When considering the many infidelities (and subsequently the many offspring that sprang from them) of Zeus, I often wonder if it might not be easier to ask the question, “Who didn’t Zeus sleep with?”.

I doubt there would have been a hand raised in ancient Greece when asked that particular question.

Zeus, Lord of the skies, of thunder, and chief among the gods of Ancient Greece was also Lord of being a total man whore. The affairs of Zeus are legendary, few deities in mythology can match the raw virility such a figure and even fewer can match the incredibly weird ways in which he wooed some of those ladies. There are a lot of guys out there that like to imagine themselves lady killers, the sort of dudes that can get any girl under any circumstances. The day those guys can somehow turn themselves into a swan and get it on with an attractive woman is the day they can be correct in those assumptions.

Yeah that’s right. Zeus became a swan, got it on, and had some kids. Imagine Leda (the woman in question) trying to explain THAT one to her children.

The craziest part of all this isn’t that Zeus was able to make-a-love to so many women, nor is it that he was seemingly so potent that every coupling left him with at least a single child, it’s the fact that through it all, his wife, Hera, stayed by his side. Goddess of the home and hearth, matron of marriage, Hera stayed faithful to Zeus through centuries of storytelling, never once deviating despite her husband’s sexual rampaging.

That’s not to say that Hera was a pleasant person all the time, however. Hera’s rage at the women who so roused her husband’s passion is about as legendary as Zeus’s sexual appetite and has been a focal point in several myths, including the tale of Hercules. Despite being a sympathetic ear (one of the few in Greek mythology) for the women of Greece, Hera’s fury was unmatched when it came to dealing with those who dared engage in dalliances with Zeus.

It’s interesting to note that despite helping untold numbers of Greek couples make their marriages happy ones, Hera was never able to help her own. That’s a very human thing to deal with and one that I suspect was no accident from the people telling these tales thousands of years ago. The fact that Hera held on in spite of her husband’s very obvious flaws is both a testament to her womanly duties (as it was seen at the time) and the sad state relationships can turn to when problems aren’t solved together.

Perhaps Hera is still out there somewhere, hanging out with Zeus. Maybe the lack of interest from modern day ladies has caused Zeus to finally settle down and appreciate what he’s got instead of always looking for greener pastures.

That’s a lesson a lot of people, both men and woman, could learn.