Web Theoi
GIGANTES
 
Greek Name Transliteration Latin Spelling Translation
Γιγας Γιγαντος
Γιγαντες
Gigas, Gigantos
Gigantes
Gigant
Gigantes
Giants, Earth-Born
(gê, genetê)
Serpent-legged Gigantes | Roman mosaic C3rd A.D. | Villa Romana del Casale, Piazza Amerina
A wounded, serpent-footed giant, Roman
mosaic C3rd A.D. , Villa Romana del Casale

THE GIGANTES were a tribe of one hundred Giants born of Gaia the Earth. Some say their father was Tartaros the hell pit, others that they were born from the blood of the castrated Ouranos (Heaven).

At the instigation of Gaia they made war on the gods but were destroyed in the ensuing battle with the help of Herakles. The most famous of the combatants were Enkelados who was burried beneath the island of Sicily by Athena, Polybotes who was crushed beneath the rock of Nisyros by Poseidon, and Porphyrion who was slain by Zeus and Herakles when he attempted to violate Hera.

The Gigantes were depicted as either hoplite warriors dressed in armour and wielding spears or as primitives wearing panther skins armed with rocks and flaming torches. In sculpture and mosaic they were usually shown with the tails of serpents for legs.
The Gigantes might have represented the primitive northern tribes of Thrake, whose barbarian culture was viewed as standing in opposition to Greek civilisation. Some say the Thrakian tribes were born from the blood or ashes of the vanquished Giants.

In Italy the turning of these buried giants was believed to be the cause of volcanism and thermal activity, from the thermal plains of Campania, to the volcanoes of Etna and Vesuvius.

PARENTS
[1.1] Blood of OURANOS & GAIA (Hesiod Theogony 176, Apollodorus 1.34)
[1.2] GAIA (Bacchylides Frag 15, Diodorus Siculus 4.15.1, Ovid Metamorphoses 1.151)
[1.3] TARTAROS & GAIA (Hyginus Preface)
NAMES

[1.1] ALKYONEUS, PORPHYRION, ENKELADOS, EPHIALTES, EURYTOS, KLYTIOS, MIMAS, PALLAS, POLYBOTES, HIPPOLYTOS, AIGAION, AGRIOS, THOON (Apollodorus 1.34)
[1.2] ENKELADOS, KOIOS, ASTRAIOS, PELOROS, PALLAS, EMPHYTOS, RHOIKOS, AGRIOS, EPHIALTES, EURYTOS, THEOMISES, THEODAMAS, OTOS, TYPHON, POLYBOTES, IAPETOS (Hyginus Preface)
[1.3] KOIOS, EURYMEDON (Propertius Elegies 3.9)
[1.4] ALKYONEUS, PORPHYRION, ENKELADOS, KHTHONION, PELOREUS, TYPHOEUS (Nonnus Dionysiaca 25.85 & 48.6)
[1.5] PANKRATES, POLYBOTES, ORANION, EPHIALTES, EUPHORBOS, EUBOIOS (Athenian Black Figure Vase Beazley 10047)
[1.6] POLYBOTES, EURYALOS (Athenian Red Figure Vase Beazley 200125)
[1.7] HYPERBIOS, EPHIALTES, AGASTHENES, ENKELADOS, POLYBOTES (Athenian Black Figure Vase Beazley 14590)
[1.8] PORPHYRION, ENKELADOS (Athenian Black Figure Vase Beazley 10148)

OFFSPRING
[1.1] A RACE OF MEN (born from the blood of the slain Gigantes) (Ovid Metamorphoses 1.151)

ENCYCLOPEDIA

GIGANTES (Gigantes). In the story about the Gigantes or giants, we must distinguish the early legends from the later ones. According to Homer, they were a gigantic and savage race of men, governed by Eurymedon, and dwelling in the distant west, in the island of Thrinacia; but they were extirpated by Eurymedon on account of their insolence towards the gods. (Hom. Od. vii. 59, 206, x. 120; comp. Paus. viii. 29. § 2.) Homer accordingly looked upon the Gigantes, like the Phaeacians, Cyclopes, and Laestrygones, as a race of Autochthones, whom, with the exception of the Phaeacians, the gods destroyed for their overbearing insolence, but neither he nor Hesiod knows any thing about the contest of the gods with the Gigantes. Hesiod (Theog. 185), however, considers them as divine beings, who sprang from the blood that fell from Uranus upon the earth, so that Ge was their mother. Later poets and mythographers frequently confound them with the Titans (Serv. ad Aen. viii. 698, Georg. i. 166, 278; Hor. Carm. iii. 4. 42), and Hyginus (Praef. Fab. p. l) calls them the sons of Ge (Terra) and Tartarus. Their battle with Zeus and the Olympian gods seems to be only an imitation of the revolt of the Titans against Uranus. Ge, it is said (Apollod. i. 6. § 1, &c.), indignant at the fate of her former children, the Titans, gave birth to the Gigantes, that is, monstrous and unconquerable giants, with fearful countenances and the tails of dragons. (Comp. Ov. Trist. iv. 7, 17.) They were born, according to some, in Phlegrae (i. e. burning fields), in Sicily, Campania, or Arcadia, and, according to others, in the Thracian Pallene. (Apollod., Paus. ll. cc. ; Pind. Nem. i. 67; Strab. pp. 245, 281, 330; Schol. ad Hom. Il. viii. 479.) It is worthy of remark that Homer, as well as later writers, places the Gigantes in volcanic districts, and most authorities in the western parts of Europe. In their native land they made an attack upon heaven, being armed with huge rocks and the trunks of trees. (Ov. Met. i. 151, &c.) Porphyrion and Alcyoneus distinguished themselves above their brethren. The latter of them, who had carried off the oxen of Helios from Erytheia, was immortal so long as he fought in his native land; and the gods were informed that they should not be able to kill one giant unless they were assisted by some mortal in their fight against the monsters. (Comp. Schol. ad Pind. Nem. i. 100; Eratosth. Catast. 11.) Ge, on hearing of this, discovered a herb which would save the giants from being killed by mortal hands; but Zeus forbade Helios and Eos to shine, took himself the herb, and invited Heracles to give his assistance against the giants. Heracles, indeed, killed Alcyoneus, but as the giant fell on the ground, lie came to life again. On the advice of Athena, Heracles dragged him away from his native land, and thus slew him effectually. Porphyrion attacked Heracles and Hera, but was killed by the combined efforts of Zeus and Heracles, the one using a flash of lightning and the other his arrows. (Comp. Pind. Pyth. viii. 19 with the Schol.) The other giants, whose number, according to Hyginus, amounted to twenty-four, were then killed one after another by the gods and Heracles, and some of them were buried by their conquerors under (volcanic) islands. (Eurip. Cycl. 7; Diod. iv. 21; Strab. p. 489; Serv. ad Aen. iii. 578.) The fight of the giants with the gods was represented by Phidias on the inside of the shield of his statue of Athena. (Plin. H. N. xxxvi. 5. 4.) The origin of the story of the Gigantes must probably be sought for in similar physical phenomena in nature, especially volcanic ones, from which arose the stories about the Cyclopes.

Source: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.

LIST OF GIANTS

AGASTHENES One of the Gigantes.

