A centaur is a mythical creature that has the upper half of a human and the body of a horse, fused together as a single hybrid animal. It is believed that the centaur originated from non-equestrian societies when they first saw a rider on a horse and misinterpreted it as a single animal. The earliest origins of the centaur date back to Greek mythology, but the misinterpretation was repeated by the Aztecs when they first saw the Spanish cavalry.
Centaurs in Fantasy
Following the myth, centaurs have become a fantasy trope appearing in works like The Chronicles of Narnia
, the Harry Potter series, and Disney's Fantasia
. Depending on the theme of the story, centaurs may be depicted as savage and tribal or as members of a larger society. This wide variance is also true in their appearances in video games: in World of Warcraft
, for example, they are often forest-dwelling hunters, and in Shining Force
they are the long-range cavalrymen in the players' army.