The Steeds of Sotha

helios greek mythology
Art by Molee Art

A year ago I began researching Greek Mythology for Scythes of the Emperor Company Banners. An art project I’ll be completing soon for all Sothan collectors.

Recently Guy Haley in the novel “Belisarius Cawl: The Great Work”, named a Scythes of the Emperor Light Cruiser, Sterope; which is an alternate to Asterope, one of Helios‘ chariot steeds according to the Greek Poet Eumelus of Corinth. I smiled, because I was on the same tack as Guy, following and naming the great steeds of Greek Mythology and later Romanised versions. These also include the horses of Phaeton, Helios’ son and Ares. Remarked upon by the poets Homer and Ovid (A Roman) also.

Scythes of the Emperor Steeds of Legend

For your consideration, here is a full list of potential names for Company banners the Scythes can fight under, some confirmed, the others educated speculation.

Sothan Horses of War

(Using original Greek names for the horses but there are conflicting Roman* and Late Greek period variations which you may come across)

Helios the Sun

The Immortal Horses (Hippos Athanatos)
Where ancient poets have noted traits and appearances, I have associated them with the description of Scythe banners and traits, following the SM “Codex” organisation.

ARES’ HORSES / Scythe Battle Companies (by poets Ovid & Eumelus)
Abraxas/Abrax – “White, Fire Breathing” 1st Co. (by Homer) [CONFIRMED]
Conabos – “Clashing Din/Tumult” (Kaleidoscope clashing in current art, cover of Slaughter at Giants Coffin novel) 2nd Co. [CONFIRMED. See “Heloth”]
Phlogios – “Flame (Fiery Mane)” 3rd Co.
Aethon – “Blazing/Shining” (Red/Burning Horse), Stallion. 4th Co.
Phobos – “Fear/Terror” 5th Co.

HELIOS’ HORSES / Scythe Reserve Companies (by poets Ovid & Eumelus)
(All pure white, ‘flame breathing’)
Phaeton – “Red Fire”, Stallion 6th Co. (Tactical)
Euos – “Skys Turn Tempest, Sky is turned”, Stallion 7th Co. (Tactical)
(A)sterope – “Lightning Mare” 8th Co. (Assault)
Bronte – “Thunderer Mare” 9th Co. (Devastators)
Chronos – Scout Company. 10th Co. (Scouts)
(Chronos, the Father of Olympians, used horse form to sneak off to lovers.)

Alternate Names / Mythology by the poet Ovid (Roman 1stBC)
Pyrois – “The fiery one””
Phlegon – “Burning.”

Ares, Aphrodite and the Muses

I hope you find this information interesting, I’ll be doing more cultural articles on the origins of the Scythes Lore, their basis in ancient history and hooks for your own embellishment of the Chapter.

Original Scythes Banner, from Advanced Space Crusade.

Main references:
Encyclopedia of Beasts and Monsters in Myth, By Theresa Bane
D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths by Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire
The Library of Greek Mythology by Apollodorus, translated by Robin Hard
The Penguin Dictionary of Classical Mythology by Pierre Grimal
Hyginus Fabulae. Greek Poetry.

About Sebastian

Site owner and creator, Sebastian Stuart has been updating and maintaining the Scythes of the Emperor webpage since 1997. He is canonised as 'ForgeMaster Sebastion' by Richard Williams and LJ Goulding in the Scythes of the Emperor novels by Black Library.