Ancient Lore of CerberusGuardian of the Underworld
What’s worse than a hellhound? I would dare argue a hellhound with three heads is undoubtably three times more terrifying. The math seems to, I think, add up anyways.
Cerberus’ primary job was to stand guard over the entrance to the Underworld
While it’s three heads represent the past, present, and future–it was definitively more frightening to encounter than any spirit you might read about in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Besides it’s three snapping jaws with razor sharp poisonous teeth, ancient Greeks described it as having a serpent’s tail, a mane of snakes, and claws of a lion.
Cerberus must have gotten it’s good looks from it’s father Typhon, a monstrous fire breathing dragon that even the gods on Mount Olympus feared. Or, perhaps, Cerberus’ genetic profile was benefited from it’s mother Echidna (a beautiful woman with a serpent’s lower body–think Medusa). And much like Medusa, Cerberus could turn you to stone with one look into it’s ghastly eyes.
Cerberus’ primary job was to stand guard over the entrance to the Underworld (a gloomy realm where the spirits of the dead roamed for eternity). Can you imagine this beast roaming about the banks of the river Styx–the only route linking the Underworld to our earthly plane?
Cerberus certainly prevented people from entering the Underworld unannounced, but more importantly kept the dead from escaping back to the land of the living. I’m pretty sure that Cerberus didn’t take bribes in the form of puppy biscuits. Perhaps the only thing it heeled to was the god Hades who ruled over the underworld.
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