Amazons

A mythical race of women, who inhabited a portion of Thrace, the land north of Greece.  They are said to have cut off their right breast, so that they would not be hindered while using the javelin or bow.  The word 'amazon' in Greek seems to mean 'breastless'  The left was kept, so that they could feed their children.  They were renowned warriors, easily the match of any male-dominated Greek cities.

One famous Amazon was Hippolyte, whom Heracles killed for her belt, in order to complete the ninth of his twelve labors.  She had earlier attempted to join the Argonauts, but was refused by Jason for fear that the crew would not accept a woman on board.

During the tenth year of the Trojan War, their queen Penthesileia came to the side of the Priam to fight the much-hated Greeks.  The Amazons inflicted many casualties upon the Greek fighters.  During the rage of Achilles, Penthesileia was killed by the great warrior.

Source(s):

  1. ApollodorusBibliotece.

  2. Apollonius RhodiusArgonautica.

  3. HomerIliad.