We Know.
―The Fates' catchphrase

The Fates are a group of deities in Disney's 1997 animated feature film, Hercules. These three sisters share one eye, which they use to see the future. They also determine the deaths of mortals, cutting a mortal's Thread of Life to send them to the Well of Souls in the Underworld. They have extreme psychic abilities, knowing everything that has happened, is happening and will happen, and are an authority above the gods in this respect, though the one thing they cannot do is kill a god.



Lachesis was voiced by the late Carole Shelley, Clotho by Amanda Plummer, and Atropos by the late Paddi Edwards. All three of The Fates were animated by Nancy Beiman.

Like all characters in Hercules, the Fates were designed by Gerald Scarfe who, known for his drawings of the deformed and grotesque, enjoyed designing characters such as the Fates and Hades more than 'beautiful' characters such as Hercules and Meg. One of Scarfe's early drawings for the Fates depicted Clotho wearing a cowl, which was at such an angle, that one of her eye sockets was covered. Beiman took this to mean that Clotho had only one eye socket; ultimately, it is Atropos (perhaps the most 'mysterious' Fate) who appears with a single eye socket in the film.

As design progressed, the Fates' bodies became less and less human, with little suggestion of any form under their clothes. Scarfe initially did not like this idea and drew the Fates in the nude as a key for Beiman to follow, but ultimately Ron Clements and John Musker approved of the 'nonhuman' nature of these bizarre, deformed characters, and they appear accordingly in the film. Beiman commented that the Fates have no feet.


They appear to relish ending mortal's lives, each looking on with glee as Atropos cuts each thread (though they will only cut at each designated time and will not kill a mortal prematurely). They are not allied with Hades, and are not denizens of the Underworld; however, they seem to prefer Hades to the gods on Mount Olympus, at one point referring to Hercules as a 'bouncing baby brat' though this is probably because they live in Underworld, making Hades their landlord of sorts.

The three sisters bicker among themselves. They often snatch their single eye from one another quite aggressively and do not always agree on matters.

Physical appearance

The Fates resemble demonic hags and are dressed in simple black cloaks. They seem rather proud that they 'know everything', and never hesitate to emphasize this claim. This is only challenged at one point in Hercules, perhaps for the purposes of dramatic effect.

  • Lachesis is the tallest of the three, with blue skin and a long nose. Her role is to measure out a mortal's Thread of Life, so she knows all of the past. She appears to have a spider living in her nose; at one point, it makes a bid for freedom, but she sends it back up her nostril with a sniff. She seems to be the grumpiest and most disapproving of the three.
  • Clotho is green-skinned, with a large chin and yellow worm-like hair. Her role is to spin the Thread of Life, so she knows all of the present. She is the most friendly of the three with Hades, and her readiness to provide him with information is frowned upon by Lachesis and Atropos.
  • Atropos is short and stout, with purple skin, green serpent-like hair, and a single eye socket. Her role is to cut the Thread of Life, so she can see the future.

Powers and abilities

  • As goddesses, the Fates possess the natural abilities and strength of an Olympian goddess such as immortality, omnipresence, omniscience, superhuman strength, metamorphosis, and teleportation.
  • As the goddesses of destiny, the Fates watch over and weave the tapestry of fate and destiny. They are also able to see into the future and therefore know the outcome of all event to come. However the weaving of the tapestry is not something only they can do, anyone who can use the loom the tapestry is created with is able to weave it and alter fate, however, this can have catastrophic results and only the Fates can properly weave the tapestry and maintain order and balance in the cosmos.



Following the celebration of the god Hercules' birth, Hades calls the Fates to the Underworld, where he asks them whether Hercules will interfere with his plan to take over Mount Olympus. They reveal some of the future to him (reluctantly, on the part of Lachesis and Atropos). Clotho reveals that, in eighteen years, the planets will align; Lachesis reveals that Hades will then release the Titans from their prison. Clotho says that Hades will overthrow Zeus with their power, but Atropos warns that he will only succeed if Hercules does not interfere.

They are later shown cutting Megara's Thread of Life, a while after she, saving Hercules, is crushed by a pillar. After Hercules defeats the Titans at Olympus, Hades angrily returns to the Underworld; Hercules, after witnessing Megara's death, goes to Hades to plead for Megara's soul. Hades lets him dive into the Well of Souls to recover Meg's soul, knowing that a mortal will die quickly in the vortex.

While Hercules swims after Meg' soul, the Fates prepare to cut his Thread of Life. However, the thread turns golden and unbreakable, leaving Atropos unable to cut the thread, indicating Hercules' transformation from mortal human to immortal god. The fact that the Fates don't realize this at first suggests either that they don't in fact know everything, or that they're sometimes forgetful. It may also indicate that it is possible to change one's fate.

