The Mythical Beast Cerberus
The Mythical Beast Cerberus – also known as The Hound O Hades. It is the famous monster dog with numerous heads from Greek mythology. It has one very important duty, to guard the gates of the underworld or hell. And by guarding, he prevents souls to enter or leave the underworld without Hades’ permission.
The origins of the Mythical Beast Cerberus
The Cerberus monster dog is the offspring of two monsters. His “parents” are:
Echidna – the half-women and half-snake monster. But she is not only the mother of Cerberus, she gave birth to many other mythological creatures.
Typhon – also known as the most dangerous and deadly creature in Greek mythology. It is a giant serpentine creature. And the offspring of Gaia and Tartarus.
The Cerberus also had 3 very powerful and also multi-headed brothers/sisters. They are:
Hydra – the beast with multiple snake heads.
Orthrus – who really resembles his brother, the Cerberus, because it has two dog heads. And he is the guardian of the Cattle of Geryon.
Chimera – another multi-headed monster. The Creepy Chimera had the head of a lion, a goat and a snake.
How does the Mythical Beast Cerberus look like?
Although it is mostly depicted as a monstrous dog with three heads, it has many more descriptions. For example, Hesiod describes the Cerberus with fifty heads. And Pindar described him with 100 heads. But these are two of the earliest descriptions of the monster. The later descriptions sustain unanimously that the guardian of the underworld had three heads.
Beside the multi heads, the body of the monster resembles a giant dog. Although the heads are not always of a dog. Some describe the beast with snake heads. Others with dog and snake head variations. There is even one depiction of the Cerberus with three dog heads and numerous snake heads on the monster’s back.
Who and how captured the Mythical Beast Cerberus?
There are numerous versions of the Cerberus’ capture. But all of these myths describe Heracles as the hero that captures the monster. For example, Apollodorus writes about a myth. This myth says that Heracles wanted Cerberus. And he even asked Hades to give him the monster. As a response, Hades challenged Heracles to master Cerberus without any weapon and it will be his. Of course that Heracles succeeds by squeezing himself around the head of Cerberus until the monster’s submission.
But there are many other versions about Heracles and The Mythical Beast Cerberus. Homer describes how Heracles had to fight Hades himself for the beast. After “winning” the beast, Heracles brings it up from the Underworld. And he traveled Greece showing the beast to the people of the biggest Greek cities. But his parade with the beast got its end at Eurystheus. When Heracles was commended to take the beast back to Hades. Although another source says that the beast actually escaped and went back to Hades.