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A huge giant, who was supposed to have stood upon the western confines of the Earth, and supported the heavens on his shoulders. Hercules sought his help in one of his Twelve Labours, that of picking three golden apples from the garden of the Hesperides, in order to accomplish which task Hercules had to temporarily relieve the giant of his burden. He did so, and when Atlas returned, the giant thought to trick the hero, by offering to convey the sacred apples to Eurystheus. Hercules appeared to agree, but asked Atlas to take the weight of the world for but a moment, while he went in search of a pad, on which to rest his head. Atlas agreed, took the world from Hercules, and the Greek hero made off with the apples. Later on, Perseus, returning to Seriphos, bearing the head of the Gorgon Medusa, turned the giant to stone, when Atlas refused to show the hero the proper hospitality.

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