Hercules

Hercules

Overview
Hercules is the Roman name for Greek demigod
Demigod
The term "demigod" , meaning "half-god", is commonly used to describe mythological figures whose one parent was a god and whose other parent was human; as such, demigods are human-god hybrids...

 Heracles
Heracles
Heracles ,born Alcaeus or Alcides , was a divine hero in Greek mythology, the son of Zeus and Alcmene, foster son of Amphitryon and great-grandson of Perseus...

, son of Zeus
Zeus
In the ancient Greek religion, Zeus was the "Father of Gods and men" who ruled the Olympians of Mount Olympus as a father ruled the family. He was the god of sky and thunder in Greek mythology. His Roman counterpart is Jupiter and his Etruscan counterpart is Tinia.Zeus was the child of Cronus...

 (the Greek equivalent of the Roman god Jupiter
Jupiter (mythology)
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Jupiter or Jove is the king of the gods, and the god of the sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon....

), and the mortal Alcmene
Alcmene
In Greek mythology, Alcmene or Alcmena was the mother of Heracles.-Background:Alcmene was born to Electryon, the son of Perseus and Andromeda, and king of Tiryns and Mycenae or Medea in Argolis. Her mother was Anaxo, daughter of Alcaeus and Astydamia, daughter of Pelops and Hippodameia...

. Early Roman sources suggest that the imported Greek hero supplanted a mythic Italic shepherd called "Recaranus" or "Garanus", famous for his strength who dedicated the Ara Maxima
Great Altar of Hercules
The Great Altar of Unconquered Hercules stood in the Forum Boarium of ancient Rome. It was the earliest cult-centre of Hercules in Rome, predating the circular Temple of Hercules Victor. The altar stood until it was demolished by order of Pope Sixtus IV...

 that became associated with the earliest Roman cult of Hercules. While adopting much of the Greek Heracles' iconography and mythology as his own, Hercules adopted a number of myths and characteristics that were distinctly Roman.
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Quotations

Wow. What a day. First that restaurant by the bay. And then that, that play, that, that, that Oedipus thing. Man! I thought I had problems.

But, Father, I've defeated every single monster I've come up against. I-I'm... I'm the most famous person in all of Greece. I'm... I-I'm an action figure!

[about Hercules] He comes on with his big, innocent farm boy routine, but I could see through that in a Peloponnesian minute.

You know how men are. They think "No" means "Yes" and "Get lost" means "Take me. I'm yours."

Thanks for everything, Herc. It's been a real slice.

[while Hercules stutters for an answer] Are you always this articulate?

Bye-bye, Wonderboy.

I'm a big tough girl. I tie my own sandals and everything.

Megara. My friends call me Meg. At least they would if I had any friends. So did they give you a name along with all those rippling pectorals?

Encyclopedia
Hercules is the Roman name for Greek demigod
Demigod
The term "demigod" , meaning "half-god", is commonly used to describe mythological figures whose one parent was a god and whose other parent was human; as such, demigods are human-god hybrids...

 Heracles
Heracles
Heracles ,born Alcaeus or Alcides , was a divine hero in Greek mythology, the son of Zeus and Alcmene, foster son of Amphitryon and great-grandson of Perseus...

, son of Zeus
Zeus
In the ancient Greek religion, Zeus was the "Father of Gods and men" who ruled the Olympians of Mount Olympus as a father ruled the family. He was the god of sky and thunder in Greek mythology. His Roman counterpart is Jupiter and his Etruscan counterpart is Tinia.Zeus was the child of Cronus...

 (the Greek equivalent of the Roman god Jupiter
Jupiter (mythology)
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Jupiter or Jove is the king of the gods, and the god of the sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon....

), and the mortal Alcmene
Alcmene
In Greek mythology, Alcmene or Alcmena was the mother of Heracles.-Background:Alcmene was born to Electryon, the son of Perseus and Andromeda, and king of Tiryns and Mycenae or Medea in Argolis. Her mother was Anaxo, daughter of Alcaeus and Astydamia, daughter of Pelops and Hippodameia...

