Monday, October 18, 2010

Mythology Monday #1

With a little over a month left until The Witching Hour is available, I've decided to share my love of mythology with you in. Why, you may ask? Because The Witching Hour is full of mythological figures and deities from pagan cultures.

So to kick off my mythology kick, we'll start with the god Apollo who makes an appearance in The Witching Hour. Apollo was, in Greek mythology, the god of healing, prophecy, music and the sun.

Like most of his fellow Olympians, Apollo did not hesitate to intervene in human affairs. He was the reason the mighty Achilles fell in battle. Of all the heroes besieging the city of Troy in the Trojan War, Achilles was the best fighter by far. He had easily defeated the Trojan captain Hector in single combat. But Apollo helped Hector's brother Paris slay Achilles with an arrow.

When someone died suddenly, Greeks and Romans said to the victim was struck down by Apollo's arrow.

As god of music, Apollo is often depicted playing the lyre. He did not invent this instrument, however, but was given it by Hermes in compensation for cattle theft. Some say that Apollo did invent the lute, although he was best known for his skill on the lyre.

He won several musical contests by playing this instrument. In one case he bested Pan, who competed on his own invention, the shepherd's pipe. On this occasion, King Midas had the bad sense to say that he preferred Pan's music, which caused Apollo to turn his ears into those of an ass.

In The Witching Hour, Apollo is depicted as a god full of bravado until he's forced to admit he can't intefer with other pantheons. He, along with the other gods, get a chance to mess with Lucky Sands, my hero, but also show some complexity beyond Greek Myths. Still, it's always a good idea to understand the core stories that inspired them, and I hope you take away some new knowledge.

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