Symbol of vanity, greed, military hubris.
The Bellerophon symbol is one of a man on a winged horse. Bellerophon lived in Ancient Greece. He was the son of Eurynome, the queen of Corinth, and Poseidon, god of the sea. After killing someone he was banished from Corinth. Bellerophon was then taken in as a guest by King Proetus. The king’s wife wanted to sleep with Bellerophon but he turned her down. She took umbrage and accused Bellerophon of raping her. The king could not kill Bellerophon because he was a guest so Proteus sent Bellerophon to his father-in-law. King Proteus included a tablet that told his father-in-law what Bellerophon had done. On the tablet, Proteus instructed his father-in-law to kill Bellerophon. King Proteus’ father-in-law, King Iobates, did not read the tablet at first and invited Bellerophon into his house as a guest. By the time Iobates read the tablet he could not kill Bellerophon so he gave him some impossible quests.
Iobates told Bellerophon he had to kill the chimera that was destroying a local town. The chimera had the head of a lion, the body of a goat, and the tail of a serpent. It breathed fire and was wreaking havoc on the local town. Bellerophon was not sure how to destroy the chimera so he asked a local seer. The seer told him that Athena would help him. Bellerophon went to Athena’s temple and stayed there. While he was sleeping he was visited by Athena. She gave him a golden bridle that could tame Pegasus. Pegasus would help Bellerophon kill the chimera.
Bellerophon captured Pegasus with the bridle and flew into battle with the chimera. He won the battle by killing the chimera with a spear and returned to King Iobates. Iobates sent him to fight the Amazon and a neighboring warring tribe. Bellerophon used Pegasus to fly over the tribes and defeat them by throwing bodies and boulders onto them. Iobates did not have any other means to kill Bellerophon so he sent assassins to kill him. Bellerophon thwarted the assassins and made it back to Iobates’ kingdom. Iobates then told Bellerophon what his son-in-law had told him. Bellerophon told Iobates that he had never harmed his daughter. Iobates believed him and gave his younger daughter to be Bellerophon’s bride. Bellerophon was made a king.
Because of the hubris, Bellerophon felt by accomplishing all those feats he rode Pegasus up to Mount Olympus to overtake Zeus and capture his throne. Zeus sent a gadfly to bite Pegasus. When the horse was bitten it bucked Bellerophon off of its back. Pegasus rode to Mount Olympus and ended up being Zeus’ steed while Bellerophon fell to earth and was blinded.
Bellerophon symbolizes greed and vanity. Bellerophon also symbolizes military control over civil society.
In modern times the symbol of Bellerophon is used by the British Airborne forces during the Second World War. A modern-day English band is named after the Ancient Greek hero. The Royal Navy had a ship named the HMS Bellerophon. There is a Bellerophon clan in the Clash of Clans game. There is also an Australian coffee company called Bellerophon Coffee. Bellerophon has been depicted on ancient vases and paintings. There was an ancient scarf clip with the Bellerophon symbol and in modern times the symbol can be found on necklaces and rings.Symbols Menu:
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