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The Mark of Athena: Glossary


AΘE alpha, theta, epsilon. In Greek it stands for of the Athenians, or the children of Athena.

Achelous a potamus, or river god

Alcyoneus the eldest of the giants born to Gaea, destined to fight Pluto

Amazons a nation of all-female warriors

Aphrodite the Greek goddess of love and beauty. She was married to Hephaestus, but she loved Ares, the god of war. Roman form: Venus

Arachne a weaver who claimed to have skills superior to Athena’s. This angered the goddess, who destroyed Arachne’s tapestry and loom. Arachne hung herself, and Athena brought her back to life as a spider.

Archimedes a Greek mathematicianphysicistengineerinventor, and astronomer who lived between 287 and 212 BCE and is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity

Ares the Greek god of war; the son of Zeus and Hera, and half brother to Athena. Roman form: Mars

argentum silver

Argo II the fantastical ship built by Leo, which can both sail and fly and has Festus’s bronze dragon head as its figurehead. The ship was named after the Argo, the vessel used by a band of Greek heroes who accompanied Jason on his quest to find the Golden Fleece.

Athena the Greek goddess of wisdom. Roman form: Minerva

Athena Parthenos a giant statue of Athena: the most famous Greek statue of all time

augury a sign of something coming, an omen; the practice of divining the future

aurum gold

Bacchus the Roman god of wine and revelry. Greek form: Dionysus

ballista (ballistae, pl.) a Roman missile siege weapon that launched a large projectile at a distant target (see also Scorpion ballista)

Bellona a Roman goddess of war

Camp HalfBlood the training ground for Greek demigods, located on Long Island, New York

Camp Jupiter the training ground for Roman demigods, located between the Oakland Hills and the Berkeley Hills, in California

Celestial bronze a rare metal deadly to monsters

centaur a race of creatures that is half human, half horse

centurion an officer of the Roman army

Ceres the Roman goddess of agriculture. Greek form: Demeter

charmspeak a blessing bestowed by Aphrodite on her children that enables them to persuade others with their voice

chiton a Greek garment; a sleeveless piece of linen or wool secured at the shoulders by brooches and at the waist by a belt

Chrysaor the brother of Pegasus, the son of Poseidon and Medusa; known as “the Gold Sword”

Circe a Greek sorceress. In ancient times, she turned Odysseus’s crew into swine.

Colosseum an elliptical amphitheater in the center of Rome, Italy. Capable of seating 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum was used for gladiatorial contests and public spectacles such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles, and dramas.

cornucopia a large horn-shaped container overflowing with edibles or wealth in some form. The cornucopia was created when Heracles (Roman: Hercules) wrestled with the river god Achelous and wrenched off one of his horns.

Cyclops a member of a primordial race of giants (Cyclopes, pl.), each with a single eye in the middle of his or her forehead

Daedalus in Greek mythology, a skilled craftsman who created the Labyrinth on Crete in which the Minotaur (part man, part bull) was kept

Deianira Heracles’s second wife. She was of such striking beauty that both Heracles and Achelous wanted to marry her and there was a contest to win her hand. The centaur Nessus tricked her into killing Heracles by dipping his tunic in what she thought was a love potion but was actually Nessus’s poisonous blood.

Demeter the Greek goddess of agriculture, a daughter of the Titans Rhea and Kronos. Roman form: Ceres

denarius (denarii, pl.) the most common coin in the Roman currency system

Dionysus the Greek god of wine and revelry, a son of Zeus. Roman form: Bacchus

Doors of Death a well-hidden passageway that when open allows souls to travel from the Underworld to the world of mortals

drachma the silver coin of Ancient Greece

drakon gigantic serpent

eidolon possessing spirit

Ephialtes and Otis twin giants, sons of Gaea

Epirus a region presently in northwestern Greece and southern Albania

Eurystheus a grandson of Perseus, who, through the favor of Hera, inherited the kingship of Mycenae, which Zeus had intended for Heracles

faun a Roman forest god, part goat and part man. Greek form: satyr

Fortuna the Roman goddess of fortune and good luck. Greek form: Tyche

Forum The Roman Forum was the center of ancient Rome, a plaza where Romans conducted business, trials, and religious activities.

Gaea the Greek earth goddess; mother of Titans, giants, Cyclopes, and other monsters. Roman form: Terra

gladius a short sword

Gorgons three monstrous sisters who have hair of living, venomous snakes. The most famous, Medusa, had eyes that turned the beholder to stone.

greaves shin armor

Greek fire an incendiary weapon used in naval battles because it can continue burning in water

Hades the Greek god of death and riches. Roman form: Pluto

Hadrian a Roman Emperor who ruled from 117 to 138 CE. He is best known for building Hadrian’s Wall, which marked the northern limit of Roman Britain. In Rome, he rebuilt the Pantheon and constructed the Temple of Venus and Roma.

