Who is Hera in Greek Mythology?

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Image of Hera

Hera is the first Greek goddess, presiding over marriage and motherhood. The name Hera means ‘lady’ while her Roman name is Juno. Hera was the offspring of the Titans Rhea and Cronus and also the wife of Zeus. Hera’s marriage to Zeus is marked by trickery and strife. It is believed that Zeus tried to court her but could not succeed. Then Zeus used trickery to gain Hera’s affection by turning into a disheveled cuckoo. Hera took pity on the bird and held it close to her when Zeus took his natural form and raped her. Hera was thus forced to marry Zeus.



What are the Distinguishing features of Hera?

Hera is the Goddess of marriage and considered a protector of married woman and motherhood. She was also revered as the goddess of the starry sky. She is usually portrayed as a beautiful woman adorned with a crown and a royal staff. Hera’s attributes include a high crown (the polo), the peacock, a staff with a cuckoo and the pomegranate. Hera is known for her jealousy over Zeus’s infidelities which led her to take revenge on his mistresses.



Who are Hera's Children?

Being the Goddess of marriage, Hera presides on the accurate arrangements and union of marriage. Through her union with Zeus she gave birth to Ares, Hebe, Eris, Enyo, and Eileithyia. Hera was often jealous and enraged by the numerous affairs of Zeus and also becoming the father of Athena through Metis. In retaliation, she gave birth to Hephaestus illegitimately. Later Hera was appalled by the ugly appearance of Hephaestus and flung him from Mount Olympus.



How did Hera take care of her Beauty?

Hera took  great care of her beauty and was nicknamed as the “white armed goddess.” She visited the spring Canathus every year as Nauplia, where she bathed in the magical waters to renew her virginity. The lotion she used to fragrance her body almost enveloped the entire universe with its sweet fragrance. She draped herself in a beautiful robe woven by Athene which was clasped with a golden pin at her breast and had a veil dropping down from her head. Zeus could not resist his attention towards Hera whose stunning image filled his heart and senses.



What are some Facts about Hera?

  • Hera was born on the island of Samos while she was brought up as a child on the island of Euboea. Later the festival of Great Daedala was celebrated in Euboea to honor Hera.
  • Hera is portrayed as a young lady of stunning beauty. She is always fully clothed and sports a high, cylindrical crown.
  • Hera’s sacred animals are the peacock and cow while her preferred city is Argos.
  • Hera is remembered for her act of hurling her disfigured son Hephaestus off Mt. Olympus as she was repulsed by his appearance.
  • Hera had a jealous nature and was offended when Paris named Aphrodite as the stunningly beautiful goddess.
  • Various epithets used for Hera in Greek Mythology ,include “Goat- Eater”, “Queen”, “She of Argos”, She of the Heights, “She of the Mound”, Cow- Faced, “Child”, “Virgin”, “Widowed”
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