. Early Roman sources suggest that the imported Greek hero supplanted a mythic Italic shepherd called "Recaranus" or "Garanus", famous for his strength who dedicated the Ara Maxima
Great Altar of Hercules
The Great Altar of Unconquered Hercules stood in the Forum Boarium of ancient Rome. It was the earliest cult-centre of Hercules in Rome, predating the circular Temple of Hercules Victor. The altar stood until it was demolished by order of Pope Sixtus IV...

 that became associated with the earliest Roman cult of Hercules. While adopting much of the Greek Heracles' iconography and mythology as his own, Hercules adopted a number of myths and characteristics that were distinctly Roman. With the spread of Roman hegemony, Hercules was worshiped locally from Hispania
Hispania
Another theory holds that the name derives from Ezpanna, the Basque word for "border" or "edge", thus meaning the farthest area or place. Isidore of Sevilla considered Hispania derived from Hispalis....

 through Gaul
Gaul
Gaul was a region of Western Europe during the Iron Age and Roman era, encompassing present day France, Luxembourg and Belgium, most of Switzerland, the western part of Northern Italy, as well as the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the left bank of the Rhine. The Gauls were the speakers of...

.

Etymology


Hercules' Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 name was not directly borrowed from Greek Heracles but is a modification of the Etruscan
Etruscan mythology
The Etruscans were a diachronically continuous population, with a distinct language and culture during the period of earliest European writing, in the Mediterranean Iron Age in the second half of the first millennium BC...

 name Herceler, which derives from the Greek name via syncope, Heracles translates to "The Glory of Hera
Hera
Hera was the wife and one of three sisters of Zeus in the Olympian pantheon of Greek mythology and religion. Her chief function was as the goddess of women and marriage. Her counterpart in the religion of ancient Rome was Juno. The cow and the peacock were sacred to her...

". An oath invoking Hercules (Hercule! or Mehercle!) was a common interjection
Interjection
In grammar, an interjection or exclamation is a word used to express an emotion or sentiment on the part of the speaker . Filled pauses such as uh, er, um are also considered interjections...

 in Classical Latin
Classical Latin
Classical Latin in simplest terms is the socio-linguistic register of the Latin language regarded by the enfranchised and empowered populations of the late Roman republic and the Roman empire as good Latin. Most writers during this time made use of it...

.

In art


In Roman works of art and in Renaissance and post-Renaissance art that adapts Roman iconography, Hercules can be identified by his attributes, the lion skin
Nemean Lion
The Nemean lion was a vicious monster in Greek mythology that lived at Nemea. It was eventually killed by Heracles. It could not be killed with mortal weapons because its golden fur was impervious to attack...

 and the gnarled club
Club (weapon)
A club is among the simplest of all weapons. A club is essentially a short staff, or stick, usually made of wood, and wielded as a weapon since prehistoric times....

 (his favorite weapon): in mosaic
Mosaic
Mosaic is the art of creating images with an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. It may be a technique of decorative art, an aspect of interior decoration, or of cultural and spiritual significance as in a cathedral...

 he is shown tanned bronze, a virile aspect.

In mythology


According to mythology, Hercules was the illegitimate son of Jupiter
Jupiter (mythology)
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Jupiter or Jove is the king of the gods, and the god of the sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon....

 (Zeus) and Alcmene
Alcmene
In Greek mythology, Alcmene or Alcmena was the mother of Heracles.-Background:Alcmene was born to Electryon, the son of Perseus and Andromeda, and king of Tiryns and Mycenae or Medea in Argolis. Her mother was Anaxo, daughter of Alcaeus and Astydamia, daughter of Pelops and Hippodameia...

, the wisest and most beautiful of all mortal women. Juno
Juno (mythology)
Juno is an ancient Roman goddess, the protector and special counselor of the state. She is a daughter of Saturn and sister of the chief god Jupiter and the mother of Mars and Vulcan. Juno also looked after the women of Rome. Her Greek equivalent is Hera...

 (Hera) was enraged at Jupiter for his infidelity with Alcmene, and even more so that he placed the infant Hercules at her breast as she slept and allowed him to feed, which caused Hercules to be partially immortal, thus, allowing him to surpass all mortal men in strength, size and skill.

