe
 
Heracles
 
Eileithyia
 
Eris
 
Ares
 
Aphrodite
 
Hephaestus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
AlexiAres
 
Anicetus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Harmonia
 
Cadmus of Thebes
 
Eros
 
Anteros
 
Himeros
 
Hymenaios
 
Pothos
 
Peitho
 
Deimos
 
Phobos
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Zeus
 
Semele
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dionysus

Immortal Offspring[]

With Aphrodite

  • Hermaphroditus

With Penelopeia

  • Pan
  • Autolycus (m. Amphithea)
    • Anticleia (m. Laertes) (Mortal)
      • Odysseus (m. Penelope) (Mortal)
        • Telemachus (m. Circe ) (Mortal)
          • Italus (Mortal)
  • Cephalus (m. Procris) (Mortal)
  • Arcesius (Mortal)
    • Laertes (m. Anticleia) (Mortal)
      • Odysseus (m. Penelope) (Mortal)
        • Telemachus (m.Circe ) (Mortal)
          • Italus (Mortal)

Gallery[]

Image gallery of Hermes

Videos[]

See also[]

Citations[]

  1. (Hamilton 1998, p. 34)
  2. (Hamilton 1998, p. 34)

References[]



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