Herakles was the greatest of the Greek heroes, the son of Zeus and the mortal woman Alcmene. He “made the world safe for mankind” by civilizing the barbarian regions and conquering the dangerous forces associated with them. He was a particular favorite of the Archaic-period aristocracy, epitomizing their hierachical worldview. The most famous of his feats were the Twelve Labors, which he performed to atone for killing his wife and children, having been driven mad by Hera. After his death he was granted immortality. The Romans knew him as Hercules.
Statue of Herakles