Gemstone of the Day
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Herb of the Day
Deity of the Day
Queen of the Gods in Greek Mythology
In Greek mythology, the beautiful goddess Hera was queen of the Greek gods and the wife of Zeus, the king. Hera was goddess of marriage and childbirth. Since Hera’s husband was Zeus, king not only of gods, but of philanderers, Hera spent a lot of time in Greek mythology angry with Zeus. So Hera is described as jealous and quarrelsome.
Among the more famous victims of Hera’s jealousy is Hercules (aka “Heracles,” whose name means the glory of Hera).
Hera persecuted the famous hero from before the time he could walk for the simple reason that Zeus was his father, but another woman — Alcmene — was his mother. Despite the fact that Hera was not Hercules’ mother, and despite her hostile actions — such as sending snakes to kill him when he was a newborn baby, she served as his nurse when he was an infant.
Hera persecuted many of the other women Zeus seduced, in one way or another.
“The anger of Hera, who murmured terrible against all child-bearing women that bare children to Zeus….”
Theoi Hera: Callimachus, Hymn 4 to Delos 51 ff (trans. Mair)
“Leto had relations with Zeus, for which she was hounded by Hera all over the earth.”
Theoi Hera: Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 21 (trans. Aldrich)
Hera is usually counted single parent mother of Hephaestus and the normal biological mother of Hebe and Ares. Their father is usually said to be her husband, Zeus, although Clark [“Who Was the Wife of Zeus?” by Arthur Bernard Clark; The Classical Review, (1906), pp.
365-378] explains the identities and births of Hebe, Ares, and Eiletheiya, goddess of childbirth, and sometimes named child of the divine couple, otherwise.
Clark argues that the king and queen of the gods had no children together.
Hebe may have been fathered by a lettuce. The association between Hebe and Zeus may have been sexual rather than familial.
Ares might have been conceived via a special flower from the fields of Olenus. Zeus’ free admission of his paternity of Ares, Clark hints, may be only to avoid the scandal of being a cuckold.
On her own, Hera gave birth to Hephaestus.
Parents of Hera
Like brother Zeus, Hera’s parents were Cronos and Rhea, who were Titans.
In Roman mythology, the goddess Hera is known as Juno.
Fast Facts About Hera
Name: Greek – Hera; Roman – Juno
Parents: Cronus and Rhea
Foster Parents: Oceanus and Thetys, among others
Siblings: Hestia, Demeter, Poseidon, Hades, and Zeus
Children: Ares, Hephaestus, Eileithyia, Hebe
Role of Hestia
For Humans: Hera was goddess of marriage. In later myth, Hera is treated as the queen of heaven, the female counterpart of Zeus
For Gods: Queen
Author: N.S. Gill
Article located on About.com
Astronomy Picture of the Day
Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.
2015 September 25
Explanation: A mountainous region informally known as Tartarus Dorsa sprawls some 530 kilometers (330 miles) across this Plutonian landscape. Recently downloaded from New Horizons, it combines blue, red, and infrared image data in an extended color view captured near the spacecraft’s close approach to Pluto on July 14. Shadows near the terminator, the line between Pluto’s dim day and night, emphasize a rough, scaly texture. The stunning image resolves details on the distant world about 1.3 kilometers (0.8 miles) across. Refering to a part of Hades in ancient Greek mythology, Tartarus Dorsa borders Tombaugh Regio to the east.
NASA Scientist Sheds Light on Rare Sept. 27 Supermoon Eclipse
Coming soon for the first time in more than 30 years: you’ll be able to witness a supermoon in combination with a lunar eclipse.
Late on Sept. 27, 2015, in the U.S. and much of the world, a total lunar eclipse will mask the moon’s larger-than-life face for more than an hour.
But what is this behemoth of the night sky? Not a bird, not a plane, it’s a supermoon! Although this incarnation of the moon comes around only once every year, it’s not as mysterious as you might think.
“Because the orbit of the moon is not a perfect circle, the moon is sometimes closer to the Earth than at other times during its orbit,” said Noah Petro, deputy project scientist for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “When the moon is farthest away it’s known as apogee, and when it’s closest it’s known as perigee. On Sept. 27, we’re going to have a perigee full moon—the closest full moon of the year.”
At perigee, the moon is about 31,000 miles closer to Earth than at apogee. That distance equates to more than once around the circumference of Earth. Its looming proximity makes the moon appear 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter in the sky than an apogee full moon, which sparked the term “supermoon.”
“There’s no physical difference in the moon,” Petro said. “It just appears slightly bigger in the sky. It’s not dramatic, but it does look larger.”
A lunar eclipse typically puts on an even greater show. For more than an hour, Earth’s shadow swallows up the moon as the planet comes between the sun and the moon. Lunar eclipses typically occur at least twice a year, and 228 will occur in the 21st century alone. While people such as the Incans and Mesopotamians historically viewed lunar eclipses as random and frightening occurrences, they’re actually quite predictable.
Scientists at Goddard have predicted eclipses a thousand years into the future. Petro said it’s just a matter of knowing where Earth, the sun and the moon are at a given point in time.
As for the supermoon and a lunar eclipse occurring simultaneously, Petro said, “It’s just planetary dynamics. The orbit of the moon around Earth is inclined to the axis of Earth and the orbital plane of all these things just falls into place every once in a while. When the rhythms line up, you might get three to four eclipses in a row or a supermoon and an eclipse happening.”
But the proverbial stars only align for this event once every few decades, making this phenomenon much rarer than a supermoon or a lunar eclipse separately. The last supermoon/lunar eclipse combination occurred in 1982 and the next won’t happen until 2033. “That’s rare because it’s something an entire generation may not have seen,” said Petro.
Despite its rarity, Petro said the event is not cause for concern. “The only thing that will happen on Earth during an eclipse is that people will wake up the next morning with neck pain because they spent the night looking up,” he said.
The total eclipse will last one hour and 12 minutes, and will be visible to North and South America, Europe, Africa, and parts of West Asia and the eastern Pacific. Viewers can see the supermoon unmasked after nightfall. Earth’s shadow will begin to dim the supermoon slightly beginning at 8:11 p.m. EDT. A noticeable shadow will begin to fall on the moon at 9:07 p.m., and the total eclipse will start at 10:11 p.m.
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