Please note, Waddesdon will be completely closed 29 June–5 July with the exception of the ticketed live music events. From 6-8 July the property reopens but there will be potential disruption to the Manor.

The live music events from 2-5 July are organised by Senbla. The grounds of Waddesdon have been hired as a venue only, and our staff are not involved in the organisation of these concerts. For any enquiries relating to these concerts, please contact Senbla here or email info@senbla.com

Share:

Myths & Legends digital trail

Help Hercules reach Mount Olympus with our online trail for all the family.

The Greek hero Hercules needs help to get to Mount Olympus, the home of the Gods. The last time he tried to get there Apollo told him he must serve the King Eurystheus. The king made Hercules perform twelve difficult tasks, which the Greeks called ‘The Twelve Labours’.

This time Hercules needs to answer twelve questions - can you help him?

How do you play?

Venus-and-Adonis-Huet-1778

1. Solve the twelve questions below by using the artwork image as a clue.

School-visit-Westcott-Manor-Kitchen-session-object-handling-2020-Waddesdon-Adam-Hollier-800-500

2. Need help? If you are really struggling then select the arrow to reveal the answer.

Ceiling-painting-of-a-chariot-pulled-by-two-horses-carrying-Hercules-driven-by-a-naked-Mercury-Jacob-de-Wit

Good luck! By the end, will Hercules reach Mount Olympus and go from zero to hero?

1. The God of the sun, music, poetry, art, archery, plague, medicine, light and knowledge is peering at you out of the carpet that is usually found in the Red Drawing Room.

Can you spot him and find out his name?

Discover more about the carpet>

Savonnerie manufactory Carpet with the head of Apollo, 1683

Answer

2. One of the paintings in the Dining Room is of the Roman goddess Venus and her son, Cupid. Cupid is always shown as a small baby with wings.

What is Venus the goddess of?

Learn more about Venus>

Francois Boucher, Venus Disarming Cupid

Answer

3. The clock in the Conservatory, which has an organ in its base, shows a legendary musician, poet and prophet from ancient Greek and Roman myth.

What is his name?

Discover more about this clock>

Answer

4. Zeus, the king of the Gods, was looked after by a goat called Amaltheia when he was a child. There is a ceramic goat in the Breakfast Room.

Can you find out who it was made for?

Use the online collection to find the answer >

Read more about the myth>

Come and discover the animals and birds made by the Meissen porcelain manufactory in the eighteenth century.

Answer

5. The musical elephant in the East Gallery is mechanical and was bought for the visit of the Shah of Persia. The Greek leader, Alexander the Great, fought against an army with elephants.

Can you find out where and when this was?

Learn more about the elephant>

Answer

6. In the West Gallery, tapestry panels hang on the wall showing five gods. The Greeks and Romans shared many gods and goddesses but gave them different names.

Can you find out the Roman names of these?

Read more about the tapestries>

Answer

7. One of Hercules’ Twelve Labours was to catch the Gold Hind. A hind is a female deer. This is a deer from a folding screen in the Grey Drawing Room, made up of carpet-woven panels.

The designer, Alexandre-François Desportes, was inspired by animals belonging to the famous Sun King, Louis XIV. Where were the animals kept?

Use the online collection to find the answer >

Read more about the myth>

Savonnerie manufactory screen

Answer

8. In Greek mythology, the nymph Calypso lured the hero Odysseus to her island. Many portraits hang in the Baron’s Room, including a woman pretending to be Calypso.

Who is she?

Use the online collection to find the answer>

Learn more about the myth>

Answer

9. Above the fireplace in the Morning Room is Thaïs, who was famous for burning down a city. In this painting, she is just about to start the fire.

Can you find out which city she destroyed?

Find the answer in this article >

Discover more about the myth>

Joshua Reynolds, Thaïs, 1781; Waddesdon

Answer

10. In the collection there is a red clay terracotta sculpture of a pair of bacchantes, young women who worshipped Bacchus.

What clue do we have on the figures to show that he is the god of wine?

Use the online collections to help find the answer>

Learn more about Bacchus>

Answer

11. In the State Bedroom there are two paintings each showing depictions of goddesses with young men. One is the goddess of the hunt, the other the goddess of love.

Who might these be?

Use the online collections to help find the answer>

Read more about the paintings>

Answer

12. In Bedroom Corridor, there is a big tapestry of a bull adorned with flowers and garlands. This is the Cretan Bull, which was considered so splendid that the king of Crete, Minos, kept him. In legends the Cretan Bull had a son who was half bull and half man.

What was its name?

Read more about the myth>

Answer

Congratulations! You have helped Hercules reach Mount Olympus.

Now treat yourself to a sing-along with the Disney classic.