Keres | Evil Spirit

Keres Greek Mythology

The Queres or Kéres (Greek: Κῆρες, singular Κήρ, "fatality"), in Greek mythology, are daemones, female spirits of fatality and violent death.

According to Hesiod in his Theogony, they were daughters of Nix, who had them without uniting with any other deity, just as the latter was begotten by Chaos. However, in some works it is possible to find variants of geneology, among which they would be daughters of Tânato, who had them just like Nix.

The Wants symbolize cruel fate, fatal and impossible to escape. They are goddesses who bring violent death to mortals. They possess the character of every descendant of Chaos, they are infallible.

Some mythological accounts bring them as messengers of Tangat, acting in the realm of Hades alongside the erinias.

However, these goddesses are sisters of Tangato, being gods with different profiles. Tangato was responsible for the peaceful death, which is also why he is associated with Hypnos.

The Queres, on the other hand, were goddesses responsible for carrying the dead from the battlefield, so they come as death before time, cruel death. So when Ares went off to great wars he would summon the Queres, since they were part of his retinue. After the battle they would devour the dead or their blood and take the souls to hell.

It is not possible to define the correct number of these goddesses, each one would correspond to a specific type of violent death.

Homer, on the other hand, goes further: in the Iliad, he states that all human beings have a Quer with them, who will personify their death. In this case, either comes in the sense of good or bad death.

In the arts, they were depicted winged (like most of the children of the goddess Nix), and had a hideous appearance, with large fangs, like vampires in the modern sense, and clawed nails.

In the Renaissance, they were confused with the erinias.

Among the destructive personifications are (not all are called queres);

Akhlýs - darkness
Phthísis - putrefaction
Iskhnasía - devastation
Ólethros - destruction
And the modern wants:

Híbris - pride
Limos - hunger
Poinê - punishment