The twelve labors of Hercules


He killed with his hands the two monsters sent to him by Juno when he was only a baby (...). He killed the Nemean lion (…) whose skin he used as a protective cape. At the spring (fountain) of Lerna, he killed the nine-headed Lernaean Hydra, daughter of Typhon. Her poison was so strong that she could kill men with her breath; if someone happened to pass by her while she was sleeping, he would smell her footprint and die of the worst torment. With Minerva's help, he killed her, opened her stomach and soaked his arrows in her venom; then whatever would be hit by them would die and later on, Hercules himself would die (of it) in Phrygia.

He killed the Erymanthian wild boar. In Arkadia, he brought alive to the king Eurystheus a ferocious deer with golden horns. On Mars island, he killed with his arrows the Stymphalian birds that used their feathers as javelins. In one day, with a big help from Jupiter, he cleaned out the manure out of King Augias' stables; he washed away all the manure by diverting a river.

He brought alive the bull with whom Pasiphae had slept from Crete island to Mycenae. With his servant Abderus, he killed Diomedes, king of Thrace and his four horses, who used human flesh as food; the horses' names were Podargus, Lampon, Xanthus and Dinus. He removed the belt from the Amazon Queen, Hippolyte, daughter of Mars and of the queen Otrera; then he offered Antiope, made prisoner, as a present to Theseus. He used one spear to kill the triple-membered Geryon, son of Chrysaor. Near the mount Atlas, he killed the son of Typhon, a monstrous dragon that was guarding the golden apples of the Hesperides; he brought the apples to the king Eurystheus. From Hades, he also brought to the king's sight the dog Cerberus, son of Typhon.

Revised: January 28, 2002
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