AGRIOS A Gigante clubbed to death by the Moirai (Fates) with maces of bronze.
AIGAION A Gigante slain by Artemis with her arrows in the war against the gods.
ALKYONEUS A King of the Gigantes who was slain by Herakles in their war against the gods. The Gigante was immortal within the confines of his homeland of Pallene, so the hero felled him with arrows and hen dragged him beyond the borders to die.
ARISTAIOS The only Gigante to survive the war against the gods. His mother Gaia (the Earth) hid him away in the shape of a dung beetle.
ASTRAIOS One of the Gigantes. He was perhaps the same as the Titan of the same.
AZEIOS A Gigante who fought in the Titan Wars. He was an ancestor of the Arkadian kings.
DAMYSOS A swiftest of the Gigantes who was slain in the war against the gods. Kheiron exumed his body and extracting the swift "astragale" from his foot placed it in the heel of the hero Akhilleus.
EMPHYTOS One of the Gigantes.
ENKELADOS A Gigante who fought Athene in the war against the gods. When he fled from the battlefield, Athene crushed him beneath Sicilian Mount Aitna.
EPHIALTES A Gigante slain by Apollon and Herakles in the war against the gods. Each each pierced one of the Gigante's eyes with their arrows. He was probably the same as the Aload giant Ephialtes.
EUBOIOS One of the Gigantes.
EUPHORBOS One of the Gigantes.
EURYALOS One of the Gigantes.
EURYMEDON The King of the Gigantes who led his people to their doom.
EURYTOS A Gigante slain by Dionysos with his pine-cone tipped thyrsos in the war against the gods.
HIPPOLYTOS A Gigante slain by Hermes with his sword and wearing the cap of invisibility in the war against the gods.
HYPERBIOS One of the Gigantes.
IAPETOS One of the Gigantes. He was probably the same as the Titan of the same name.
KHTHONIOS One of the Gigantes.
KLYTIOS A Gigante immolated by the torches of Hekate in the war against the gods.
KOIOS One of the Gigantes. He was presumably the same as the Titan of the same name.
LEON A Gigante who battled Herakles in the war against the gods. The hero made a protective cloak from his leonine skin.
MIMAS A Gigante slain by Hephaistos with a volley of molten iron in the war against the gods.
MIMON A Gigante despatched by Ares in the war against the gods. He was perhaps the same as Mimas.
"MOLIOS" The Gigante opponent of the sun-god Helios who was slain after fierce fighting on the Isle of Aiaia. From his blood sprung the magical moly plant.
MYLINOS One of the Gigantes who was slain by Zeus on the island of Krete.
OLYMPOS The Gigante foster-father of Zeus, who urged his brethren to rise up against the gods.
OTOS One of the Gigantes. He was probably the same as the Aload giant of the same name.
OURANION One of the Gigantes.
PALLAS A Gigante slain by Athena in the war against the gods. She stripped off his goatish skin and made of it a shield for the battle (the aigis). He was perhaps the same as the Titan of the same name.
PANKRATES One of the Gigantes.
PELOREUS A many-armed Gigante who fought the gods wielding Mount Pelion.
PERIBOIA The youngest daughter of the King of the Gigantes. She was probably a giantess.
PHOITIOS A Gigante slain by Hera in the war against the gods.
POLYBOTES A Gigante who fought Poseidon in the war against the gods. When he fled the battlefield, Poseidon pursued and crushed him beneath the rock of Nisyros on the island of Kos.
PORPHYRION The King of the Gigantes who attempted to rape Hera in the war against the gods. Zeus struck him down with a thunderbolt and Herakles with an arrow.
RHOIKOS One of the Gigantes.
SYKEUS A Gigante pursued by Zeus to Kilikia where Gaia (the Earth) transformed him into a fig-tree to escape the god.
THEODAMAS One of the Gigantes.
THEOMISES One of the Gigantes.
THOON A Gigante clubbed to death in the war against the gods by the Moirai (Fates) with maces of bronze.
TYPHOEUS A Gigante slain by Dionysos in the war against the gods.

Gigantomachy | Greek vase painting
L20.1 GIGANTES,
GODS
Hermes & the Gigante Hippolytus | Greek vase painting
K11.3 HIPPOLYTOS,
HERMES
Zeus, Heracles, Hera & the Giant Porphyrion | Greek vase painting
K4.4 PORPHYRION,
HERA, HERAKLES
Hecate & the Gigante Clytius | Greek vase painting
T16.1 KLYTIOS,
HEKATE

Greek Name Transliteration Latin Spelling Translation
Ευρυμεδων Eurymedon Eurymedon Wide-Ruling
Αλκυονευς Alkyoneus Alcyoneus Halcyon Calm,
Kingfisher (alkyôn
Πορφυριων Porphyriôn Porphyrion Heaving, Surging
( porphyreôs)
Εφιαλτης Ephialtês Ephialtes Nightmare (ephialtês)
Ευρυτος Eurytos Eurytus Full-Flowing
(eu-, rhytos)
Κλυτιος Klytios Clytius Renowned, Glorious
(klytos)
Μιμας Mimas Mimas Imitator, mimic ?
(mimos)
Εγκελαδος Enkelados Enceladus Sound of the Charge
(enkeleuô)
Παλλας Pallas Pallas Spear Brandishing
(pallô)
Πολυβωτης Polybôtês Polybotes Many-Feeding, Fertile? (polybôtos)
Ἱππολυτος Hippolytos Hippolytus Loosing Horses
(hippos, lytos)
Αιγαιων Aigaiôn Aegaeon Stormy (aigis),
Of the Aegean Sea
Θοων Thoôn Thoon Swift, Fast (thoos)
Αγριος Agrios Agrius Wild, Uncivilized (agrios)
Φοιτιος Phoitios Phoetius Wildly Roaming
(phoitaô)
Ευρυμεδων Eurymedôn Eurymedon Wide-Ruling
(eury-, medôn)
Χθονιος Khthonios Chthonius Of the Earth
(khthonios)
Πελωρευς Peloreus Peloreus Monstrous, Huge
(pelôros)
Τυφωευς Typhoeus Typhoeus Smouldering, Smoking (tuphô)
Πανκρατες Pankrates Pancrates All-Powerful
(pan, krateros)
Ουρανιων Ouraniôn Uranion Heavenly
(ouranos)
Ευφορβος Euphorbos Euphorbus Well-Fed
(eu-, pherbô)
Ευβοιος Euboios Euboeus Well Cattled
(eu-, bous)
Ευρυαλος Euryalos Euryalus Warlike (euryalos)
Αγασθενης Agasthenês Agasthenes Very Strong
(aga-, sthenos)
Ὑπερβιος Hyperbios Hyperbius Overwhelming
Strength
Εμφυτος Emphytos Emphytus Implanted, Natural
(emphytos)
Ροικος Rhoikos Rhoecus Crooked, Bow-Legged (rhoikos)
Θεομισης Theomises Theomises Hated by the Gods
(theomisês)
Θεοδαμας Theodamas Theodamas Conquered by Gods
(theos, damazô)
Κοιος Koios Coeus Questioning (koios)
Ιαπετος Iapetos Iapetus Piercing (iaptô)
Αστραιος Astraios Astraeus Starry (astraios)
Δαμυσος Damysos Damysus Subdue, Conquer?
(damazô)
Αρισταιος Aristaios Aristaeus Most Excellent,
Best (aristos)
Ολυμπος Olympos Olympus Of Mt Olympus
Μυλινος Mylinos Mylinus Mill-Stone (mylinos)
Συκευς Sykeus Syceus Fig-Tree (sykea)

BIRTH OF THE GIGANTES

Hesiod, Theogony 176 ff (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C8th or C7th B.C.) :
"Then the son [Kronos, Cronus] from his ambush stretched forth his left hand and in his right took the great long sickle with jagged teeth, and swiftly lopped off his own father's [Ouranos', Heaven's] members and cast them away to fall behind him. And not vainly did they fall from his hand; for all the bloody drops that gushed forth Gaia (the Earth) received, and as the seasons moved round she bare the strong Erinyes and the great Gigantes (Giants) with gleaming armour."
[N.B. The giants described in this passage might actually be the Kouretes (Curetes), the protectors of the infant Zeus, and their sisters, the Meliai, his nurses.]

Homer, Odyssey 7. 200 ff (trans. Shewring) (Greek epic C8th B.C.) :
"[King Alkinoos (Alcinous) of the Phaiekes (Phaeacians) speaks of his people:] ‘In the past they [the gods] have always appeared undisguised among us at our offering of noble hecatombs; they have feasted beside us, they have sat at the same table. And if one of us comes upon them as he travels alone, then too they have never as yet made concealment, because we are close of kin (egguthen) to themselves, just like those of the Kyklopes (Cyclopes) race or the savage people (phyla) of the Gigantes (Giants).’"
[N.B. It is not clear exactly why Homer describes these three races as "close of kin." Later classical writers, however, explain this passage by saying that the Gigante, Phaeacian (and presumably Kyklops) tribes were born of the Earth when she was impregnated by the blood of the castrated sky-god Ouranos. Cf. Apollonius Rhodius 4.982 on the sickle of Kronos.]

Odyssey 10.119 ff :
"They [the Laistrygones] came thronging up in multitudes, looking not like men but like the lawless Gigantes (Giants)."
[N.B. Homer may be implying that these two gigantic races were kin.]

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Now because of her anger over the Titanes [who were imprisoned in Tartaros by Zeus], Ge (Earth) gave birth to the Gigantes (Giants), Ouranos (Sky) was the father."

Greek Lyric V Anonymous, Fragments 985 (from Hippolytus, Refutation of all the Heresies) (trans. Campbell) (Greek lyric B.C.) :
"Ge (the Earth), say the Greeks, was the first to produce man . . . But it is hard to discover [who] . . . was the first of men to appear . . . [whether it was the Earth of] Pellene to [which was born] Phlegraian Alkyoneus, eldest of the Gigantes (Giants) [or another]."

