Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Helios, god of the sun in Greek mythology is mentioned in the Odyssein Book XII when Odysseus and those of his crew that are still alive come to the island of Thrinacia, which was sacred to the sun god. Circe calls him Hyperion instead of Helios. On this island, the red cattle of the sun, sacred to Helios/Hyperion were kept. The cattle are looked after by the daughters of Hyperion, Phaethusa and Lampetia. Eurylochus, a member of the crew, persuades the crew to ignore Odysseus and the men of Odysseus slaughter and eat some of the sacred cattle, despite his protests. The supplies of the crew had run out so they were hungry, to be fair. The guardians tell their father and Helios asks Zeus to punish them. Zeus destroys their ship and kills all men, save for Odysseus.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team