Medusa , in Greek mythology , the most famous of the monster figures known as Gorgons. She was usually represented as a winged female creature having a head of hair consisting of snakes; unlike the Gorgons, she was sometimes represented as very beautiful. Medusa was the only Gorgon who was mortal; hence her slayer, Perseus , was able to kill her by cutting off her head. From the blood that spurted from her neck sprang Chrysaor and Pegasus , her two sons by Poseidon. The severed head, which had the power of turning into stone all who looked upon it, was given to Athena , who placed it in her shield; according to another account, Perseus buried it in the marketplace of Argos.
Why Did Medusa Get Cursed?
The Legend of Medusa and Perseus
Those who gazed into her eyes would turn to stone. Most sources describe her as the daughter of Phorcys and Ceto ,  although the author Hyginus makes her the daughter of Gorgon and Ceto. The 2nd-century BC novelist Dionysios Skytobrachion puts her somewhere in Libya , where Herodotus had said the Berbers originated her myth, as part of their religion. She remained a priestess to Athena after her death and was risen with fresh hair. Medusa was raped by Poseidon then beheaded by the hero Perseus , who thereafter used her head, which retained its ability to turn onlookers to stone, as a weapon  until he gave it to the goddess Athena to place on her shield. In classical antiquity the image of the head of Medusa appeared in the evil-averting device known as the Gorgoneion. The three Gorgon sisters—Medusa, Stheno , and Euryale —were all children of the ancient marine deities Phorcys or "Phorkys" and his sister Ceto or "Keto" , chthonic monsters from an archaic world.
Hanging on the esteemed walls of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, there is a painting by Caravaggio depicting a feminine creature with slithering locks. Its subject is so majestic and terrifying that the 16th century poet Gaspare Murtola once wrote of it , "Flee, for if your eyes are petrified in amazement, she will turn you to stone. She is, of course, Medusa. Since the days of early Western civilization, when myths were forged in fire and stone, society has been fascinated with the ancient Greek imagination. No female character, however, is perhaps as popular as Medusa, the monster who could turn men to stone with a single glance. For the past two decades, the character has continually resurfaced in cinema mostly in an alluring form: Natalia Vodianova lent serious supermodel power to the remake of Clash of the Titans , while Uma Thurman cut a particularly seductive figure in Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. Even the House of Versace found inspiration in the Gorgon, placing the beautiful pre-curse version at the heart of its iconic logo. There she sits, long-locked, encircled by a ring of Greek keys. A quick character sketch might well include snakes, deadly eyes, and a taste for destruction.
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