Lycophron, Alexandra 126 (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"Pallenia, nurse of the earth-born Gigantes (Giants)."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 29. 1 - 3 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"The Arkadians say that the fabled battle between Gigantes (Giants) and gods took place here [Trapezos in Arkadia] and not at Pellene, Thrakia (Thrace), and at this spot sacrifices are offered to lightnings, hurricanes and thunders.
Homer does not mention Gigantes at all in the Iliad, but in the Odyssey he relates how the Laistrygones [were] . . . not in the likeness of men but of Gigantes, and he makes also the king of the Phaiakes (Phaeacians) say that the Phaiakes are near to the gods like the Kyklopes (Cyclopes) and the race of Gigantes. In these places he indicates that the Gigantes are mortal, and not of divine race, and his words in the following passage are plainer still:--‘Who once was king among the haughty Gigantes; but he destroyed the infatuate folk, and was destroyed himself.’ Folk in the poetry of Homer means the common people. That the Gigantes had serpents for feet is an absurd tale."
[N.B. The Phaiakes, wild Kyklopes and Gigantes were perhaps all born of Gaia by the blood of Ouranos.]

Pseudo-Hyginus, Preface :
"From Terra [Gaia] and Tartarus [were born]: Gigantes--Enceladus, Coeus, elentes, mophius, Astraeus, Pelorus, Pallas, Emphytus, Rhoecus, ienios, Agrius, alemone, Ephialtes, Eurytus, effracordon, Theomises, Theodamas, Otus, Typhon, Polybotes, meephriarus, abesus, colophonus, Iapetus."
[N.B. Several Titanes--namely Iapetos, Koios, Pallas and Astraios --appear in this list of Gigantes.]

Virgil, Georgics 1. 276 (trans. Fairclough) (Roman bucolic C1st B.C.) :
"Luna [Selene the Moon] herself has ordained various days in various grades as lucky for work. Shun the fifth . . . then in monstrous labour Terra [Gaia the Earth] bore Coeus, and Iapetus and fierce Typhoeus, and the brethren [Gigantes] who were banded to break down Heaven."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 25. 85 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"The coiling sons of Gaia (Earth) with two hundred hands [i.e. there were a hundred Gigantes]."


Poseidon & the Gigante Polybotes | Greek vase painting
T1.1 POLYBOTES,
POSEIDON
Zeus & the Gigante Porphyrion | Greek vase painting
K1.3 PORPHYRION,
ZEUS
Apollo & the Gigante Ephialtes | Greek vase painting
K5.8 EPHIALTES,
APOLLON
Ares & the Gigante Mimon | Greek vase painting
K9.5 MIMON,
ARES

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTIONS OF THE GIGANTES

Hesiod, Theogony 176 (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C8th or C7th B.C.) :
"The great Gigantes (Giants) with gleaming armour."
[N.B. These may be Kouretes (Curetes) rather than those Gigantes who waged war on the gods.]

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"These creatures [Gigantes, Giants] were unsurpassed in the size of their bodies and unconquerable by virtue of their power. They were frightening in appearance, with long hair that swept down from their heads and chins, and serpent-scales covering their lower limbs."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 21. 5 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"The myths record that the Gigantes (Giants) were sons of Ge (Earth) because of the exceedingly great size of their bodies."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 28. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"That the Gigantes had serpents for feet is an absurd tale."

Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 185 (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"The serpent-footed Gigantes (Giants) strove each to grapple in his hundred arms the captive sky."

Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 2. 16 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"The monstrous forms of Earth's children (Terrigenum) . . . the Gigantum (Giants), whom in compassion their mother [Gaia the Earth] clothed with rocks, trees, crags and piled up to heaven new-shaped as mountains."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 25. 85 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"The snakehaired Gigantes (Giants) . . . the coiling sons of Gaia (the Earth) with two hundred hands [i.e. a hundred Gigantes], who pressed the starry vault with manynecked heads."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 25. 206 ff :
"[Gigantes, Giants] the snaky sons of Gaia (the Earth) . . . with huge serpents flowing over their shoulders equally on both sides much bigger than the Inakhian snake [ie, their long serpentine legs coiled down then up over their shoulders] . . . went hissing restlessly about among the stars of heaven."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 1. 18 :
"The horrid hosts of Gigantes (Giants) serpent-haired."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 48. 6 :
"The multitudinous hands of the Gigantes . . . the Gigantes' heads with those viper tresses."


CRIMES OF THE GIGANTES

I) HURLING ROCKS AT THE GODS IN HEAVEN

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"They [Gigantes, Giants] would hurl rocks and flaming oak trees at the sky."

II) ATTACKING THE RACE OF MEN

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 71. 4 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"The Gigantes (Giants) were punished by Zeus because they had treated the rest of mankind in a lawless fashion and, confiding in their bodily superiority and strength, had enslaved their neighbours, and because they were also disobeying the rules of justice which he was laying down and were raising up war against those whom all mankind considered to be gods because of the benefactions they were conferring upon men generally."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 28. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"‘He [the Gigante] destroyed the infatuate folk, and was destroyed himself.’ Folk in the poetry of Homer means the common people."

III) THEFT OF THE CATTLE OF HELIOS

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"It was [the Gigante, Giant] Alkyoneus who drove away the cattle of Helios (the Sun) from Erytheia [the Sunset Isle]."

IV) ATTEMPTED RAPE OF APHRODITE

Strabo, Geography 11. 2. 10 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"There is also in Phanagoreia [on the Bosporos] a notable temple of Aphrodite Apatouros. Critics derive the etymology of the epithet of the goddess by adducing a certain myth, according to which the Gigantes (Giants) attacked the goddess there; but she called upon Herakles for help and hid him in a cave, and then, admitting the Gigantes one by one, gave them over to Herakles to be murdered through treachery."


Hecate & the Gigante Clytius | Greek vase painting
T16.3 KLYTIOS,
HEKATE
Hera & the Gigante Phoitos | Greek vase painting
K4.3 PHOITOS,
HERA
Dioskouroi & Gigantes | Greek vase painting
H28.1 GIGANTE,
DIOSKOUROS
Dioskouroi & Gigantes | Greek vase painting
H28.1B GIGANTE,
DIOSKOUROS

THE GIGANTOMACHIA (WAR OF THE GIANTS)

I) THE GIGANTES VERSUS THE GODS

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 - 38 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Now because of her anger over the Titanes, Ge (Earth) gave birth to the Gigantes (Giants), Ouranos (Sky) was the father. These creatures were unsurpassed in the size of their bodies and unconquerable by virtue of their power. They were frightening in appearance, with long hair that swept down from their heads and chins, and serpent-scales covering their lower limbs. Some say that they were born in Phlegrae, others in Pallene. They would hurl rocks and flaming oak trees at the sky.
The greatest of them were Porphyrion and Alkyoneus, who was in fact immortal provided he did his fighting in the land where he was born. It was Alkyoneus who drove away the cattle of Helios (the Sun) from Erytheia [the Sunset Isle].
Now there was an oracle among the gods that they themselves would not be able to destroy any of the Gigantes, but would finish them off only with the help of some mortal ally. When Ge (Earth) learned of this, she sought a drug that would prevent their destruction even by mortal hands. But Zeus barred the appearance of Eos (the Dawn), Selene (the Moon), and Helios (the Sun), and chopped up the drug himself before Ge could find it.
Then with Athene's help he called for Herakles to be his ally. Herakles first sent and arrow at Alkyoneus, who by falling to the earth recovered somewhat. Athene advised Herakles to drag him outside of Pallene, which he did, and Alkyoneus thereupon died.
In the course of the battle Porphyrion rushed against Herakles and also Hera. Zeus instilled him with a passion for Hera, and when he tore her gown and wanted to rape her, she called for help, whereat Zeus hit him with a thunderbolt and Herakles slew him with an arrow. As for the rest, Apollon sent an arrow into the left eye of Ephialtes, Herakles into the right; Dionysos slew Eurytos with his thyrsos; Hekate got Klytios with fire-brands; and Hephaistos killed Mimas by throwing molten iron at him. As Enkelados was fleeing, Athene threw the island of Sikilia (Sicily) in his direction. She stripped the skin off Pallas and used it to protect her own body during the battle. Polybotes was pursued through the sea by Poseidon until he reached Kos. There Poseidon ripped off the part of that island called Nisyros and threw it at him. Hermes, who was wearing the helmet of Haides, killed Hippolytos in the course of the battle, and Artemis killed Aigaion. The Moirai (Fates) fought with bronze maces and killed Agrios and Thoon, whiles Zeus destroyed the rest by throwing his thunderbolts. Herakles sent arrows into all of them as they lay dying."

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 2. 138 :
"When Herakles had destroyed Kos [and King Eurypylos], he found his way with Athena's help to Phlegra where he helped the gods reduce the Gigantes (Giants)."

Pindar, Nemean Ode 1 str 4 - ant 4 (trans. Conway) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"Teiresias [the seer] who then declared to him [Tyndareos] and all the gathered host [at the birth of Herakles], what chance of fortunes Herakles should encounter . . . This too he told: When that the gods join battle with the Gigantes (Giants) on Phlegyra's plain, then shall his bow speed forth a gale of shafts to quell their might, and the fair glory of their gleaming locks lie sullied in the dust."

