Hermes - Messager God

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The idea of gods and goddesses began as far back as the ancient Egyptians, but the ancient Greeks were the first group to form a religion based on gods and goddesses. They believed that the gods and goddesses were not different from humans. Some of the few ways humans were different from gods were that the gods were stronger and lived forever. Since the Greeks believe in many gods, they are Polytheists.

The gods and goddesses were thought to control different parts of the universe. For example, Zeus is the king of the gods, controlled weather. Or like Athena who was the goddess of wisdom. You learn about different gods and goddesses in myths. A myth is a story about a god or goddess. Homer, a blind poet, is famous for telling myths. He told myths because no one could read or write.

Hermes (Latin name Mercury) is the messenger of the gods. He is the fastest of all the gods and goddesses. He is the son of Zeus and Maia. He is a guide who knew the way to the underworld. So he would show the dead souls the way to the underworld. Hermes is also known as the patron of traders, merchants, thieves and everyone who lived by their wits.

Some characteristics of Hermes include his ingenuity, knowledge, creativity, and is known to be very cunning. He is also quite good at gymnastics. Hermes is an incredibly clever god. He found a tortoise outside of his cave and displayed his godly talent by placing strings over the shell, inventing the first lyre. As a child he was very precious, even for a god. But he caused a great deal of trouble. But one day, he went too far and learned a very important lesson.

Hermes is a master thief. He started his career as a thief before he was more than a few hours old! It was his intelligence and theft abilities in the following myth that won him recognition as a god.

The worship of Hermes began in his birthplace, Arcadia. People of Arcadia would hold festivals called Hermaea in his honor. The...
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