A daughter of Tartarus and Ge (Apollod. ii. 1. § 2), or of Chrysaor and Callirrhoë (Hesiod. Theog. 295), and according to others again, of Peiras and Styx. (Paus. viii. 18. § 1.) Echidna was a monster, half maiden and half serpent, with black eyes, fearful and bloodthirsty. She was the destruction of man, and became by Typhon the mother of the Chimaera, of the many-headed dog Orthus, of the hundred-headed dragon who guarded the apples of the Hesperides, of the Colchian dragon, of the Sphinx, Cerberus, Scylla,Gorgon, the Lernaean Hydra, of the eagle which consumed the liver of Prometheus, and of the Nemean lion. (Hes. Theog. 307, &c.; Apollod. ii. 3. § 1, 5. §§ 10, 11, iii. 5. § 8; Hygin. Fab. Praef. p. 3, and Fab.151.) She was killed in her sleep by Argus Panoptes. (Apollod. ii. 1. § 2.) According to Hesiod she lived with Typhon in a cave in the country of the Arimi.
THE HARPYIAI (or Harpies) were the spirits of sudden, sharp gusts of wind. They were known as the hounds of Zeus and were despatched by the god to snatch away (harpazô) people and things from the earth. Sudden, mysterious dissappearances were often attributed to the Harpyiai.
The Harpies were once sent by Zeus to plague King Phineus of Thrake as punishment for revealing the secrets of the gods. Whenever a plate of food was set before him, the Harpies would swoop down and snatch it away, befouling any scraps left behind. When the Argonauts came to visit, the winged Boreades gave chase, and pursued the Harpies to the Strophades Islands, where the goddess Iris commanded them to turn back and leave the storm-spirits unharmed.
Greek myth and legend is filled with a wide variety of monsters and creatures ranging from Dragons, Giants, Demons and Ghosts, to multiformed creatures such as the Sphinx, Minotaur, Centaurs, Manticores and Griffins.There were also many fabulous animals such as the Nemean Lion, golden-fleeced Ram and winged horse Pegasus, not to mention the creatures of legend such as the Phoenix, Unicorns (Monocerata) . Even amongst the tribes of man, myth spoke of strange peoples inhabiting the far reaches of the earth such as the hopping Umbrella-Foots, the one-eyed Arimaspians, the Dog-Headed men, and the puny Pygmies.Greek myth and legend is filled with a wide variety of monsters and creatures ranging from Dragons, Giants, Demons and Ghosts, to multiformed creatures such as the Sphinx, Minotaur, Centaurs, Manticores and Griffins.
Hephaistos splits open the skull of Zeus with a mallet, releasing the goddess Athene from his head. The king of the gods is shown seated on a swan-backed chair, holding a lightning bolt in his hand. A miniature Athene springs from his head, already equipped with a shield. Hephaistos waves one hand, in imitation of an Eileithyia (birth goddess) bringing forth a child. In the other hand he holds a two-headed mallet or axe.
“Now Zeus, king of the gods, made Metis (Wise Counsel) his wife first, and she was wisest among gods and mortal men. But when she was about to bring forth the goddess bright-eyed Athene, Zeus craftily deceived her with cunning words and put her in his own belly, as Gaia (Earth) and starry Ouranos (Heaven) advised. For they advised him so, to the end that no other should hold royal sway over the eternal gods in place of Zeus; for very wise children were destined to be born of her, first the maiden bright-eyed Tritogeneia, equal to her father in strength and in wise understanding; but afterwards she was to bear a son of overbearing spirit, king of gods and men. But Zeus put her into his own belly first, that the goddess might devise for him both good and evil.”