Juno held a spiteful grudge against Hercules and sent him into a blind frenzy, in which he killed all of his children and his wife. When Hercules regained his sanity, he sought out the Oracle at Delphi in the hope of making atonement. The Oracle ordered Hercules to serve Eurystheus
Eurystheus
In Greek mythology, Eurystheus was king of Tiryns, one of three Mycenaean strongholds in the Argolid, although other authors including Homer and Euripides cast him as ruler of Argos: Sthenelus was his father and the "victorious horsewoman" Nicippe his mother, and he was a grandson of the hero...

, king of Mycenae
Mycenae
Mycenae is an archaeological site in Greece, located about 90 km south-west of Athens, in the north-eastern Peloponnese. Argos is 11 km to the south; Corinth, 48 km to the north...

, who sent him on a series of tasks known as the Labors of Hercules. These tasks are told in this order:
  1. To kill the Nemean lion
    Nemean Lion
    The Nemean lion was a vicious monster in Greek mythology that lived at Nemea. It was eventually killed by Heracles. It could not be killed with mortal weapons because its golden fur was impervious to attack...

  2. To destroy the Lernaean Hydra
    Lernaean Hydra
    In Greek mythology, the Lernaean Hydra was an ancient nameless serpent-like chthonic water beast, with reptilian traits, that possessed many heads — the poets mention more heads than the vase-painters could paint, and for each head cut off it grew two more — and poisonous breath so virulent even...

  3. To capture Ceryneian Hind
    Ceryneian Hind
    In Greek mythology, the Ceryneian Hind , also called Cerynitis, was an enormous hind , who lived in Keryneia, Greece. It was sacred to Artemis, the chaste goddess of the hunt, animals and unmarried women. It had golden antlers like a stag and hooves of bronze or brass, and it was said that it could...

     alive
  4. To trap the Erymanthian boar
    Erymanthian Boar
    In Greek mythology, the Erymanthian Boar is remembered in connection with The Twelve Labours, in which Heracles, the enemy of Hera, visited in turn "all the other sites of the Goddess throughout the world, to conquer every conceivable 'monster' of nature and rededicate the primordial world to its...

  5. To clean the Augean stables
  6. To get rid of the Stymphalian birds
    Stymphalian birds
    In Greek mythology, the Stymphalian birds were man-eating birds with beaks of bronze and sharp metallic feathers they could launch at their victims, and were sacred to Ares, the god of war. Furthermore, their dung was highly toxic...

  7. To capture the Cretan bull
    Cretan Bull
    In Greek mythology, the Cretan Bull was either the bull that carried away Europa or the bull Pasiphaë fell in love with, giving birth to the Minotaur.- Origin :...

  8. To round up the Mares of Diomedes
    Mares of Diomedes
    The Mares of Diomedes, also called the Mares of Thrace, were four man-eating horses in Greek mythology. Magnificent, wild, and uncontrollable, they belonged to the giant Diomedes , king of Thrace, a son of Ares and Cyrene who lived on the shores of the Black Sea...

  9. To fetch Hippolyte's girdle, or belt
  10. To fetch the cattle of Geryon
    Geryon
    In Greek mythology, Geryon , son of Chrysaor and Callirrhoe and grandson of Medusa, was a fearsome giant who dwelt on the island Erytheia of the mythic Hesperides in the far west of the Mediterranean. A more literal-minded later generation of Greeks associated the region with Tartessos in southern...

  11. To fetch the golden apples of the Hesperides
    Hesperides
    In Greek mythology, the Hesperides are nymphs who tend a blissful garden in a far western corner of the world, located near the Atlas mountains in North Africa at the edge of the encircling Oceanus, the world-ocean....

  12. To bring Cerberus
    Cerberus
    Cerberus , or Kerberos, in Greek and Roman mythology, is a multi-headed hound which guards the gates of the Underworld, to prevent those who have crossed the river Styx from ever escaping...

     from Tartarus
    Tartarus
    In classic mythology, below Uranus , Gaia , and Pontus is Tartarus, or Tartaros . It is a deep, gloomy place, a pit, or an abyss used as a dungeon of torment and suffering that resides beneath the underworld. In the Gorgias, Plato In classic mythology, below Uranus (sky), Gaia (earth), and Pontus...

