Posts Tagged ‘Ipotanes’

PEGASUSHEADER

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Bellerophon, Pegasus and Khimaira. Kylix Laconian Black Figure. Ca 570 - 565 BC.

Bellerophon, Pegasus and Khimaira. Kylix Laconian Black Figure. Ca 570 – 565 BC.

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Pegasus was a Hippoi Athanatoi, meaning an immortal horse of the Gods. he was a winged horse which sprang forth from the neck of the Gorgon Medusa when she was beheaded by the hero Perseus. 

When Perseus struck off the head of Medusa, with whom Poseidon had once had intercourse in the form of a horse or a bird, there sprang forth from her Chrysaor and the horse Pegasus.

Chrysaor (meaning “Golden Sword”) was usually represented as giant, but may also have been conceived of as a winged boar.

As to Pegasus, he obtained that because he was believed to have made his appearance near the sources (pêgai) of Oceanus.

Liz Greene calls the winged horse the bridge between opposites: “An earthy creature which has the power to ascend into the spiritual realm”[Source: Symbol Reader].

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“The Birth of Pegasus and Chrysaor” by Edward Burne-Jones (1885).

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Pegasus was tamed by Bellerophon, a corinthian hero, who rode him into battle against the Chimera.

On a side note, the Chimera was a creature of Asia Minor, composed of the parts of more than one animal. 

Usually depicted as a lion, with the head of a goat  arising from its back, and a tail that might end with a snake´s head. The Chimera was one of the offspring of Typhon and Echidna and a sibling of such monsters as Cerberus and the Hydra.

After Pegasus had conquered the Chimera, he endeavoured to rise up to heaven with his winged horse, but fell down upon the earth, either from fear or from giddiness, or being thrown off by Pegasus, who was rendered furious by a gad-fly which Zeus had sent. But Pegasus continued his flight.

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“Bellerophon Rides to Kill the Chimera” by Alexander Andreyevich Ivanov 1829.

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The winged horse was also placed amongst the stars as a constellation whose rising marked the arrival of the warmer weather of spring and seasonal rainstorms.

Hence, Pegasus became a constellation in the northern sky, which brightest star is the orange supergiant Epsilon Pegasi

Both Hesiod and Plato made reference to this emplacement:

“Pegasus, soaring, left the earth, the mother of sheep flocks, and came to the immortals, and there he lives in the household of Zeus, and carries the thunder and lightning for Zeus of the counsels”. (Hesiod, Theogony).

“A pair of winged horses and a charioteer. Now the winged horses and the charioteers of the gods are all of them noble and of noble descent… Zeus, the mighty lord, holding the reins of a winged chariot, leads the way in heaven, ordering all and taking care of all; and there follows him the array of gods and demigods, marshalled in eleven bands [the twelve Olympians]”.  (Plato, Phaedrus, 246).

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Pegasus with the foal Equuleus next to it, as depicted in Urania's Mirror, a set of constellation cards published in London in 1825. The horses appear upside-down in relation to the constellations around them.

Pegasus with the foal Equuleus next to it, as depicted in Urania’s Mirror, a set of constellation cards published in London in 1825. The horses appear upside-down in relation to the constellations around them.

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From a symbolic point, Pegasoi or winged horses occur in ancient art drawing the chariots of various gods and goddesses, including Helios, the sun and Selene, the moon.

The hero Pelops was also given a chariot drawn by winged horses by the god Poseidon.

Furthermore, Pegasus is a Pterippus (pteros in Greek means “winged” and hippos means “horse”).

The symbolic meaning of the horse is pretty intense with themes of power and mobility.

The horse alone also carries archetypal themes of unifying grounded stability (four feet on the ground) with higher ideals (from speed and mobility).

This theme really comes to life when the horse is winged. The Pterippus, or winged horse, is a symbol of aspiring to the greatest heights of accomplishment.

Grounded by the stability of its body, yet in flight by the ephemeral power of its wings, Pegasus offers a great analogy because of the dichotomy it offers. 

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“Perseus on Pegasus Slaying Medusa “by John Singer Sargent. 20th century.

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Perseus and Andromeda, detail of

Perseus and Andromeda, detail of “Pegasus”, by Peter Paul Rubens. 1622.

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►Gallery: “Creatures, Characters and Gods featured in this post”:

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►Gallery: “Pegasus, The Winged Horse”:

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►Anex: A List of More Types of Horses in Greek Mythology (Gallery Below):

The Centaur, a creature with the head and torso of a man and the lower body of a horse. 

•The Hippocampus, a creature with an upper body that resembles a horse and a dolphin-like lower body.

•The Hippogriff, a beast with a head and front legs of an eagle whilst the rest of its body is that of a horse.

•The Ichthyocentaur, a creature which supposedly was one-third horse, one-third fish, and one-third human. Also known as Sea Centaur.

•The Ipotanes, a being that looked overall human, but had the legs, hindquarters, tail, and ears of a horse.

•The Sileni, bipedal beings that appear human form the waist up and horse the waist down. They were  were rustic spirits in the train of the God of Wine, Dionysus.

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Links Post:
http://www.theoi.com/Ther/HipposPegasos.html
http://www.theoi.com/Ther/Hippoi.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chimera_(mythology)
http://www.space.com/16743-constellation-pegasus.html
http://rabirius.me/2016/01/03/feeding-pegasus/
http://www.whats-your-sign.com/meaning-of-wings.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perseus_and_Andromeda_(Rubens)
http://symbolreader.net/2013/08/11/light-and-matter-the-perseid-meteor-shower/

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