Content advisory: graphic language and sexual nature.
“Zeus, father of gods and mortals.” Whether Homer meant this literally or metaphorically, there’s no denying the supreme ruler of the Pantheon of gods knew how to please the ladies, no matter what the cost.
Zeus spent his formative years on Crete. Secreted away to the cave on Mount Dicte, his mother—Rhea, kept Zeus hidden from Kronos, his titan father. Once grown and having accomplished the important tasks on his ‘To Do List’—Overthrow Father—Split Universe With Brothers—Zeus turned his attention to more pleasant endeavors.
When Metis, the goddess of prudence, sparked Zeus’s interest, he relentlessly pursued her. Though Metis resisted, Zeus wore her down and she had no choice but to submit to his advances. From their union sprang Athena, goddess of wisdom. Gaia warned Zeus that Athena would bear a son, who would one day overthrow him. Upon hearing the prophecy, Zeus swallowed Metis in hopes of stopping the prediction, though in hindsight swallowing Athena might have been a more savvy choice.
Swallowing ones spouse seemed the equivalent to a godly divorce on Mount Olympus.
Next up—Dione—supposed mother of Aphrodite. Being the product of Zeus and Dione’s union was a far better beginning than other rumored accounts of Aphrodite’s birth. One tale claims the goddess of beauty was born when Kronos castrated his father, Uranus, and tossed the severed genitalia in the ocean. That’s cold. The waters churned, foamed, and Aphrodite arose from the sea. What a reputation to live down. Good thing she was pretty.
Hera burst on the scene as Zeus’s possessive wife and sister. The reasons he wedded and bedded his sister may escape our feeble mortal minds and we must trust that the supreme ruler knew what he was doing. But seriously, his sister? There must have been other options.
Hera dogged Zeus’s every step. Vain and jealous, the queen of the Olympians rarely gave her husband a moment’s peace. To make matters worse, Zeus couldn’t keep his thunderbolt in his toga, and many females felt not only Zeus’s amorous touch, but also Hera’s wrath.
Zeus always won his gal, even if his plan required trickery or deception. Some of his most famous erotic escapades were spent trussed-up in true god-like fashion.
Transforming himself into Artemis, the goddess of chastity, Zeus seduced Callisto, a nymph who served Artemis. Thinking it was her goddess, Callisto accepted Zeus’s amorous advances. For Callisto, keeping her virgnity was paramount, but Zeus had other plans. When the nymph became pregnant, surprise—surprise, Hera threw a fit and turned Callisto into a bear. Whether to make amends or to get rid of the mistress, Zeus placed Callisto in the heavens, making her the constellation Ursa Major. Uh, thanks Zeus.
Danae, a Greek princess, succumbed to Zeus’s advances while locked away in her father’s dungeon. Zeus’s disguise was exceptionally brilliant during this affair, for what would a woman, who had been locked away in a filthy dungeon, want most of all? A bath. Taking the form of a golden shower, and let’s hope that means pretty and not the more modern term, Zeus seduced Danae, after which she gave birth to Perseus.
Europa, a Phoenician princess from which Europe was named, may have been beautiful, but wasn’t all that bright. When Zeus’s roving eye landed on the princess, he transformed into a white bull and struck a pose near where Europa and her home-girls were picking flowers. Upon seeing the animal, she approached and stroked him. In what can only be described as a grave lack of judgment, Europa mounted the bull.
Zeus ran straight into the sea, taking Europa with him, and didn’t stop until he reached the island of Crete. To commemorate the occasion, Zeus created the Taurus constellation. Europa gave Zeus three sons and became the first queen of Crete.
Zeus had wide and varied tastes in his lovers. The father of the gods wooed Leda, the queen of Sparta, by transforming himself into a white swan. Pretending to be chased by an eagle, Zeus landed in Leda’s lap. Sure the normal train of thought may not be, “Hmmm, I think I’m going to fuck this bird.” But do him she did. From Leda and Zeus’s union came two eggs, from which four children hatched—Castor and Pollux, and two girls—Clytemnestra and Helen (also known as Helen of Troy).
Hundreds of goddesses, nymphs, women, and men fell victim to Zeus’s erotic manipulations. From these exploits, Zeus begot demigods, heroes, several wonderful star constellations, and a reputation as the god that never stopped giving. From him and the many that gave their virginity came a rich and powerful Greek dynasty, the gods of Olympus.
Stay tuned for more Sex in History next month.
Like what you read? Please visit our page on Amazon and leave a review for us.
Copyright © 2010 Boone Brux. All rights reserved.