Most commonly known as the god of the sea from ancient Greek mythology, there’s much more to Poseidon’s story than his rule over Earth’s waters. Discover more than 20 fascinating Poseidon facts about this powerful and fierce figure from Greek mythology.
Facts About Poseidon’s Family
Poseidon’s family history is an interesting one linked to the Titans of ancient Greece.
- Poseidon’s parents were Cronus and Rhea, who were actually brother and sister.
- Cronus and Rhea were children of Uranus (heaven) and Gaea (Earth), so Poseidon was the grandson of heaven and Earth.
- Poseidon is one of six children. He has two brothers, Hades and Zeus. His three sisters are Demeter, Hera and Hestia.
- Cronus swallowed Poseidon, and all of his other children except Zeus, out of fear of being overthrown by his children.
- Poseidon was saved when Zeus tricked Cronus into regurgitating him and the other siblings. (Zeus was not swallowed because Rhea tricked Cronus.)
- Poseidon married Amphitrite, the daughter of Oceanus. She is the goddess of the sea.
- Poseidon and Amphitrite had one son (Triton) and three Kymopoleia daughters (Benthesicyme, Kymopoleia and Rhode).
- Poseidon and Amphitrite’s son, Triton, was half human and half fish.
- Poseidon fathered many children with women other than his wife.
- Amphitrite remained faithful to Poseidon despite his many infidelities.
Facts About Some of Poseidon’s Children
All told, he is believed to have fathered around 75 children, most mortal but some immortal. Some are notable figures in Greek mythology.
- The winged horse Pegasus is the offspring of Poseidon and Medusa.
- The demigod Orion is one of Poseidon’s many sons. His mother was Euryale, whose father was the King of Crete.
- The immortal horse Aerion is the offspring of Poseidon and his sister Demeter.
Facts About Poseidon’s Dominion
Cronus’ fears of being overthrown by his children were not unfounded. That’s exactly what happened, once Zeus rescued his siblings.
- After Cronus was overthrown and the Titans fell, Poseidon and his brothers (Hades and Zeus) became rulers over creation, with each taking on different dominions.
- Poseidon’s most well-known role is as god of the sea in Greek mythology. In this capacity, he became the protector of all of Earth’s waters.
- Sailors prayed to Poseidon for safe passage and navigation on their seagoing journeys.
- Beyond his role as god of the sea, Poseidon is also the god of storms, earthquakes and horses.
- Poseidon was also worshipped as a fertility god, largely due to the fact that he fathered so many children.
- Poseidon is said to have had a palace on the ocean floor crafted from gems and coral.
General Facts About Poseidon
Poseidon had an interesting life and the ancient Greeks had some interesting beliefs about him.
- Poseidon had a foul temper and violent tendencies. He was known for being moody, greedy and vengeful.
- His primary mode of transportation was a chariot pulled by creatures that appeared to combine horse bodies with fish-like tails.
- Posiedon wielded a three-pronged spear known as a trident.
- Poseidon’s trident was made by the same cyclopes who crafted Zeus’ lightning bolt.
- Poseidon could wield his trident over the water to cause a wave or tsunami.
- Poseidon could cause an earthquake by striking the ground with his trident.
- The trident has come to symbolize the sea universally.
- The dolphin is often used as a symbol of Poseidon.
- Images of Poseidon usually show him with long, curly hair that appears wet.
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