Pindar, Nemean Ode 7 str 5 :
"[Herakles] great conquerer of the Gigantes."

Bacchylides, Fragment 15 (trans. Campbell, Vol. Greek Lyric IV) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"Shameless Hybris (Insolence), luxuriating in shifty tricks and lawless follies, who swiftly gives a man another's wealth and power only to bring him into deep ruin--it was she who destroyed those arrogant sons of Ge (Earth), the Gigantes (Giants)."

Aristophanes, The Birds 825 (trans. O'Neill) (Greek comedy C5th to 4th B.C.) :
"The plain of Phlegra, where the gods withered the pride of the Gegenees (sons of the Earth) with their shafts."

Plato, Euthyphro 6b (trans. Fowler) (Greek philosopher C4th B.C.) :
"Sokrates: And so you believe that there was really war between the gods, and fearful enmities and battles and other things of the sort [i.e. the war of the Gigantes], such as are told of by the poets and represented in varied designs by the great artists in our sacred places and especially on the robe which is carried up to the Akropolis at the great Panathenaia? for this is covered with such representations. Shall we agree that these things are true, Euthyphro?"

Plato, Republic 378c (trans. Shorey) :
"‘Neither must we admit at all,’ said I, ‘that gods war with gods . . . still less must we make battles of gods and Gigantes (Giants) the subject for them of stories and embroideries. [i.e. the Gigantomakhia (War of the Giants) woven on the pelos of Athena at the Panethenaic festival.]’"

Lycophron, Alexandra 697 ff (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"The dark, stream of black Styx, where Termeios [Zeus] made the seat of the oath-swearing for the immortals, drawing the water in golden basins for libations, when he was about to go against the Gigantes (Giants)and Titanes." [N.B. The author seems to be suggesting that the Gigantes and Titanes fought against the gods in the same war.]

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 15. 1 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"When the Gigantes (Giants) about Pallene chose to begin war against the immortals, Herakles fought on the side of the gods, and slaying many of the Sons of Ge (Earth) he received the highest approbation. For Zeus gave the name of Olympian only to those gods who had fought by his side, in order that the courageous, by being adorned by so honourable a title, might be distinguished by this designation from the coward; and of those who were born of mortal women he considered only Dionysos and Herakles worthy of this name."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 21. 5 :
"Herakles then moved on from the Tiber [of Rome], and as he passed down the coast of what now bears the name of Italia (Italy) he came to the Kumaion (Cumaean) Plain. Here, the myths relate, there were men of outstanding strength the fame of whom had gone abroad for lawlessness and they were called Gigantes. This plain was called Phlegraian (Fiery) from the mountain which of old spouted forth a huge fire . . .
Now the Gigantes (Giants), according to the account, on learning that Herakles was at hand, gathered in full force and drew themselves up in battle-order against him. The struggle which took place was a wonderful one, in view both of the strength and courage of the Gigantes, but Herakles, they say, with the help of the gods who fought on his side, gained the upper hand in the battle, slew most of the Gigantes, and brought the land under cultivation. The myths record that the Gigantes were sons of Ge (Earth) because of the exceedingly great size of their bodies. With regard, then, to the Gigantes who were slain in Phlegra, this is the account of certain writers of myths, who have been followed by the historian Timaios also."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 71. 4 :
"Zeus also had other wars against the Gigantes (Giants) [after the War of the Titanes], we are told, in Makedonia near Pallene and in Italia (Italy) on the plain which of old was named Phelgraion (Fiery) . . . Now the Gigantes were punished by Zeus because they had treated the rest of mankind in a lawless fashion . . . Zeus, then, we are told, not only totally eradicated the impious and evil-doers from among mankind, but he also distributed honours as they were merited among the noblest of the gods and heroes and men."

Strabo, Geography 7. 1. 5 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"The mythical story is told that those of the Gigantes (Giants) who survived at the Kampanian Phlegra and are called the Leuternian Gigantes were driven out by Herakles, and on fleeing hither [the town of Leuka in southern Italy] for refuge were shrouded by Mother Ge (Earth)."

Strabo, Geography 7 Fragments 25 & 27 :
"The peninsula Pallene . . . was called Phlegra in still earlier times. It used to be inhabited by the Gigantes of whom the myths are told, an impious and lawless tribe, whom Herakles destroyed."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 24. 2 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"By the south wall [of the Akropolis of Athens] are represented the legendary war with the Gigantes (Giants), who once dwelt about Thrake and on the isthmus of Pallene."

Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy 5. 103 ff (trans. Way) (Greek epic C4th A.D.) :
"Zeus in his wrath was set upon the crest [of the helm of Akhilleus] throned on heaven's dome; the Immortals all around fierce-battling with the Titanes fought for Zeus. Already were their foes enwrapped with flame, for thick and fast as snowflakes poured from heaven the thunderbolts : the might of Zeus was roused, and burning Gigantes seemed to breathe out flames." [N.B. The Gigantomakhia (War of the Giants) and Titanomakhia (War of the Titanes) are here one and the same.]

Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy 11. 415 ff :
"Olympian Zeus himself from heaven in wrath smote down the insolent bands of Gigantes (Giants) grim, and shook the boundless earth, Tethys and Okeanos, and the heavens, when reeled the knees of Atlas neath the rush of Zeus."

Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana 5. 16 (trans. Conybeare) (Greek biography C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"Now I admit that Gigantes (Giants) have existed, and that gigantic bodies are revealed all over earth when tombs are broken open; nevertheless I deny that they ever came into conflict with the gods; at the most they violated their temples and statues, and to suppose that hey scaled the heaven and chased away the gods therefrom,--this it is madness to relate and madness to believe."

Anonymous (perhaps Pamprepius of Panopolis), Fragments (trans. Page, Vol. Select Papyri III, No. 140b) (Greek poetry C4th A.D.) :
"Zeus, the leader of the dance that slew the Gigantes . . .
Khthon (Earth) [i.e. Gaia] teemed of old and bore a son Azeios, who grew to manhood amid the mighty battles of the Titanes. Gigas (the giant) Azeios encountered a Nymphe with lover’s intent, and begot Lykon [the grandfather of King Lykaon of Arkadia]."
[Cf. Eumelos' Titanomakhia Frag 3 below for the dance of Zeus. The Gigantomakhia and Titanomakhia are here synonymous. The figure of Azeios fixes the Titan war in the Arkadian chronology.]

Eumelus or Arctinus, Titanomachia Fragment 5 (from Athenaeus 1. 22c) :
"Eumelos [in the Titanomakhia] somewhere introduces Zeus dancing: he says--‘In the midst of them danced the Father of men and gods.’"
[N.B. This may be the war dance of the Kouretes.]

Anonymous, Persian War of Diocletian and Galerius Fragment (trans. Page, Vol. Select Papyri III, No. 135) (Greek poetry C4th A.D.) :
"Even as one divinity goes from Krete, the other from sea-girt Delos--Zeus over [mount] Othrys, Apollon to [mount] Pangaios--and as they gird their armour on, the throng of Gigantes (Giants) trembles."

Pseudo-Hyginus, Astronomica 2. 23 (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"According to Eratosthenes [Greek writer C3rd B.C.], another story is told about the Asses. After Jupiter [Zeus] had declared war on the Gigantes (Giants), he summoned all the gods to combat them, and Father Liber [Dionysos], Vulcanus [Hephaistos], the Satyri, and the Sileni came riding on asses. Since they were not far from the enemy, the asses were terrified, and individually let out a braying such as the Gigantes had never heard. At the noise the enemy took hastily to flight, and thus were defeated.
There is a story similar to this about the shell of Triton. He, too, when he had hollowed out the trumpet he had invented, took it with him against the Gigantes, and there blew strange sounds through the shell. The Gigantes, fearing that some wild beast had been brought by their adversaries, took to flight, and thus were overcome and came into their enemies’ power."

Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 151 (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Nor were the heights of heaven more secure [during the violent Iron Age of Man]: Gigantes (Giants), it's said, to win the gods' domain, mountain on mountain reared and reached the stars. Then the Almighty Father (Pater Omnipotens) [Zeus] hurled his bolt and shattered great Olympus and struck down high Pelion piled on Ossa. There they lay, grim broken bodies crushed in huge collapse [and Gaia created a race of men from their blood, see below]."

Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 185 :
"[Zeus addresses the assembly of the gods:] ‘Never felt I more anxious for the world, my realm, not when the serpent-footed Gigantes (Giants) strove each to grapple in his hundred arms the captive sky. Fierce was that foe indeed, yet war hung on one front, sprang from one source.’"

Ovid, Metamorphoses 5. 319 :
"[The girls called Pierides mocked the gods when they] sang of the great war in heaven, ascribing spurious prowess to the Gigantes (Giants), belittling all the exploits of the gods."

