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In ancient Greek literature, such moments are called aristeia, meaning "excellence", usually used for moments of awesomeness of Greek heroes.
  • Zeus saving his siblings and uniting them against Cronus.
    • Zeus releasing the Cyclopses and Hecatonchires bound in Tartarus, thus proving that he was a better leader then Cronus ever hoped to be.
  • Hephaestus getting revenge on Hera by making her own throne into a trap that holds her completely immobile while he gives her "The Reason You Suck" Speech and offers to be her best and favorite son if she accepts him.
  • Athena coming out of Zeus's head fully grown and equipped with weapons and armor. It is debated whether Prometheus aided in the "birth" with an axe.
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  • Prometheus and Epithemeus were set to create all the creatures of the earth. Epimetheus set to work giving each of them great gifts, but when it came time to make man, the greatest of these creatures, he was all out of gifts. Prometheus, however, was clever, and he had found the greatest of all gifts that he would give man. First, he gave reason, the ability to think ahead like Prometheus did, but man also needed protection so they could use that reason, and Prometheus was prepared to give them better protection than any hide or claw or shelter: He gave fire, the element from which all civilization springs.
  • The horrific monster Typhon, last child of Gaia and father of many monsters, strode towards Olympus to kill the gods, destroying cities and throwing mountains with his bare hands along the way. He possessed a hundred dragon heads, shot fire from his eyes and was so large his head scraped the stars and his arms spanned the horizon. He first attacked Zeus and easily best him, removing the sinews from his legs, crippling him, until Hermes restored them and healed Zeus. Zeus prepared for their last showdown on Olympus, all of the other gods (minus Athena, who stayed alongside her father) having fled to Egypt in fear. They fought, Typhon wielding fire, Zeus his thunderbolts, creating earthquakes and tsunamis with their blows, until finally Zeus cast Typhon into Tartarus.
    • Pan defeating Typhon. To put this into perspective, Typhon had just completely taken down all the other Gods, trapped Ares in a vase and was using Zeus as a mattress. Little Pan comes and does his Panic Yell. Typhon is stopped and Pan brings Zeus back to life and saves everyone.
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    • Zeus may often be a hedonistic dick in legends, but that story confirms more than any other why he is the ruler of the gods. When all others fled before Typhon, he stood still.
    • Qualifies as a CMOA for Typhon too, who may well be the Ur-Example of a Hero Killer. When you make the entire Olympian pantheon run in fear and defeat Zeus you are a badass among badasses.
    • To put extra emphasis on Typhon's defeat, Zeus slammed Mount Etna on top of him. He literally knocked Typhon from this dimension into Tartarus.
    • Some minor points for Athena too; she was the only God along with Zeus who didn't flee at the sight of Typhon. Could also count as a Heartwarming Moment as it shows how loyal she was to her father.
    • Hades stayed at his post, too, although he is described to have been shivering in fear when the shockwaves from Typhon's battle with Zeus could be felt all the way down to Tartarus. Then again, when you think about it, that he was just as scared as everyone else, but still didn't flee makes it all the more impressive.
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    • Hephaestus also deserves a mention here too, as after the battle, Zeus charged him with guarding Mount Etna where Typhon was imprisoned. He doesn't just guard the place, he makes the damn mountain his workshop.
  • Eris throwing the fateful apple and causing The Trojan War.
    • Palamedes outsmarted Odysseus. I repeat, someone outsmarted Odysseus. Not once, but twice.
      • The first time, after Paris took Helen to Troy, Agamemnon sent Palamedes to Ithaca to retrieve Odysseus, who had promised to defend the marriage of Helen and Menelaus. Odysseus did not want to honor his oath, so he pretended to be insane and plowed his fields with salt. Palamedes guessed what was happening and put Odysseus' baby son, Telemachus, in front of the plow. Odysseus stopped working and revealed his sanity.
      • The second time, when Odysseus had been sent to Thrace to search for wheat and brought nothing, he was violently attacked by Palamedes and replied that it was not his fault, and that if he wanted so badly wheat, Palamedes just had to go look around for himself: he wouldn't find anything. Palamedes went there, and brought back a huge quantity of wheat.
    • Diomedes wounding Ares and Aphrodite.
      • And as for what this blog has to say about that:
      DIOMEDES KILLS EVERYONE. HE RAMPAGES UP AND DOWN THE BATTLEFIELD AND FUCKS UP ALL THE TROJANS’ PLANS.

