Jupiter God - Roman, Greek Mythology, Facts, Symbols, Meaning

 Jupiter Roman God

Jupiter in Roman Mythology and Greek Mythology

Jupiter’s real name was “Jupiter Optimus Maximus” this stands for being the best.

Jupiter fathered many different Roman gods and held a passion for his lovers. He was quite prominent in Roman wars and was worshipped by the military. The Romans prayed to him before the war in order to protect and bring about peace. In old Latin, the word “Jupiter” means the father. In our modern world, the God Jupiter is found in many different types of TV shows and movies such as the Clash of the Titans and Immortals to name but a few. I am Flo and here I am going to walk you through the story of Jupiter in I hope an easy to understand way. There is so much information out there which is too confusing so to try to make this as simple as I can I have broken this down into questions and answers. Just scroll down to learn more about this wonderful, passionate warlord of the sky.

What is the story of Zeus and is it the same as the god Jupiter?

Yes, In Greek mythology, the God Jupiter (also known as Zeus in Greek mythology) has the same story but the names of the characters are different. Jupiter overthrew Saturn (Cronus in Greek) who was his father, after having a battle with his brothers. Called Poseidon and Hades in Greek mythology. This story and mythology of Jupiter is quite powerful. Jupiter in Latin spells “Lupita.” As I have already touched on, Jupiter in Greek mythology is known as Zeus and the ruler of the sky and thunder, he had approximately two brothers and three sisters. Both the Romans and the Greeks worshiped this god and believed he was truly the ruler. In both Roman and Greek mythology, the stories are indistinguishable and identical but the names have changed.

Jupiter overthrew his father (known as Saturn in Rome) and (Cronus in Greece). I have used names interchangeably as otherwise, it might get somewhat confusing! Jupiter was the leader of 12 powerful Olympian gods and essentially ruled the whole kingdom. The god Jupiter was considered a God of the sky and heavens. He regularly used both thunder and lightning as weapons which are his famous symbols.  His sisters were Hestia, Demeter, and Hera (Greek names). Jupiter / Zeus was a leader and the main symbol he used in war was known as a thunderbolt.  Of course, after overthrowing his father he gained power and later became the father of many different gods (Athena, Ares, Artemis, Apollo, Dionysus and Hermes) the names of the gods in Roman mythology are different, which I discuss later in this article.

We can conclude that he was passionate, loving and seduced women. He had many affairs. Interestingly, the God of Jupiter holds special powers such as controlling storms, creating darkness, commanding thunderstorms and creating chaos in the sky.  In my research and spending many hours reading Greek mythology books - it is clear that this god represents the laws of change and harmony. Jupiter is quite a spiritual God and a clear leader and ruler. In most Greek narratives, he lived on the Mount Olympus and his counselors were Dice, Themis, and Nemesis. There are many Greek accounts where this God possesses the power to overturn but he was also the protector of the community.

What did people believe in ancient times about gods?

People believed that the gods were in “control “of life itself. The ancient Greeks would pray to the gods, for example, they would pray for a harvest or pray to Jupiter to request rain, storms or sun. The mythology that showers the Greek gods is that people actually believed they were real and that they would impact on life itself. Obviously, this is not proven. In our modern world, we don’t tend to think in this way. Unknown to you I have faced many types of Greek gods today. Maybe you’re thinking why would I say such an absurd thing. Greek gods names are used by us daily, such as a “Trojan virus” or even perhaps you looked up your zodiac sign – named after a god. In our modern world the name of gods surrounds us we just don’t always know it. 

What is the story of Jupiter?

Heaven and earth had 12 sons and daughters known as the Titans.  The youngest of these children was Jupiter’s father known as Saturn in Roman mythology and Cronos in Greek mythology. Jupiter’s birth was very interesting in fact it was full of uncertain danger. Jupiter’s grandmother (known as Gaia in Greek mythology) was extremely unhappy in life from the narratives I have read. She was a mother of Saturn (Cronus in Greek) who ruled the entire universe. Saturn was a warrior against the Titans, who basically ruled the world and the skies before God’s existed. I am just going to talk about the history of Saturn’s father because it is interesting and provides an insight into the difficult childhood of Jupiter. Jupiter’s grandfather was in Greek mythology known as Uranus and he infuriated his wife by rejecting one of her children known as Cyclopes.

The three children were supposed to have 100 arms and 50 heads, therefore, being rather ugly to look at. As they were not beautiful so because of this Uranus banished them all together into the underworld. This was quite heart-breaking for Jupiter’s grandmother. In fact, she was so distraught by all this she took the side of the Titans who were fighting with Saturn for power over the lands. As you will read later on in the story of Jupiter which I have written below these gods were later resurrected to help fight and overturn Saturn so Jupiter could take power.

