What are some examples of tales about Greek heroes?  

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There is also the tale of Hercules, the demi-god, son of Zeus and Alcmene, a mortal woman.  Zeus came to her, disguised as her husband, Amphitryon, and had sex with her, impregnating her with Hercules.

The story goes that Hera loathed Hercules (as she hated most of the women Zeus slept with and their children -- and Zeus's affairs always produced offspring).  One day, after he'd grown up, Hera put him into a sort of crazy rage trance and he killed his wife, Megara, and their sons.  He came to just after the killings, and found their bodies and himself covered in their blood.  Theseus actually took him in because he felt that Hercules should not be held responsible for the murders because he wasn't aware of what he was doing.  However, the oracle at Delphi said that Hercules needed to be purified, and she sent him to his cousin, the King of Mycenae, Eurystheus.  Encouraged by Hera, Eurystheus gave Hercules many tasks called the "Labors of Hercules."  Each one was believed to be impossible, and so Hera was clearly hoping that Hercules would die in the attempt to complete them.

First, he kills the lion of Nemea, who could not be wounded by weapons, so Hercules choked him.  Second, he killed the Hydra, a monster with nine heads.  Each time he struck one of its heads off, two grew in its place.  So Hercules cauterized the stump after he struck off the head, and this prevented regrowth.  Third, he brought back Artemis's sacred golden-horned stag, but he had to capture it alive.  This took a year of hunting.  Fourth, he captured a great boar, driving it into the snow and trapping it.  Fifth, he cleaned the Augean stables in a day by diverting the course of two rivers so that they would flow through the stables and carry away the refuse.  Sixth, he drove away the Stymphalian birds, with a little help from Athena.  Seventh, he stole a beautiful bull given to Minos by Poseidon.  Eighth, he drove away the man-eating mares of King Diomedes.  Ninth, he brought back the girdle of Hippolyta, Amazon Queen.  Hera made this one tough by making the Amazons believe that Hercules was actually going to steal their queen.  Tenth, he brought back the cattle belonging to Geryon, a three-bodied monster.  Eleventh, he brought back the Golden Apples of the Hesperides.  To do this, he had to trick Atlas.  Lastly, he had to go to the underworld and bring back Cerberus, the three-headed dog that guards the gates.

Hercules isn't known for his intelligence, but he is credited as being the "greatest hero in Greece" (except for in Athens, because Theseus is preferred there) due to his physical strength, bravery, and passionate nature.

You could also check out the story of Odysseus, the hero on whom The Odyssey is based, as well as Jason and the Argonauts who sailed the Argo on the Quest for the Golden Fleece.  What ties these heroes altogether, with the exception of Theseus, is their bravery (even bravado) and their brawn; Theseus is best known for his intelligence and diplomacy.  They all complete physically, and mentally, demanding tasks and are believed to have made Greece a safer place for all.

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There are several heroes in Greek mythology. Among the most interesting and well known include the demigods Perseus and Theseus. A demigod is half man and half god, meaning his father was a god and his mother a mortal. Although the stories of these heroes are different they share two important elements. Each hero goes on a quest and is aided by the gods. For more information about the heroic quest and its three main steps see the link below for a good explanation. Since these stories are myths they are often retold and the stories may change from one telling to the next.

One of the best modern interpreters of these legends is Edith Hamilton whose book Mythology includes stories of many of these heroes. Her telling of the Perseus legend is the best source of this story. Recently, the tale has been retold in the popular movies "Clash of the Titans," which, while entertaining, add Hollywood twists to the original. 

Perseus is the son of Zeus and the beautiful Danae. In a common mythological motif, it is prophesied that Danae's father, King Acrysius of Argos, will be killed by his grandson. Thus, he locks his daughter in a tower to avoid her becoming pregnant. This does not dissuade Zeus, who turns himself into a shower of gold and goes through the keyhole to make love to the girl, and later she gives birth to Perseus. In fear, the King sets his daughter and her son adrift in the Aegean Sea where they eventually land on a small island and are taken in by the fisherman Dictys.

When Perseus is just entering manhood, the ruler of the island, the tyrannous Polydectes, falls in love with Danae. He wants to marry her but doesn't want her son, so he devises a devious plan to get Perseus off the island. Polydectes tells Perseus he would very much like to have the head of one of the Gorgons, fearsome monsters that live on a far away island. Against all odds, and with the help of Hermes, the messenger god, and Athena, the goddess of wisdom, Perseus brings back the head of Medusa, who is ultra dangerous because one look from the monster turns anything it gazes on to stone. When he reveals the head to Polydectes the evil king is turned to stone and Perseus frees his  mother from marrying the tyrant. 

There are two interesting retellings of the myth of Theseus, one by the celebrated English writer Robert Graves and another by Bernard Evslin. Evslin's version is superior because it adds more details. Theseus is the son of Poseidon and Aethra. Actually, Theseus has two fathers because Poseidon turned himself into Aegeus, the King of Athens, in order to make love to the beautiful Aethra.

Theseus's quest involves going to Crete to defeat the Minotaur, a fearsome half-man, half-bull creature who is the offspring of King Minos' wife and a bull. Theseus is aided by his father Poseidon and the lovely young daughter of Minos, Ariadne, who knows the secret of the Labyrinth where the Minotaur lives. With a ball of string given to her by Daedalus, Ariadne leads Theseus to the monster and the hero kills the creature. Afterward, Theseus marries Ariadne and sails back to Athens to become king. 

Unfortunately, Theseus became arrogant after his success, a fatal flaw in many Greek heroes. When he tries to help his friend Peirithous recover Persephone from the Greek god of the underworld, Hades, that god tricks Theseus. The hero is permanently attached to a bench in Tartarus for eternity where the three headed dog Cerberus gnaws at his fingers and spotted snakes sting him.

 

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