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Mercury In Greek Mythology Essay

517 words - 3 pages

Mercury, known in Greek mythology as Hermes, is probably one of the most well known gods in Rome. He is also one of the most liked deities. Mercury represents many, many things ranging from being the god of cunning to the messenger god. He was introduced into Roman mythology around 495 BC and his festival is on the 15th of May. He was undoubtedly a favorite of the gods. Even though Mercury was a very popular god, he was not a very important one.Mercury is considered to be a beardless youth. He had winged shoes, talaria, fastened to his feet. On his head, he wore a winged cap, also known ...view middle of the document...

The center of his cult was Arcadia, the place of his birth.Mercury was the god of commerce and thievery. He was also the god of merchants and gain. Mercury is the god of fertility and of flocks. He was the patron of travelers, vagabonds, and thieves. He is also the god of cunning and trickery, the messenger of the gods, and a dangerous foe. He was very, very fast. Mercury was the guardian of borders and of roads. He conducted souls to the underworld. His wand possessed magical powers and had control over sleeping, waking, and dreams.There is only one major myth involving Mercury. This is the one entitled "The Golden Cattle of Apollo." Once Mercury was born, he grew so rapidly that soon after his birth, he was able to kill a tortoise and make the first lyre from its shell. Strings were needed to complete it. He stole a herd of cattle from Apollo and made them walk backwards so Apollo would be led in the wrong direction. He killed the cows and made strings from their guts. When Apollo discovered that Mercury stole the cattle, he brought him to Jupiter. Jupiter was more joyful than angry, when Mercury brought out the lyre and played it. Apollo was so mesmerized that he offered the rest of his flock to Mercury in a trade for it. Apollo also gave Mercury the caduceus and Pluto, ruler of the underworld, told Mercury to lay the golden staff on the eyes of the dying or dead and lead them to the underworld.

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