One of the most recognizable figures in Greek mythology, Medusa is also the most famous amongst the Gorgons, three hideous female monsters with snakes for hair, and the ability to turn someone to stone just by looking at them.
While many have heard of Medusa as a horrible monster, not many know of her interesting, even poignant, backstory. Medusa is more than just a monster – she’s a multi-faceted character, who was wronged. Here’s a closer look at the story of Medusa and what she symbolizes today.
The name Gorgon comes from the word gorgos, which in Greek means horrible. Medusa was the only one amongst the Gorgon sisters who was mortal, although how she could be the only mortal daughter born to immortal beings isn’t clearly explained. Gaia is said to be the mother of all Gorgon sisters while Forcis is the father. However, other sources cite Ceto and Phorcys as the parents of the Gorgons. Beyond their birth, there is little mention of the Gorgons as a group and little is known about them.
Medusa’s beauty was so remarkable that even Poseidon himself found her irresistible and tried to seduce her. However, when she did not reciprocate his affections, he attacked her and raped her right inside a temple dedicated to the goddess of Athena. The goddess was awakened with anger by what had happened inside her hallowed halls.
For some unknown reason, Athena did not punish Poseidon for the rape he committed. It could be because Poseidon was her uncle and the powerful god of the sea, which meant that technically, only Zeus could punish Poseidon for his crime. It could also have been that Athena was envious of Medusa’s beauty and the attraction that men had towards her. Whatever the exact reason, Athena turned her wrath towards Medusa and punished her by turning her into a hideous monster, with snakes growing out of her head, and a deadly stare that would immediately turn anyone to stone if they looked into her eyes.
Some stories say that as a result of the rape, Medusa gave birth to Pegasus, the winged horse, as well as Chrysaor, the hero of the golden sword. However, other accounts say that her two children sprang from her head after she was slain by Perseus.
The measurements are as follows:
4.5cm long (1.77 inches)
3.5cm wide (1.37 inches)
The piece will be sent with an adjustable black cotton strap but it also looks great with a silver chain:
If you have any questions feel free to ask!