Gustave Moreau, n.d, The Fall of Phaethon
In Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses’, Phaethon was the son of Clymene, who insisted that Phaethon’s father was Helios, the Greek sun God, and not her mortal king husband Merops. Helios reluctantly allowed Phaethon to ride on his sun chariot in order to prove his identity as Phaethon’s divine father. However, Phaethon soon lost control of the chariot and was unable to command the fire-breathing horses. Good old Zeus eventually stepped in to help by hurling one of his trademark lightning bolts at Phaethon and the turbulent chariot, thus killing Phaethon. Great job, Zeus.