Hagno a nymph who is said to have brought up Zeus. On Mount Lycaeus in Arcadia there was a well sacred to and named after her.

harpy a winged female creature that snatches things

Hebe the goddess of youth; the daughter of Zeus and Hera, and married to Heracles. Roman form: Juventas

Hephaestus the Greek god of fire and crafts and of blacksmiths; the son of Zeus and Hera, and married to Aphrodite. Roman form: Vulcan

Hera the Greek goddess of marriage; Zeus’s wife and sister. Roman form: Juno

Heracles the Greek equivalent of Hercules; the son of Zeus and Alcmene; the strongest of all mortals

Hercules the Roman equivalent of Heracles; the son of Jupiter and Alcmene, who was born with great strength

hippocampi creatures that from the waist up have the body of a horse and from the waist down have silvery fish bodies, with glistening scales and rainbow tail fins. They were used to draw Poseidon’s chariot, and sea foam was created by their movement.

hippodrome a Greek stadium for horse racing and chariot racing

House of Hades an underground temple in Epirus, Greece, dedicated to the Hades and Persephone, sometimes called a necromanteion, or “oracle of death.” Ancient Greeks believed it marked one entrance to the Underworld, and pilgrims would go there to commune with the dead.

hypogeum the area under a coliseum that housed set pieces and machinery used for special effects

ichthyocentaur a fish-centaur described as having the forefeet of a horse, a human torso and head, and a fish tail. It is sometimes shown with a pair of lobster-claw horns.

Imperial gold a rare metal deadly to monsters, consecrated at the Pantheon; its existence was a closely guarded secret of the emperors

Invidia the Roman goddess of revenge. Greek form: Nemesis

Iris the Greek rainbow goddess and a messenger of the gods; the daughter of Thaumas and Electra. Roman form: Iris

Juno the Roman goddess of women, marriage, and fertility; sister and wife of Jupiter; mother of Mars. Greek form: Hera

Jupiter the Roman king of the gods; also called Jupiter Optimus Maximus (the best and the greatest). Greek form: Zeus

Juventas the Roman goddess of youth. Greek form: Hebe

Kalends of July the first day of July, which was sacred to Juno

karpoi grain spirits

Katoptris Piper’s dagger, once owned by Helen of Troy. The word means “looking glass.”

Keto the Greek goddess of sea monsters and large sea creatures, such as whales and sharks. She is the daughter of Gaea and the sister-wife of Phorcys, god of the dangers of the sea.

Khione the Greek goddess of snow; daughter of Boreas

Kronos the Greek god of agriculture, the son of Uranus and Gaea and the father of Zeus. Roman form: Saturn

Lar a house god, ancestral spirit of Rome (Lares, pl.).

Lupa the sacred Roman she-wolf that nursed the foundling twins Romulus and Remus

Marcus Agrippa a Roman statesman and general; defense minister to Octavian, and responsible for most of his military victories. He commissioned the Pantheon as a temple to all the gods of Ancient Rome.

Mare Nostrum Latin for Our Sea, was a Roman name for the Mediterranean Sea

Mars the Roman god of war; also called Mars Ultor. Patron of the empire; divine father of Romulus and Remus. Greek form: Ares

Minerva the Roman goddess of wisdom. Greek form: Athena

Minotaur a monster with the head of a bull on the body of a man

Mist a magic force that disguises things from mortals

Mithras Originally a Persian god of the sun, Mithras was worshipped by Roman warriors as a guardian of arms and a patron of soldiers.

muskeg bog

Narcissus a Greek hunter who was renowned for his beauty. He was exceptionally proud and disdained those who loved him. Nemesis saw this and attracted Narcissus to a pool where he saw his reflection in the water and fell in love with it. Unable to leave the beauty of his reflection, Narcissus died.

Nemesis the Greek goddess of revenge. Roman form: Invidia

Neptune the Roman god of the sea. Greek form: Poseidon

Nereids fifty female sea spirits; patrons of sailors and fishermen and caretakers of the sea’s bounty

Nessus a crafty centaur who tricked Deianira into killing Heracles

New Rome a community near Camp Jupiter where demigods can live together in peace, without interference from mortals or monsters

Nike the Greek goddess of strength, speed, and victory. Roman form: Victoria

nymph a female nature deity who animates nature

nymphaeum a shrine to nymphs

Pantheon a building in RomeItaly, commissioned by Marcus Agrippa as a temple to all the gods of Ancient Rome, and rebuilt by Emperor Hadrian in about 126 CE

pater Latin for father; also the name of an ancient Roman god of the Underworld, later subsumed by Pluto

pauldron a piece of plate armor for the shoulder and the upper part of the arm

Pegasus In Greek mythology, a winged divine horse; sired by Poseidon, in his role as horse-god, and foaled by the Gorgon Medusa; the brother of Chrysaor