Hercules: The Series

The Fates appeared in a few episodes of the animated series. Their largest role in the series was the episode "Hercules and the Tapestry of Fate", Hercules and Icarus want to go to an Orpheus concert, but they find it sold out, and so seek out the aid of the Fates, when Zeus cannot help. Hercules distracts them while Icarus reweaves fate to allow them to go to the concert. This gives Hades the idea to reweave his own fate, making him king of the gods, Phil a janitor, Icarus the inventor of capable wings, Hercules himself a god and Hades' son, and Zeus guardian of the Tapestry and ruler of the Underworld. Hercules uses his strength as a god to destroy the Tapestry and reweave it back to normal; the Fates give them tickets as a reward, only for them to find the concert has been canceled.

In "Hercules and the Big Kiss", Hades tries to use the Fates all seeing eye to see his future regarding Aphrodite causing the Fates to be cross with him. Still desperate to learn his future Hades makes a deal with Cassandra for her soul on weekends once he has successfully stopped Icarus from kissing her.

In "Hercules and the Twilight of the Gods", the Fates are revealed to be double dipping Greek and Norse mythology. However, they deny being the Fates and insists that they are the Norns.

In "Hercules and the Big Sink", the Fates accidentally weave Atlantis onto the Tapestry of Fate, causing it to sink. The Fates make a cameo in the episode "Hercules and the River Styx" during Hades song "My Town". In the episode "Hercules and the Underworld Takeover", The Fates appear alongside Cerberus and Hades' monstrous underling during Hecate's hostile takeover of the Underworld.

In the episode Hercules and the Visit From Zeus, Hades learns from the Fates that Zeus was in the form of a teenager. In an attempt to be rid himself of Zeus once and for all he sends his troublesome dog Cerberus after Zeus while he's still mortal. They also doubled as the Norse Norns in "Hercules and the Twilight of the Gods". Like the Muses, they are the only characters in the series that interact, bicker, and banter with Bob the Narrator.

House of Mouse

The Fates appeared in various episodes of House of Mouse, each voiced by Tress MacNeille.

In "Clarabelle's Christmas List", Clarabelle Cow borrows their eye to guard Santa's Naughty or Nice list from the rest of the staff who wants to see where they ended up.

In "Clarabelle's Big Secret", Atropos is surprised when Clarabelle declares that she is discontinuing "Main Street Gossip," commenting that not even she, with her ability to know all that will happen in the future, had expected Clarabelle to do so.

In Mickey's House of Villains, they were amongst the Disney Villains that took over the club.

Once Upon a Time

The Fates don't appear in the series but are mentioned in the episode "Street Rats".

Video games

Hercules Playstation Game

The Fates make a small cameo appearance on one of the menus in the Hercules PlayStation Game, with a Fate standing underneath each menu category.

Differences from the source material

The Fates in the film are a combination of the Fates of Greek Mythology (also known as the Moirae) and the Graeae, three hag-like creatures featured in the story of Perseus. While the Fates take their inspiration greatly from the Moirae, their physical appearances and trait of owning one eye are borrowed from the Graeae. Conversely, the Fates seen in the film and their role as weavers of fate is faithful to the Moirae. However, neither the Graeae or the Moirae appear in the original Hercules myth.


  • The highlighted category causes the Fate underneath to snatch the eye from the Fate next to her.
  • Chaos once stated even he was subject to fate. Considering the crossover between the two franchises, it is possible these were the Fates he was alluding to.
  • Their role in Hercules is perhaps similar to that of the Witches in Shakespeare's Macbeth; not only do they resemble hags, but they also reveal the events of the future in verse (much to Hades' annoyance), and do not reveal all of the truth (they do not say whether or not Hercules will fight, making it unclear whether Hades will succeed or fail).
  • The Fates' eyes resembles to the 1930s cartoon eyes and Shy Guys' eyes in Mario video games.
  • As shown in Mickey's House of Villains, the Fates are capable of have their heads fall off without dying.
  • Other than the Muses, the Fates are the only characters in the series that interact with Bob the Narrator.
  • While the fates have not appeared physically in the Kingdom Hearts series, they have been numerous references of them in some capacity:
    • In Kingdom Hearts II, their likeness and appearance were used in the Goddess of Fate Cup in the Underdome tournaments.
    • In Kingdom Hearts III, they were mentioned by the narrator during the opening narration for Olympus.



