Born small, born sickly, born different.
An outcast, the rejected one, the deformed. Abhorred by my mother, rejected by my father.
Thrown down from Olympus, and lamed thereafter. Though they called me ugly, I thrived in the
arts of metal-work. god of fire and crafts,
My objects were so beautiful, my skills are unmatched.
A cripple, yet, for myself I fashioned, strong legs of the finest metals,
and a chariot of gold. And for others, silver hands, legs, swords
and spears, So they can create their own paths,
So they can fight their own demons, So they too, can stand up for themselves. The ancient Greek god, Hephaestus, is the
god of arts and crafts, blacksmiths and fire. He is Called “the celestial artificer,”
the lame one, the halting, the cripple. And his Roman alias is Vulcan. Proclaimed ugly
at birth, he was hated by his own mother Hera, and hurled down from mount Olympus by his
own father Zeus. He hit his legs on a hard rock, and became
crippled after. A slightly different version of the myth,
stated that Hephaestus was solely Hera’s child, and that she gave birth to him while
trying to imitate her husband who had solely birthed Athena from his head. In this story
version, after bringing him to the world, Hera was so disgusted with Hephaestus’ looks and
ashamed of his deformity that she threw him down from Olympus by her own hand. Little
Hephaestus was severely hurt from the fall, but was rescued by Thetis and Eurynome,
who sheltered him in a cave under the Ocean for nine whole years. Hephaestus was the most peculiar member of
the Olympian Pantheon. He was large, bearded, extremely muscular
and sturdy. He is sometimes depicted with an oval cap and almost always with a hammer
and an anvil. Although he was not gifted with the beauty and the physical flawlessness of
the other gods, his metal-work skills were extraordinary, spectacular and unrivaled.
And that was how he regained his permanent place on Olympus. The fiery god Hephaestus exerted his revenge
on his mother later on. He made a golden throne, so beautiful that Heraaccepted it right away.
But as soon as she sat on it, she was tied up by the numerous invisible cords fashioned
by Hephaestus an only him could see. All the other gods pleaded on Hera’ s behalf and
tried to persuade Hephaestus to free her, with Zeus even promising him a place on Olympus
in return. However, the fiery god was unmoved. He was unremorseful, it was payback for all
the ill treatment towards him. It was only when Dionysus got him drunk,
that he released his mother.Now, Hera’s golden throne was not the only wondrous work
of Hephaestus. It is said that it was him who built the beautiful, indestructible bronze
mansions where all the other Olympians lived. For Hera, the crafty god added secure doors
to Hera’s chamber, which no other god but her could open. As a favor to Thetis, he
created the shield of Achilles. He was also the one who made the scepter of Agamemnon,
the breast-plate of Diomedes, and the sword of Peleus. In addition, the “Iliad,” tells us that Hephaestus
crafted for himself handmaidens of gold, who were able to understand him, speak to him
and assist him. He also sculpted golden dogs to guard the palace of Alcinous and Talos,
a giant bronze man to protect Crete. Some go ahead to say that, at the request of Zeus,
he also sculpted the first mortal woman, Pandora. Hephaestus married Aphrodite, the Goddess
of Beauty herself. However, she wasn’t faithful to him, she was sleeping with the war god,
Ares, behind his back. On a fateful day, Hephaestus had caught the two lovers and trapped them in
a fine-woven chain-net, after which he called upon the other gods to laugh at their shame. Although
the sea god, Poseidon successfully persuaded him to free the adulterous couple, Hephaestus was
not done punishing them. In the near future, when Ares and Aphrodite’s
daughter, Harmonia, would marry Cadmus, hephaestus would gift her a magical necklace
which would bring misfortune to her and everyone who wields it afterward.