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ATLAS

Real Name: Atlas

Occupation: Mountain God

Legal Status: Citizen of Olympus

Identity: The general populace of Earth is unaware of the existence of Atlas except as a mythological being.

Other Aliases: None Known

Place of Birth: Unrevealed

Marital Status: Married

Known Relatives: Japet (father), Clymene (mother), Prometheus, Eprimetheus, Menoeceus (brothers), Pleione (wife), Hyas (son), The Hesperides (Aegle, Erythia, Hesperia, Hespere, Hesperusa – daughters), The Hyades (Coronis, Cleeia, Phaea, Eudora – daughters), The Pleiades ( Maia, Electra, Taygete, Celaeno, Alcyone, Sterope and Merope – daughters), Hermes (grandson), Jasion, Dardanus, Lacedamon, Lycus, Nycteus, Hyrieus, Hyperenor, Oenomaus (grandsons, deceased), Cronus, Hyperion, Oceanus (uncles), Rhea, Dione, Themis (aunts), Zeus, Hera, Poseidon, Demeter, Hades, Hestia (cousins),

Group Affiliation: The Gods of Olympus

Base of Operations: Olympus, formerly the Atlas Mountains in modern Morocco,

First Appearance: Journey into Mystery #124

History: Atlas is a member of an extra-dimensional race of beings known as the Titans who predated the Olympians as gods of Ancient Greece. He was the son of the Titan Japet and Clymene, a minor ocean goddess. Atlas also took an ocean goddess named Pleione as his wife and she bore him a son, Hyas, and numerous daughters known as the Hesperides, the Hyades and the Pleiades. The Titans ruled the Earth for millennia until Cronus overthrew their father Ouranus at the behest of his mother Gaea, the ancestral goddess of the gods of Earth. Gaea was displeased because Ouranus had imprisoned her children, the Cyclopes and the Hecatocheiroi, within Tartarus, the Greek underworld. In order to free them, she petitioned from among the Titans a favor for one of them to slay their father. The youngest among the Titans, Cronus, a god of the earth, used a scythe to castrate and then fatally wound Ouranus. The dying Ouranus prophesied that would likewise be overthrown by a son of his own. Cronus then began imprisoning his children in Tartarus as soon as they were born, also failing to release his siblings, the Cyclopes and the Hecatocheiroi, from the underworld. (Later myths would claim that Cronus actually swallowed his children and that they remained alive inside him until adulthood.) Cronus’s wife, Rhea, concealed her sixth pregnancy and gave her son to Gaea to raise in secrecy. Zeus eventually grew to adulthood and freed his siblings into helping him conquer Olympus.

While some of the Titans sided with Zeus, Atlas chose to side with Cronus and the remaining Titans in a battle that lasted ten years.. He commanded the Titans against Zeus and the Olympians, but Atlas was defeated as Cronus fled war-torn Olympus. In the battle, Zeus levitated a section of the Atlas Mountains in Western Libya (now modern Morocco) and imprisoned Atlas underneath. In later myths, it was claimed that Atlas was given the arduous task of holding up the heavens or at least became the personification of the mountain. He was situated somewhere in the area of the Garden of the Hesperides protected the Garden of Hera where grew the golden apples of the gods. Tended by the Hesperides, the garden had been given as a gift to Hera at her wedding to Zeus and was protected by the dragon known as Ladon. The apples growing here were responsible for preserving the youth of the Olympian gods. 

Atlas meanwhile received a prophecy from the goddess Themis who had been one of the female Titans to side with Zeus against the other Titans. She warned Atlas to beware of a son of Zeus who would come to steal some of the apples. However, during his centuries of imprisonment, Atlas’s daughter, Maia of the Pleiades conceived Hermes, who was later accepted into the Olympian Pantheon as the messenger-god. Loved by Zeus, Electra conceived  Jasion, who became a lover of Demeter, the grain-goddess, and Dardanus who conquered the Dardanian tribes of Asia Minor and founded the great city of Troy. Taygete gave birth to Lacedamon who founded the city of Sparta. Poseidon seduced Celaeno and Alcyone. Celaeno’s sons, Lycus and Nycteus became co-regents of Thebes and Alcyone’s sons, Hyreius and Hyperenor, and eponymous rulers of their own domains. Sterope bore Ares, Oenomaus, a King of Elis while Merope became wife of the wily King Sisyphus of Corinth and mother of his son Glaucus.

Around 1380 BC, Zeus seduced Danae, an Argive Princess, and she gave birth to Perseus. When Polydectes, the ruler of the island of Seriphos, sought the hand of Danae as a bride, he sent Perseus on a foolish mission to slay Medusa the Gorgon in order to be rid of him. However, Perseus was protected by his half-sister, Athena, who instructed him to travel to the Garden of the Hesperides for weapons capable of slaying Medusa. Although they originally mistook him for Perseus, the Hesperides offered Perseus food and lodging after he had slew Medusa and drugged Ladon in order to have Perseus stay with them, but Perseus also wanted to take some apples as a gift for his mother. Recalling the warning of Themis, Atlas saw him and threatened him by shaking the mountains on top of him, effectively scaring off Perseus who used Medusa's gaze to turn him to stone. However, due to the fact that Atlas was immortal, Medusa's power must have had only a partial affect on him or Atlas managed to stave off the effects after a period of time.

