Hero


A hero (heroine is always used for females) (Ancient Greek: ἥρως, hḗrōs), in Greek mythology and folklore, was originally a demigod, their cult being one of the most distinctive features of ancient Greek religion. A demigod is the son or daughter from one immortal and one mortal parent, an example would be Heracles, son of the mortal queen Alkema and the god Zeus. Later, hero (male) and heroine (female) came to refer to characters who, in the face of danger and adversity or from a position of weakness, display courage and the will for self sacrifice—that is, heroism—for some greater good of all humanity. This definition originally referred to martial courage or excellence but extended to more general moral excellence.

Stories of heroism may serve as moral examples. In classical antiquity, hero cults that venerated deified heroes such as Heracles, Perseus, and Achilles played an important role in Ancient Greek religion. Politicians, ancient and modern, have employed hero worship for their own apotheosis (i.e., cult of personality). Stories of the anti-hero also play a major role in Greek mythology. The anti-hero is someone's qualities are the last expected from a person in certain situations. The favorite type of anti-hero is a characterless individual.

Read more about Hero:  Etymology, Classical Hero Cults, The Validity of The Hero in Historical Studies, Heroic Myth, Folk and Fairy Tales, The Modern Fictional Hero, Hero As Self, Psychology of Heroism

Other articles related to "hero":

Everyone's Hero
... Everyone's Hero is a 2006 computer animated comedy film, directed by Colin Brady, Christopher Reeve (who was working on this film at the time of his death), and Daniel St ... Everyone's Hero had a moderate performance at the box office, earning only $16 million worldwide during its theatrical run, but the film was not released in several major countries ...
Divinization - In Literature
... Joseph Campbell, in his book The Hero With a Thousand Faces, writes that the Universal Hero from monomyth must pass through a stage of Apotheosis ... to Campbell, apotheosis is the expansion of consciousness that the hero experiences after defeating his foe ...
Echtra
... Echtrai) is one of a category of Old Irish literature about a hero's adventures in the Otherworld (see Tír na nÓg and Mag Mell) the otherworldly setting is the distinctive trait of these tales ... Earlier on, however, an echtra's emphasis was on the hero's time in the Otherworld, the journey to which served merely as a frame story ... echtrai from the Immrama, or "Voyages", which focus on the hero's journey rather than the otherworldly destination ...
Foe - Enemies in Literature
... Serial fictional narratives of heroes often present the hero contending against an archenemy whose capabilities match or exceed those of the hero, thereby establishing ...
Psychology of Heroism
... An evolutionary psychology explanation for heroic risk-taking is that it is a costly signal demonstrating the ability of the hero ... It can be seen as one form of altruism for which there are also several other evolutionary explanations ...

Famous quotes containing the word hero:

    What a hero Tom was become now! He did not go skipping and prancing, but moved with a dignified swagger as became a pirate who felt that the public eye was on him.
    Mark Twain [Samuel Langhorne Clemens] (1835–1910)

    We live by our imaginations, by our admirations, by our sentiments. The child walks amid heaps of illusions, which he does not like to have disturbed. The boy, how sweet to him his fancy! how dear the story of barons and battles! What a hero he is, whilst he feeds on his heroes! What a debt is his to imaginative books!
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)

    Newspaperman: That was a magnificent work. There were these mass columns of Apaches in their war paint and feather bonnets. And here was Thursday leading his men in that heroic charge.
    Capt. York: Correct in every detail.
    Newspaperman: He’s become almost a legend already. He’s the hero of every schoolboy in America.
    Frank S. Nugent (1908–1965)