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In a Nutshell

All the crazy stuff that happens in the story of Io would be right at home on the front page of any tabloid today.

Zeus, Caught in the Act!
Io Seduced, Shamed, Transformed!
Hera Seeks Awful Revenge!

Doesn't this sound like stuff you'd read in line at the grocery store? And it's all straight from this super ancient myth. Check it out: you've got a young, sexy nymph seduced by a corrupt politician dude. They almost get busted by his wife so the guy disguises his lover. The wife doesn't buy it, though, so she has the lover imprisoned and tortured.

Are you kidding us? How many trashy magazines would that sell?

Whether you admit to reading gossip rags or just sneakily check out the headlines while you're waiting in line, there's no doubt we're interested. The more sensational the headline, the more we want to know all the dirt. And trust us: the story of Io does not disappoint.


Shmoop Connections

Explore the ways this myth connects with the world and with other topics on Shmoop

Check out Shmoop's take on the version of Io's story included in The Metamorphoses, a massive collection of mythy poems by everybody's favorite Roman poet, Ovid. (JK Virgil, you're awesome, too.)

Is it a coincidence that Hogwarts' caretaker, Argus Filch, has the same first name as Io's caretaker, Argus Panoptes? We think not. Both characters do their best to keep their charges in check, and both of them, um, don't do such a great job of it.

Io isn't the only pretty young thing seduced by Zeus, Greek mythology's most infamous dirty, old god. Don't believe us? Check out the poem "Leda and the Swan" by William Butler Yeats for all the deets.

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