Essay on Hermes: the Trickster

685 Words Jul 29th, 2006 3 Pages
Hermes, son of Zeus, is one of the twelve Olympian Gods in Greek Mythology. He's described as: "blandly cunning, a robber, a cattle driver, a bringer of dreams, a watcher by night, a thief at the gates, one who was soon to show forth wonderful deeds among the deathless gods" in the Homeric Hymn dedicated to Hermes (ll. 1-29). Of all of his attributes, I find that he being a deceptive trickster stands out the most. Greek Mythology tells the story of other deceptive characters, but none of them come close to the level of Hermes.
Hermes was a devious character since the day of his birth when he stole the cattle of Apollo. When confronted by Apollo, Hermes told him: "I cannot give news of them, nor win the reward for news. Am I like a
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Another showing of Hermes' intelligence is how he executed Argus to free Io, Zeus' lover that was turned into a cow. Instead of going through a fight with the 100-eyed monster (that could've been lost easily), Hermes used his Lyre to put the monster to sleep, he then beheaded Argus using Zeus' sickle. Other than being quite crafty on the way he handled Argus, Hermes probably was thinking of pleasing Zeus even more to become more and more his go-to man, which explains the good relationship between Zeus and Hermes.
Zeus was probably the greatest believer in Hermes' deceiving techniques, that can be seen by the sending of Hermes to try to convince Prometheus to tell Zeus the name of the woman that would bare Zeus' successor. Prometheus was quite the trickster himself, and Zeus probably sent Hermes to talk to Prometheus not just because Hermes was Zeus' trusted messenger, but I think because Zeus was hoping that Hermes might be able to "out-trick" Prometheus.
Although some of the stories about Hermes' slickness wouldn't be appreciated by today's standards of story complexity, he's quite deceptive compared to other Olympians and stories from that era. The tales about Hermes show how crafty and tricky he was. I also think that he had long-term thinking when he deceived someone. This can be seen from how he befriended Apollo and how he became Zeus' right hand. I also think that he probably had the easiest life out of all the Olympians since he never tackled

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