After performing a dozen miraculous feats of strength and savvy, Heracles, a mortal, was raised to Mount Olympus and given the privilege of eating with the gods. As Aesop tells it, Heracles made sure to greet each of his dinner companions with courtesy and warmth as they came in. Last of all Ploutos, the god of wealth, came in to the dining hall —and Heracles turned his back and pretended not to notice him. Zeus, surprised at this rudeness, took Heracles aside to ask why he had singled out Ploutos for such rudeness.

“When I was living among men, said Heracles, “I noticed that Ploutos kept company with the worst sort of people.”