Helios vs Apollo: The Two Sun Gods of Greek Mythology

Helios vs apollo what are the differencesHelios vs Apollo were the two characters in Greek mythology that were both associated with the sun. Greek mythology is a fascinating tale of many characters and their lives that intertwine with one another. Helios and Apollo are two individuals with a few similarities and differences. 

In this article, we have gathered all the information about the two characters, their lives, abilities, and features.

Helios vs Apollo Quick Comparison Table

FeaturesHeliosApollo
OriginGreekGreek
ParentsHyperion and TheiaZeus and Leto
SiblingsSelena and EosArtemis, Dionysus, Athena, Aphrodite, Persephone, Perseus, and much more
ConsortClymene, Clytie, Perse, Rhodos, and Leucothea and a few moreDaphne, Kyrene, Cassandra, Calliope, Coronis, Thalia, and a few more
ChildrenCirce, Helia, Aex, Dirce, Astris, Lelex, and many moreApollonis, Asclepius, Aristaeus, Corybantes, Amphiaraus, Anius, Apis, Cycnus, Eurydice, Hector, Lycomedes, Melaneus, Orpheus, Troilus, and a few more
PowersPersonification of SunGod of healing, diseases, prophecy, archery, music, and dance, truth and the Sun and light, poetry, and more.
SymbolSun, ChariotPython, Bow, Arrows
Type of CreaturePersonificationGod
MeaningThe God of the SunThe God of Sunlight
Roman CounterpartSolPheobus
AppearanceShining Aureole of the SunHandsome youth with long hair

What Are the Differences Between Helios vs Apollo?

The main difference between Helio and Apollo is that Helios is the personification of the sun while Apollo is the god of archery, music, and a few other traits. However, the names Helios and Apollo both relate to the god of the sun in Greek mythology.

What Is Helios Best Known For?

Helios was best known to be born from two Titan gods, he was also famous for looking like a sun in greek mythology, in addition to representing the sun, or the one that is light coming from above. Moreover, his symbol is best seen as a chariot.

Solar Deity

Helios is best known for his personification of the sun in Greek mythology. He was a solar deity with the epithets: Phaethon (“the shining”) and Hyperion (“the one above”). In modern art, Heliosis is depicted as a man wearing a shining crown with a chariot drawn towards the sky. Even though Helios was a solar deity and a personification of the sun, he was actually not that celebrated and a famous god in mythology.

Helios was born to Hyperion and Theia, the Titan gods and his siblings were Selena and Eos. He was born as a personification of the sun which is why he does not have any other physical body. He had many children namely Circe, Helia, Aex, Dirce, Astris, and Lelex, with many of his consorts, Clymene, Clytie, Perse, Rhodos, Leucothea, and a few more.

Helios Physical Features

God Helios looks like the sun because in Greek mythology he was the personification of the son. As he did not have a physical body he is mostly depicted by shining rays of sunlight. In modern culture, however, Helios is shown to be a man wearing a shining crown with a chariot drawn towards the sky.

He is muscular with short curly hair. He is also shown to have worn golden-colored clothes which cover his body. In reality, Helios was just the sun. His sister, Eos, would paint the morning sky and open the curtains of dust from where the sun, Helios would appear and make the whole world shine.

So the best depiction of Helios can be explained as the shining aureole of the sun. This is a very unusual description because not many characters in Greek mythology personified the sun. Helios was one of the lucky ones and which is why his character is still very famous in modern culture.

Reasons Helios is Famous

Helios is so significant and famous because he was the personification of the sun in Greek mythology so he was a sun god. He was not a god or any high-born deity with famous parents and even famous siblings. He was born to Hyperion and Theia, who were mere Titan gods before Titanomachy struck its course. Helios married many times and also had a lot of children but still, he was a not-so-famous deity in Greek mythology.

