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Atlas (mythology)

From Academic Kids

Greek deities
series
Primordial deities
Olympians
Aquatic deities
Chthonic deities
Personified concepts
Other deities
Titans
The Twelve Titans:
Oceanus and Tethys,
Hyperion and Theia,
Coeus and Phoebe,
Rhea, Mnemosyne,
Metis, Themis,
Crius, Iapetus
Sons of Iapetus:
Atlas, Prometheus,
Epimetheus, Menoetius

In Greek mythology, Atlas was the son of the Titan Iapetus and the nymph Clymene, and brother of Prometheus. He was the father of the Hesperides, Maera, the Hyades, Calypso and the Pleiades. Because Atlas fought on the side of the Titans in the war with the gods of Mount Olympus, Zeus punished him with the burden of carrying the heavens upon his shoulders. Atlas was turned to stone by Perseus using Medusa's head in the place where the Atlas mountains now stand, after he threatened Perseus when wanting to speak to his father Zeus about the punishment that had fallen upon him. He is also known as one of the kings of Atlantis.

Missing image
Rockefeller_Center_Atlas1.jpg
Atlas, Rockefeller Center, New York City

As part of his Twelve Labors, the hero Heracles tricked Atlas into retrieving some of the golden apples of the Hesperides for him by offering to hold the heavens for a little while. Upon his return with the apples, Atlas decided not to take the heavens back from Heracles. Heracles tricked him again by agreeing to take his place if he would only take the sky again for a few minutes so Heracles could rearrange his cloak as padding on his shoulders. Atlas agreed and Heracles left.

Since the middle of the sixteenth century, he is often shown in cartographic atlases. However it was not he but rather the mythical King Atlas that was depicted by Mercator in the first book to bear the name "atlas" and who gave his name to that type of book. Atlas continues to be a commonly used icon in western culture (and advertising), as a symbol of strength or stoic endurance. In such contemporary depictions, he is often shown kneeling over on one knee while supporting an enormous round globe on his back and shoulders.

The etymology of the name Atlas is uncertain and still debated: some derive it from the Proto-Indo-European root *tel, 'to uphold, support'; others suggest that it is a pre-Indo-European name.

"Atlas" is also the presently used name of many objects and places (see Atlas (disambiguation)).

Sources

de:Atlas (Mythologie) fr:Atlas (mythologie) it:Atlante (mitologia) he:אטלס (מיתולוגיה) hu:Atlasz (mitolgia) nl:Atlas (mythologie) ja:アトラス (神話) pl:Atlas (mitologia) pt:Atlas (mitologia) ru:Атлас (титан) sv:Atlas

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