Poseidon was known for many things, including making creatures in his realm and even in the land. The god has many things that he is inclined to attend to and give his full attention, but Poseidon created horses for a reason.
The god has numerous things to do, mostly related to the management of the seas, being a husband to his wife, Amphitrite. He is also responsible for punishing the mortals with disastrous things happening in the land, such as earthquakes, tsunami, and other water-related events.
But why did Poseidon create horses? Doesn’t he already have a lot of things to manage? Here are some reasons why.
1. Poseidon Created Horses Because He Wanted to Pursue Demeter.
Poseidon was pretty much like Zeus in more aspects of his character. He is cranky, he does not want other gods or mortals to betray him, and indeed, Poseidon does not want to settle down even though he is already married.
For this reason, Poseidon wanted to charm his sister Demeter. Demeter is the goddess of all nurturing plants and harvest, and she possesses such beauty that no god can ever resist. At least, that was what Poseidon was thinking. He did all the possible things he could think of, but Demeter feels even more aggravated by Poseidon’s advances.
Demeter is focused on her daughter’s life, and most certainly, she wants to make everything the same as it already was. Therefore, she does not want to reciprocate Poseidon’s intentions. But the goddess wanted him to create a beautiful living creature, and Poseidon took upon the challenge of creating more creatures than he intended. He created the giraffes, hippopotamus, and many other four-legged animals until he was finally satisfied with his creation— the horse.
In an attempt to run away from Poseidon’s prey, Demeter transformed herself into a mare that she thought could easily get lost in the herd of horses and disguise her. However, Poseidon was knowledgeable of her appearance, so he altered himself to be one of the stallions, and Demeter was mad at Poseidon because of his forceful taking.
Poseidon created horses to woo her sister. And when he saw that Demeter did not budge, he took her by force.
With that encounter, he fathered two of Demeter’s children, namely Despoina and Arion.
Who Is Despoina?
Despoina is Demeter and Poseidon’s daughter, but her name is connected to the goddess of mysteries. She is ultimately a secret because the ones who only know her name are being called.
She is also the goddess worshipped in the Arcadian cult and the little half-sister of Persephone, the wife of Hades. Despoina also has a brother named Arion.
Who Is Arion?
Arion is one of the creatures which only proved that Poseidon created horses. He is the horse that Demeter gives birth to in consequence of Poseidon’s assault.
Arion was a black horse, and he often worked alongside Greek heroes. There are some accounts that he was working with Heracles during his battles. Then, he was passed to the king of Argos, Adrastus.
2. Poseidon Created Horses to Compete With Athena.
Athena, the goddess of wisdom and war, is also Poseidon’s greatest rival. Athena detests Poseidon because he is also vying for the supervision of the city of Athens.
Poseidon was in the posterior because he did more useless things like spewing saltwater on the city. The citizens thought that the water was too salty, so they could not use it for their everyday lives.
Poseidon also created horses for them to use in war or transportation. Like before, Athens did not like Poseidon’s gifts but instead, they favored Athena’s olive tree.
Poseidon was ultimately humiliated by losing Athena. Therefore, he cursed the city to have a minimal amount of water to use for their daily lives.
3. Poseidon Created a Horse with Medusa’s Blood
And if you think that the uncle and niece rivalry ends with losing to a city for their patronage, it is not.
Aside from that encounter of creating horses for the city of Athens, Poseidon also committed the crime of raping Medusa in the steps of Athena’s temple.
Medusa’s rape was the most popular myth concerning the tale of the gorgon with snakes for a hair, and her gaze can turn any mortal to stone.
Who Is the Gorgon Medusa?
Medusa was the youngest one of the three gorgons, Steno, Euryale, and Medusa. The two of her sisters were not mortals, but Medusa was the most beautiful of them all.
Medusa served as the priestess of Athena’s temple. The woman turned many heads of her beauty, but she wished to remain chaste in front of the goddess of wisdom’s eye. Her fate, however, changed because Poseidon was one of her suitors, and he does not take no for an answer.
The god has taken her by force into the steps of Athena’s temple, and Medusa cried for help from the deity that she’s worshipping. Yet, Athena was so enraged by the act of transgression so, in the end, she turned Medusa and her sisters to be gorgons — they had snakes for hair, but Medusa was the only one who could turn the mortals into stone with her gaze.
She was isolated on an island, but she was pursued by the hero Perseus. Perseus wanted to cut her head off because he needed to give it as a gift to their king. With the help of the gods, Perseus completed his quest.
When Perseus cut her head off, there emerged two creatures from her neck Chrysaor and Pegasus. The hero then used Medusa’s head to turn his opponents to stone, and Athena attached her head to her shield called Aegis.
Who Is Pegasus?
One of Medusa and Poseidon’s children was Pegasus. Amongst the horses that Poseidon created, Pegasus is the only breed that has wings. Pegasus’s brother was Chrysaor, a mortal but Pegasus, just like his half-brother Arion came into existence as a horse.
Most of the stories about Pegasus depict him as a gentle and kind creature, but he is tough to tame. Athena had to step in controlling the winged horse, and the goddess sheltered him in the stables along with other horses of Helios, Zeus, and Poseidon.
Pegasus like Arion was given to the heroes to be their steed. Poseidon gave him to Bellerophon, who defeated the chimera. But the hero was also testing his luck so much that he wanted to reach Mount Olympus, thus making Zeus furious. Bellerophon died after Zeus intentionally startled Pegasus and thrashed Bellerophon out of his seat.
Aside from Bellerophon, Perseus also used Pegasus in his rescue of Andromeda.
At Pegasus’s death, he was included in the constellation in the sky as a prize. Zeus did this to pay homage for his loyalty to the gods and the mortals.
The Final Say
Poseidon created horses, and it was undoubtedly an exciting creation to witness. There are many reasons why Poseidon created them, but the main reason was his trying to get his pleasure in the end.
But even though that was the case, the horses have shown many significant roles in Greek mythology instead. Like Arion and Pegasus, they were used by the heroes to make their fight easier and stealthy.