    .


While he was a champion and a great warrior, he was not above cheating and using any unfair trick to his advantage. However, he was renowned as having "made the world safe for mankind" by destroying many dangerous monsters. Although he was a famous demigod, he still could not prevent his death.

Death of Hercules


Hercules was married to Deianeira
Deianira
Deïanira or Dejanira is a figure in Greek mythology, best-known for being Heracles' third wife and, in the late Classical story, unwittingly killing him with the Shirt of Nessus...

. One day, long after Hercules' marriage to Deianeira, the centaur
Centaur
In Greek mythology, a centaur or hippocentaur is a member of a composite race of creatures, part human and part horse...

 Nessus
Nessus (mythology)
In Greek mythology, Nessus was a famous centaur who was killed by Heracles, and whose tainted blood in turn killed Heracles. He was the son of Centauros. He fought in the battle with the Lapiths. He became a ferryman on the river Euenos....

 offered to ferry them across a wide river that they had to cross. Nessus set off with Deianeira first, but tried to abduct her. When Hercules realized the centaur's real intention, Hercules chased after him and shot him with an arrow which was poisoned with Hydra's
Lernaean Hydra
In Greek mythology, the Lernaean Hydra was an ancient nameless serpent-like chthonic water beast, with reptilian traits, that possessed many heads — the poets mention more heads than the vase-painters could paint, and for each head cut off it grew two more — and poisonous breath so virulent even...

 blood. Before he died, Nessus told Deianeira to take some of his blood and treasure it, since it was a very powerful medicine and: if she ever thought Hercules was being unfaithful, the centaur
Centaur
In Greek mythology, a centaur or hippocentaur is a member of a composite race of creatures, part human and part horse...

 told her, the blood would restore his love. Deianeira kept the vial of blood.

Many years after that incident she heard rumours that Hercules had fallen in love with another woman. She smeared some of the blood on a robe and sent it to Hercules by a servant named Lichas
Lichas
In Greek mythology, Lichas was Hercules' servant, who brought the poisoned shirt from Deianira to Hercules because of her jealousy of Iole, killing him...

. Lichas spilled some blood on the floor and when the sun's rays fell on it the blood begun to burn. Because of this Deianeira began to suspect Nessus's advice and decided to send another servant to fetch Lichas back before he could hand over the blood soaked robe to Hercules. She was too late. Hercules had already put on the robe and when he did so the blood still poisoned from the same arrow used by Hercules, burnt into his flesh. When he jumped into a nearby river in hope of extinguishing the fire, it only made it worse. When he tried to rip off the robe from his body his organs were also ripped off with it.

Furiously, Hercules caught Lichas and tossed him into the sea. After that he told his friend Philoctetes
Philoctetes
Philoctetes or Philocthetes according to Greek mythology, the son of King Poeas of Meliboea in Thessaly. He was a Greek hero, famed as an archer, and was a participant in the Trojan War. He was the subject of at least two plays by Sophocles, one of which is named after him, and one each by both...

 to build him a pyre on the mountain Oata. He was burnt to death on the pyre. Before dying, Hercules offered his bow and arrows as a token of gratitude to Philoctetes. His father Zeus then turned him into a god. Deianeira, after hearing what she had caused, committed suicide.

Germanic association


Tacitus
Tacitus
Publius Cornelius Tacitus was a senator and a historian of the Roman Empire. The surviving portions of his two major works—the Annals and the Histories—examine the reigns of the Roman Emperors Tiberius, Claudius, Nero and those who reigned in the Year of the Four Emperors...

 records a special affinity of the Germanic peoples
Germanic peoples
The Germanic peoples are an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group of Northern European origin, identified by their use of the Indo-European Germanic languages which diversified out of Proto-Germanic during the Pre-Roman Iron Age.Originating about 1800 BCE from the Corded Ware Culture on the North...

 for Hercules. In chapter 3 of his Germania
Germania (book)
The Germania , written by Gaius Cornelius Tacitus around 98, is an ethnographic work on the Germanic tribes outside the Roman Empire.-Contents:...

