A Goddess For Men
Athena brooks no rivals in the area of beauty.
After Poseidon and Medusa desecrate Athena's temple by using it for their tryst, Medusa further enraged the warrior goddess by [URL = http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/classes/ALp_fn.html] comparing herself with the goddess in beauty. As punishment, the goddess changed Medusa's beautiful hair into snakes making her so fearful those who looked at her were turned to stone.
Even that wasn't enough for Athena. Her opportunity for complete revenge presented itself when a king, in the typical predicament of needing a legitimate way to dispose of a virile young nuisance, sent Perseus off on a quest that would be impossible for mere mortals. Specifically, King Polydectes sent Perseus off to fetch the head of Medusa.
Athena couldn't resist this opportunity. Allied with her brother Hermes, she helped Perseus, the young son of Danae and Zeus. First they acquired Hades' helmet of invisibility which Perseus used to trick the three Graeae. Then, aided by the the donation of a wallet and winged sandals from the nymphs, Perseus flew to Medusa, where, with sword hand guided by Athena, he struck off Medusa's head while keeping his eyes focused away on the mirroring surface of a shield. To prevent anyone from inadvertently seeing the head of Medusa, Perseus deposited the fearful snaky tressed object in the nymph's wallet.
With due reverence to his savior, and after wreaking his own revenge by turning the evil King Polydectes to stone through an unguarded glance at the Medusa head, Perseus handed the head over to Athena who put it in the middle of the aegis on her shield.
Athena Favors Heroes:>> Asclepius > Bellerophon > Hercules > Odysseus > Orestes > Perseus
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A Goddess For Men - Athena Favors the Greek Heroes - Perseus
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