Persephone the Greek queen of the Underworld; wife of Hades; daughter of Zeus and Demeter. Roman form: Proserpine

Phorcys In Greek mythology, a primordial god of the dangers of the sea; son of Gaea; brother-husband of Keto

Piazza Navona a city square in Rome, built on the site of the Stadium of Domitian, where Ancient Romans watched competitive games

Pluto the Roman god of death and riches. Greek form: Hades

Polybotes the giant son of Gaea, the Earth Mother

Pomerian Line the boundary around New Rome, and in ancient times, the city limits of Rome

Porphyrion the king of the Giants in Greek and Roman mythology

Poseidon the Greek god of the sea; son of the Titans Kronos and Rhea, and brother of Zeus and Hades. Roman form: Neptune

praetor an elected Roman magistrate and commander of the army

Proserpine Roman queen of the Underworld. Greek form: Persephone

Rhea Silvia a priestess and mother of the twins Romulus and Remus, who founded Rome

Riptide the name of Percy Jackson’s sword (Anaklusmos in Greek)

Romulus and Remus the twin sons of Mars and the priestess Rhea Silvia. They were thrown into the River Tiber by their human father, Amulius, and rescued and raised by a she-wolf. Upon reaching adulthood, they founded Rome.

Saturn the Roman god of agriculture; the son of Uranus and Gaea, and the father of Jupiter. Greek form: Kronos

satyr a Greek forest god, part goat and part man. Roman equivalent: faun

Scorpion ballista a Roman missile siege weapon that launched a large projectile at a distant target

Senatus Populusque Romanus (SPQR) meaning “The Senate and People of Rome,” refers to the government of the Roman Republic and is used as an official emblem of Rome

skolopendra a gargantuan Greek sea monster with hairy nostrils, a flat crayfish-like tail, and rows of webbed feet lining its flanks

Stymphalian birds in Greek mythology, man-eating birds with bronze beaks and sharp metallic feathers they could launch at their victims; sacred to Ares, the god of war

Sybilline Books a collection of prophecies in rhyme written in Greek. Tarquinius Superbus, a king of Rome, bought them from a prophetess named Sibyl and consulted them in times of great danger.

Tartarus husband of Gaea; spirit of the abyss; father of the giants

telkhines mysterious sea demons and smiths native to the islands of Kaos and Rhodes; children of Thalassa and Pontus; they had flippers instead of hands and dogs’ heads and were known as fish children

Terminus the Roman god of boundaries and landmarks

Terra the Roman goddess of the Earth. Greek form: Gaea

Thanatos the Greek god of death. Roman form: Letus

thyrsus Bacchus’s weapon, a staff topped by a pinecone and twined with ivy

Tiber River the third-longest river in Italy. Rome was founded on its banks. In Ancient Rome, executed criminals were thrown into the river.

Tiberius was Roman Emperor from 14 CE to 37 CE. He was one of Rome’s greatest generals, but he came to be remembered as a reclusive and somber ruler who never really wanted to be emperor.

Titans a race of powerful Greek deities, descendants of Gaia and Uranus, who ruled during the Golden Age and were overthrown by a race of younger gods, the Olympians

Trevi Fountain a fountain in the Trevi district in Rome. Standing more than eighty-five feet high and sixty-five feet wide, it is the largest Baroque fountain in the city and one of the most famous fountains in the world.

trireme an Ancient Greek or Roman warship, having three tiers of oars on each side

Tyche the Greek goddess of good luck; daughter of Hermes and Aphrodite. Roman form: Fortuna

Venus the Roman goddess of love and beauty. She was married to Vulcan, but she loved Mars, the god of war. Greek form: Aphrodite

Vestal Virgins Roman priestesses of Vesta, goddess of the hearth. The Vestals were free of the usual social obligations to marry and bear children and took a vow of chastity in order to devote themselves to the study and observance of ritual.

Via Labicana an ancient road of Italy, leading east-southeast from Rome

Via Principalis the main street in a Roman camp or fort

Victoria the Roman goddess of strength, speed, and victory. Greek form: Nike

Vulcan the Roman god of fire and crafts and of blacksmiths; the son of Jupiter and Juno, and married to Venus. Greek form: Hephaestus

Wolf House a ruined mansion, originally commissioned by Jack London near Sonoma, California, where Percy Jackson was trained as a Roman demigod by Lupa

Zeus Greek god of the sky and king of the gods. Roman form: Jupiter


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