How many heads did the Hydra originally have?

  • When Hercules fought the Hydra, it had 9 heads I think.

    But the way of the Hydra is that when one is cut down 2 grow up.

    So obviously some foolish fighters went in and cut some heads before, to know that information.

    So what I am asking, when the Hydra was first born, How many heads did he originally have?

  • femtoRgon

    femtoRgon Correct answer

    6 years ago

    There are many different accounts. I don't believe a simple, conclusive "it started with X heads" is possible.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Author       | Source         | # of heads    | Regeneration             |
    ============================================================================
    | Hesiod       | Theogony       | N/A           | N/A                      |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Alcaeus      | scholiast on   | 9             | N/A                      |
    |              | Theogony       |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Simonides    | scholiast on   | 50            | N/A                      |
    |              | Theogony       |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Euripides    | Herakles       | Many          | Yes                      |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Plato        | Euthydemas     | N/A           | Many for each severed    |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Apollodorus  | Library        | 9             | 2 for each severed       |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Pausanias    | Description    | 1             | No                       |
    |              | of Greece      |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Diodorus     | Library of     | 100           | 2 for each severed       |
    |   Siculus    | History        |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Quintus      | Fall of Troy   | Many          | >1 for each severed      |
    |   Smyrnaeus  |                |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Hyginus      | Fabulae        | 9             | N/A                      |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Ovid         | Metamorphoses  | 100           | 2 for each severed       |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Seneca       | Hercules       | Many          | N/A                      |
    |              | Furens         |               |                          |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    | Nonnus       | Dionysiaca     | Many          | Yes                      |
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM