Atlas was a second-generation Titan, meaning that he was born to an original Titan. He was most commonly known as the strongest Titan. Atlas was famous for his enduring, stoic, and steadfast personality. Atlas was not very smart, and was easily fooled.
Family and OriginEdit
Atlas was the Son of Iapetus, a Titan, and Clymene, a nymph. He had three brothers, Prometheus, Menoetius, and Epimetheus. Atlas and his wife, Pleione, had many children. Some of his kids were the Pleiades: Maia, Electra, Taygete, Alcyone, Celaeno, Sterope, and Merope; the Hyades: Aesyle, Ambrosia, Cleeia, Coronis, Eudora, Pedile, Phaeo, Phyto, and Polyxo; the Hesperides: Aigle, Erytheis, and Hespere; Hyas, Dione, Calypso, and Maera.
In the war between the titans and the gods, known as the Titanomachy, Atlas supported Cronus. He led a battle in the war that lasted for ten years. When the Titans lost, Zeus gave Atlas the unique punishment of holding up the sky. This was also the punishment to Gaia, Earth, and Ouranos, the sky. Atlas kept them from ever meeting again.
When the hero Hercules was searching for the golden apples of the Hesperides, he came across Atlas instead. Atlas, being the Hesperides’ father, offered to go get the heavily guarded apples from his daughters in return for Hercules temporarily holding the sky for him. Atlas returned with the apples, but then decided he liked being free of his heavy burden. Hercules then tricked Atlas into holding the heavens by asking him to take the weight momentarily so he could shift the load. However, Heracles got away and left Atlas with his punishment for the rest of eternity.
Other myths tell of when Perseus came across Atlas. Perseus had just killed Medusa, and still had her head in his possession. He saw Atlas and introduced himself as the son of Zeus. Atlas remembered a prophecy telling of a son of Zeus stealing the golden apples from his beloved garden. Atlas yelled at Perseus to leave, despite Perseus’s begs for shelter. When Perseus began to fear what the Titan would do to him, he took out Medusa’s head and turned Atlas into stone. Atlas became what is now called the Atlas Mountains, completed by the heavens resting on his shoulders.
Atlas is said to be stronger than anyone else in the mythical world. The only possible exception to Atlas’ ultimate strength is Hercules. It is also believed that he had amazing stamina and endurance. Atlas was known for being the most injury-resistant of all of the gods and titans.
1) Held up the world in the western most part of Greece, and the Atlantic Ocean was named after him for it
2) Sometimes known as the father of weightlifting
3) Is very often mistaken for carrying the world, like the statue in Rockefeller Center, but actually holds up the sky.
4) Atlas led the battle of the Titanomachy instead of Cronus because Cronus was too old.
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