Major cults of Hera were not evenly spread over the Greek world, but instead were characteristic of certain regions and peoples. The Dorians of the northeast Peloponnese (Argos, Korinth, Tiryns) and the Peloponnesians who colonized southern Italy honored her the most. A famous Ionian seat of her worship was the island of Samos. Her cult enjoyed its greatest prosperity during the Archaic period, when Argos and Samos were at the height of their power. Hera’s origins are generally thought to lie in a powerful prehellenic goddess (or goddesses) whose cult was adopted by the Mycenaean Greeks. Her name has been connected with the word ho¯ra, season, indicating fertility and ripeness for marriage, and appears on Linear B tablets from Pylos (in connection with Zeus) and Thebes. The same etymology makes Hera a feminine form of hero¯s, and this background may help to elucidate the goddess’ complex ties to heroes, Herakles above all, and the genesis of the Greek concept of the mythic and cultic hero.1