Helios was the Greek Sun God and his job was to drove the sun from east to west in the sky on his four-horse chariot. Helios is closely identified with the mythology of Apollo.
Helios at Night
After sun set, Helios allowed his tired horses to graze in their western home.
Late in the night he would board a golden barge made to transport his chariot & animals. This barge sailed them along the stream Oceanus (which was said to flow around the world) back to his palace in the east.
Helios had a Sun Stable where he kept his horses along with other flying horses of Greek mythology including Pegasus & Apollo’s horses.
The Chosen Few
These horses were the favorite of Helios and most often used to pull his sun chariot.
Sun Stable Residents
Helios did choose different horses from time to time & had a large stable of animals to choose from. Here is a list of some of those animals.
- Lampos – Used by Apollo
- Actaeon – Used by Apollo
Phaeton was the son of Helios and an Ethiopian princess and unfortunately one day curiosity got the better of him. He tracked his father down in the east and went to meet him & during this meeting he convinced his father to let him try driving the sun chariot across the sky.
Sadly he didn’t quite have his father’s way with horses and was unable to control them. The fiery chariot flailed and started charging dangerously towards earth.
This immediate danger prompted Zeus to action & he intervened to save the planet by shooting Phaeton with a thunder bolt. The chariot broke to bits, the scared horses ran home and poor Phaeton fell to the earth in flames.
So Many Mythological Horses
As I started doing my research I realized that horses were a popular subject in mythology from all region of the world. I’ll continue bringing them to you, but for now why not meet some more?