by Jack from Richmond
|Bellerophon fighting Chimera
Bellerophon was a citizen of Corinth, Greece. He is my hero because of the many difficult and dangerous feats that he accomplished.
Bellerophon was accused of murder by King Proetus of Corinth. Proetus invited Bellerophon into his house where he planned to have him executed. However, it was considered evil to kill a guest in such a manner and Proetus was afraid it would tarnish his reputation. Instead, Proetus sent Bellerophon to his friend, King Iothas. But when Bellerophon arrived at King Iothas’s house, the king was in the same fix as Proetus was. Iothas, instead, told Bellerophon that he had to go on a quest to kill the Chimera. Iothas believed that the Chimera would surely kill Bellerophon.
The Chimera was a terrible fire-breathing lion. It had a goat’s head on its back and had a serpent for a tail. Bellerophon needed time to prepare for the battle with the monster. He prayed for a long time at a temple of Athena. That night, Athena came to Bellerophon in a dream and gave him a golden bridle that could capture Pegasus, the flying horse. When Bellerophon awoke, the bridle was in his hands. Bellerophon used the bridle to capture and tame Pegasus.
Bellerophon began to plan how he would slay the Chimera. He decided to put a lump of lead on the end of his lance. When the Chimera’s fire melted the lead, it would trickle down the beast’s throat and kill it. When Bellerophon was ready, he took his lance and flew with Pegasus to the mountain where the Chimera lived. Bellerophon’s plan worked. From the safety of Pegasus’s back, Bellerophon shoved the lance into the Chimera’s mouth. The melted lead then poured down its throat and choked it.
Bellerophon accomplished other quests and became very rich and famous. Bellerophon worshiped Athena to thank her for the bridle. Eventually, Bellerophon considered himself as good as a god and tried to fly to the forbidden Mount Olympus. Furious at the intrusion, Zeus sent a gadfly to sting Pegasus. Pegasus bucked and threw Bellerophon off. Athena slowed Bellerophon down before he hit the ground and saved him from dying. Bellerophon then spent the rest of his life alone, looking for Pegasus.