Weekly Photo Challenge: Carefree


My carefree Chickasha Chiron  born 5/12/06 out of Leavin My Mark and Chickasha Candy

This photo was taken May, 27, 2011.  I was called by a woman who lived in the same community as me to come and do a photo shoot for her 5 year old buckskin gelding.  We took Chiron and his mother Candy to a beautiful lush pasture which needed to be eaten down.  I would do the photo shoot and then the horses would stay in the pasture for a couple of weeks.  As soon as Chiron was turned loose in the pasture he started tearing around and kicking up his heals.  As you can see in the photo above!  He was so happy to be free to run around and eat at will.  In talking to his owner I found out she was selling Chiron (why she was selling Chiron I will leave for another day).  After the photo shoot I told Chiron’s owner I would have the photo’s ready in a week or so for her review.   I did not tell her I was in love with her young horse who she bred herself from her beloved buckskin mare Candy.  Chiron was the most personable, beautiful and playful horse I could imagine.  And I have always wanted a buckskin.  When I got home I could not wait to download the photo’s so I could look at Chiron more.   I sent a few of the the photo’s to my friends telling them this is my new horse.  Needless to say I aroused some curiosity but was not taken too seriously.  I already had two horses at the time.   Little did they know two months later on July 25th I took ownership of Chiron and the rest is history.  We will be together until one of us dies first.   Below is a cute photo of Chiron taken shortly after his birth.  As you can see he has not changed much in personality 🙂

I have also included below, for anyone interested , the story of Chiron who was a unique centaur who lived in Greek Mythology.  The story is quite interesting.  I can’t remember why Chiron’s first human mother named him Chiron but I know she is of great faith and had some kind of epiphany one night.  Her foals name had to be Chiron.

Scanned Image 132340000

Adios Amigos!


In Greek mythology, Chiron /ˈkaɪrən/ (also Cheiron or Kheiron; Greek: Χείρων “hand”[1]) was held to be the superlative centaur among his brethren. Chiron was notable throughout Greek mythology for his kourotrophic (bringer up of boys) nature. His personal skills tend to match those of Apollo, his foster father (sometimes along with Artemis); medicine, music, archery, hunting, prophecy.

Like the satyrs, centaurs were notorious for being wild and lusty, overly indulgent drinkers and carousers, given to violence when intoxicated, and generally uncultured delinquents. Chiron, by contrast, was intelligent, civilized and kind, but he was not related directly to the other centaurs.[2] He was known for his knowledge and skill with medicine. According to an archaic myth[3] he was sired by Cronus when he had taken the form of a horse[4] and impregnated the nymph Philyra.[5] Chiron’s lineage was different from other centaurs, who were born of sun and raincloud, rendered by Greeks of the Classic period as from the union of the king Ixion, consigned to a fiery wheel, and Nephele (“cloud”), which in the Olympian telling Zeus invented to look like Hera. Myths in the Olympian tradition attributed Chiron’s uniquely peaceful character and intelligence to teaching by Apollo and Artemis in his younger days.

Amphora suggested to be Achilles riding Chiron. British Museum ref 1956,1220.1 .
Chiron lived predominantly on Mount Pelion; there he married the nymph Chariclo who bore him three daughters, Hippe (also known as Melanippe (also the name of her daughter), the “Black Mare” or Euippe, “truly a mare”), Endeis, and Ocyrhoe, and one son Carystus.

A great healer, astrologer, and respected oracle, Chiron was said to be the first among centaurs and highly revered as a teacher and tutor. Among his pupils were many culture heroes: Asclepius, Aristaeus, Ajax, Aeneas, Actaeon, Caeneus, Theseus, Achilles, Jason, Peleus, Telamon, Perseus, sometimes Heracles, Oileus, Phoenix, and in one Byzantine tradition, even Dionysus: according to Ptolemaeus Chennus of Alexandria, “Dionysius was loved by Chiron, from whom he learned chants and dances, the bacchic rites and initiations.”

There is also a persistent link with Peleus throughout Chiron’s myth. Chiron saved the life of Peleus when Acastus tried to kill him by taking his sword and leaving him out in the woods to be slaughtered by the centaurs. Chiron retrieved the sword for Peleus. Some sources speculate that Chiron was originally a Thessalian god, later subsumed into the Greek pantheon as a centaur.[citation needed]. Chiron then explained to Peleus how to capture the nymph Thetis, leading to their marriage.

