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The Amazons were a tribe of warrior women of Greek mythology, who fought Hercules during his Twelve Labors, and (aiding the Trojans) the Achaeans during the Trojan War. Those Amazons were descendants of the Amazonian queen Ortrera and of Ares, God of War.

Having persisted into the Modern Age, and documented to have been active as mercenaries over 20,000 years ago, during the Pre-Cataclysmic Age (while a few groups were known as "Amazons" during the Hyborian Age, though any relation between them and the Amazons witnessed in Atlantis, Greece and Troy remains unconfirmed), the Amazons are one of the oldest nations on Earth.

History

Origins

The Amazons were a fierce tribe of warrior women during the Pre-Cataclysmic Age, and offered their fighting skills to other nations.[5]

Pre-Cataclysmic Age

Over 20,000 years ago, the Amazons, ruled by Queen Myrina, were hired by Atlantis, now a decadent nation, to root out a nest of Gorgons. Myrina had some Gorgons captured, in order to continue the line within the Amazon nation. A garrison was left behind to collect the payment, but was slain, as the Atlanteans hated the warrior-women and wanted to avoid payment, thus earning the eternal hated of the Amazonian nation. Wishing to protect their power, the Atlantean council of sorcerers tried to harness a fraction of the power of the Axis Mundi, but were unable to control the energies, causing the Great Cataclysm[6][5] or rather furthering it.[5]

Hyborian Age

During the Hyborian Age of Conan circa 10,000 BC, the (fair-skinned)[7] Amazons led lived in the Valley of the Amazons[3] (or "Hidden Valley") in the fabled Secret City of the Amazons,[4] in Hyboria. The custom of slaying their male mates,[3] as well as any mates entering their domain, was already law to those Amazons. Those Amazons held a death-match arena known as the Circle, in which the victorious survivor mated with the Queen before she slew him.[4]

When Conan was let free by Queen Bryn who showed him the secret tunnel out of the city after their mating, Mab took the lead, imprisoning Bryn and hunting Conan. Conan himself stumbled onto the vanguard of the Legion of Freebooters come to plunder the valley and sold the Amazons into slavery.[3] The Amazons pursuing Conan reached him at this moment and a fight broke, in which Conan turned on the Freebooters to let Danae warn Bryn. They returned and Conan timely stopped Mab from executing Bryn for having violated the law of the Circle. Conan and Danae arrived and prevented Bryn's execution. Meanwhile, a survivor of the Freebooters dragged the horde of Malekhar the Morose. Conan slew Malekhar, and swore to never reveal the tunnel leading to the Amazons' domain before departing. Mab shot him to respect the law of the Circle and Conan left, believed dead, protected by Danae's shield on his back.[4]

At least two other groups of women warriors were known as Amazons in Hyboria in the same era (though their relations to the Amazons, if any, remains unrevealed):

Antiquity

Several thousand years later, the Amazons founded their own city, Themiscyra, on the Thermodon River (in modern-day Turkey). Hippolyta, daughter of the Amazonian queen Ortrera and of Ares, the Olympian god of war, was born (near River Tanais, near modern-day Rostov-on-Don, Russia).[13][5] Some account have Otrera described as the first queen of the Amazons.[13] Echidna stated that, despite being the offspring of Ares, she always thought the Amazons to be as her own.[2]

Lysippe succeeded to her mother Ortrera as queen of the Amazons, but was killed in combat. Hyppolita then succeeded to her sister.[13][5]

Twelve Labors of Hercules

In 1270 BC, Hercules went to Themiscyra, to steal the girdle of Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons, a gift from Hippolyta's father Ares. However the moment the two met it was an instant attraction and the two went to bed together. This happiness from Hercules angered Hera, who took the form of one of the Amazons, and made them believe Hercules was kidnapping their queen. He escaped buck naked, carrying the girdle and chased by the countless Amazons.[14]


Later, Hippolyta used arcane magic to invert the gorgons' stone-making abilities and turned a statue into flesh, her daughter Artume, aiming at the creation of a more perfect offspring.[13]

Siege of Troy

Hippolyta was eventually killed in a hunting accident by her sister Penthesileia. She soon grew in fear of her people's reproaches and was haunted by the Furies, who tormented those who killed their kin. Along twelve fellow Amazons (Clonié, Polemusa, Derinoè, Evandrè, Antandrè, Bremusa, Hippothoè, Harmothoè, Alcibiè, Derimacheia, Antibrotè and Thermodosa), Penthesilea came to Troy in order to cleanse her soul and help King Priam in the Trojan War.