      TROJANS ARE STABBED IN THE FACE. TROJANS ARE STABBED IN THE ARM. TROJANS ARE STABBED IN THE NIPPLE. LIMBS ARE HACKED OFF. TONGUES ARE CUT OFF. THERE’S A LOT OF BEHEADING. SPEARS GO THROUGH THROATS AND STOMACHS AND NOSES AND NIPPLES (LOTS OF NIPPLES). BRAINS SPLATTER ALL OVER THE BACKS OF HELMETS. DIOMEDES IS A FUCKING KILLING MACHINE.

      AND THEN HE STABS APHRODITE, BECAUSE HE’S FUCKING INSANE AND SHE JUST HAPPENS TO BE THERE.

      AND THEN HE STABS ARES. AND ARES RUNS AWAY.

      DIOMEDES IS JUST THAT FUCKING AWESOME.''
      • He also charged at Apollo to spear him and Aeneas (whom Aphrodite had tried to protect before, earning her a sword to the arm) thrice, Apollo only keeping him away by blinding him each time with a powerful flare of light.
      • And if that isn't enough (he was admittedly helped by Athena against the immortals), he defeated over thirty well-known warriors of the time, and outmatched most of his fellow Greeks in various sporting events. They even had to stop his fight against Ajax because they feared he might kill the giant man.
      • His shield doubles as a flamethrower. AWESOME!
    • Hera, the Non-Action Girl by excellence, utterly destroys Artemis, with the latter's own weapons.
    • Achilles chose a short glorious life (and eternal fame) over a long, quiet one. Highlights include killing the Amazonian Queen Penthesilea and the final battle of Achilles vs. Hector. It is an epic Combat by Champion for the ages.
    • By the bucket load for Odysseus. Some pretty epic ones are his chewing out of Agamemnon, covering and protecting Ajax from a wave of countless Trojans while the other man was recovering Achilles's body, and of course the creation of the Trojan Horse.
  • Arachne beating Athena, the goddess of handicraft, in weaving. She may have been arrogant, but she had the skills to back it up.
    • And to put salt in the wound, some myths claimed that Arachne weaved very unsavory pictures about the gods - more precisely Zeus - during the challenge with Athena.
  • Theseus killing the Minotaur with his bare hands. Granted, the beast was asleep, but still impressive.
    • It was asleep when he started.
  • On the subject of Hercules/Herakles, Hera tried to kill him in the cradle and get it over with by sending two snakes to his mother's house. Herc's mom and stepdad hear Herc's half-brother wailing like mad and run into the room... to see Herc holding two snakes he just choked to death with his baby hands.
    • Hercules solving his 12 Labors. To elaborate:
      • Killing a lion, a flock of man-eating birds, a herd of man-eating horses and the Hydra.
      • Capturing Artemis' sacred stag, a giant boar, a sacred bull, a herd of cattle belonging to a three-headed giant, and Hades' pet Cerberus.
      • Cleaning a really dirty stable by diverting 2 rivers into it.
      • Stealing the Amazon Queen's girdle and some golden apples by tricking Atlas.
      • Some myths said that Herc actually held up the sky for Atlas while he was picking apples that insta-killed any mortal that touched them.
    • How about Hercules fighting and defeating Thanatos, the Greek Personification of Death, to bring an old friend's dead wife back to life?
    • On one of his adventures, Hercules visited the kingdom of King Busiris, who performed human sacrifices. Just as the king was about to sacrifice Hercules, he broke free from his ropes, grabbed a priest by the ankle, flung him around like a club to kill the king’s entire army and sacrificed Busiris on his own altar.
    • And to cap an awesome life with a Dying Moment of Awesome: towards the end of his life, he was away a lot and his wife Deianeira (whom he saved from a centaur) was starting to have doubts. So when she heard that Herakles brought home a girl among his other bounty from his recent excursion and his first thing to do is taking that girl to the Temple of Zeus, she in a fit of jealousy smeared his clothes with centaur blood which she thought was a love potion. Unaware, Herakles puts on the clothes, goes to the temple to offer the girl as a temple servant... and someone points out he is burning, because the centaur bloodnote  is literally burning away his flesh and causing it to melt together with the clothes. He leaves the temple, builds a funeral pyre, gives his bow to his friend Philoctetes with orders to shoot Herakles as soon as he gets on top, and climbs it himself. Just in case you wondered, there were no recorded objections when Zeus announced he will make him a god after all this, meaning yes, EVEN HERA AGREED.
  • Orpheus descending to the underworld to rescue Eurydice. And he almost pulled it off too.
    • Psyche did pull it off. Put into perspective, only six people had managed to do so. The other five were Aeneas, Heracles, Orpheus, Theseusnote  [all half divine] and Odysseus [who had divine ancestry.] Psyche was the only woman, pregnant, and completely mortal at the time, to wander down into Hades, finish her quest [asking Persephone for a box of beauty], and make it back to the surface even after having spent some time suffering abuse at the hands of Aphrodite and completing 2 or 3 previous quests for her. Epic.
