Halcyone (Myths and Legends of the World)
Two separate Greek myths mention a figure named Halcyone (or Alcyone). In the first of these tales, Halcyone is one of seven sisters called the Pleiades. This story has different versions. In one, the death of two of the sisters drives all of the Pleiades to commit suicide. In the more familiar version, a giant named Orion chases the Pleiades for seven years. To allow them to escape, changes the sisters into a constellation, or group of stars. Orion also becomes a constellation, and he still chases the sisters in the night sky.
In the second tale, Halcyone is the daughter of Aeolus, god of the winds. There are two versions of this legend as well. In one myth, Halcyone and her husband, Ceyx, king of Thessaly, compare themselves to the gods by taking the names Zeus and HeraGreek goddess, wife and sister of Zeus; queen of heaven (Roman goddess Juno). As punishment, the gods turn them into birds. In another story, Ceyx decides to sail across the sea to consult an to find out if the gods are angry with him. Halcyone, fearing the dangers of such a voyage, begs him not to go. However, Ceyx sets out and, as Halcyone fears, drowns in a storm. Morpheus, the god of sleep and dreams, comes to Halcyone in a dream and tells her of her husband's death. Later when she sees his body washed up on shore, the gods transform both of them into kingfisher seabirds. Every winter...
(The entire section is 291 words.)
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