Greek Mythology: The Cancer Constellation

Greek Mythology: The Cancer Constellation

Jewellery has always expressed a rich history with formidably vibrant characters in mythology. We hope that you will join us in exploring the enchanting saga of the giant Greek crab, Karkinos, and how he became one of the 12 constellations.

Hera is the Ancient Greek goddess of marriage and the wife of the powerful god of the sky, Zeus. Zeus had an affair with Alcmene, resulting in the birth of Hercules. Hera grew increasingly jealous of Hercules and vowed to kill him, however Hercules displayed great strength and immense power, allowing him to survive.

Hera and Zeus's son, Eurystheus, decided that Hercules could take his throne if he was able to complete twelve labours. The second labour stated that Hercules must defeat the multi-headed water-serpent, Hydra.

Hera sent a giant crab called Karkinos to help Hydra kill Hercules, however with one swift kick Hercules broke Karkinos's shell. Hera honoured Karkinos's service by placing him in the night sky with the other constellations and naming him Cancer, translating to "crab" in Latin.

The Cancer constellation is located in the northern sky and is now part of the zodiac family.