Physical Appearance[edit source

Although a centaur, Chiron’s physical appearance often differs somewhat from other centaurs, demonstrating his status and heritage. In traditional Greek representations of Chiron his front legs are human, rather than equine, this is in contrast to the traditional representation of centaurs,which have the entire lower body of a horse[7]. This clearly sets Chiron apart from the other centaurs, making him easily identifiable. This difference may also have highlighted Chiron’s unique linage; being the son of Cronus. Chiron is often depicted carrying a branch with dead hares he has caught handing from it. Chiron is also often depicted wearing clothes, demonstrating he is more civilised and unlike a normal centaur (the only other occasional exceptions to this rule are the centaurs Nessus and Pholus).

The ‘Education of Achilles’ wall painting, from the basilica in Herculaneum (top right), is one of the most common Roman depictions of Chiron, as he teaches Achilles the lyre. In this version we see Chiron with a fully equine lower body; this is in contrast to the ancient Greek representations in which he has the front legs of a man.  In addition to this reconfiguration, Chiron’s appearance is further altered with his ears.  Whereas previously human, Chiron’s ears now match those of a satyr; folded over at the top.  This rendering creates a more bestial version of Chiron, much more akin to a standard centaur.  It may be possible that due to the rise of written sources, Roman artist were inspired by written descriptions of Chiron; simply using the word centaur, rather than having available traditional visual representations.  This may then, not be a deliberate reworking of the Chiron myth on the part of the Romans, but simply a lost nuance of the character in its migration from Greece to Rome.  As F. Kelsey writes; “The Chiron of our painting, […] has a body like that of the other centaurs, but the prominence of the human element in his nature is no less marked; he is the wise and gentle teacher, the instructor of an art”[8] (1908, pp.37).  Interestingly, Chiron has retained an element of clothing and gained a laurel wreath, suggesting the artist wished to portray nobility, or even divinity, more consistent with the traditional view. It has also been suggested that this fresco is a reproduction of an actual statue in the Roman forum.


A lekythos depicting Chiron and Achilles
His nobility is further reflected in the story of his death, as Prometheus sacrificed his life, allowing mankind to obtain the use of fire. Being the son of Cronus, a Titan, he was immortal and so could not die. So it was left to Heracles to arrange a bargain with Zeus to exchange Chiron’s immortality for the life of Prometheus, who had been chained to a rock and left to die for his transgressions.[9] Chiron had been poisoned with an arrow belonging to Heracles that had been treated with the blood of the Hydra, or, in other versions, poison that Chiron had given to the hero when he had been under the honorable centaur’s tutelage. According to a Scholium on Theocritus,[10] this had taken place during the visit of Heracles to the cave of Pholus on Mount Pelion in Thessaly when he visited his friend during his fourth labour in defeating the Erymanthian Boar. While they were at supper, Heracles asked for some wine to accompany his meal. Pholus, who ate his food raw, was taken aback. He had been given a vessel of sacred wine by Dionysus sometime earlier, to be kept in trust for the rest of the centaurs until the right time for its opening. At Heracles’ prompting, Pholus was forced to produce the vessel of sacred wine. The hero, gasping for wine, grabbed it from him and forced it open. Thereupon the vapours of the sacred wine wafted out of the cave and intoxicated the wild centaurs, led by Nessus, who had gathered outside. They attacked the cave with stones and fir trees. Heracles was forced to shoot many arrows (poisoned with the blood of the Hydra) to drive them back. During this assault, Chiron was hit in the thigh by one of the poisoned arrows. After the centaurs had fled, Pholus emerged from the cave to observe the destruction. Being of a philosophical frame of mind, he pulled one of the arrows from the body of a dead centaur and wondered how such a little thing as an arrow could have caused so much death and destruction. In that instant, he let slip the arrow from his hand and it dropped and hit him in the hoof, killing him instantly. This, however, is open to controversy, because Pholus shared the “civilized centaur” form with Chiron in some art images, and thus would have been immortal.

Ironically, Chiron, the master of the healing arts, could not heal himself, so he willingly gave up his immortality. He was honoured with a place in the sky, identified by the Greeks as the constellation Centaurus.

In Ovid’s poem Fasti Ovid has the hero Hercules visiting Chiron’s home on Pelion while Achilles, still a child is there. While Chiron is examining Hercules’ weapons, one of the arrows dipped in Lernaean hydra venom falls on Chiron’s left foot and poisons him. Chiron then tries to use herbs to heal himself, but fails. After nine days, with a weeping Achilles looking on, Chiron passes into the stars.

“While the old man fingers the foul, poisoned shafts,

An arrow slips out and stabs his left foot.

Chiron groaned and hauled the iron from his flesh” (5.397-99)

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