There are the big three: Hades, Poseidon, Zeus. Furthermore, the Fates, the Furies, the judges of the Underworld, the elder Cyclopes, the Hecatoncheires and the Oneiroi.

There are also three rules of the universe: the Primordials, the Titans, and the Olympians.

I am writing a book and three seems to be a theme in Greek mythology. Any other groups of three would be helpful.

  • 2
    Sons of Kronos and Rhea, daughters of Kronos and Rhea, Graces, Gorgons, claimants of the Apple of Discord, Old Men of the Sea (Nereus, Phorkys, Proteus) . . . on Furies, I consider Eumenides, wherein they are a whole chorus, to be the Greek locus classicus, but if one goes by Virgil they are three too. Then there seems to be some rather mysterious three-ness involving Hecate. But the concernancy, sir? Why do we wrap these triads in our more rawer breath? Nov 12, 2017 at 14:38
  • Possibly you could massage this question to make it more directly answerable. I think asking about triads in Greek mythology in general might be more acceptable to the general community.
    – DukeZhou
    Nov 14, 2017 at 21:47

1 Answer 1


Definitively answering the question of "how many" would require an enormous research effort, and it's a little fuzzy in terms of what qualifies. Being lazy, I only say triads are important and quite common.

I suggest taking a look at:

It lists manifestations such as the Boeotian three muses configuration (Melete, Aoide and Mneme, which legendarily pre-dates the nine muses.

Maiden/Mother/Crone configurations are particularly prevalent, for instance Kore/Demeter/Rhea. (The prevalence of female triads relates to the three distinct biological conditions related to reproduction--pre-pubescent, fertile, and menopausal. Pagan religions tend to be preoccupied with cycles of generation.)

Among the most famous triads are:

More fearsome famous triads are:

And of course:

  • The Hesperides ("Daughters of the Evening")
  • The Graeae (Known for sharing a single eye between them)
  • The Oenotropae ("The Winegrowers")

A famous tri-partite male figure is

Although it's important to recognize his connection to Demeter and the Eleusinian Mysteries.

Is an important triad, where the fates of the three warriors are entwined.

In this famous version of the riddle, "the creature that goes on four legs in the morning, two legs in the day, and three legs at night" is an an analogy for the three phases of human life: childhood, adulthood, old age.

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