Kronos Stone in "The End of the Beginning"
|First Appearance||HTLJ: "The End of the Beginning"|
|Last Appearance||HTLJ: "Love, Amazon Style"|
Arguably the most powerful artifact in the Xenaverse, the Kronos Stone is named for Kronos, king of the Titans and father of Zeus. After Autolycus steals the Kronos Stone from King Quallus he and Hercules discover that it can manipulate time. Hercules is able to use it to save Serena's life before he destroys it to prevent any further changes to the timeline (HTLJ "The End of the Beginning)."
Later, Zeus reveals to Hercules that it is the Kronos Stone which gave him the power to overthrow and imprison the Titans. Hera steals it from Zeus and briefly frees three of the Titans in an attempted coup of Olympus (Hercules and Xena - The Animated Movie: The Battle for Mount Olympus).
When Ares sends Iolaus back in time to stop Callisto from killing Alcmene he finds that Empress Xena has the Kronos Stone on her sceptre. He manages to steal it and travel further back in time to save Alcmene and the unborn Hercules. When Iolaus travels back into the present, Callisto destroys the Kronos Stone by melting it in front of the Halls of War (HTLJ "Armageddon Now Part 2").
The shards of the original Kronos Stone, broken by Hercules, were given to the Shimax Amazon tribe by Artemis for their protection. When Deimos discovered this he forced them to reveal the stone's location to him so that he could overthrow Zeus. Hercules was able to get the partially-reformed stone away from Deimos before he became too powerful. The hero sent the stone flying into the atmosphere (HTLJ "Love, Amazon Style").
Shards of the Stone also appear in Young Hercules. In the continuation, the Stone (or even pieces of it) grants immense power to the god who has it, as well as to demi-gods (but they seem to greatly lack control over it). However, possibly as a measure to prevent them from being abused, the Stone(s) can only be wielded by a god once it/they had/have been granted to them by a mortal (this was not the case of demi-gods); Ares already had in his possession two of the shards, with the only remaining shard left to obtain would be in the hands of Kora.
- HTLJ: "The End of the Beginning"
- HTLJ: "Armageddon Now Part 2"
- Hercules and Xena - The Animated Movie: The Battle for Mount Olympus
- HTLJ: "Love, Amazon Style"
There is some historical/mythological precedence for a Kronos Stone. Kronos or Cronos was the leader of the Titans and the father of the first generation of Olympian gods. For fear that his children would usurp his rule, after each one was born, Kronos would devour them. When Zeus was born, Kronos' wife, Rhea, hid the child and presented Kronos with a stone. Later, when Zeus killed Kronos, the stone was taken by two eagles to the "centre of the world." Due to the fact that the Greeks couldn't agree to where that was, there are multiple Kronos Stones or (also called Omphalos stones, Omphalos meaning "navel"). The most famous was at the Oracle of Delphi.
The stone also suffers from a common mythological confusion: Cronus was the leader of the titans, but Chronos was the god of time. In the original Greek, the two names were pronounced differently and were difficult to confuse even when written, but in Latin and the original English pronunciation spelling, they are quite similar. This could explain the stone's original association with time travel (Chronos), and its later enhanced powers (Cronus). The Xenaverse was one of the first modern retellings to use the spelling "Kronos", which is closer to the original Greek spelling.