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jewelry glossary

Antique jewelry glossary

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Hera

In the Olympian pantheon of classical Greek Mythology, Hera or Here was the wife and older sister of Zeus. Her chief function was as goddess of women and marriage. Her equivalent in Roman mythology was Juno. The cow and later the peacock were sacred to her. Hera was born of Cronus and Rhea and was swallowed by her father after birth due to a prophecy that one of Cronus's children would take over his throne. Zeus was not swallowed because of a plan hatched by Rhea and Gaia. Rhea wrapped a stone into baby clothes and gave that to Cronus. Zeus was then moved to a cave on Crete. Rhea later gave Cronus an herb which she told him could make him completely invincible. The herb actually made him regurgitate the five other Olympians: Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades, and Poseidon, as well as the previously ingested stone. When Zeus grew older, he banished Cronus to Tartarus, the deepest chasm in the underworld, because the Titans were immortal and could not be killed.

Portrayed as majestic and solemn, often enthroned and crowned with the polos, the high cylindrical crown worn by several of the Great Goddesses, Hera may bear in her hand the pomegranate, emblem of fertile blood and death and a substitute for the narcotic capsule of the opium poppy. "Nevertheless, there are memories of an earlier, aniconic representation, as a pillar in Argos and as a plank in Samos". Hera was well-known for her jealous and vengeful nature, most notably against Zeus's paramours or their offspring, but also against other mortals who crossed her, such as Pelias or arguably even Paris, who had offended her by choosing Aphrodite as the most beautiful of goddesses, and thus earned Troy Hera's hatred.

See also: Olympian gods

From: Wikipedia

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