, Tacitus states:

... they say that Hercules, too, once visited them; and when going into battle, they sang of him first of all heroes. They have also those songs of theirs, by the recital of this barditus as they call it, they rouse their courage, while from the note they augur the result of the approaching conflict. For, as their line shouts, they inspire or feel alarm.


In the Roman era Hercules' Club
Hercules' Club (amulet)
Hercules' Club is a Roman Empire and Migration era artefact type.Roman era Hercules's Clubs appear from the 2nd to 3rd century, spread over the empire Hercules' Club (also Hercules-club, Club-of-Hercules; German ) is a Roman Empire and Migration era artefact type.Roman era Hercules's Clubs...

 amulets appear from the 2nd to 3rd century, distributed over the empire (including Roman Britain
Roman Britain
Roman Britain was the part of the island of Great Britain controlled by the Roman Empire from AD 43 until ca. AD 410.The Romans referred to the imperial province as Britannia, which eventually comprised all of the island of Great Britain south of the fluid frontier with Caledonia...

, c.f. Cool 1986), mostly made of gold, shaped like wooden clubs. A specimen found in Köln-Nippes bears the inscription "DEO HER[culi]", confirming the association with Hercules.

In the 5th to 7th centuries, during the Migration Period
Migration Period
The Migration Period, also called the Barbarian Invasions , was a period of intensified human migration in Europe that occurred from c. 400 to 800 CE. This period marked the transition from Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages...

, the amulet is theorized to have rapidly spread from the Elbe Germanic area across Europe. These Germanic "Donar's Clubs" were made from deer antler, bone or wood, more rarely also from bronze or precious metals. They are found exclusively in female graves, apparently worn either as a belt pendant, or as an ear pendant. The amulet type is replaced by the Viking Age
Viking Age
Viking Age is the term for the period in European history, especially Northern European and Scandinavian history, spanning the late 8th to 11th centuries. Scandinavian Vikings explored Europe by its oceans and rivers through trade and warfare. The Vikings also reached Iceland, Greenland,...

 Thor's hammer
Thor's Hammer
Thor's Hammer may refer to:* Mjölnir, the hammer wielded by Thor in Norse mythology*Thor's Hammer , a garage rock band from Iceland*Thorr's Hammer, a death/doom band from Ballard, Washington...

 pendants in the course of the Christianization of Scandinavia
Christianization of Scandinavia
The Christianization of Scandinavia took place between the 8th and the 12th century. The realms of Scandinavia proper, Denmark, Norway and Sweden, established their own Archdioceses, responsible directly to the Pope, in 1104, 1154 and 1164, respectively...

 from the 8th to 9th century.

In numismatics


Hercules has been the main motif of many collector coins and medals, the most recent one is the 20 euro Baroque Silver coin issued on September 11, 2002. The obverse side of the coin shows the Grand Staircase in the town palace of Prince Eugene of Savoy
Prince Eugene of Savoy
Prince Eugene of Savoy , was one of the most successful military commanders in modern European history, rising to the highest offices of state at the Imperial court in Vienna. Born in Paris to aristocratic Italian parents, Eugene grew up around the French court of King Louis XIV...

 in Vienna
Vienna
Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...

, currently the Austrian Ministry of Finance. Gods and demi-gods hold its flights, while Hercules stands at the turn of the stairs.

Hercules filmography


A series of nineteen Italian Hercules movies were made in the late 1950's and early 1960's. The actors who played Hercules in these films were Steve Reeves
Steve Reeves
Stephen L. Reeves was an American bodybuilder and actor. At the peak of his career, he was the highest-paid actor in Europe.-Childhood:...

, Gordon Scott
Gordon Scott
Gordon Scott was an American film and television actor known for his portrayal of the fictional character Tarzan in five films of the Tarzan film series from 1955 to 1960.-Early life, education and military service:He was born Gordon Merrill Werschkul in Portland,...

