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The Girdle of Hippolyte, Queen of the Amazons

Herakles' ninth labor involved the legendary Amazon warrior-women, the favorite subjects of some other myths as well. Herakles fighting Queen HippolyteIn this case the task was to get the magic girdle, supposedly given to the Amazon queen Hippolyte by war-god Ares himself. While it appeared for a while that Herakles' diplomacy (and possibly the accompaniment of other famous heroes in this case) would meet the good will of Hippolyte and for once accomplish a labor with no bloodshed, the conniving goddess Hera was then to step in, posing as an Amazon and instigating Hippolyte's subjects against the visitors, with a savage battle ensuing after all. The accounts of the queen's fate differ, but the prize was taken, and this labor thus brought to a close. Artistic accounts of this epic showdown, though present in other forms, seem to be absent from Greek coinage; however, portaits of individual Amazons may be found, like those of Kyme, the legendary founder of a city of that name in Aiolis, the Asian coastline just south of Lesbos.

Search for coins depicting Amazons.