Greek Name Transliteration Latin Spelling Translation

OLYMPOS (or Olympus) was a giant or Titan wof the island of Krete (Crete). He raised the young god Zeus, but later incited the Gigantes to rebel against him and was destroyed in the battle which ensued.

Presumably GAIA (see Gigantes)

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Bk2 (trans. Pearse) (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"The tomb which passes for that of Zeus in Krete (Crete) is that of Olympos of Krete, who received Zeus son of Kronos (Cronus), raised him and taught divine things to him; but Zeus, he says, struck down his foster-parent and master because he had pushed the Gigantes (Giants) to attack him in his turn; but when he had struck, before his body he was full of remorse and, since he could appease his sorrow in no other way, he gave his own name to the tomb of his victim."
[N.B. The Gigantes of this myth may have been the Kouretes (Curetes) or the Titanes.]

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 71. 2 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"Before the battle against the Gigantes in Krete (Crete) [i.e. the Titanes], we are told, Zeus sacrificed a bull to Helios (Sun) and to Ouranos (Sky) and to Ge (Earth)."

Ovid, Fasti 3. 793 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman poet C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
[Cf. Kronos and the Titanes in the following passage with Hephaestion's Olympos and hte Gigantes.]
"Saturnus [Kronos] was thrust from his realm by Jove [Zeus]. In anger he stirs the mighty Titanes to arms and seeks the assistance owed by fate."

NOTES: Olympos or Oulympos as the name is also spelt was probably identified with Kronos (Time), the father of Zeus, and plays a similar role. In a Greek description of the Phoenician cosmogony by the writer Mochos, a primeval god named Oulomos (World-Time) (cf. the name Oulympos) is born to Aither (the Light of Heaven). This figure clearly coincides with the Greek Kronos (Time) son of Ouranos (Heaven). Kronos was also closely associated with the shrine of Olympia in Elis, where he was said to have wrestled with Zeus over the throne of heaven.
Olympos may also have been the same as Mylinos, a giant mentioned by Diodorus Siculus who was vanquished by Zeus on the island of Krete. His name, meaning "the mill-stone", perhaps imagines the grinding wheel of time.


  • Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History - Greek History C1st B.C.
  • Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History - Greek Mythographer C1st-2nd A.D.
  • Photius, Myriobiblon - Byzantine Greek Scholar C9th A.D.
  • Ovid, Fasti - Latin Epic C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.