The 5 Rivers. Image Credit: ABC Studios
The Rivers of the Underworld
by Zach Van Norman (@TheZachVan)
One of the questions Oncers have been asking themselves since the spring premiere of the Underworld story is, "What's the deal with the rivers?" They're actually a major piece of Greek mythology, so here for your reading pleasure is a summary of the Five Rivers of the Underworld.
The River Acheron is the primary river. The recently deceased would enter Hades' realm on a boat guided by Charon, ferryman of the Underworld. Acheron is known as the "river of woe" or "river of pain," a place of punishment for the souls of the damned. Cocytus is called the "river of lamentation" and "river of wailing," thanks to the cries of its inhabitants. The River Lethe, "river of forgetfulness," erases the memories of those who drink from it so that they may be reincarnated and is sometimes known as the "river of lost souls," while the River Phlegethon is named, appropriately, as the "river of fire." The River Styx is the most well-known river of them all. It's the river that creates the boundary between Earth and the Underworld and the river in which the gods would swear their oaths.
The rivers of the Once Underworld have the same names, as seen in the shot below from a promo:
Image Credit: ABC Studios
The placement of the green river helps us figure out which is which: Styx is the blue river and Cocytus is the gray; Phlegethon is the river of fire and is easily identified, This leaves Lethe as the green and Acheron as the gold. It remains to be seen what roles the rivers may have in the story of the Underworld, but we can count on at least the River Lethe to factor in since it was in Hercules.
So there you have them, the rivers of the Underworld!
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