Greek goddess of retribution. In the earliest Greek religion she was worshiped as a fertility goddess. Later legends told how Zeus, in the form of a swan, coupled with her in the form of a goose. Nemesis then laid the egg from which Helen of Troy was born (in other versions Leda was said to be Helen's mother). Nemesis dealt out punishments that expressed the gods' disapproval of human presumption. Her cult was also popular in Rome, particularly among soldiers.
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