The one thing that Saturn (Jupiter’s father) never did was free his own brothers who were trapped in the underworld, which annoyed Jupiter’s grandmother. Therefore, she knew that in time that Saturn would need to be defeated. The reason that Saturn actually swallowed his own children known as (Neptune, Pluto, Ceres, Juno and Vesta in Roman mythology) was because he wanted them to grow up without being harmed but additionally didn’t want them to rule. Saturn’s wife knew that her children would be trapped for years and she eventually decided that she would wait, rescue Jupiter and finally overthrow Saturn to release her children who were inside his stomach.

She wanted to conceal her pregnancy of Jupiter so went to a cave to give birth to him so he could grow up strong and not be swallowed by his father. In Greek mythology, she was known as Rhea but in Roman her name was Ops. Basically, she hid Jupiter and concealed him so he was able to grow and he was looked after by his grandmother. Jupiter’s grandmother took Jupiter as a baby to a place known as Mount Ida and placed him hanging from a tree in the most beautiful golden cradle. The reason being is that she didn’t want Saturn to hear him cry.  Additionally, Jupiter’s grandmother put animals around the tree so they would make enough noise to mask the babies crying and existence. In time Jupiter grew into a strong young teenager.

The young Jupiter known by the Greek name of Zeus walked up the hill following a white billy goat. He finally reached the top of the mountain and observed from the highest point of Crete the raging blue sea. When he turned around he could see Gaia, his grandmother. Jupiter’s grandmother raised him and she said to him “Your strong enough” “It is your turn now” Jupiter’s heart skipped a beat and suddenly he felt fear. Jupiter’s father known as Saturn (Cronus in Greek) remember I said that he swallowed his own children at their birth (yes, not worth thinking about) the reason was that he wanted to maintain being a powerful ruler of his time.

Jupiter's task was to free his brothers and sisters and overturn his father and take power. Apparently, the legend is that Jupiter’s Mother fooled Cronus by making him swallow a stone instead of Jupiter in the beginning. Now was the time for Jupiter to take power. This small boy had grown to feel some he was quite strong and rather clever. He knew that as he had grown old enough this was the time he had to face his father. He met his father Saturn (Cronos in Greek) for the first time and as you can imagine was feeling somewhat nervous. 

As he met his father he gave him a drink which was a potion from a Titan called Metis, which his wife helped to source. Jupiter’s mother organized that Jupiter would give this to his father in order for him to regurgitate his brothers and sisters, which he did. What also happened next was that the stone that Saturn (Cronos in Greek) swallowed previously suddenly came from his mouth and landed at the feet of Jupiter. His brothers and sisters were so grateful to Jupiter for releasing them that they supported him to become the ruler.

The Titans further helped fight against Saturn (Cronos in Greek). And, this is when a mystical war began between the Olympians and Titans broke out for ten years. Basically, the Titans were the rulers of the god and goddesses existed. The Olympians tried to take over the world fighting the Titans. The Olympians were described as “the good side” in ancient mythology.  

Jupiter’s grandmother requested that Jupiter freed the Cyclopes from the underworld and in return to join Jupiter’s side to fight. It was the Cyclopes that actually gave Jupiter the power over storms using his famous lightning bolt. He killed his father, Saturn (Cronus). This resulted in the brothers dividing up the Olympian kingdom. But this divide was not equal. The stories of Jupiter contained in Roman books known as “The Aeneid”  however in Greece the narratives of the stories were in The odyssey by Homer.  Greek mythology was around 1000 years before Rome adopted the same.

The heavens were divided up and Jupiter was given the sky and Neptune the sea and the underworld was given to Pluto.  Jupiter maintained a position being superior and basically ruled earth, heaven and life itself. The final decision was that Jupiter would take ownership and control of the land. In contrast, in Greek mythology, the land was controlled by what was known as fates and Zeus/Jupiter came down from the skies to talk with the people.

Zeus / Jupiter could shapeshift and change into different creatures or animals. The Romans considered Mars the second most powerful God. Mars was a God Of War and the Romans believed that praying to this god will help with agricultural development. Jupiter was the youngest of his siblings and he often came across as being rather aggressive. There are many other different elements and mysteries that surround Jupiters Greek and Roman decent.  I’m going to spend some time giving you some more interesting facts so here goes.

Where did the story of Jupiter come from?

The Greek myth of Jupiter evolved with time and civilization. There are no specific events that occurred in chronological order but there are various narrators that were written which provides a reflection of the story. Many of the different myths and stories around gods were focused on pain, jealousy, and passion. The gods themselves were rarely perfect in nature but nevertheless, they were obeyed and worshipped. In Roman mythology, the gods ruled those of us on earth.  

