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Zeus was the first of the Olympian Gods often referred to as the "Father of Gods and men”. He was a sky god who controlled lightning and thunder and the king of Mount Olympus, the home of Greek gods, where he ruled the world and imposed his will onto gods and mortals alike.

His parents were Cronus and Rhea. Cronus swallowed Zeus’ siblings Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades and Poseidon as soon as they were born. He had learned from Gaia and Uranus that he was destined to be overthrown by his son as he had previously overthrown Uranus, his own father, an oracle that Rhea heard and wished to prevent.

When Zeus was about to be born, Rhea sought Gaia to devise a plan to save him. She gave birth to Zeus in Crete, handing Cronus a rock wrapped in swaddling clothes, which he promptly swallowed.
After reaching manhood, Zeus forced Cronus to disgorge his siblings. Zeus and his brothers and sisters overthrew Cronus and the other Titans, in the combat called the Titanomachy. After the battle, Zeus shared the world with his elder brothers, Poseidon and Hades, by drawing lots: Zeus got the sky and air, Poseidon the waters, and Hades the world of the dead.

Zeus mated with many goddesses and mortals but was married to his sister Hera – goddess of marriage and monogamy. He is the father of Athena, who is said to have sprung from his head. She was his favorite child.  He also fathered Hercules by disguising himself as Amphitryon, Alcmene’s husband, in order to have relations with her. Zeus fathered Perseus by impregnating Danaë. His union with Leto brought forth the twins Apollo and Artemis. Zeus had an affair with Mnemosyne, he coupled with her for nine nights and produced nine daughters, who became known as the Muses.

According to "Work and Days” by Hesiod, Zeus loved to laugh out loud. He was regarded as wise, fair, merciful, and prudent. He was also unpredictable – nobody was able to guess the decisions he would make. Hesiod described Zeus as a god who "brought peace in place of violence” and referred to him as the "lord of justice". Perhaps because of this, he was reluctant to join a side in the Trojan War.
He was often described as a strong, imposing man with a regal body and long, often curly, hair. He usually had a short beard and carried his thunderbolt at all times.