Ovid, Metamorphoses 10. 148 :
"I [the Mousa, Muse] sang the Gigantes (Giantes) in a graver theme and bolts victorious in Phlegraie's plains."

Ovid, Fasti 3. 439 (trans.Boyle) (Roman poetry C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Jove [Zeus] grabbed the thunderbolt when the Gigantes (Giants) attacked heaven (initially he was unarmed). Strange fires charred Ossa and Pelion atop Ossa and Olympus rooted in earth."

Virgil, Georgics 1. 276 ff (trans. Fairclough) (Roman bucolic C1st B.C.) :
"[The Titanes] Coeus, and Iapetus and fierce Typhoeus, and the brethren [Gigantes, Giants] who were banded to break down Heaven. Thrice did they essay to pile Ossa on Pelion, and over Ossa to roll leafy Olympus; thrice, with his bolt, the Father [Zeus] dashed apart their up-piled mountains."

Propertius, Elegies 2. 1 (trans. Goold) (Roman elegy C1st B.C.) :
"The slender utterance of Callimachus to thunder for the battle waged on Phlegrae's plain between Jove [Zeus] and Enceladus."

Propertius, Elegies 3. 9 :
"I shall sing even of the arms of Jove [Zeus], and [the Titan] Coeus and [the Gigante] Eurymedon threatening heaven from the hills of Phlegra."

Cicero, De Natura Deorum 2. 28 (trans. Rackham) (Roman rhetorician C1st B.C.) :
"According to the myths they [the gods] even engage in wars and battles . . . they actually fought wars of their own, for instance with the Titanes and the Gigantes (Giants). These stories and these beliefs are utterly foolish."

Seneca, Hercules Furens 439 ff (trans. Miller) (Roman tragedy C1st A.D.) :
"After Phlegra stained with impious blood [of the Gigantes], after his [Herakles'] protection of the gods, is not his fathering yet clear? Claim we Jove [Zeus] falsely?"

Seneca, Hercules Furens 967 ff :
"Let the Titanes [here equated with the Gigantes and the Aloadai] prepare war, with me to lead their rage; rocks, woods and all, will I bring, and with my right hand I'll snatch up ridges full of Centauri. Now with twin mountains I'll construct a pathway to the realms above; Chiron shall see his own Pelion 'neath Ossa, and Olympus, set as third in order, shall reach clean to heaven--or else I’ll hurl it there!"

Seneca, Hercules Furens 976 ff :
"The baleful Gigantes (Giants) are taking arm . . . Cithaeron is tottering, lofty Pellene quakes, and Tempe's beauty fades. Here one Gigante has seized Pindus' peak, there one has seized Oete, while horribly [the Gigante] Mimas rages."

Seneca, Oedipus 87 ff :
"Far from me is the crime and shame of cowardice, and my valour knows not dastard fears. Should swords be drawn against me, against even the fierce Gigantes (Giants) would I boldly bear opposing hands." [N.B. To fight the Giants is proverbial for bravery.]

Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 2. 16 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"Lo! Here the terror of the gods, Pallene, their fated battle-ground: all about they saw the monstrous forms of Earth's children (Terrigenum), that once made war on heaven, the Gigantum (Giants), whom in compassion their mother [Gaia the Earth] clothed with rocks, trees, crags and piled up to heaven new-shaped as mountains. And still in stone each threatens, battles or cowers; with his own hand the Father [Zeus] wields his storms and hurls bolt after bolt from on high; but not among those rocks is the chiefest dread."

Statius, Thebaid 5. 569 (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"A Gigante to battle with me upon those limbs."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 1. 18 (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"With ivy-wreathed wand he [Dionysos] destroyed the horrid hosts of Gigantes (Giants) serpent-haired."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 25. 85 ff :
"Bakkhos repaid the stubble of snakehaired Gigante (Giants)s, a conquering hero with a tiny manbreaking wand, when he cast the battling ivy against Porphyrion, when he buffelted Enkelados and drove Alkyoneus with a volley of leaves: then the wands flew in showers, and brought the Gegenees (Earthborn) down in defence of Olympos, when the coiling sons of Gaia with two hundred hands [i.e. there were a hundred Gigantes], who pressed the starry vault with manynecked heads, bent the knee before a flimsy javelin of vineleaves or a spear of ivy. Not so great a swarm fell to the fiery thunderbolt as fell to the manbreaking thyrsus."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 25. 206 ff :
"Euios [Dionysos] wnd in hand cut down the [Gigantes, Giants] snaky sons of Gaia (the Earth) alone--that champion of Zeus! attacked them all, with huge serpents flowing over their shoulders equally on both sides much bigger than the Inakhian snake, while they went hissing restlessly about among the stars of heaven."

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 48. 6 ff :
"[Hera] addressed her deceitful prayers to Allmother Gaia (Earth), crying out upon the doings of Zeus and the valour of Dionysos [against whom she bore a grudge], who had destroyed that cloud of numberless earthborn Indians; and when the lifebringing mother (Earth) heard that the son of Semele had wiped out the Indian nation with speedy fate, she groaned still more thinking of her children. Then she armed all around Bakkhos [Dionysos] the mountainranging tribes of Gigantes (Giants), Gaia's (Earth's) own brood, and goaded her own sons to battle: ‘My sons, make your attack with hightowering rocks against clustergarlanded Dionysos--catch this Indianslayer, this destroyer of my family, this son of Zeus, and let me not see him ruling with Zeus a bastard monarch of Olympos! Bind him, bind Bakkhos fast, that he may attend in the chamber when I bestow Hebe on [the Gigante] Porphyrion as a wife, and give Kythereia [Aphrodite] to [the Gigante] Khthonios, when I sing Brighteyes [Athene] the bedfellow of Enkelados, and Artemis of Alkyoneus. Bring Dionysos to me, that I may enrage Kronion [Zeus] when he sees Lyaios a slave and the captive of my spear. Or wound him with cutting steel and kill him for me like Zagreus, that one may say, god or mortal, that Gaia in her anger has twice armed her slayers against the breed of Kronides--the older Titanes against the former Dionysos [Zagreus], the younger Gigantes against Dionysos later born.’
With these words she excited all the host of the Gigantes, and the battalions of the Gegenees (Earthborn) set forth to war, one bearing a bulwark of Nysa, one who had sliced off with steel the flank of a cloudhigh precipice, each withthese rocks for missiles armed him against Dionysos; one hastened to the conflict bearing the rocky hill of some land with its base in the brine, another with a reef torn from a brinegirt isthmus. Peloreus took up Pelion with hightowering peak as a missile in his innumberable arms, and left the cave Philyre bare: as the rocky roof of his cave was pulled off, old Kheiron quivered and shook, that figure of half a man growing into a comrade horse. But Bakkhos held a bunch of giantsbane vine, and ran at Alkyoneus with the mountain upraised in his hands: he wielded no furious lance, no deadly sword, but he struck with this bunch of tendrils and shore off the multitudinous hands of the Gigantes; the terrible swarms of groundbred serpents were shorn off by those tippling leaves, the Gigantes' heads with those viper tresses were cut off and the severed necks danced in the dust. Tribes innumerable were destroyed; from the slain Gigantes ran everflowing rivers of blood, crimson torrents newly poured coloured the ravines red. The swarms of earthbred snakes ran wild with fear before the tresses of Dionysos viperwreathed.
Fire was also a weapon of Bakkhos. He cast a torch in the air to destroy his adversaries: through the high paths ran the Bakkhic flame leaping and curling over itself and shooting down corrosive sparks on the Gigante's limbs; and there was a serpent with a blaze in his threatening mouth, half-burnt and whistling with a firescorched throat, spitting out smoke instead of a spurt of deadly poison.
There was infinite tumult. Bakkhos raised himself and lifted his fighting torch over the heads of his adversaries, and roasted the Gigantes’ bodies with a great conflagration, an image on earth of the thunderbolt cast by Zeus. The torches blazed: fire was rolling all over the head of Enkelados and making the air hot, but it did not vanquish him--Enkelados bent not his knee in the steam of the earthly fire, since he was reserved for the thunderbolt. Vast Alkyoneus leapt upon Lyaios armed with his Thrakian crags; he lifted over Bakkhos a cloudhigh peak of wintry Haimos--useless against that mark, Dionysos the invulnerable. He there the cliff, but when the rocks touched the fawnskin of Lyaios, they could not tear it, and burst into splinters themselves. Typhoeus towering high had stript the mountains of Emathia (a younger Typhoeus in all parts like the older, who once had lifted many a rugged strip of his mother earth), and cast the rocky missiles at Dionysos. Lord Bakkhos pulled away the sword of one that was gasping on the ground and attacked the Gigantes' heads, cutting the snaky crop of poison-spitting hair; even without weapon he destroyed the selfmarshalled host, fighting furiously, and using the treeclimbing longleaf ivy to strike the Gigantes.
Indeed he would have slain all with his manbreaking thyrsos, if he had not retired of his own will out of the fray and left enemies alive for his Father."