How was Jupiter perceived by the Romans?

Jupiter started his life as a stone, interestingly, the Romans worshipped stones and this goes back into history notably the Stone Age. This is because taxes were often made from the stone material. In Roman times Jupiter was worshipped by many as I have already mentioned. The Romans took many of their own gods from the Greek myths. In Rome temples were erected to worship Jupiter, he was a Lord of rain and thunder and would punish the mortals if they have sinned – well, this is what they believed.

The planet Jupiter was named after this god. Many Romans hailed to the sky and Jupiter became the Guardian God of many Latin towns which included the Roman state. He was known as an ancient deity and was also a source of light. It was also recorded that many Romans spoke to Jupiter through oaths to ask for his help in matters.

What happened after Jupiter won the war?

Following the Great War with Titans, Jupiter made sure that the gods resigned upon the mountain of Olympias,  Which presently is in Macedonia. This is known as a throne of Jupiter and to be the place where the gods would convert this and make decisions upon what is going to happen to the mortals and land. Jupiter and his brothers and sisters would reside on the mountain. 

What is the connection of the Titans in the story of Jupiter?

In the early years Jupiter grew up extremely quickly and he was known to drink ambrosia from goat horns which made him strong and competent.  He grew into a bright competent God. Before defeating his father he married a woman who was a daughter of a Titan, known in Greek mythology as Metis. She did not want Jupiter to fight his father on his own and begged him to use the Titans for support. 

Because she was worried about her husband Jupiter’s wife or Jupiter (there is conflicting stories) gave Saturn a potion which made him sick, when he vomited the children appeared before Jupiter’s feet. (As I mentioned earlier) Therefore, there were in total six gods against their father. Once they defeated Saturn the Titans not very happy about being ruled by completely new God. Therefore, Jupiter made a number of different bolts of lightning in the sky as weapons and imprisoned the Titans in a place called Tartarus.

What is Jupiter the god of?

Jupiter is a god of thunder and lightning: the weather. His symbolism was the throne, eagle, lion, scales, thunderbolt and finally the sceptre. I've already outlined that Jupiter was a Greek God of the universe. He ruled the other 12 Olympian gods. He was often seen as being flirtatious and seductive – having many affairs and children. There are many different accounts where Jupiter changed into animals for example when he made love to Leda (in Greek mythology) and he was a swan he also appeared as an eagle and a white Bull.

What is Jupiter god facts?

The Greek name of this God is called Zeus. Jupiter’s title is known as the King of gods. His symbol is: scales, sceptre, aegis, eagle, lion, throne. And his birthplace is Olympian. This god married Hera as well as other goddesses and his parents were known as Cronus and Reha. He was raised by his grandmother known as Gaia. Additionally, he was raised by a goat called amalthea. 

What does it mean to have a Jupiter god tattoo? 

Having a Jupiter tattoo indicates you are in control of difficult times in life and are a true fighter. Obviously, you have read the above and understand that the God of Jupiter is a ruler.  Jupiter tattoos are associated with protection, good luck, balance, experience and above all authority. The tattooed symbolizes that you will be in charge of your own life and have the rule of the Crown. Jupiter is a symbolism of wisdom and strength. If you are considering getting a tattoo of Jupiter then this symbol on the body represents a balance between situations in life.

Who did Jupiter marry and who did he have love affairs with? 

The lovers of Jupiter included his own sister. Jupiter’s wife was known as Juno in Roman mythology. They had children including Vulcan, Mars (god of war), Juventas (cupbearer) and additional the goddess of childbirth known as Lucina.

There is quite a famous painting which shows him embracing his wife.  Jupiter was supposed to be quite seductive and his wife the goddess of marriage was known as Juno. Jupiter did, in fact, have many different lovers.  He had a relationship with Leto, and from this beared the children Apollo and Diana. He further had a relationship with Themis which resulted in three children known as a horse, Parcae, and Astraea. 

These, of course, are the Roman names and will be different in Greek mythology. Additionally, he had a relationship with Maia and a son called Mercury.  Jupiter and Semele created Dionysus. Obviously, due to the fact that Jupiter was quite promiscuous, his wife did not trust him which caused jealousy. He then had an affair with a Goddess known as Alcmene and they had a child together named Herakles, who was the god of heroes. He did have a further relationship with Ganymede and he spent the night with this goddess. He fell for a Goddess called Europa and they became lovers. Semele was his final lover and gave birth to the god Bacchus. So, he had many children as you can tell. I have pieced this together in order to provide you with an overview of his lovers 

Who are the God Jupiters Children?

