A minor Roman deity, Hermaphroditus governed sexuality. Likely he was originally a Grecian god adopted by the Romans, as his name sounds almost exactly like his Grecian counterpart, Hermaphroditos. In both cultures, the god is exactly the same in his origins, sphere of influence, and mythology.
In art, Hermaphroditus was often portrayed as a young female figure but with male genitalia.
The mother of Hermaphroditus is Aphrodite (Venus), while his father is Hermes (Mercury), which is evident by the combination of their names into their son’s name. According to Ovid, Hermaphroditus was raised by naiads for most of his life. When he became tired of staying in the one place, he ventured out from his home. While traveling, he came to a pool in which a nymph, Salmacis, bathed. Salmacis became immediately attracted to Hermaphroditus and wanted him for her own, but he rejected her. After he thought she had left, Hermaphroditus undressed and stepped into the pool to bathe. It was then that Salmacis sprang out from her hiding place and wrapped herself around him, calling to the gods in prayer that she and he never be parted. The gods granted this prayer and melded their two bodies literally into one form, a body of both sexes. After the change, Hermaphroditus asked his father Hermes and his mother Aphrodite that anyone else who bathed in the pool should fall under the same fate and be transformed as well, a wish which was granted.
Light and Dark Sides
Except for the one myth of his own life, Hermaphroditus appears no where else in Greek or Roman mythology. His character suggests very little about his personality. Hermaphroditus is literally the combination of the male and female aspects, which I suppose, depending on how you look at it, can be both a positive and a negative trait. But considering his final wish, Hermaphroditus sounds like an angry and bitter person, one who wishes others ill in order to make them suffer the pain he also suffered. There was no logical reason for him to ask for the pool to be cursed (but then, when has anything truly been logical in myths?).