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The Hippalectryon is a creature with origins in Greek mythology, legend and folklore. Though mythologically obscure, and only recently re-emerging in modern times, it is known that they were commonly featured on vases, pottery, sculptures and certain other artworks Ancient Greek society (they were even mentioned in certain ancient plays, like Aristophanes' The Frogs and Aeschylus' Myrmidons).
By those who knew of them, the Hippalectryon was considered a symbol of solar power (due to the males' rooster nature), as well as a funerary symbol, or psychopomp (since horses were believed, by the Ancient Greeks, to help guide the souls of the dead). Some even used their images for good fortune on sea voyages.
Due to their triple functions (pertaining to land, sea and sky), they were probably also associated with magic, and held in great standing with occult mystery rites of the time.
A Hippalectryon's appearance combines the body of a horse and a chicken (hen for a female, rooster for a male). Typically, it has the foreparts of a horse and the hind-end of a rooster, though it is not unheard of to see them with numerous other arrangements of horse and chicken nature.
Their hair can be the color and pattern of any horse breed, and their feathers can be the color and pattern of any chicken breed. They can have horse hooves and/or chicken claws. They can cluck like chickens (or crow like roosters) and/or neigh like a horse. The males' genitals may be closer to horse size, or proportionate to a rooster.
In addition, there are cases in which the Hippalectryon is entirely covered in chicken feathers, or in which all four hooves are replaced with chicken feet, or all four feet are hooved. The tail is most commonly composed of a chicken's tail feathers, but it is not unheard-of to see it with both tail feathers and a horse's tail (even shaped like a horse tail, but composed of chicken feathers).
Anatomical combinations even go so far as the horse head having a chicken's comb, the horse snout having a chicken's beak, or the horse head being replaced entirely with the head of a chicken. The horse head may even be replaced by the entire upper body of a chicken/rooster.
In all, numerous combinations of horse and chicken features may be seen. Though, the horse body and chicken features are a staple; for example, something like a chicken with horse legs, or a chicken that sounds like a horse, or a horse that sounds like a chicken, is not considered a Hippalectryon).
Although not much is known about Hippalectryons (their existence having been obscured by the passing of the ages), it is known that they combine the nature of a chicken (hen or rooster) and a horse.
This means that, at their worst, they can be very timid, scatterbrained creatures, but for the most part, are gentle and easygoing. However, they can also be fiercely protective and territorial, especially the males, or females over their young, when their families (called flocks or herds) are threatened.
Males will not hesitate to fluff their feathers in an attempt to look larger, give a warning call (a cluck, a crow, a neigh, or some mixture) and strut proudly in the face of even larger foes, to bluff them out of attacking. Females have more of a tendency to peck (or bite, as their snout permits) as a defense, while the babies (called alternately chicks or colts) will, naturally, cower behind mother.
It is known, also, that they can be ridden, as there are numerous depictions in art of them being mounted, even by young boys (perhaps implying that it doesn't require much to render them tame). Though Hippalectryons born in the wild prefer to live in wide, open fields and meadows, those born in captivity are more easily comfortable in stables and similar housing.
A Hippalectryon's diet may be that of a horse (apples, hay, etc), that of a chicken (corn, insects, etc) or some combination of the two.
As the Hippalectryon combines chicken/rooster and horse nature, it has both equine and avian capabilities. As such, it is agile, strong, powerful, sturdy and smart like a horse. And, like most other bird/horse hybrids (Pegasus, Hippogriff, Pegasy, etc), they can communicate with both horses and birds. The females are sometimes also able to lay eggs. And the capability to fly (or at least to glide short distances) varies.
In addition, they seem to possess great prophylactic power; that is, they have a powerful capacity against illness. They can withstand all but supernatural sicknesses, and can repel pathogens from their immediate surroundings (as well as keeping germs away from beings they have constant interaction with). It is speculated that the dander on the Hippalectryon's hair and feathers may have some part in this (since some have the capability to shake off feathers and rapidly regrow them).
However, perhaps the Hippalectryon's strongest power is its great apotropaic power; that is, its capacity against evil spirits. Whenever creatures or beings of evil moral alignment look at a Hippalectryon, they will often find themselves chuckling, or even laughing uncontrollably, to the point that they cannot function. This results in them being avoided by even elder demons and other wicked entities, who not only loathe them, but fear them.
It is unknown what about the Hippalectryon's appearance or behavior brings out their more lighthearted nature, but this power is at its peak during sunrise. Many adult male Hippalectryons have the added advantage of a rooster-like crow that further frightens demons and evil spirits (which also has the strongest power at sunrise).
With older, stronger Hippalectryons, this capability also works against mental and emotional conditions, like sadness and grief, making them powerful agents of happiness and joy. Older Hippalectryons can even perceive spirits, and the moral alignment of said spirits, at will, to know when their capabilities are required.