Ancient Greece >
Fast Facts About the Olympians | 12 Olympians
In Greek mythology, there were 12 Olympians, gods and goddesses, who lived and held thrones on Mount Olympus, although you may run across more than a dozen names. These major gods and goddesses are named Olympian for their place of residence.
The canonical list, based on the Parthenon sculptures includes:
You may sometimes see:
listed as Olympian deities, but they are not all regulars.
The Roman versions of the Greek names are:
- Jupiter, and
- Ceres, and
The alternates among the Roman gods and goddesses are:
Asculapius, Hercules, Vesta, Proserpine, and Pluto.[See Roman Gods and Goddesses.]
Also Known As: Theoi Olympioi, Dodekatheon
Alternate Spellings: Hephaestus' name is sometimes spelled Hephaistos or Hephestus.
"Iuno, Vesta, Minerva, Ceres, Diana, Venus, Mars,The 12 Olympians were the major gods and goddesses with prominent roles in Greek mythology. Although being an Olympian meant a throne on Mt. Olympus, some of the major Olympians spent most of their time elsewhere. Poseidon lived in the sea and Hades in the Underworld.
Mercurius, Iovis, Neptunus, Vulcanus, Apollo."
Ennius Ann. 62-63 Vahl.
From "Plautus as a Source Book for Roman Religion," by John A. Hanson, TAPhA (1959), pp. 48-101.
Aphrodite, Apollo, Ares, Artemis, Athena, Demeter, Dionysus, Hephaestus, Hera, Hermes, Poseidon, and Zeus are the names of the Olympian gods on the Parthenon frieze, according to the Oxford Dictionary of the Classical World. However, Elizabeth G. Pemberton, in "The Gods of the East Frieze of the Parthenon" (American Journal of Archaeology Vol. 80, No. 2 [Spring, 1976] pp. 113-124), says that on the East frieze of the Parthenon, in addition to the 12 are Eros and Nike.