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The Constellation: Hercules


Hercules or Heracles, son of Zeus (king of the gods) and the mortal woman Alcmene, was the greatest hero among the gods. As Hercules was born of Alcmene, Hera (queen of the gods) did not like him and did all that was in her power to make Hercules miserable. Hercules went mad because of Hera and hurt several of those close to him. For his redemption Hercules was tasked with the twelve labors by the king of Tiryns, Eurystheus. Among these labors were slaying the invulnerable lion as well as the multi-headed hydra and retrieving Cerberus, guard of the underworld. Upon completion of the twelve super-human labors, Hercules was without doubt the greatest hero Greece had ever known. For this reason, he was placed in the stars.

Can you find Hercules?

Hercules the hero of Greece can be best seen by looking up and to the North in the summer. Find the brightest star Vega by looking North, then by looking just west of that you can make out the keystone, or body, of Hercules. The head of Hercules will be to the South, and his kneeling legs will be pointing northward.

Explore the Mythologies of Globe at Night Constellations