Greek Mythology Wiki

Chariot & Horses of Hades: Hades drove a golden chariot drawn by a team of four immortal, sable-black horses; Orphnaeus (savage and fleet), Aethon (swifter than an arrow), great Nyctaeus (proud glory of Hell's steeds), and Alastor (branded with the mark of Dis).

Ancient Text[]

"The wide-pathed earth yawned there in the plain of Nysa, and the lord [Haides], Polydegmon (Host of Many), with his immortal horses sprang out upon her - the Son of Kronos, Polyonomos (He who has many names) ...
He caught her [Persephone] up reluctant on his golden car and bare her away ... So he, that Son of Kronos, of many names, Polysemantor (Ruler of Many), Polydegmon (Host of Many), was bearing her away by leave of Zeus on his immortal chariot." - Homeric Hymn 2 to Demeter

Kidnapping of Persephone by Hades on his Chariot

"Aidoneus Polysemantor (the Ruler of Many) openly got ready his deathless horses beneath the golden chariot [when commanded by Zeus to return Persephone to her mother]. And she mounted on the chariot, and the strong Argeiphontes [Hermes] took reins and whip in his dear hands and drove forth from the hall, the horses speeding readily. Swiftly they traversed their long course, and neither the sea nor river-waters nor grassy glens nor mountain-peaks checked the career of the immortal horses, but they cleft the deep air above them as they went." - Homeric Hymn 2 to Demeter

"A narcissus the wide earth caused to grow yellow as a crocus. That I plucked in my joy; but the earth parted beneath, and there the strong lord [Haides] Polydegmon (Host of Many) sprang forth and in his golden chariot he bore me away, all unwilling, beneath the earth." - Homeric Hymn 2 to Demeter

"[Persephone] captive, through grassy plains, drawn in a four-yoked car with loosened reins, rapt over the deep." - Orphic Hymn 18 to Pluton

"Some are of opinion that ... here [near Olympia in Elis] the earth gaped (khanein) for the chariot of Hades and then closed up (mysai) once more." - Pausanias, Guide to Greece 6.21.1

"[In the meadows of Enna, in Sikelia is] a huge grotto which contains a chasm which leads down into the earth and opens to the north, and through it, the myth relates, Plouton [Haides], coming out with his chariot, effected the Rape of Kore ... The myth relates that it was near Syrakousa that Plouton effected the Rape of Kore and took her away in his chariot, and that after cleaving the earth asunder he himself descended into Haides, taking along with him the bride whom he had seized, and that he caused the fountain named Kyane to gush forth." - Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5.2.3-5.5.1

"While Proserpina [Persephone] was gathering flowers ... Pluto [Haides] came in his four-horse chariot, and seized her." - Hyginus, Fabulae 146

"Tyrannus [Haides] had left his dark domains to and fro, drawn in his chariot and sable steeds, inspected the foundations of the isle [of Sikelia, wrent by the burried giant Typhoeus]. His survey done, and no point found to fail, he put his fears aside ... Proserpina [Persephone] was playing in a glade [nearby] ... when, in a trice, Dis [Haides] saw her, loved her, carried her away ... Away the chariot sped; her captor urged each horse by name and shook the dark-dyed reins on mane and neck. On through deep lakes he drove, on through Palici’s sulphurous pools ... [to the spring of] Cyane ... [where the Naiad Kyane attempted to bar his way]. But Saturnius [Hades] restrained his wrath no longer. Urging on his steeds, his terrible steeds, and brandishing aloft his royal sceptre in his strong right arm, he hurled it to the bottom of the pool. The smitten earth opened a way to Hell and down the deep abyss the chariot plunged." - Ovid, Metamorphoses 5.354

"[Hades] sees her [Persephone picking flowers in Sicily] and swiftly abducts what he sees, and bears her to his realm on black horses. She screamed ... Meanwhile a path gapes open for Dis; his horses barely endure the foreign daylight." - Ovid, Fasti 4.443