The New Student's Reference Work/Zeus
Zeus (zūs) was the greatest of the Hellenic deities. According to the most generally received mythology, he was the son of Cronos and Rhea and the brother of Poseidon and Hera, the latter being his wife. He expelled his father and the older dynasties of the Titans, assumed the sovereignty of the world, and successfully resisted the attacks of the giants and the conspiracies of the gods. After the dethronement of the Titans, Zeus was allotted the empire of heaven and air, Hades of the infernal regions and Poseidon of the sea, while the earth was left under the power of the three. Crete, Dodona and Arcadia were the places where the worship of Zeus was most observed; and in process of time all the local gods worshiped under the name of Zeus were merged in one Hellenic divinity, who was afterward identified with the Jupiter of the Romans and the Ammon of Libya. Zeus was the father of gods and men, protector of kings and supporter of law and order, the avenger of broken oaths and other offenses; he watched over the state and the family and over strangers and suppliants; his hand wielded the lightnings and guided the stars; he ordained the changes of the seasons, and regulated the whole course of nature. He dispensed both weal and woe to mortals; but the ancients disagreed as to his power over the fates themselves, as has always been the case when men have "reasoned high on fixed fate, free will, foreknowledge absolute."