The Greeks personified in their myths many phenomena of nature such as dawn , the Echo or the winds. The Greek mythology He considered that the four main winds were gods, children of Astreo and Eos. Their names were Cephiro, Euro, Noto and Boreas and they corresponded with the four cardinal points. Join us to meet Boreas, the devourer, the fearsome Greek god of the North Wind. Its name in Greek meant "devourer".
The Greek gods of the wind were known as the "Anemoi" . Zephyr the west wind ruled, Euro the one from the East, Noto the one from the South and Boreas the North wind. However, all of them were in turn commanded by Aeolus and sometimes also by Zeus or other Olympian gods. Its representation in Greek mythology is sometimes through a simple gust of wind, but in others take the form of a winged human male and even a horse that can run through the fields without damaging crops.
Boreas, the Greek god of the North Wind
Boreas was not a kind god, he was a god strong and violent character that he brought with him the cold north wind . It is usually represented with a light tunic, sometimes made of clouds and a conch shell in his hands. In addition, sometimes it takes the form of a horse and is made father of 12 foals that would have fathered with the mares of Erictonio. He is also considered the murderer of Jacinto, the lover of Apollo , by diverting the disk that had thrown him and that made impact against his own head.
"Boreas", John William Waterhouse, 1903
The main myth of Boreas is related to the kidnapping of a princess Athenian he fell in love with. The girl's name was Oritia and the god of the north wind became infatuated with it. At first he courted her in the traditional way and begged her favors, hoping that she would accede to his pretensions. Nevertheless, before the refusal of Oritía, it gave free rein to its violent character and as was habitual in many of the Greek gods, it decided to abduct it. The princess was dancing on the banks of the Iliso river when Bóreas formed a cloud of wind and caught her off guard and took her to Thrace. With her he had four children, two boys Boreas-Zetes and Calais and two females: Cleopatra and Quíone.
"Boreas and Oritia", Joseph-Ferdinand Lancrenon, 1822
It was believed that north of Thrace there existed a land in which one lived in perpetual happiness known as "Hyperboreas" where Boreas lived. Its inhabitants had a reputation for being extraordinarily long-lived.
Athens , due to the abduction of his princess, he believed that Boreas was a relative of his and that he protected them. When Xerxes He went to Athens to conquer it, the Athenians prayed to Boreas and it was said that it formed terrible winds that sank 400 ships of the Persians. In the city this event was celebrated with a celebration known as "Boreasmas" and a temple was dedicated to him in Attica. In Rome , this god received the name of Aquilo and sometimes also Septentrio and for that reason "northern" means "of the North".
Did you know Boreas, the Greek god of the north wind ? Do you know any more history about this being mythological ? Share it with us! And if you want to meet other curious characters of Greek mythology, we invite you to read the post: Deucalión and Pirra, the Deluge in Greek mythology | Like Noah!