Chapter 3. Recurring characters

Table of Contents

Historical Dramatis Personae
Fictional Dramatis Personae

Characters that appear again and again — at least twice usually qualifies — in the Asterix canon.


Table 3.1. Recurring Gods in Asterix

God Meaning:explained meaning. Comments
Adonis Greek god of vegetation. Son of Theias, king of Smyrna, and his daughter Myrrha. Lover of Aphrodite. Killed by a wild boar while hunting. Symbolizes the natural cycle of death and rebirth.
Apollo Greek god of light, music, poetry, the arts, oracles, medicine and breeding. Son of Zeus and Leto. Starting 5th century BC Apollo was also the object of a cult in Rome.
Belenos (or ) Celtic god of light. A Gallo-Roman nickname for Apollo (q.v.). Married to Belisama (q.v.)
Belisama Celtic god of lakes and rivers (the river Ribble in England was known by the name Belisama in Roman times), fire, crafts and light. Only appears as an oath in the Asterix books. Wife of Belanus (q.v.). Belenos and Belisama are compared to the Roman equivalents - Apollo (q.v.) and Minerva.
Helios Greek god of Sun. The son of Hyperion and Theia.
Heracles Demigod in Greek mythology. Son of Zeus and Alcmene.
Hermes Greek god. Son of Zeus and Maia. Messenger of the gods. The Greek equivalent of the Roman god Mercury.
Isis Egyptian mother goddess. Wife of Osiris and mother of Horus.
Juno Chief goddess of the Romans. Equivalent to the Greek goddess Hera. Wife of Jupiter (q.v.), protectress of femininity.
Jupiter In Roman mythology, Jupiter (Jove) held the same role as Zeus in the Greek pantheon. The name is a reduction of the Greek phrase 'Zeu Pater' (father Zeus). He was called Jupiter Optimus Maximus as the patron deity and supreme god of the Roman Empire, and brother and husband of Juno, in charge of laws and social order. Also called Jove. The Romans and the roman legionaries in Asterix always swear by this name. In Latin the common oath "by Jupiter" would be rendered "pro Jove" (Jove being a different form of his name). In the Christian tradition there is no religious significance to this exclamation but English writers, by using it as an expression of surprise or pleasure, avoided taking God's name in vain; thus "by Jupiter" or "by Jove" was used to replace the blasphemous "By God." To describe someone or something as Jovian means that one partakes of that awe-inspiring majesty that is particular to a supreme god.
Toutatis Gaulish god of the village. Only appears as an oath. Also known as Teutates. An ancient Celtic God of war, fertility and wealth (Annotators note: strange mix) worshiped in Gaul. His name means "the god of the people / village / tribe".
Mars Roman god of war, farmers and protector of fields. Mars was also the father of Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome.
Miscellaneous There are quite a few gods regularly uttered by the Romans (Jupiter, Minerva, and Mercury). And there are quite a few "one-off" uttering of Gaulish, Greek, Egyptian, Hindu and Roman Gods throughout. e.g. Taranis, Zeus, and Osiris.