Suidas s.v. Gigantiai (trans. Suda On Line) (Byzantine Greek Lexicon C10th A.D.) :
"[Titles of the gods:] Gigantoleteira, she who destroyed the Giants; also Gigantoletis, likewise feminine. Also Gigantoletor [Giant-destroyer, masculine]."


Dionysus & the Gigante Eurytus | Greek vase painting
K12.9 EURYTOS,
DIONYSOS
Poseidon & the Gigante Polybotes | Greek vase painting
K2.3 POLYBOTES,
POSEIDON
Poseidon & the Gigante Polybotes | Greek vase painting
K2.6 POLYBOTES,
POSEIDON
Poseidon & the Gigante Polybotes | Greek vase painting
K2.7 POLYBOTES,
POSEIDON

II) BATTLEFIELD : THE PLAIN OF PHLEGRA

The War of the Gigantes was said to have taken place on the Plain of Phlegra. Early writers located it on the Thrakian (Thracian) peninsular of Pallene, but later sources said it lay in thermally-active Italian region of Kampania (Campania). The Arkadians, however, disagreed with all others, claiming that the war took place in a valley of their own land.

Pindar, Nemean Ode 1 ant 4 (trans. Conway) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"The gods joined battle with the Gigantes on Phlegyra's plain."

Aeschylus, Eumenides 295 ff (trans. Weir Smyth) (Greek tragedy C5th B.C.) :
"Like a bold marshal, she [Athena] is surveying the Phlegraian plain."

Aristophanes, The Birds 825 (trans. O'Neill) (Greek comedy C5th to 4th B.C.) :
"The plain of Phlegra, where the gods withered the pride of the Gegenees."

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 35 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"The land where he [the Gigante Alkyoneus] was born . . . Pallene."

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 2. 138 :
"Phlegra where the gods reduce the Gigantes."

Lycophron, Alexandra 126 (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"Pallenia, nurse of the earth-born Gigantes."

Lycophron, Alexandra 1405 :
"The plains of the Sithonians and the fields of Pallene, where the ox-horned Brykhon [a local River-God], who served the Gigantes, fattens with his waters."

Strabo, Geography 5. 4. 4 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"The Phlegraion Plain [near Cumae, Italia] mythology has made the setting of the story of the Gigantes--for no other reason, it would seem, than that the land, on account of its excellence was a thing to fight for."

Strabo, Geography 5. 4. 6 :
"The whole district, as far as Baiai and Kume (Cumae), has a foul smell, because it is full of sulphur and fire and hot waters. And some believe that it is for this reason that the Kumaian country was called Phlegra (Blazing-Land), and that it is the wounds of the fallen Gigantes, inflicted by the thunderbolts, that pour forth those streams of fire and water."

Strabo, Geography 7. 1. 5 :
"The Gigantes who survived at the Kampanian Phlegra."

Strabo, Geography 7 Fragments 25 & 27 :
"And further, writers say that in earlier times the Gigantes lived here [the peninsular of Pallene in Thrake] and that the country was named Phlegra; the stories of some are mythical, but the account of others is more plausible, for they tell of a certain barbarous and impious tribe which occupied the place but was broken up by Herakles when, after capturing Troy, be sailed back to his home-land . . . The peninsula Pallene . . . was called Phlegra in still earlier times. It used to be inhabited by the Gigantes of whom the myths are told, an impious and lawless tribe, whom Herakles destroyed."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 24. 2 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"The legendary war with the Gigantes, who once dwelt about Thrake and on the isthmus of Pallene."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 28. 1 :
"The Arkadians say that the fabled battle between Gigantes and gods took place here [Trapezos in Arkadia] and not at Pellene, Thrakia, and at this spot sacrifices are offered to lightnings, hurricanes and thunders."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 15. 1 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"The Gigantes about Pallene chose to begin war against the immortals."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 21. 5 :
"Herakles then moved on from the Tiber, and as he passed down the coast of what now bears the name of Italia he came to the Kumaion Plain. Here, the myths relate, there were men of outstanding strength the fame of whom had gone abroad for lawlessness and they were called Gigantes. This plain was called Phlegraian (Fiery) from the mountain which of old spouted forth a huge fire as Aitna (Etna) did in Sikelia (Sicily); at this time, however, the mountain is called Vesuvios and shows many signs of the fire which once raged in ancient times."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 71. 4 :
"Zeus also had other wars against the Gigantes [after the Titanes], we are told, in Makedonia near Pallene and in Italia on the plain which of old was named Phelgraion (Fiery) after the region about it which had been burned, but which in later times men called Kumaion (Cumae)."

Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 2. 16 (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"Here the terror of the gods, Pallene, their fated battle-ground: all about they saw the monstrous forms of Earth's children (Terrigenum)."

Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 6. 168 :
"The ground trembles and quakes at the shock, as when Jupiter [Zeus] strikes Phlegra [home of the Gigantes] with his angry brand and hurls back Typhon to the deepest recesses of the earth."

III) THE GIGANTE ALKYONEUS vs HERAKLES

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 34 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"The greatest of them [the Gigantes] were Porphyrion and Alkyoneus, who was in fact immortal provided he did his fighting in the land where he was born. It was Alkyoneus who drove away the cattle of Helios from Erytheia . . . With Athene's help he [Zeus] called for Herakles to be his ally. Herakles first sent and arrow at Alkyoneus, who by falling to the earth recovered somewhat. Athene advised Herakles to drag him outside of Pallene, which he did, and Alkyoneus thereupon died."

Pindar, Nemean Ode 4 str 4 (trans. Conway) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"[Herakles] slew the Meropes and that great man of war, giant of terror, Alkyoneus; yet not before with rocks his only weapon, he felled twelve four-horse chariots, and the men who bestrode them twice the number, proud horsemen all."

Pindar, Isthmian Ode 6 str 2 :
"And on that shepherd in stature like a mountain, Alkyoneus, meeting with him at Phlegra, Herakles spared not of his strength to loose the sounding music of his bowstring."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 28. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"He [Homer] indicates that the Gigantes are mortal, and not of divine race, and his words in the following passage are plainer still:--‘[Alkyoneus] He who once was king among the haughty Gigantes; but he destroyed the infatuate folk, and was destroyed himself.’"

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 36. 241 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"Nine cubits high, equal to Alkyoneus." [N.B. A cubit is about 45cm or 1 1/2 feet, so the giant was about 4 meters or 13 1/2 feet tall.]

IV) THE GIGANTE PORPHYRION vs ZEUS & HERA

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 36 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"The greatest of them [the Gigantes] were Porphyrion and Alkyoneus . . . In the course of the battle [of gods and giants] Porphyrion rushed against Herakles and also Hera. Zeus instilled him with a passion for Hera, and when he tore her gown and wanted to rape her, she called for help, whereat Zeus hit him with a thunderbolt and Herakles slew him with an arrow."

Pindar, Pythian Ode 8 ant 1 - ep 1 (trans. Conway) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"Porphyrion even he knew not your [Zeus’] strength when he provoked you beyond all measure . . . But violence brings ruin even the boastful hard-heart soon or late. Kilikian Typhon of the hundred heads could not escape his fate, nor could even the great king of the Gigantes [Porphyrion], but by the thunderbolt they were laid low, and by Apollon’s shafts."

Aristophanes, The Birds 1249 ff (trans. O'Neill) (Greek comedy C5th to 4th B.C.) :
"[Comedy in which the Birds threaten to attack heaven:] I shall send more than six hundred porphyrions (purple-coots or water-hens) clothed in leopards' skins up to heaven against him; and formerly a single Porphyrion [the Gigante] gave him enough to do."

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 2 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (trans. Pearse) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"Herakles, says the author [Hephaestion], was called Neilos at his birth; then, when he saved Hera in killing the nameless Gigante with the fiery breath who attacked her, he changed his name because he had escaped the danger of Hera."


Gaea & a Gigante | Greek vase painting
T1.5 GIGANTE,
GAIA
Aphrodite & the Gigante Mimon | Greek vase painting
K10.13 MIMON,
APHRODITE
   

V) THE GIGANTES ENKELADOS & PALLAS vs ATHENA

Athena's opponents in the Gigantomakhia (War of the Giants) were Enkelados and Pallas. However, according to others, Pallas was not a Gigante but the Titan opponent of Athena in the earlier Titanomakhia (War of the Titans).

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 38 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"[In the War of the Gigantes:] As Enkelados was fleeing, Athene threw the island of Sikilia (Sicily) in his direction. She stripped the skin off Pallas and used it to protect her own body during the battle."

