– Latin name: Juppiter
– Greek name: Zeus
The god Jupiter is in fact the Greek god Zeus Roman version. Romain adopts the god but also his Greek mythology. Jupiter arises from Zeus paternoster. The name of Jupiter means ” master of the bright day “.
– Children: the children of Jupiter are very many. We shall quote here only the Olympian gods: Bacchus, Diane, Apollo, Mercury, Platen machine, Venus, Mars and Red admiral.
The history of Jupiter resumes that of Zeus but the Latin author Ovide and Tite-Live completes the legend.
In The Splendors, Ovide evokes the birth and the childhood of Jupiter. Warned by an oracle that he will be dethroned by his son, Saturn devours each of his children. Jupiter is saved thanks to a guile: Saturn devours a stone surrounded with linen by believing to devour his(her) child. The child is raised on the mount Ida. Curètes and Corybantes make noise to cover the wails of the baby.
THE AGE OF SILVER
In The Metamorphoses, Ovide tells the arrival of Jupiter to the power. Winner in the face of Saturn, his father, he reigns from now on over the Sky and over the earth. Ovide calls this new period ” the age of silver “, by opposition to the golden age, period of the reign of Saturn. Jupiter organizes a new distribution of time: there will be from now on four seasons.
A new period, ” the Iron Age “, marks more difficult times. The Giants declare the war to the gods and try to seize heavens. The Giants are monstrous: they have a bust of human shape and legs in the shape of snakes. Jupiter intervenes and strikes them. He precipitates them then on Earth.
The men became so violent and bad as the giants. Jupiter thus decides to annihilate them also. He is about to throw his lightnings on the human beings but he decides otherwise. He starts then a deluge. Waters ravage the Earth. The Earth becomes an unlimitedness of water. The men( who do not drown themselves, starve.
DEUCALION and PYRRHA
Jupiter discovers two survivors in Boeotia, a man and a woman: Deucalion (son of Promethée) and Pyrrha (girl of Epimethée). They failed on the mount Parnassus. The god is moved by these right and good human beings. He decides then to stop the deluge. Deucalion and Pyrrha casts stones which take life and become men and women.
JUPITER AND JUNO
Jupiter is an unfaithful husband. He returns unfortunate and jealous Juno. Their relation is often conflicting.
In the valley of Tempé, in the Thessaly, Jupiter perceives a girl named Io. It is the girl of the river Inachus, the main stream of Argolide. Jupiter pursues the girl of its diligences. He prevents Io from running away by plunging the Earth into the darkness. But Juno intervenes and transforms the girl into heifer. She confides then the guarding of the heifer Io to the giant Argus, the guard with hundred eyes. These eyes rest only two by two and thus make of Argus a formidable guard. He watches Io permanently. Io succeeds all the same in indicating by guile his presence to his father Inachus who despaired. Jupiter does not support to see Io transformed into heifer forced to graze all day long. He thus makes murder Argus. Juno brings in Erynie (divinity capable of making his victims sink into the madness) who terrorizes Io. Io runs away then to Egypt. She implores Jupiter. The god promised to Juno not to bother any more the girl. He returns him his human appearance and she becomes then the goddess Isis and a guarding still her brilliant beauty. Io gives birth to a son designed with Jupiter.
– THE TANK OF PHAETON
Phaeton leads Phoebus’s tank. But he loses control of his tank. The race of the tank upsets the balance of the Earth. She suffers and asks Jupiter to intervene. She asks him to end her existence. Jupiter intervenes and strikes Phaeton. He so stops the mad drive of his tank. Mad with grief, Phoebus refuses to light the Earth. Jupiter apologizes to him and asks him not to plunge the world into the darkness.
Jupiter comes down on Earth to help the nature which suffered during the misadventures of phaeton. He goes in Arcadia and discovers a nymph: Callisto, girl of Lycaon. He is been thought of as Phébé and so makes an excessive use of the girl. Then, Jupiter abandons him. But she is pregnant. She is a member of the sacred choir dedicated to Diane. When the goddess notices that the young woman is pregnant, she hunts her. Callisto will give birth to a boy, Arcas, a sonof Jupiter. Jealous person, Juno transforms Callisto into she-bear. Callisto lives from now on in the fear. At the age of fifteen, while he hunts, Arcas is faced with Callisto who is from now on a she-bear. She recognizes her son and approaches him. But Arcas ignores that the she-bear is her mother. He is afraid and gets ready to kill her when Jupiter intervenes. He transforms the mother and the son into stars which will be nearby from now on: Arctos and Arctophylax. Callisto so becomes ” The Great Bear “.
– THE KIDNAPPING OF EUROPE
Jupiter orders a day Mercury to lower to the country of Sidon and to lead the herd of the cows of king of Tyr Agénor by the sea. Mercury runs. Europe, phoenician princess, girl of Agénor, goes regularly to this place. Jupiter is transformed into bull and sinking into the sea, it removes Europe and takes it in Crete.
