ARGUS

Real Name: Arges (original spelling)

Identity/Class: Cyclops/Olympian god

Occupation: Sentry of Olympus, Weapon-Maker of Zeus

Group Membership: The Cyclopses

Affiliations: Loki, Olympian gods, Typhon, Yellow-Crested Titans

Enemies: Apollo, Hercules, Odin, Thor, Thunderstrike

Known Relatives: Poseidon (father), Thoosa (mother), various relations to other Olympian gods through his father

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Olympus

First Appearance: Thor I#289 (November, 1979)

Powers/Abilities: Argus possesses several conventional attributes with the Olympian Gods such as superhuman strength (Class 50 at least), stamina, resistance to injury and an immortality enchantment. He has exceptional skills in blacksmithing alongside Hephaestus.

Unusual Features: In addition to his great size, Argus like the rest of the Cyclopes has only one eye in the center of his head.

History: (Greek/Roman Myth)- Argus is one of the three Cyclopes born to Ouranus and Gaea. Because they were disfigured with only one eye each, Ouranus became dissatisfied with the Cyclopes and exiled them to Tartarus. Ouranus also exiled the many-armed Hecatocheiroi (also known as the Centimanes) into Tartarus in order to conceal them from mortals. He gave the heavens to his children known as the Titans, but Gaea desired the release of all of her children from the underworld. She requested one of the Titans to rise up against his father and release their captive brothers, but they all fell afraid except for Cronus. Taking a sickle given to him, Cronus killed and dethroned his father, Ouranus, who as he died predicted that Cronus would be overthrown by one of his own children.

Cronus, however, did not live to his promise to release the Cyclopes or the Hecatocheiroi and instead imprisoned his children by the goddess Rhea in the underworld in order to prevent his father’s prediction. With Gaea’s help, Rhea was able to conceal a sixth pregnancy and gave birth on Earth to Zeus who as an adult released his siblings as well as the Cyclopes and the Hecatocheiroi. They joined forces in overthrowing Cronus and the Titans and Zeus became the king of the Olympian Gods. Argus and the other Cyclopes undertook the task of creating the thunderbolts of Zeus as the Hecatocheiroi guarded the Titans now exiled to Tartarus.

In ages past, Asclepius, a son of Apollo, became so adept at curing mortals of disease that no one died. Pluto, the god of dead, complained to Zeus that Asclepius had found means to bring the dead to life and Zeus slew Asclepius with a thunderbolt. Upset over the death of his son, Apollo slew Argus, Brontes and Steropes to stop them from further creating more thunderbolts for his father. Zeus momentarily stripped Apollo of his godhood and made him mortal to teach him a lesson for a time before restoring the Cyclopes to life.

(Thor I#289)- Acting as sentry at the gates of Olympus, Argus stood fast to his position as Odin, Ruler of the Asgardian Gods, arrived to confer with Zeus about the Celestials. When Odin attempted to force himself through, Argus called upon the Yellow-Crested Titans to fend him off with thunderbolts, which only served to anger Odin further. Frustrated by their insolence, Odin fought them off as Zeus, Athena, Hercules and Ares arrived to investigate the disturbance.

(Avengers Annual#23) - His soul returned to Tartarus, until he was freed by Loki to assist Typhon in their mission against Hercules, and later in their attempted conquest of Olympus. In combat against the Avengers, Arges fought Thunderstrike with a thunderbolt he had crafted, boasting he was a "thunder god"-- but Thunderstrike, while not Thor, still had more than enough power to defeat him.

Comments: Adapted by Roy Thomas, Keith Pollard and Chic Stone

There is a second set of Cyclopes, sons of Poseidon and the Nereid, Thoosa. Living as shepards on Sicily, one of them, Polyphemus, encountered Odysseus during his wandering and was both blinded and humiliated by his craftiness. It is likely that it was the Cyclops Argus from these five who allied himself with Typhon against the Olympians in Avengers Annual#23.

In Greek-Roman myth, the two-faced god Janus, a son of Apollo, is considered the sentry of Olympus in the years after Argus Panoptes, the many-eyed seer was slain by Hermes. So far, Janus has not yet been depicted in the Marvel Universe. He is not to be confused with Janus, the son of Dracula from Tomb of Dracula I#51.

These first three Cyclopes were different from the others encountered in mythology, such as Polyphemus.

by Will U

CLARIFICATIONS:
Argus is not to be confused with:


Images taken from:
Thor I#289, page 15, top right
Thor I#289, page 14, middle


Appearances:
Thor I#289 (November, 1979) - Roy Thomas (writer), Keith Pollard (pencils), Chic Stone (inks), Jim Shooter (editor)
Avengers Annual#23 (1994) - Roy Thomas (writer), John Buscema (pencils/inks), Ralph Macchio (editor)


Last updated: 09/04/11

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