I know Ares is the god of war and all, but in most stories I've read, he mostly acts more like a villain instead of a god. Why would anyone worship such a god? In stark contrast, Mars was widely worshipped.

  • 3
    Hello and welcome to mythology and folklore! Athena was the Olympian of choice among the military. Ares stands for the unbridled rage in the mids of battle. While Athena stands for the tactical aspect of warfare and thinking about your strategy instead of mindlessly running into battle. I'll write a more detailed answer once I'm home.
    – Tom Sol
    Commented Jun 4, 2020 at 18:21
  • 4
    Does this answer your question? What differences were there in Greek soldiers worship of Ares and Roman soldiers worship of Mars?
    – Tom Sol
    Commented Jun 4, 2020 at 18:42

3 Answers 3


You can't categorize the Olympians with DC/Marvel labels. The Ancient Greeks didn't even think of their gods as we currently think of that concept. Greek gods were regarded much more like the deep, layered human characters of Bronte or Wolf. That's why virtually all Olympian myths are tragedies.


Why would someone worship such a god? So he didn't smite you for your insolence. Who are you, a mere mortal, to presume to withhold due rites from a god? Especially one whom you know is willing to do terrible things to you?

I will add that the Homeric Hymn to Ares shows a much more favorable view. Also, you have such myths as that the Areopagus, which was said to be named from the way that the first trial there was Ares's for murder -- Poseidon prosecuted him for killing one of his sons -- and Ares was acquitted on the defense that the son had been trying rape his daughter at the time.


Ares, Greek god of war, being the epitome of the horrors of war, was accompanied by his children Deimos (dread), Phobos (fear) and Eris, not his daughter but the goddess of discord with several parentages disputed. He wore a cape of the skin of men he had killed. He was fickle promising to fight on one side one day and changing his mind the next. He was also mindlessly boastful, cowardly,and a loud whiner when injured by Athena. His appearance represents all the horrors of war and his shadow across the land is a portent of terror, pillage and death. No hero here.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.