Hades, Pluto, or Zeus of the Underworld, it doesn’t matter what you call him – but you have to know about him! A popular figure in Greek mythology, he is sometimes forgotten to the bigger named gods out there, but surely this god of the Underworld deserves the same recognition? Check out what we found out about Hades here, 25 facts coming up!
Fact 1: Hades was a popular figure in Greek mythology. Greek mythology has actually been around for a very long time, and the myths that are told are largely based around the beliefs of the gods, deities, and heroes about a certain way of life at the time. Most of the myths told contain some sort of mystical creatures too!
Fact 2: Hades was the son of Cronus and Rhea. His father, in particular, plays a big role in Greek mythology as he was the leader of the Titans. The Titans were ‘pre-Olympian Gods’ who ruled, but they were overthrown eventually by Zeus and his brothers, who then formed the Olympus and ruled. Rhea, on the other hand, is sometimes known as the ‘mother of gods’.
Fact 3: Interestingly, Cronus and Rhea, Hades’ Mother and Father, were also brother and sister. But, this kind of relationship wasn’t frowned upon in Greek myth.
Fact 4: Hades is sometimes referred to as the ‘god of the dead’ and as ‘god of the Underworld’. They can be interchangeable. The Underworld isn’t some sort of ‘hell’ it’s actually where the souls of the dead go to live after a person has died.
Fact 5: Hades was 1 of 7 children. His siblings are: Demeter, Hera, Hestia, Poseidon, Chiron, and Zeus.
Fact 6: Like a lot of gods at this time, they liked a good battle, and loved a good conquering! Which is exactly what Hades and a couple of his sibling did to his Father. Together with Zeus and Poseidon, Hades overthrew his Father, leader of the Titans, and started off a new generation of leaders, the Olympians.
Fact 7: So, if you go to the Underworld in spirit form there is a really good chance that you won’t be coming out again. Why? Because there is a 3 headed-dog guarding it. This ‘cute’ little pup is known as Cerberus, and is the loyal hound of Hades. In fact, Cerberus is sometimes called the ‘hound of Hades’.
Fact 8: Although we mostly know him as Hades, sometimes he is called Pluto. This is derived from the name ‘Plouton’ which is associated with wealth.
Fact 9: Hades is not classified as one of the 12 Olympians. Why? Apparently, it was because he was based so far away from Mount Olympus in the Underworld.
Fact 10: Thanatos is the Greek god of death, Hades is not the god of death as you might think. Hades simply rules the Underworld. On that note, am I only one who wants to keep calling this death chap Thanos from The Avengers?!
Fact 11: Hades is also known as ‘Áïdēs’ in Homeric and Ionic Greek.
Fact 12: According to myth, Cronus, Hades’ father, ate Hades along with his siblings, apart from Zeus. Zeus survived the eating episode and later made his Father give up his other siblings, so they came out to the world.
Fact 13: Persephone, is the Queen of the Underworld. She obtained this title after she was abducted from her parents Zeus and Demeter by Hades. Persephone is often seen as the vegetation goddess, as she was associated with the fertility of vegetation in Greek myth.
Fact 14: Hades, although he’s sometimes seen as negative because of his association with death in the Underworld, was actually a god who was interested in keeping balance. Namely, if you didn’t try to escape the Underworld then he was pleasant enough, but he got frustrated if spirits tried to escape.
Fact 15: Hades is also called ‘Zeus katachthonios’ because he is basically like the Zeus of the Underworld. The reason why people call him this is because Zeus received the sky when he and his brothers overthrew their father in battle, and so this makes for a good comparison.
Fact 16: He was unkind to those who tried to cheat death or to those who tried to steal souls. If a person tried to cheat death or steal a soul, he always found out about it and he always behaved badly towards the person. Take Pirithous, who tried to steal Persephone from the Underworld, as an example. For his punishment, Pirithous was sent to the ‘Chair of Forgetfulness’, thus resulting in him having a completely blank mind for eternity.
Fact 17: Persephone, Hades’ Queen of the Underworld, was tricked into staying in the Underworld by Hades. The story goes, if you eat the food of the dead you will be forever bound to the Underworld. Hades managed to get Persephone to eat a pomegranate seed, which was the naughty food, and so she had to stay with him in the Underworld.
Fact 18: People who were living at this time were actually afraid of saying Hades’ name in case something terrible happened to them and they were carried off to the Underworld.
Fact 19: When Hades did go around, which he very rarely did as he was quite content being in the Underworld, he would be in his chariot that was drawn by 4 black horses. Going out in style there old chap!
Fact 20: Some Greek myths say that Hades had a Cap of Invisibility. As the name suggests, this cap had the power to turn the owner invisible. This is a pretty neat trick, especially for when Hades he had to sneak around!
Fact 21: A lot of the other Greek gods have been portrayed in various art forms over the years, but because people feared and disliked Hades so much he was only portrayed on some pottery items, so there aren’t very many known, big, lavish statues of him.
Fact 22: Hades can be seen in the 2010 ‘Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief’ film. Here he is played by Steve Coogan.
Fact 23: In 2010 and 2012 Hades popped up in the ‘Clash of the Titans’ films, these films star Ralph Fiennes.
Fact 24: With a great film and TV career behind him, Hades joined the gaming world. He appears in games like:
- God Of War
- Zeus: Master of Olympus
- Kingdom Hearts
Fact 25: Some say that Hades was infertile, and he could not have children with Persephone. This was partly because he was living in the Underworld which represented death, and so having children and bringing life into the world would be a complete and utter contrast to what he ruled over!