Tricked by Athena (who favored Achilles of the Achaeans), Penthesileia led both her Amazons and the Trojans, galvanized by the warrior woman. Despite killing many warriors, the Amazons were all slain, Penthesilea falling last after facing Achilles. Ares was enraged but forbidden to intervene, while Achilles' heart was drown in sorrow (from one fist blow, he slew Thersites, who mocked his mourning.[15] The feats of the Amazons were witnessed by Cole, a Neanderthal with an extended lifespan.[16]

Olympus

The Amazons came to exist in Olympus, where they were the most-fiercely trained warrior. Hippolyta resumed her rule as Queen of the Amazons.[17]

Their whereabouts in the following years are unrevealed, but Hercules stated they did "run a little wild every hundred years or so.[18]

Modern Age

In the Modern Age, Hippolyta still harbored passion for Hercules. She was recruited by Pluto into enterring an arranged marriage with Hercules, in order to prevent him from interfering with Pluto plans of conquering Olympus.[13] The Amazons were among many, along with Harpies, that stormed the U.C.L.A. Campus through portals, looking for Venus (while Cerberus and the Mutates went after Hercules), culminating with Ares, Pluto and Hippolyta appearing before them and their allies, stating that Zeus had decreed that Hercules was to marry Hippolyta and serve as her prince consort and that Venus was to marry Ares, or the universe would die.[17] This event helped start up the Champions of Los Angeles, who ultimately foiled Pluto's plan.[13]

The Amazons, including Artume and Delphyne (an Amazon gorgon), fought in Olympus along the Olympians and against the invading demon hordes of Mikaboshi. Artume's resolve for conquer sprang out from the fighting.[19]

Artume's rule

Artume killed Hippolyta and rewrote reality, using the Atlantean Omphalos, to have the Amazons rule the world. This plan was foiled by Delphyne who killed Artume.[13]

Delphyne Gorgon's rule

Gorgon succeeded Artume as the Amazonian queen, and inherited Hippolyta's seat on Hera's Olympus Group.[13]

Hyppolita's return

Hela bargained with the Death-Lords to have Hippolyta resurrected, more powerful, in exchange for her owing each of them a favor, "The Twelve Labors of Hippolyta" (which Hippolyta interpreted as the Death-Gods wishing to have her ascend to Ares' throne and bolster the ranks of the dead). She first fought Doom Maidens for Hela. She was then urged by Pluto to restrengthen the Amazons' ranks.

Hippolyta founded New Amazonia in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, and started raising an army and nation of warrior women (including Delphyne Gorgon), though intending them not as pawns in the warmongering of gods, and declared that New Amazonia would persist for eons. On Delphyne's account, some Amazons did not share Hippolyta's view and craved for a more destructive purpose.

New Amazonia was soon visited by the Doom Maidens Aradnea and Echidna along with a quintet of giant sea monsters. They clashed with Hippolyta and the Defenders, until Aradnea delivered Caroline Le Fay's message calling the Amazons to join her and sate their craving for bloodshed, leaving the Amazon nation in doubt.[2]

Wade Wilson and Threnody went to New Amazonia as part of a paid mission on behalf of Weasel to acquire Hippolyta's bust from the Amazonian temple, and were confronted by the queen and her Amazons, though managed to steal the bust and flee.[20]

Religion

During the Hyborian Age, the Amazons invoked the names of Isis and Astarte. Their city was decorated with many theriantropic statues of female figures.[3]

Paraphernalia

Equipment

They Amazons of the Hyborian Age used sticky rope spider-web and armors seemingly made of big spiders' chitin. Danae wielded a shield decorated with a pattern reminiscent of a gorgon face.[4]

Weapons

War bows, daggers, axes, spears[4]

Notes

See Also

Links and References

References

  1. Incredible Hercules #125
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Fearless Defenders #11
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Conan #10; Queen of the Amazons!
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Conan #11; Amazons!
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #14; Hippolyta's profile
  6. Incredible Hercules #123
  7. Conan #10 and #11's covers picture Amazons with a wide range of pigmentation, including various tints of fair to dark, and yellow skins, but the Amazons on-panel all have the same fair complexion
  8. 8.0 8.1 Savage Sword of Conan #30; A Gazetteer of the Hyborian Age: Amazons' entry
  9. King Conan #4
  10. Savage Sword of Conan #12; The Hyborian Age - Chapter 3: The Hyborian Kingdoms
  11. Savage Sword of Conan #97; Leopard Men of Darfar
  12. Savage Sword of Conan #62; The Temple of the Tiger
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 13.6 13.7 Thor & Hercules: Encyclopaedia Mythologica #1; Hippolyta's profile
  14. Incredible Hercules #122
  15. Trojan War #3
  16. Cable #96
  17. 17.0 17.1 Champions #1
  18. Incredible Hercules #121
  19. Incredible Hercules #124
  20. Deadpool: Assassin #4
  21. Amazons at Wikipedia
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