Hermes is the deity of travelers, merchants, thieves, gamblers, athletes, language and diplomacy. He is also a patron of fertility, animal husbandry and sleep. He is perhaps the shrewdest and most cunning of all the Olympian deities; he began his career as a thief before he was a day old by stealing a herd of cattle from Apollo (who retains a distaste for thieves to this day). In addition, he was the herald and messenger of Mt. Olympus so that he came to symbolize the crossing of boundaries in his role as a guide between the two realms of gods and humanity. It is also said that he invented the lyre. In Rome, he was known as Mercurius (Mercury).
Hermes's clerics seldom sit still. They're always busy with something, or out traveling the world. They are found in a wide variety of occupations, serving as diplomats, judges, translators, moneychangers, surveyors, and explorers.
TemplesWayside shrines to Hermes are common, but temples dedicated to Hermes are fairly rare.
Hermes values fair play, so much that he often settles disputes among the Olympians. While he values the wit and daring required to accomplish a difficult theft, he frowns upon those who would steal from anyone who cannot afford the loss. He urges his followers to be dependable and prompt, but he despises tediousness and smiles when something unexpected upsets the predictable. Hermes abhors idleness. If one cannot do anything useful, Hermes says, the proper thing to do is travel and have new experiences.
Hermes is depicted as a handsome and athletic, beardless youth or as an older, bearded man. He is usually carrying a white caduceus, but he was sometimes armed instead with a short sword. He is most noted for wearing a winged helm and sandals.
Hermes is the son of Zeus and the Pleiad Maia. Pan, The goat-footed god of shepherds, is a son of Hermes and the Nymphe Penelopeia. He also has a large array of mortal children.