  • Perseus killing Medusa. And if that wasn't enough, on his way home, he saved Andromeda from being devoured by Poseidon's sea monster, without any rest. Other myth sources say that he used Medusa's head (that he just decapitated) to petrify said monster.
    • Also, the other use he gave to Medusa's head — petrifying the corrupt king that sent him for it with the intention of killing him off so he could take Perseus's beloved mother as his wife. And then he didn't take the throne - in a Heartwarming Moment he gave it to his kind adoptive father, who also happened to be the evil king's brother who should have reigned from the start, but was banished away by his evil sibling.
  • Sisyphus, whose life and repeated cheating of death straddle the line between this and Crowning Moment of Evil.
    • The gods give finally getting him back by making him push a boulder up a hill. The boulder always comes rolling back down the other side.
  • When a lady of good family is raped by a prince, in many cultures it will be endured lest worst things happen. What do Romans do when this happens to Lucretia? They enact a Roaring Rampage of Revenge-and follow it by creating the greatest empire on earth.
    • For additional context; Lucretia was the daughter of a Roman Prefect, and wife of a Governor during the last years of the Roman Kingdom. While the monarchy was unpopular, after Lucretia requested retribution which included killing herself during the debate on what to do, it is easy to assume that this is the point at which "King" became a dirty word in Rome. The subsequent revolution resulted in the Roman Republic being established.
  • Pollux forcing the entire pantheon into a Logic Bomb. He and his (technically half) brother Castor were inseparable, dedicating themselves to each other and the protection of Sparta. But Castor was mortal. Pollux was a demigod (the product of their mom's one-night stand with Zeus). When they fell in battle, Pollux was spirited up to Olympus and had everything he could have ever wanted...except his brother. But his brother is in the mortal underworld, not a very nice place. So he takes all the wonders the Gods can offer, tells them to shove it, marches down to the Underworld, finds his brother and refuses to leave. They can't keep Pollux there as he's a demigod, but Pollux ain't going anywhere without his brother. Finally, they work out a deal and the brothers are now the constellation Gemini.
  • I'm surprised Hades gets only a few mentions here. You cannot begin to understand how awesome he is; to elaborate:
    • During the Titanomachy he receives just a helmet while zeus and Poseidon get actual weapons and what does he do? He sabotages the Titans by going into their camp and destroying their weapons with his bare hands (or some mortal weapons) and we know what happened after.
    • Theseus and Pirithous attempt to kidnap his wife so he welcomes them into his house and then binds them forever to their chairs(or chains them to a rock) freeing only Theseus after Hercules begs.
    • During the Iliad a man falls into the underworld alive and Hades snaps, talking about how he has to keep the Titans and Gigantes in their prisons lest they conquer Olympus threatening to attack his brothers and make a Stygian sky and ordering the furies to make monsters; and to crown it all, after he's done the underworld stops shaking from the sound of his voice.
  • Years after the Trojan War, Troy finally gets vengeance on Greece: Rome, which was created by a descendant of one of the last Trojans, storms Greece, crushes it into powder, and makes it a part of their empire.
  • Demeter is otherwise a harmless goddess, but one you'd be damn sure to stay on the good side of judging by these myths:
  • Atalanta wounding the fierce Calydonian boar and Meleager, who subsequently killed it, refusing to take full credit. (It went downhill from there, but still... an honorable gesture.)
  • Even if Hera's coup against Zeus failed and she was punished for it, you got to admit that it was still impressive and ballsy of her to take initiative and organize it in the first place.
  • A bit of a Fridge Awesome moment, but Typhon and Echidna had at least ten nasty children. Over the course of his twelve labors, Heracles subdued six of them (the Nemean Lion, the Lernean Hydra, the Caucasian Eagle, the Orthrus, the Ladon and Cerberus) and killed five with little effort.
  • After being effectively banned from giving birth anywhere on Earth, Leto has to wander the world searching for a place she can safely have her twin children, Artemis and Apollo. Hera sends as many obstacles as she can against Leto, including Ares spying on her, Iris being sent to tell anyone who may take pity on her not to under penalty of incurring Hera's wrath, sometimes holding the Goddess of childbirth hostage and even sending a dragon to chase Leto throughout her travels. Does Leto give up? Hell no. She keeps going. She continues her wanderings, refusing to stop until she can find a safe haven to give birth. Come Hell or high water, Leto will have her children.

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