ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel


Updated on November 24, 2017


Did you know that in Greek myth, Pegasus was not the only winged horse? In ancient Greek myth Arion was an immortal horse with the power of speech (although some put this strange ability down to an error in translation often attributed to Propertius). He was also reputed to be the fastest horse that ever existed.

Also known as: Areion, Erion, Vocalis Arion.

His Lineage

Arion was the offspring of Poseidon and Gaia or Demeter (depending on the source), conceived while they were in the form of horses. Posiedon was also the father of other mythical horses including Skyphios and Pegasus. Arion's twin sister was known as Despoina.

An alternate explanation is that Arion is the offsrping of Zephyrus and a harpy, which would suggest a dark/infernal nature. This dual identity may explain why Arion is described in disparate ways.

Talking Horses

The description of Arion as a talking horses may be entirely deliberate, as Hera was said to give the power of speech to the steeds of great heroes. In the poem Thebaid by Statius, Arion is also said to provide prophecies of the future--warning his master of impending danger and carrying him to safety.

What did Arion look like?

Arion is sometimes described as having wings. In various accounts he is said to be dark (even blue) and sometimes fair in color. His mane is variously described as dark or fiery red. In some accounts Arion is said to have two hooves and two human feet (both on the right side of his body).

Arion is associated with:


Arion was raised by sea nymphs and taught how to pull the chariot of Poseidon. The horses pulling Poseidon's chariot are often depicted as hippocampuses with the hindquarters of fish. But in no description of Arion is he described in this way.


The son of Apollo, king of Haliartus, was given Arion by Poseidon and in turn gave him to Hercules.


Hercules rode Arion into battle against Elis. Hercules also rode Arion to victory in a race against a son of Mars. He in turn gave Arion to Adrastus.


Arion and Krakos drew the chariot of the king Adrastos in the Quest of the Seven against Thebes. Arion is said to have spoken to Adrastos to warn him against war with Thebes. The war was a failure and only Adrastos survived due to the swiftness of Arion.

Arion was said to have a naturally wild and fiery nature, but Adrastos was a calm and mild man an his temperament effected that of the horse making him more tractable.

  • Archemoros: Arion is also said to have spoken to pronounce the death of Archemoros.

Abdera, Greece

get directions


The people of the city of Abdera showed particular honor to horses and the city boasted a temple dedicated to Arion.


Iliad (Homer)

"... there is no man that shall catch thee by a burst of speed, neither pass thee by, nay, not though in pursuit he were driving goodly Arion, the swift horse of Adrastus, that was of heavenly stock ...”

Shield of Heracles (Hesiod)

"`Guide the great horse, Arion of the black mane, through all his turns and make him help us, as best you are able.'"

Cynegetica (Oppian)

"To Horses beyond all mortal creatures cunning Nature has given a subtle mind and heart . . . A horse there was which ran with light feet over the corn-ears and brake them not; another [offspring of Boreas] ran over the sea and wetted not his coronet."


Arion provides the name for a music album, a design company and stable. Many horses have also been given the name of Arion.


  • Johnston, S. I. (1992). Xanthus, Hera and the Erinyes (Iliad 19.400-418). Transactions of the American Philological Association (1974-), 122, 85-98.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)