In modern culture, however, Helios is very famous because of his personification of the sun. Not many gods and goddesses even have that kind of power or personification which made Helios even more powerful and famous. Among many other things, Helios was also depicted as a man in modern culture even though in Greek mythology he never had a human body or appearance.

What Is Apollo Best Known For?

In Greek mythology, Apollo is best known to be one of the sons of Zeus. He was famous for his skills in archery and having strength, enthusiasm, and even music. He was best known to be the symbol of youth, beauty and the symbol of love.

Son of the Primary God

Apollo is best known for his prowess in archery, protection, and beardless youth. He is also very famously called the true Greek among all the Greek gods. This is surely a very big honor for him as he is from the fourth generation of Greek gods and is still named one of the most original ones. Apollo was thus an attractive young Greek god with so much to offer and an adventurous life.

Apollo was one of many sons of Zeus and one of many consorts, Leto. Zeus was the prime god of all gods, goddesses, and creatures in Greek mythology after Titanomachy while Leto was a Titan goddess. Apollo was the twin brother of Artemis, who was the goddess of the hunt and another very famous character in the Greek pantheon of gods and goddesses.

He is also known for his relation to the sun. One of his many abilities as a god includes his control over the sun but this was not his main aim. He was the god of archery, music, protection, dance, and enlightenment and after that, he was the god of the sun. This is why he is often compared to Helios but the comparison is not justified.

Apollo’s Physical Features

Apollo looked like the beardless youth that he was and was also thought of as the most beautiful god in Greek mythology. He was of a normal height, with a semi-muscular body and straight hair. He had green eyes and very masculine facial features from a very young age. He was the god of archery so he had a perfect body, he was the god of music so he had a beautiful voice, and after all that he was the son of an Olympian god and a Titan goddess.

He was bound for greatness and he knew it. He was a complete god with Greek roots. Many named him the truest Greek god among all the gods and goddesses. He was the best amongst them in archery, protection, music, and dance. He was surely an attractive man with so many qualities and abilities.

This may be the reason that he had many lovers and from those lovers, he had many children. Some of the children grew up to be famous in Greek mythology but none compared to their father, Apollo, and his success. Apollo has the symbols of the sun and a chariot which symbolizes his relation to the sun and his prowess in archery.

Reasons Apollo is Famous

Apollo is so famous because he was the god of archery, protection, music, dance, poetry, enlightenment, and the sun and light in Greek mythology. His powers over the sun related him to the other Greek god, Helios but they have many differences and are not the same deity. Apollo was a beautiful man with so many qualities and abilities. In Greek mythology, Apollo was named the most Greek god among all the other Greek gods and goddesses.

One can understand the reason for his fame from the fact that he was the son of Zeus and Leto, an Olympian god and a Titan goddess. They made a son that stood out amongst thousands of men and stayed in the hearts of people. In modern culture, Apollo is surely an important character in Greek mythology.

FAQ

Who Were the Charites to Helios?

The Charites were among the many children of the Sun god, Helios. These creatures were three in number and were famous for being the goddesses of charm, nature, beauty, human creativity, goodwill, and fertility. In Greek mythology, they were also called the Graces in some places. Among many other things, these three goddesses brought happiness and pleasure to humans so they were worshipped heavily and wholeheartedly.

Conclusion

Helios vs apollo all you need to know

Helios and Apollo were the two creatures of Greek mythology associated with the son. While Helios was the literal personification of the son, Apollo was the mere god of the sun for a brief period in addition to many other abilities. This is the reason that the two gods are often compared to each other but they have more differences between them than similarities. Apollo and Helios also come from different parentages which makes them even more unrelatable.

Nevertheless, Helios and Apollo both have their own special importance in Greek mythology and also in modern culture. Here we come to the end of the article. We went through all the major features of both characters, Helios and Apollo for better understanding and comparison.

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One Comment

  1. In two places in the above article, reference is made to “personification of the son” — in both, the word should be spelled “sun,”
    I hope this helps.

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