, Kirk Morris, Mickey Hargitay
Mickey Hargitay
Miklós "Mickey" Hargitay was an actor and Mr. Universe 1955. Born in Budapest, Hungary, he was married to Jayne Mansfield, and the father of actress Mariska Hargitay...

, Mark Forest, Alan Steel, Dan Vadis
Dan Vadis
Dan Vadis was an actor of Greek descent with lineage tracing back to the infamous island of Chios in the Aegean Sea. This former U.S...

, Brad Harris
Brad Harris
Bradford Harris is an American actor, stuntman, and executive producer. He appeared in a variety of roles in over 50 films, mostly in European productions. He is a member of the Stuntman's Hall of Fame.- Life and career :...

, Reg Park
Reg Park
Roy "Reg" Park from Leeds in West Yorkshire, England, was a bodybuilder, businessman and film actor.-Biography:...

, Peter Lupus
Peter Lupus
Peter Lupus is an American bodybuilder and actor of Syrian ancestry. He attended the Jordan College of Fine Arts at Butler University, where he also played football and basketball, graduating in 1954...

 (billed as Rock Stevens) and Michael Lane. The films are listed below by their American release titles, and the titles in parentheses are the original Italian titles with English translation.
  • Hercules
    Hercules (1958 film)
    Hercules is a 1958 Italian epic fantasy feature film based upon the Hercules myths and the Quest for the Golden Fleece. The film stars Steve Reeves as the titular hero and Sylva Koscina as his love interest Princess Iole. Hercules was directed by Pietro Francisci and produced by Federico Teti...

    (Le Fatiche di Ercole/ The Labors of Hercules, 1957) starring Steve Reeves
  • Hercules Unchained (Ercole e la regina di Lidia/ Hercules and the Queen of Lydia, 1959) starring Steve Reeves
  • Goliath and the Dragon (La Vendetta di Ercole/ The Revenge of Hercules, 1960) (this Hercules film had its title changed to Goliath when it was distributed in the U.S.)
  • Hercules Vs The Hydra (Gli Amori di Ercole/ The Loves of Hercules, 1960) co-starring Jayne Mansfield
  • Hercules and the Captive Women (Ercole alla conquista di Atlantide/Hercules at the Conquest of Atlantis, 1961) (alternate U.S. title: Hercules and the Haunted Women)
  • Hercules in the Haunted World
    Hercules in the Haunted World
    Hercules in The Haunted World is a 1961 Italian sword and sandal film directed by director Mario Bava and starring British-born bodybuilder Reg Park as Hercules and legendary British actor Christopher Lee as his nemesis, Lico. It is the sequel to Hercules and the Captive Women...

    (Ercole al centro della terra/Hercules at the Center of the Earth) 1961 (directed by Mario Bava)
  • Hercules in the Vale of Woe (Maciste contro Ercole nella valle dei guai/Maciste Vs. Hercules in the Vale of Woe) 1961
  • Ulysses Vs. The Son of Hercules (Ulisse contro Ercole/Ulysses Vs. Hercules) 1962
  • The Fury of Hercules (La Furia di Ercole/The Fury of Hercules, a.k.a. The Fury of Samson) 1962
  • Hercules, Samson and Ulysses (Ercole sfida Sansone/Hercules Challenges Samson) 1963
  • Hercules Vs. the Moloch (Ercole contro Molock/Hercules Vs. Moloch, 1963) (alternate U.S. title: The Conquest of Mycene)
  • Son of Hercules in the Land of Darkness (Ercole l'invincibile/Hercules, the Invincible) 1964 (this was originally a Hercules film that was retitled to "Son of Hercules" so that it could be included in the "Sons of Hercules" TV syndication package)
  • Hercules Vs. The Giant Warrior (il Trionfo di Ercole/The Triumph of Hercules, 1964) (alternate U.S. title: Hercules and the Ten Avengers)
  • Hercules Against Rome (Ercole contro Roma, 1964)
  • Hercules Against the Sons of the Sun (Ercole contro i figli del sole, 1964)
  • Hercules and the Tyrants of Babylon (Ercole contro i tiranni di Babilonia, 1964)
  • Samson and the Mighty Challenge (Ercole, Sansone, Maciste e Ursus: gli invincibili, 1964) (a.k.a. Combate dei Gigantes)
  • Hercules and the Princess of Troy (a.k.a. Hercules vs. the Sea Monster) No Italian title, 1965 (this 48-minute Italian/U.S. co-production was made as a pilot for a Charles Band-produced TV series that never materialized)
  • Hercules, the Avenger (Sfida dei giganti/Challenge of the Giants, 1965) This film was composed mostly of stock footage from 2 earlier Reg Park Hercules films, made to be released directly to U.S. television


