Phaethon MA London College of Fashion
Phaethon is a youth, filled with self importance because his mother, Clymene, keeps telling him that he is the son of Phoebus, The sun-god. His friends laugh at him and in a tantrum he goes and berates his mother who suggests he visits his father. Phoebus, the sun god greets him as his son and feels guilty for not paying Phaethon any attention and offers him a gift of anything. Phaethon wants to drive the sun chariot and even when his father begs him not to he insists that is how he can prove he is the son of Phoebus. So the winged horses are brought out and Phoebus gives Phaethon his crown of sun rays warning him how to drive the sun chariot. Phaethon doesn’t listen and takes off with youthful bravado which soon turns to fear as the horses realise they can do what they want. It careers out of control, burning the earth until Zeus the mightiest god kills him with a lightning bolt . Phaethon falls into the sea and is washed ashore. His sisters weep and Cycnus turns them into poplar trees by the river Eridanus, their resin tears forming amber.