Who are the Hecatoncheires creatures in Greek mythology?
In Greek mythology, the Hecatoncheires were a type of giant creature. Their name directly means “hundred-handed ones” because they each had a hundred hands. These hands also had great strength. The Hecatoncheires also had 50 heads each, giving them a very rare look as a creature.
There were just three Hecatoncheires and they were born to the Titans named Uranus (God of the Sky) and Gaea (Mother Earth). One of the Hecatoncheires was named Aegaeon and he was considered “The Vigorous” or “The Sea Goat.” Another of them was named Cottus. He was also called “The striker” or “The Furious.” The third Hecatoncheires was named Gyges, or “The big-limbed.”
Since they were children of Gaea who was known as “Mother Earth,” the three Hecatoncheires were behind natural disasters. They were connected to sea waves and earthquakes according to the mythology.
In the Greek mythology, the Hecatoncheires’ father Uranus did not like them, so he tried to hide them away somewhere on earth. Uranus did not like his other sons named the Cyclopes either. He hid the Hecatoncheires and the Cyclopes down in a dark place called Tartarus. This was like a prison or dungeon.
The Hecatoncheires’ mother Gaia did not want her children to suffer like this. She told them to fight Uranus to take away his power. The Hecatoncheires and Cyclopes decided they needed to overthrow their father Uranus.
They had the help of another one of Uranus’ sons named Cronos. Cronos attacked his father one night in order to dethrone him. Cronos then took over in place of his father and released the Hecatoncheires and Cyclopes back up from the dark prison.
Unfortunately for the Hecatoncheires, Cronos did the same thing as his father had done. He eventually sent them back down to the dark place called Tartarus. He had them guarded by Campe. This was a creature with poisonous snakes for its hair and sea-monster scales on its chest to its waist.
Luckily for the Hecatoncheires, their mother helped again. She told Zeus if he would fight alongside her sons (the Hecatoncheires and Cyclopes) he could overthrow Cronos and the Titans. Zeus agreed with this idea.
Zeus killed the Campe that was guarding the Hecatoncheires and Cyclopes so he could set them free from Hades. They were then able to help Zeus defeat Cronos and the Titans by throwing hundreds of rocks at them.
The defeated Titans were sent to prison in Tartarus – the world down below. Zeus had the Hecatoncheires guard them there. After some time, Zeus allowed the Hecatoncheires to leave as guardians. Two of them went to live near the Ocean area, but it’s unknown where the third went to love.
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