Medusa in Greek Mythology Summary

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Medusa was once a beautiful maiden and now a hideous monster. She was the most beautiful mortal girl and after her poor choice of actions she was cursed. Medusa is now a gorgon which is a mythical creature with snakes for hair, a hideous face that causes humans to turn to stone if they look at her. She is important to society because she was once a mortal and now the only gorgon to have locks of snake hair. Medusa didn’t really go on many adventures but she did have an affair with Poseidon which got her cursed by Athena. Medusa teaches us that we should all learn from our actions and that everything has a consequence in life.

Medusa’s adventures led her into a terrible outcome for herself. Medusa had every guy wanting her, being the most beautiful maiden. Everyday, she boasts to everyone on how beautiful she is(The story of Medusa and Athena, Leanne Guenther). She was a Priestess of Athena. Athena is a virgin goddess of wisdom and war and because of that ,all of her priestesses have to remain virgin too. Medusa’s beautiful looks caught the eye of Poseidon,the sky god,god of the sea and rival to Athena.

Since Poseidon knew Medusa was Athena’s priestess, he decided to humiliate Athena by raping Medusa and having a love affair on the steps of Athena’s temple. When Athena found out, she was very angry and offended that this happened in her temple. Athena then blamed Medusa for this sinful act and cursed her. Athena took all of Medusa’s beauty away and turned her into a hideous gorgon with snakes for hair and the ability to turn any human who gaze upon her to turn to stone. After the affair, Medusa is announced to be pregnant with Poseidon’s children.

Later on, Athena sends Perseus on a quest to retrieve the head of the gorgon, Medusa. Athena helps guide him throughout the whole journey. When he arrives at the home of Medusa and her two sisters ,he finds them all asleep. To finish the quest, Athena holds out a mirror so that Perseus doesn’t look directly at Medusa and turn to stone. Perseus then successfully decapitates Medusa with his sword. When Medusa dies ,her blood still has its power. Since she was pregnant at the time and got decapitated,her powerful blood gave life to Pegasus a winged stallion and Chrysaor a winged boar(Medusa, infobase).

Medusa’s children ended up being born straight out of her bleeding neck. Perseus then takes her decapitated head and puts it in his pouch to use as a weapon to enemies(Medusa ,infobase). Medusa’s blood was later drained from her body. The blood was used to raise the dead and her right vein was used to heal and nourish life,while the blood from her left vein was used to kill. When Perseus returned from his quest ,he gave Medusa’s head to Athena (Medusa, in Greek mythology ,Ebsco).

Medusa is overall the most famous gorgon of her two sisters and that is why she is very important to society(Medusa, in Greek mythology, Ebsco). With her very fascinating story, it is one everyone remembers and knows very well. To society, Medusa is basically known as the monstrous women with snakes for hair and the ability to turn any human to stone if you look at her.

Medusa’s fame led many people to make varieties of sculptures and paintings of her(Medusa ,infobase). Medusa is also very important to society because she is one out of the three gorgons to once be mortal ,and the only one with snakes for hair with her special abilities she is known to have. Medusa’s story shows a good life lesson to everyone. Everything comes with a consequence even when it’s unintentional. Medusa’s story basically teaches everyone that bragging isn’t always a good thing to do and with bad actions come bad consequences.

Also, always boasting about yourself to make others feel bad can just hit you right in the back in just a flash of light, just like it hit Medusa because of her terrible actions, she didn’t even see it coming. Cheating is a very bad sin and Medusa’s poor choice of action lead everyone to know that the worst is yet to come and that we should all think before we act or say anything. Life is also very precious, so make the best of it.

As the most famous gorgon, Medusa’s story will be shared on and will always be important to society. From beautiful maiden to ugly gorgon, Medusa has learned many life lessons herself. Her life story is very unique and memorable. Learning life lessons is something everyone should get out of this story and should know not to make some of the same mistakes she did. After Medusa’s passing, everyone thinks of her as a very evil lady, but she leaves a great legacy behind.

Works Cited

  • “Athena • Facts and Information on Greek Goddess Athena. ” Greek Gods & Goddesses, greekgodsandgoddesses. net/goddesses/athena/.
  • Daly, Kathleen N. “Medusa. ” Greek and Roman Mythology A to Z, Facts On File, 1992. Ancient and Medieval History, online. infobase. com/Auth/Index?aid=101246&itemid=WE49&articleId=216494. Accessed 22 Apr. 2019.
  • “DLTK’s Countries and Cultures – Greek Mythology The Story of Medusa and Athena. ” DLTK, www. dltk-kids. com/world/greece/m-story-medusa-and-athena. htm.
  • “Greek Mythology and Medusa. ” Topics, Sample Papers & Articles Online for Free, 11 Sept. 2016, studymoose. com/greek-mythology-and-medusa-essay.
  • “Medusa, in Greek Mythology. ” Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition, Jan. 2019, p. 1. EBSCOhost, search. ebscohost. com/login. aspx?direct=true&db=lfh&AN=134480912&site=lrc-live.
  • Sacks, David. “Medusa. ” Encyclopedia of the Ancient Greek World, Third Edition, Facts On File, 2015. Ancient and Medieval History, online. infobase. com/Auth/Index?aid=101246&itemid=WE49&articleId=224566. Accessed 16 Apr. 2019.

Cite this paper

Medusa in Greek Mythology Summary. (2020, Dec 13). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/medusa-in-greek-mythology/



What did Medusa symbolize?
Medusa symbolized various things in Greek mythology, including fear, death, and the power of women. She was also seen as a representation of the dangers that lay in wait for those who dared to challenge the gods.
What is the real story of Medusa?
According to Greek mythology, Medusa was once a beautiful woman with golden hair. However, after she was raped by Poseidon in Athena's temple, Athena cursed her, transforming her into a monstrous creature with serpents for hair.
Why did Medusa get cursed?
Some say that Medusa was cursed by Athena because she was raped by Poseidon in Athena's temple. Others say that she was cursed because she was vain and boasted that her hair was more beautiful than Athena's.
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