A number of English-dubbed Italian films that featured the Hercules name in their title were never intended to be Hercules movies by their Italian creators.
  • Hercules, Prisoner of Evil was actually a retitled Ursus film.
  • Hercules and the Black Pirate and Hercules and the Treasure of the Incas were both retitled Samson movies.
  • Hercules and the Masked Rider was actually a retitled Goliath movie.
  • Hercules Against the Moon Men, Hercules Against the Barbarians, Hercules Against the Mongols and Hercules of the Desert were all originally Maciste films.

None of these films in their original Italian versions were connected to the Hercules character in any way. Likewise, most of the Sons of Hercules movies shown on American TV in the 1960s had nothing to do with Hercules in their original Italian incarnations.
  • The Three Stooges
    Three Stooges
    The Three Stooges were an American vaudeville and comedy act of the early to mid–20th century best known for their numerous short subject films. Their hallmark was physical farce and extreme slapstick. In films, the Stooges were commonly known by their first names: "Moe, Larry, and Curly" and "Moe,...

     made an American comedy in 1962 called The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
    The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
    The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was the third feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was directed by long-time...

    with Samson Burke playing Hercules.
  • In 1970 Arnold Schwarzenegger
    Arnold Schwarzenegger
    Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger is an Austrian-American former professional bodybuilder, actor, businessman, investor, and politician. Schwarzenegger served as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 until 2011....

     starred in Hercules in New York
    Hercules in New York
    Hercules in New York is a 1969 fantasy adventure film. It is known for being the first feature film to star Arnold Schwarzenegger, who was about 22 years old when the film was produced...

    .

See also

  • Cudgel of Hercules
    Maczuga Herkulesa
    Maczuga Herkulesa is a tall limestone monadnock situated in Ojców National Park near Pieskowa Skała, north of Kraków in southern Poland. Its name, in Polish, means the "cudgel of Hercules", due to its distinctive shape....

  • Labours of Hercules
  • Pillars of Hercules
    Pillars of Hercules
    The Pillars of Hercules was the phrase that was applied in Antiquity to the promontories that flank the entrance to the Strait of Gibraltar. The northern Pillar is the Rock of Gibraltar in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar...

  • Sword-and-sandal
  • Heracles
    Heracles
    Heracles ,born Alcaeus or Alcides , was a divine hero in Greek mythology, the son of Zeus and Alcmene, foster son of Amphitryon and great-grandson of Perseus...

  • Zeus
    Zeus
    In the ancient Greek religion, Zeus was the "Father of Gods and men" who ruled the Olympians of Mount Olympus as a father ruled the family. He was the god of sky and thunder in Greek mythology. His Roman counterpart is Jupiter and his Etruscan counterpart is Tinia.Zeus was the child of Cronus...

  • Hercules (comics)
    Hercules (comics)
    Hercules, or Heracles, in comics, may refer to:* Hercules , a long-running Marvel character** Hercules, a trainee member of The Order.* Hercules , a DC Comics character...


External links



}
    • “Hercules and the Wagoner,” by Aesop
      Aesop
      Aesop was a Greek writer credited with a number of popular fables. Older spellings of his name have included Esop and Isope. Although his existence remains uncertain and no writings by him survive, numerous tales credited to him were gathered across the centuries and in many languages in a...

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      Hamilton Wright Mabie, A.M., L.H.D., LL.D. was an American essayist, editor, critic, and lecturer.-Biography:He was born at Cold Spring, N. Y. in 1846. Mabie was the youngest child of Sarah Colwell Mabie who was from a wealthy Scottish-English family and Levi Jeremiah Mabie, whose ancestors were...


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