Zeus  

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Image:Danae.jpg
Danae (1907-08) by Gustav Klimt depicting Zeus, the master of metamorphosis, as a golden shower.
Image:Jupiter and Thetis.jpg
Jupiter and Thetis (1811) by Ingres, Thetis is depicted in the painting by Ingres as pleading at the knees of Zeus: "She sank to the ground beside him, put her left arm round his knees, raised her right hand to touch his chin, and so made her petition to the Royal Son of Cronos" (Iliad, I).

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Loves of Zeus

Zeus in Greek mythology is the king of the gods, the ruler of Mount Olympus, and god of the sky and thunder. His symbols are the thunderbolt, eagle, bull and the oak. Zeus is frequently envisaged by Greek artists in one of two poses: standing, striding forward, a thunderbolt leveled in his raised right hand, or seated in majesty.

The son of Cronus and Rhea, he was the youngest of his siblings. He was married to Hera in most traditions, although at the oracle of Dodona his consort was Dione: according to the Iliad, he is the father of Aphrodite by Dione. Accordingly, he is known for his erotic escapades, including one pederastic relationship with Ganymede. His trysts resulted in many famous offspring, including Athena, Apollo and Artemis, Hermes, Persephone (by Demeter), Dionysus, Perseus, Heracles, Helen, Minos, and the Muses (by Mnemosyne); by Hera he is usually said to have sired Ares, Hebe and Hephaestus.

His Roman counterpart was Jupiter, and his Etruscan counterpart was Tinia.

He is known for his shapeshifting abilities, especially when he wanted to seduce. He transforms himself into a cloud (he hid himself in a cloud with Io), a golden shower with Danae, a swan with Leda, a bull with Europa, depending on whether he needed to be charming and beautiful or powerful and frightening in his conquest.

The film Clash of the Titans (1981) has a dialogue on Zeus's promiscuousness:

[discussing Zeus' womanizing]
Thetis: So many women, and all these transformations and disguises he invents in order to seduce them. Sometimes a shower of gold, sometimes a bull or a swan. Why, once he even tried to ravish me disguised as a cuttlefish.
Hera: Did he succeed?
Thetis: Certainly not.
Athena: What did you do?
Thetis: Beat him at his own game. I simply turned myself into a shark.
[they laugh]

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Zeus" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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