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Heracles (Hercules): Birth and Early Adventures Photos

Baby Heracles vs. Snakes
This would be scary if the baby weren’t Heracles. [Roman sculpture, 2nd century A.D.]


Heracles Kills the Snakes
We see two parts of the story here: Zeus is getting cozy with Alcmene, and baby Heracles is killing the snakes in his bed. [French illuminated manuscript from the 16th century.]


The Origin of the Milky Way
Who knew the Milky Way was created by a breastfeeding mishap? [Painting by Jacopo Tintoretto, c. 1575.]


The Birth of Heracles
Alcmene has just given birth to Heracles in this picture. [Illustration by Jean Jacques François Le Barbier, late 1700s or early 1800s.]


Young Heracles
A woman had herself painted holding the hand of a young Hercules, identifiable by his club – and is that a lion skin he's wearing? [Painting by a French court painter, 1630s.]


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