When the thunder happened everyone (mortals) believed it was because Jupiter and his wife, Juno were fighting over his lovers. Jupiter had children by mortals, wood and sea nymphs and goddesses. Sometimes Juno would try to kill lovers in various ways. And, many of Jupiters lovers did actually fear his wife.  The children he had were as follows: Invidia, Dike, Venus, Vulcan, Mars, Minerva, Hercules, Apollo, Discordia, Diana, Juventas, Bacchus, Graces, Lucina, Bellona, Mercury, Nona, Muses, Decima, Morta

What did Jupiter do to his father?

When Jupiter won the war against his father he did not want to just kill him, instead, he actually castrated him, took his body parts and then threw them into the sea. I know sounds a bit far-fetched but that is what is recorded.

Who is the Greek equivalent of the Roman god Jupiter?

Yes, Jupiter is the Roman god and in Greek mythology, he is called Zeus. Just in case you have missed that. These two gods are the same and follow the same story. Both the Greeks and also the Romans worshipped Jupiter. He was quite an aggressive and imposing God he was a true ruler of people. 

Did the Romans worship Jupiter?

Yes, the Romans themselves never really truly believed in one God like we do. They essentially had a God based on prayers. For example, if they wanted the crops to grow they would have a God who was responsible for harvest or good weather.

There was a God for childbirth who would protect the mother. Jupiter was, however, one of the most worshipped gods of all time. They built many statues in Rome to worship him and named places and items after him. The worship of Jupiter was so common that they made various sacrifices and also built a number of different temples such as Capitoline Hill. After the war, the military would often have parades chanting the name Jupiter - believing that he helped conquer or defeat the enemy.

Today in our modern world we generally believe in one God, especially in Christianity. However back in Roman mythology, similar to the Greek theology many different gods were worshipped. There were many different accounts in the old narratives regarding people’s opinions of Jupiter. In Rome interestingly, the opinion of Jupiter changed with time and the fact that emperors came into power diminished the belief that gods were the true power. There are many different types of drawings and pictures of Jupiter but he is normally presented holding a staff or a bolt of lightning.

Who was Juno or Hera?

Juno as she was married to Jupiter was the Queen and ruler of the goddesses. She was also known as Hera in Greek mythology. As I’ve already pointed out she was actually the sister as well. She wanted to protect her marriage so she would try to destroy any lovers of Jupiter. She actually sent a gadfly once to kill any woman that would get in her way. In regards to animal totems, Juno was connected to both horses and cows and she was a goddess of the city known as Argos. 

Who is Poseidon or Neptune? 

In Roman mythology, Poseidon was also known as Neptune. he was the brother of Jupiter. A God of great strength and the brother of Jupiter. He was a ruler of the sea and known to be the patron God of the Greek capital Athens.

Who was Demeter/ Ceres? 

This is the sister of Jupiter and her name represents the mother in ancient Greek. There was a festival whereby only women would be able to parade in her honour every year, generally in the springtime. She was the goddess of growth. Many mortals of Rome pray to her in order to ensure great harvests.

Who is Athena or Minerva? 

This was the favorite child of Jupiter and she was born after Jupiter swallowed her mother who was the goddess known as Metis. In essence, she was a goddess of wisdom. She was consequently worshipped throughout Greek civilization and there were many different temples.

Who was Artemis or Diana?

This was the goddess of the forests and of women in general. She was supposed to care about females and provide guidance and help in childbirth. She carried a bow narrow and if a woman died through childbirth it was said that she had shot them down. While women were pregnant they would often pray to this goddess.

Who is Aphrodite or Venus?

This was the goddess of sex, passion, and love. It made sure that we all reproduced and she was in fact quite instrumental in the Trojan War. She had various love affairs that can be traced back to Julius Caesar.

Who is Apollo?

This was Jupiter’s son and his mother was Leto.  Apollo is also shown in many different writings as a good-looking man who undertook training of war. The weapon of use was the bow and arrow.

I do hope you enjoyed this overview of Jupiter and please get in touch if you have any questions I will always try to answer. Both Roman and Greek mythology can be quite complex and difficult to understand so I have tried to make this as easy as possible for you. The most important takeaway my overview is that this was ultimately the king of gods for the Romans and a powerful character in both Greek and Roman mythology.

Sources: Frazer, R.M, 1983, the poems of Hesiod, Normal, University of Oklahoma Press. The Myths of Greece & Rome By H. A. Guerber, Jupiter: King of the Gods, God of Sky and Storms by Temple (Author) There are many different types of movies that are dedicated to Jupiter such as the Clash of the Titans, Immortals to name but a few.  Jupiter was the youngest of his siblings and often came across as being rather aggressive.

By Florance Saul
Mar 19, 2018