Two generations later, Perseus's grandson, Hercules came to the Hesperides to fetch some Golden Apples on his Eleventh Labor to fulfill the prophecy Themis told Atlas. After slaying the dragon Ladon that protected the garden, Hercules learned from the Hesperides that no mortal man was allowed to touch them. Hercules then made a deal with Atlas to pick them in his behalf. Atlas promised to pick them for him by telling him he could trust him as well as he trusted his brother, Prometheus. Prometheus had been chained to the Caucasus Mountains for sharing fire with mortal man and Hercules had freed him from his punishment. Believing Atlas to have likewise served his sentence, Hercules freed him and supported the Atlas Mountains on his shoulders for a while, but then rather than return to his sentence, Atlas opted to take the apples to Mycenae himself. Realizing he had been tricked, Hercules shook the mountainside and threatened to bury Atlas in a landslide. Adequately gaining the Titan’s attention, Hercules then asked Atlas to hold the heavens a second so that he could get a better hold on them, but as Atlas took his place once more, Hercules collected the apples and quickly left the area.

Because of this encounter, Atlas developed a sort of enmity with Hercules. At some point under unresolved means, Zeus offered Atlas a place among the Olympian gods if he would fight alongside them against other menaces against the gods. Atlas was among the Olympians as they fought back against the Celtic gods of the Gaul tribes attacking Rome and against the Asgardian gods of the Germanic tribes attacking the Roman outposts in Western Europe. In recent years, Olympus was attacked by the Dark Gods impersonating the Asgardians in order to turn break their truce amongst them. Overwhelmed by their number, the Olympians fought back without Hercules for several days until Olympus was ravaged. The imposters then vanished as mysteriously as they had attacked. When Thor and Hercules finally arrived and were beheld by the image of war torn Olympus, they were attacked in turn by Hermes, Ares and Atlas. Atlas took a menacing blow from Thor's errantly acting hammer, but Hercules supported Thor in that the Asgardian gods were not responsible for the attack on Olympus. Zeus banished Hercules and Thor to Earth for their insolence, but Thor was eventually proven correct.

In recent years, an Amazon named Artume used the mystical powers of the Omphalus to allow Atlas to battle Hercules in Washington D.C. on her behalf. Created by the Ancient Atlanteans, the Omphalus was mystically linked to the Celestial Axis of Earth and its other forms, such as the Yggdrasil Tree of the Asgardians and Atlas himself. Forced to manifest on Earth against his will, Atlas appeared in giant form and pummeled Hercules with the Washington Monument, the form the Celestial Axis took among the Free Masons who founded the city. Hercules managed to defeat Atlas and knock him out but do to the power of the Omphalus, Atlas seems to have been returned to his prison in the Atlas Mountains. Just how long he will remain there remains to be seen.  

Height: 7' 2"
Weight: 510 lbs.
Eyes: Blue
Hair: None, Brown in his youth

Strength LevelAtlas possesses superhuman strength enabling him to lift (press) around 100 tons under optimal conditions. In his gigantic form, his strength is substantially greater, giving him Class 100 strength under optimal conditions. 

Known Superhuman Powers: Atlas possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Olympian Gods. Like all of the Titans, he is immortal; he has not aged since reaching adulthood and cannot die by any conventional means. He is immune to all terrestrial diseases and is resistant to conventional injury. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for a god of sufficient  power, such as Zeus, or for a number of Olympian gods working together to revive him. Atlas also possesses superhuman strength, but at a level greater than the majority of the Olympian gods, except perhaps for Hercules. His Olympian metabolism provides him with greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (Olympian flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to the superhuman strength and weight of the Olympians.) 

Unlike the majority of the Olympian gods, Atlas has no mystical powers, but he can appear with a gigantic stature on Earth in which state his strength, stamina and endurance against injury is increased. On Olympus, he has a more humanoid stature among the other Olympian gods. 

Comments: Atlas has been used as a peripheral character by both Marvel and DC Comics as well as in "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys." 

Some sources claim that Atlas was the son of the Giant Eurymedon, but since Eurymedon was not born until millennia after Zeus conquered Olympus, this has to be erroneous. However, an argument could be made for Eurymedon being an alternate name of Japet.

Given that Zeus is also known for dropping mountains on Typhon and having Prometheus chained to the Caucasus Mountains, this bio purposely reinvents the possible apocryphal notion of Atlas holding up the earth or heavens, especially since he would have to exist in a location that the still mortal Hercules could still reach

Clarifications: Atlas is not to be confused with:

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