Callimachus, Hymn 4 to Delos 140 (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"The mount of Aitna (Etna) smoulders with fire and all its secret depths are shaken as the Gigantos under the earth."

Callimachus, Hymn 5 The Bath of Pallas 5 ff :
"Never did Athanaia (Athena) wash her mighty arms before she drave the dust from the flanks of her horses--not even when, her armour all defiled with filth, she returned from the battle of the lawless Gigantes (Giants); but far first she loosed from the car her horses' necks, and in the springs of Okeanos washed the flecks of sweat and from their mouths that champed the bit cleansed the clotted foam."

Callimachus, Fragment 382 (from Choerobus) (trans. Trypanis) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"Pindar says that Aitna lies upon Typhon, Kallimakhos says upon Enkelados: ‘The three-forked island [of Sicily] that lies upon deadly Enkelados.’

Callimachus, Hymns Fragment 11 :
"The three-forked island [Sicily] that lies upon deadly Enkelados."

Callimachus, Aetia Fragment 1 :
"It weighs upon me like the three-cornered isle [Sicily] upon deadly Enkelados."

Lycophron, Alexandra 688 ff (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"The island [Sicily] that crushed the back of the Gigantes (Giants) and the fierce form of Typhon . . . an island boiling with flame."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8. 47. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"[Athene] had the surname of Hippia (Horse). According to their account, when the battle of the gods and Gigantes (Giants) took place the goddess drove the chariot and horses against Enkelados."

Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy 5. 640 ff (trans. Way) (Greek epic C4th A.D.) :
"That giant form, as when Enkelados by Zeus' levin was consumed beneath Thrinakia [Sicily], when from all the isle smoke of his burning rose."

Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy 14. 581 ff :
"In the old time Pallas [Athena] heaved on high Sikelia (Sicily), and on huge Enkelados dashed down the isle, which burns with the burning yet of that immortal giant, as he breathes fire underground."

Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana 5. 16 (trans. Conybeare) (Greek biography C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"Poetical myths are given by the vulgar of Aitna (Etna) . . . belonging to the class of dramatic stories which fill the mouths of our poets. For they sway that a certain Typho or Enkelados lies bound under the mountain [of Etna], and in his death agony breathes out this fire that we see."

Pseudo-Hyginus, Astronomica 2. 3 (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Constellation Serpent . . . Some also say this Draco (Dragon) was thrown at Minerva [Athene] by the Gigantes (Giants), when she fought them. Minerva, however, snatched its twisted form and threw it to the stars, and fixed it at the very pole of heaven. And so to this day it appears with twisted body, as if recently transported to the stars."

Statius, Thebaid 3. 594 (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"When Enceladus tries to shift his side: above, the fiery mountain [Etna] thunders from its caves, its peaks o'erflows and Pelorus' flood is narrowed, and the sundered land hopes to return once more."

Oppian, Cynegetica 1. 273 (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd A.D.) :
"The three-peaked hill [Sicily] that covers Enkelados, as the thunderbolt belches forth in beams reaching to the sky, discharges the eternal fire of Sikelian Aitna (Sicilian Etna)."

Suidas s.v. Pallas (trans. Suda On Line) (Byzantine Greek Lexicon C10th A.D.) :
"Pallas: A great virgin. It is an epithet of Athena; from brandishing (pallein) the spear, or from having killed Pallas, one of the Gigantes (Giants)."

VI) THE GIGANTE POLYBOTES vs POSEIDON

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 37 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"[During the War of the Gigantes:] [The Gigante] Polybotes was pursued through the sea by Poseidon until he reached Kos. There Poseidon ripped off the part of that island called Nisyros and threw it at him."

Strabo, Geography 10. 5. 16 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"They say that [the island of] Nisyros is a fragment of Kos, and they add the myth that Poseidon, when he was pursuing one of the Gigantes (Giants), Polybotes, broke off a fragment of Kos with his trident and hurled it upon him, and the missile became an island, Nisyros, with the Gigante lying beneath it. But some say that he lies beneath Kos."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 2. 4 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"Not far from the temple [of Demeter in Athens] is [a statue of] Poseidon on horseback, hurling a spear against the Gigante Polybotes, concerning whom is prevalent among the Koans the story about the promontory Khelone."

VII) THE GIGANTE MIMAS vs HEPHAISTOS / ARES

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 38 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"[In the War of the Gigantes:] Hephaistos killed Mimas by throwing molten iron at him."

Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 3. 236 ff (trans. Rieu) (Greek epic C3rd B.C.) :
"Helios (the Sun), who had taken him [Hephaistos] up in his chariot when he sank exhausted on the battlefield of Phlegra [in the battle of gods and the Gigantes]."

Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 3. 1226 :
"Aeetes put on his breast the stiff cuirass which Ares had given him after slaying Mimas with his own hands in the field of Phlegra."

VIII) THE GIGANTE ALLY OLYMPOS vs ZEUS

Olympos of Krete was possibly identical to the Titan Kronos.

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 2 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (trans. Pearse) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"The tomb which passes for that of Zeus in Krete is that of Olympos of Krete, who received Zeus son of Kronos, 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 are apparently identified with the Kouretes (Curetes).]

Ovid, Fasti 3. 793 (trans.Boyle) (Roman poetry C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Saturnus [Kronos] was thrust from his realm by Jove [Zeus]. In anger he stirs the mighty Titanes [and Gigantes?] to arms and seeks the assistance owed by fate."

IX) THE "MOLY" GIGANTE vs HELIOS

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 4 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (trans. Pearse) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"The plant ‘moly’ of which Homer speaks; this plant had, it is said, grown from the blood of the Gigante (Giant) killed in the isle of Kirke (Circe); it has a white flower; the ally of Kirke who killed the Gigante was Helios (the Sun); the combat was hard (Greek malos) from which the name of this plant."

X) THE GIGANTE LEON vs HERAKLES

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 5 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) :
"Herakles did not wear the skin of the Nemean lion, but that of a certain Leon (Lion), one of the Gigantes killed by Herakles whom he had challenged to single combat."

N.B. A lion-headed Gigante is depicted in the ancient Pergamon relief of the Gigantomakhia.

XI) HORSES OF THE GIGANTES

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 5 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) :
"Xanthos and Balios, the horses of Akhilleus (Achilles), once belonged to Gigantes (Giants) and they were the only ones to fight alongside the gods against their brothers [immortal horses, sons of the wind-gods]."

For the closely related STORY of the Titan-War see THE TITANES

Wounded Gigantes | Roman mosaic
Z43.1 GIGANTES
WOUNDED
Wounded Gigante | Roman mosaic
Z43.1A GIGANTE
WOUNDED
Wounded Gigante | Roman mosaic
Z43.1B GIGANTE
WOUNDED
 

AFTER THE END OF THE WAR

I) A RACE OF MEN IS BORN FROM THE GIGANTES BLOOD

Lycophron, Alexandra 1358 (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"Them [the Pelasgians] who drew the root of their race from the blood of the Sithonian Gigantes (Giants)."

Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 151 (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"There they [the Gigantes] lay, grim broken bodies crushed in huge collapse, and Terra [Gaia, Earth], drenched in her children's weltering blood, gave life to that warm gore; and to preserve memorial of her sons refashioned it in human form [another Race of Man]. But that new stock no less despised the gods and relished cruelty, bloodshed and outrage--born beyond doubt of blood."

For the related STORY of the birth of men from Titan-blood see THE TITANES

II) THE SURVIVING GIGANTES FLEE TO LEUKA OR MYKONOS

Strabo, Geography 7. 1. 5 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Leuka [in Italy] is a small town, and in it is to be seen a fountain of malodorous water; the mythical story is told that those of the Gigantes (Giants) who survived at the Kampanian Phlegra and are called the Leuternian Gigantes were driven out by Herakles, and on fleeing hither for refuge were shrouded by Mother Ge (Earth), and the fountain gets its malodorous stream from the ichor of their bodies; and for this reason, also, the seaboard here is called Leuternia."

Strabo, Geography 10. 5. 9 :
"[The island of] Mykonos, beneath which, according to the myth, lie the last of the Gigantes (Giants) that were destroyed by Herakles. Whence the proverb, ‘all beneath Mykonos alone,’ applied to those who bring under one title even those things which are by nature separate."

III) THE SURVIVING GIGANTE ARISTAIOS

Aristaios appears to have fled to Mount Etna in Sicily and protectively transformed into a dung-beetle by his mother Gaia.

Suidas s.v. Aristaios (trans. Suda On Line) (Byzantine Greek Lexicon C10th A.D.) :
"Aristaios: One of the Gigantes (Giants), who survived . . . Aristaios, the story goes, was the only Gigante to survive, on the Sikelion (Sicilian) mountain called Aitne (Etna); the fire of heaven did not reach him, and nor did Aitne harm him."

