The Greek Fates or Moirae were three goddesses in charge of the destiny of human beings from birth to death.
Clotho spun the thread of a person’s life. Lachesis determined the length of the thread (one’s lifespan). And Atropos clipped the thread at the time of a person’s death.
Although other Greek gods were immortal, they too feared the Fates. The gods often favored heroic or noble human beings and had to appease or bargain with the Fates to deliver someone from the underworld.
Fortune tellers acted as mediums for the Fates. Normally depicted as ugly old hags, some mythic stories say the Fates were born of Zeus and the Titaness Themis (representing justice) but no unified opinion exists as to their origin.
They were called Parcae by the Romans, who incorporated many Greek core ideas into their religion.
- Fate (earthpages.wordpress.com)
- The Moirae: Deities who Spin the Threads of Life (yuenxdioses.wordpress.com)
- Greco roman glossary (slideshare.net)