Jupiter has an affair with Sémélé, girl of Cadmos (Cadmos is the brother of Europe) and of Harmony. Sémélé is expecting a baby. Juno, jealous person, suggests to Sémélé to verify the identity of her lover and causes by guile the death of the young woman. Indeed, the vision of Jupiter under its real divine appearance strikes the young woman. Jupiter saves their child who will be the future Bacchus. Bacchus will be raised by Ino, sister of Sémélé and by the nymphs of Nysa.
Jupiter found Juno. Tirésias, son of Evérès, is struck by blindness by Juno because he takes sides with Jupiter during a discussion between the god and his wife. Juno is furious against Tirésias who agrees with Jupiter. The god indeed asked him for his opinion about the women. To punish Tirésias, Juno blinds him. Jupiter cannot cancel this fate. To compensate for the handicap, Jupiter confers on Tirésias the gift to predict the future.
– CERES AND PROSERPINE
Pluto kidnaps Proserpine. Cérès wants to see again his daughter and begs Jupiter (who is the father) to intervene. She indicates him that to have a son-in-law thief is unworthy. Jupiter does not consider Pluto as annoys but it intervenes. He suggests returning Proserpine to her mother if the young woman is on an empty stomach. But it is not the case: she ate three seeds of pomegranate. Jupiter finds a compromise. Proserpine will cross from now on half of the year on Earth with her mother and in Hell with her husband. The agreement returns again happy Cérès.
The adventures of Jupiter are so famous as they appear in a competition setting Arachné against Platen machine. Arachné, a girl lydienne, girl of Idmon, excels at the art of the weaving. She executes a tapestry representing the connections of Jupiter during which he made use of metamorphoses. These stories concern: Europe, Astérié, Léda, Antiopé, Alcmène, Danaé, Égine, Mnémosyne, Proserpine. Europe is represented accompanied with a bull whereas Astérié is removed by an eagle.
– THE MYRMIDONS
The island of Egine bears the name of a mistress of Jupiter. The plague comes down on the island. She is sent by Juno, wild with jealousy. The island is destroyed in spite of the prayers and the sacrifices made in front of the temple of Jupiter. King of the Eginaques, Eaque, is the son of Jupiter and the nymph Egine, girl of Asopos. He begs his father and asks him or to make him die or to intervene and to repopulate the island. Eaque sees his demand coming true in dream: insects are transformed in human beings. In its awakening, the island is again populated. Eaque names these new inhabitants: Myrmidons.
– PHILEMON AND BAUCIS
Jupiter and Mercury go in Phrygia. The inhabitants refuse them the hospitality. Philémon and Baucis, a couple of old men of low incomes, have the visit from Jupiter and Mercury disguised as mortal. Philémon and Baucis shows itself hospitable and generous. By way of thanks, the gods warn them of an imminent disaster: they are going to punish the inhabitants of this part of the country for their godlessness. But they allow Philémon and Baucis to put themselves under cover. Their hut is transformed into temple and Philémon and Baucis becomes the guards. They finish their days together transformed into trees in front of the temple: an oak and a lime tree.
– GANYMEDE ORPHEUS
sings the history of Jupiter and Ganymède. Jupiter was in love with Ganymède, a young Phrygian coming down from Dardanos. He was transformed into eagle and removed it. Ganymède became the cupbearer of the gods.
In The Splendors, Ovide tells other stories about Jupiter.
– JUTURNE and LARA
Jupiter is in love with Juturne, nymph of waters and springs. But she repels) her advances. Jupiter asks to the nymphs of the Lazio to help him. They accept, except Lara. He decides to punish her by making her dumb and by sending her at Manes. Mercury leads her. Mercury and Lara has twins: the gods Lares.
Ovide tells that king Numa manages to make lower Jupiter on Earth thanks to Faunus and Picus, the green woodpecker. He asks then to the god to help him to beg the lightning. But the answers of the god are mysterious. Numa report this story to Quirites which are sceptical. But the day after this appearance, Jupiter sends a shield to Numa. This shield, called ancile, will be from now on the symbol of the sovereignty.
Jupiter raised the Milan to the rank of celestial body in thanks of services provided. The Milan brought him the viscera of a monster at the middle-bull the middle-snake.
Jupiter sometimes appears as a vindictive god. This is the way Tite-Live presents himi in its Roman History.
– THE GAMES
Tite-Live tells that a slave was whipped during big Games organized in honor of Jupiter. Outraged Jupiter, appeared there think of a man and declared him that it was necessary to organize new games. In May the man did not dare to speak about his dream. Furious, Jupiter made his son die then struck this man of paralysis. The man decided to speak. He was led to the senate and spoke appearances of Jupiter. He was then able to walk again.