Suidas s.v. Aitnaios kantharos :
"Aitnaios kantharos (Dung-beetle of Etna): The big [kind]. Because the mountain [is] also big. They say that Aristaios was the only Gigante to survive; the fire of heaven did not reach him, nor did Aitna harm him."

IV) BURIED GIGANTES FORM THE FIRES OF VOLCANOES

The Gigante Enkelados was burried beneath the Sicilian Mount Etna by Athena. The writhing of his body beneath the island were said to form for the volcanic fires. Others say, however, it was the more monstrous Typhoeus who was buried beneath the island. The volcanism of Mount Vesuvios on the plain of Phlegra was also said to have been created by the writhings of burried Gigantes.

Philostratus the Elder, Imagines 2. 17 (trans. Fairbanks) (Greek rhetorician C3rd A.D.) :
"[From a description of an ancient Greek painting depicting a volcanic island:] The neighbouring island, my boy, we may consider a marvel; for fire smoulders under the whole of it, having worked its way into underground passages and cavities of the island, through which as though ducts the flames break forth and produce terrific torrents from which pour mighty rivers of fire that run in billows to the sea. If one wishes to speculate about such matters, the island provides natural bitumen and sulphur; and when these are mixed by the sea, the island is fanned into flame by many winds, drawing from the sea that which sets the fuel aflame. But the painting, following the accounts given by the poets, goes farther and ascribes a myth to the island. A Gigante (Giant), namely, was once struck down there, and upon his as he struggled in the death agony the island was placed as a bond to hold him down, and he doest not yet yield but from beneath the earth renews the fight and breathes forth this fire as he utters threats. Yonder figure, they say, would represent Typhon in Sikelia (Sicily) [i.e. beneath Mount Etna] or Enkelados here in Italia [i.e. buried beneath Mount Vesuvius], Gigantes that both continents and island are pressing down, not yet dead indeed but always dying. And you, yourself, my boy, will imagine that you have not been left out of the contest, when you look at the peak of the mountain; for what you see there are thunderbolts which Zeus is hurling at the Gigante, and the Gigante is already giving up the struggle but still trusts in the earth, but the earth () has grown weary because Poseidon does not permit her to remain in place. Poseidon has spread a mist over the contest, so that it resembles what has taken place in the past rather than what is taking place now."

Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana 5. 16 (trans. Conybeare) (Greek biography C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"Poetical myths are given by the vulgar of Aitna (Etna) . . . belonging to the class of dramatic stories which fill the mouths of our poets. For they sway that a certain Typho or Enkelados lies bound under the mountain [of Etna], and in his death agony breathes out this fire that we see. . . . There are many other mountains all over the earth that are on fire, and yet we should never be so rash as to assign to them Gigantes (Giants) and gods like Hephaistos."

See also The Gigantomakhia (above) & The Gigante Enkelados versus Athena (above).

V) ZEUS CREATES THE APE IN MOCKERY OF THE GIGANTES

Lycophron, Alexandra 688 ff (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"The island [of Sicily] that crushed the back of the Gigantes (Giants) and the fierce form of Typhon . . . an island boiling with flame, wherein the king of the immortals established an ugly race of apes, in mockery of all who raised war against the sons of Kronos."

VI) THE GIGANTE DAMYSOS EXHUMED BY KHEIRON

Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 6 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (trans. Pearse) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"Thetis burned in a secret place the children she had by Peleus; six were born; when she had Akhilleus (Achilles), Peleus noticed and tore him from the flames with only a burnt foot and confided him to Kheiron (Chiron). The latter exhumed the body of the Gigante Damysos who was buried at Pallene - Damysos was the fastest of all the Gigantes--removed the astragale and incorporated it into Akhilleus' foot using ‘ingredients’. This astragale fell when Akhilleus was pursued by Apollon and it was thus that Akhilleus, fallen, was killed."

VII) THE GHOSTS OF THE GIGANTES BOUND IN EREBOS

Statius, Thebaid 4. 536 (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"Why should I tell thee of Erebus' [Haides'] monsters, of Scyllas, and the empty rage of Centauri, and the Gigantes' twisted chains of solid adamant, and the diminished shade of hundredfold Aegaeon?"

Statius, Thebaid 8. 41 :
"Mine [Haides'] is the prison-house, now broken, of the Gigantes, and of the Titanes, eager to force their way to the world above, and his own unhappy sire [Kronos]."

VIII) THE GODS DIVIDE THEIR HONOURS FOLLOWING THE WAR

Zeus is usually said to have apportioned the honours of the gods at Mekone following the War of the Titans, with which the Giganomakhia was closely identified.

Callimachus, Hymns Fragment 54 (trans. Trypanis) (Greek poet C3rd B.C.) :
"Mekone, seat of the Blessed, where first the gods cast lots and apportioned their honours after the war with the Gigantes (Giants)."

Callimachus, Aetia Fragment 119 :
"To see again Mekone, seat of the Blessed Ones, where the gods drew lots and first distributed the honours after the war against the Gigantes (Giants)."

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 71. 4 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"Zeus, then [after the destruction of the Gigantes], we are told, not only totally eradicated the impious and evil-doers from among mankind [the Gigantes], but he also distributed honours as they were merited among the noblest of the gods and heroes and men."

Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 1. 563 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"It was only after the battle with fierce Iapetus [general of the Titanes] and the toils of Phlegra [against the Gigantes] that Olympus' palace set me [Zeus] over the universe."

IX) THE WRATHFUL GODDESS GAIA BIRTHS TYPHOEUS

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 39 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"The defeat of the Gigantes (Giants) by the gods angered Ge (Earth) all the more, so she had intercourse with Tartaros [the netherworld pit] and bore Typhoeus in Kilikia (Cilicia)."

For MORE information on this giant see TYPHOEUS

Enceladus, Gaea & Athena | Greek relief sculpture
R43.2 ENKELADOS,
ATHENA, GAIA
Athena & the Gigantes | Greek relief sculpture
R43.1A GIGANTES,
ATHENA
Gigantes & Goddesses | Greek relief sculpture
R43.1B GIGANTES,
GODDESSES
 

Sources:

  • Hesiod, Theogony - Greek Epic C8th-7th B.C.
  • Eumelus, Titanomachia Fragments - Greek Epic C8th B.C.
  • Pindar, Odes - Greek Lyric C5th B.C.
  • Greek Lyric IV Bacchylides, Fragments - Greek Lyric C5th B.C.
  • Greek Lyric V Anonymous, Fragments - Greek Lyric C5th B.C.
  • Aeschylus, Eumenides - Greek Tragedy C5th B.C.
  • Plato, Euthyphro - Greek Philosophy C4th B.C.
  • Plato, Republic - Greek Philosophy C4th B.C.
  • Apollodorus, The Library - Greek Mythography C2nd A.D.
  • Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica - Greek Epic C3rd B.C.
  • Aristophanes, The Birds - Greek Comedy C5th-4th B.C.
  • Callimachus, Hymns - Greek Poetry C3rd B.C.
  • Callimachus, Fragments - Greek Poetry C3rd B.C.
  • Lycophron, Alexandra - Greek Poetry C3rd B.C.
  • Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History - Greek History C1st B.C.
  • Strabo, Geography - Greek Geography C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.
  • Pausanias, Description of Greece - Greek Geography C2nd A.D.
  • Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy - Greek Epic C4th A.D.
  • Philostratus the Elder, Imagines - Greek Rhetoric C3rd A.D.
  • Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana - Greek Biography C2nd A.D.
  • Greek Papyri III Anonymous, Fragments - Greek Poetry C4th A.D.
  • Hyginus, Fabulae - Latin Mythography C2nd A.D.
  • Hyginus, Astronomica - Latin Mythography C2nd A.D.
  • Ovid, Metamorphoses - Latin Epic C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.
  • Ovid, Fasti - Latin Poetry C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.
  • Virgil, Georgics - Latin Bucolic C1st B.C.
  • Propertius, Elegies - Latin Elegy C1st B.C.
  • Cicero, De Natura Deorum - Latin Philosophy C1st B.C.
  • Seneca, Hercules Furens - Latin Tragedy C1st A.D.
  • Seneca, Oedipus - Latin Tragedy C1st A.D.
  • Valerius Flaccus, The Argonautica - Latin Epic C1st A.D.
  • Statius, Thebaid - Latin Epic C1st A.D.
  • Oppian, Cynegetica - Greek Poetry C3rd A.D.
  • Nonnos, Dionysiaca - Greek Epic C5th A.D.
  • Photius, Myriobiblon - Byzantine Greek Scholar C9th A.D.
  • Suidas - Byzantine Greek Lexicon C10th A.D.

Other references not currently quoted here: Argonautica Orphica 18, Claudian Gigantomachy