The Nemean Lion Picture

for my classical studies project i have to do 10 different mythical animals in greek mythology and give one unique fact about each.
The first of Heracles' twelve labours, set by Eurystheus (his cousin) was to slay the Nemean Lion and bring back its skin.

The Nemean lion had been terrorizing the area around Nemea, and had a skin so thick that it was impenetrable to weapons. When Heracles first tackled it, his weapons - bow and arrow, a club made from an olive tree (which he pulled out of the ground himself) and a bronze sword - were all ineffective. At last Heracles threw away his weapons and wrestled the lion to the ground, eventually killing it by thrusting his arm down its throat and choking it to death. (In some variants, Heracles actually strangled the beast, or broke its jaw.)

Heracles spent hours trying unsuccessfully to skin the lion, and gradually growing angrier as it appeared he would be unable to complete his first task. Eventually Athena, in the guise of an old crone, helped Heracles to realize that the best tools to cut the hide were the creature's own claws. Thus, with a little divine intervention, Heracles completed his first task.

Thereafter, he wore the impenetrable hide as armour. King Eurystheus, Heracles' taskmaster for the labours, was so frightened by Heracles' fearsome guise that he hid in a large bronze jar, and from that moment forth communicated all his instructions to Heracles through a herald.

In William Shakespeare's Love's Labor's Lost, Boyet mentions a Nemean lion, this is also the case in the speech from another of his works, Hamlet, "As hardy as the Nemean lion's nerve.--" says Hamlet hoping for the courage of and strength in his body of Nemean.

Nemean Lion© greek persons
Art© ~zazouko
Continue Reading: Heracles