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Hephaestus built automatons of metal to work for him.
Later writers describe his lameness as the consequence of his second fall, while Homer makes him lame and weak from his birth.
The Greeks maintained in their civilization an animistic idea that statues are in some sense alive.
This kind of art and the animistic belief goes back to the Minoan period, when Daedalus, the builder of the labyrinth, made images which moved of their own accord. In the account of Attic vase painters, Hephaestus was present at the birth of Athena and wields the axe with which he split Zeus' head to free her.
In the latter account, Hephaestus is there represented as older than Athena, so the mythology of Hephaestus is inconsistent in this respect.
In one branch of Greek mythology, Hera ejected Hephaestus from the heavens because he was "shrivelled of foot".