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Born as a son to Zeus and Leto, Apollo was the twin brother of Artemis, and his mother spent some time on the run from Hera, Zeus' jealous wife. She finally found shelter on the island of Delos, in the Aegan Sea, and there delivered her child. A golden burst of light showered the island on the birth of Apollo, and seven swans circled it. But Leto, still running from Hera, had to entrust her newborn children to Themis, who brought them up on ambrosia and nectar, with the result that Apollo attained manhood in only a few hours, and escaped from Themis, declaring his destiny was to become a bow man, a player of the lyre, and a supplier of truthful oracles to mankind.

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