Hercules: The Animated Series

House of Mouse

Concept Art

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Hercules transparent
Films: HerculesHercules: Zero to HeroVideo

Television: TV series (Episode list) (Aladdin crossover) • House of Mouse
Video games: Video gameKingdom HeartsKingdom Hearts: Chain of MemoriesKingdom Hearts IIKingdom Hearts 358/2 DaysKingdom Hearts Birth by SleepKingdom Hearts coded Kingdom Hearts χ Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ/Union χKingdom Hearts IIIDisney Emoji BlitzDisney Heroes: Battle Mode
Music: Soundtrack
Books: Classic StorybookDisney's Wonderful World of ReadingLittle Golden Book

Disney Parks
Disney Animation BuildingIt's a Small WorldSorcerers of the Magic KingdomStitch and Friends Summer Surprise

Entertainment: Animazment: The MusicalDisney's Dreams: An Enchanted ClassicDisney's WishesHercules: The Muse-icalOnce Upon a MouseVillains Tonight!
Parade: Disney Stars and Motorcars ParadeHercules Victory ParadeThe Hercules Electrical ParadeThe Wonderful World of Disney Parade
Firework: HarmoniUSHappily Ever AfterWishesWonderful World of Animation
Halloween: Disney's Not So Spooky SpectacularHocus Pocus Villain SpelltacularMaze of Madness: The Nightmare Experiment ContinuesMickey's Boo-to-You Halloween ParadeRe-Villains! Halloween ParadeRock on With The Disney VillainsScream and Shout Halloween ParadeThe Villains WorldVillains Night Out!World of Color: Villainous!

Original: HerculesHadesPegasusPhiloctetesMegaraPain and PanicFatesMusesZeusHeraHermesHestiaHephaestusAthenaAresPoseidonAphroditeOlympian GodsArtemisApolloThebansDionysusTitansCerberusHydraMinotaurSthenoNemean LionNessusFuriesNymphsAmphitryon and Alcmene

TV Series: IcarusCassandraAdonisHelen of TroyTempestCirceTritonGalateaPandoraMedusaEchidnaTyphonEchidna's ChildrenHecateNemesisMr. ParenthesesHomerFear and TerrorIbidAntaeusPrometheusDaedelusMorpheusKronosGaiaAmphitriteAchillesTheseusOrionNestor & MeleagerKing MidasMelampusLavinaAjaxAndromedaSyrinxElectraMr. GriffKing MinosTiviusOrthosQueen Hippolyte

Original: The Gospel TruthGo the DistanceOne Last HopeZero to HeroI Won't Say (I'm in Love)A Star is BornShooting StarI Can't Believe My Heart

TV series songs: Send My Boy to SchoolMy TownPromethean DittyThe AgoraThe BacchanalThe Man That I LovePucker Up or Let Him SnoozeThat's How the Story GoesAphrodesia DanceLove Is In The AirSince the Light Went AwayAin't Life a BeachCan-Do KingKronos StoneWhat's a Mother to Do?Sreamin' Grecian Teenage BluesLethe Water on the Brain!One Good ManYou're My Hero

Ancient GreeceMount OlympusUnderworldPhil's IslandThebesPrometheus AcademyAtlantis City
Skull PacifierArmageddon BowLightning BoltsMortal PotionTrident
Disney Sing Along Songs: From Hercules

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Disney Villains Logo
The Evil QueenChernabogQueen of HeartsCaptain HookMaleficentCruella de VilUrsulaJafarScarHadesDoctor Facilier

Other Members: Big Bad WolfPeteThe Headless HorsemanMortimer MouseBr'er FoxBr'er BearHonest JohnGideonStromboliThe CoachmanMonstroRingmasterPink ElephantsDiabloHitchhiking GhostsLonesome GhostsLady TremaineAnastasia TremaineDrizella TremaineLuciferMr. SmeeSi and AmJasper and HoraceMadam MimKaaShere KhanEdgar BalthazarPrince JohnSir HissSheriff of NottinghamMadame MedusaAmos SladeHorned KingRatiganFeliciaBill SykesHeffalumpsWoozlesFlotsam and JetsamPercival McLeachGastonIagoShenzi, Banzai, and EdOogie BoogieGovernor RatcliffeClaude FrolloPain and PanicFatesShan YuClaytonYzmaKronkCaptain GantuDr. HämstervielDOR-15Michale "Goob" YagoobianQueen NarissaLawrenceMother GothelThe Stabbington BrothersKing CandySour BillHansYokaiTamatoa
Pixar Villains: Sid PhillipsHopperEmperor ZurgRandall BoggsHenry J. Waternoose IIISyndromeLots-o'-Huggin' Bear
Guest Villains: Sarah SandersonWinifred SandersonMary Sanderson

Disney Parks
Celebrate A Dreams Come True ParadeCelebrate the MagicCinderella Castle Mystery TourClub VillainDisney's FantillusionDisney's Maleficious Halloween PartyDisney's Not-So-Scary Halloween ShowDisney's Once Upon a Dream ParadeDisney Dreams!Disney's Stars 'n' Cars... As Never Seen BeforeFantasmic!Feel the MagicFrightfully Fun ParadeGlow in the Park Halloween ParadeHappy HallowishesHocus Pocus Villain SpelltacularInferno Dance PartyIt's Good To Be Bad With The Disney VillainsIt's Good to Be Bad Villainous CelebrationIt's Party Time... with Mickey and Friends... and the Disney VillainsMickey's Boo-to-You Halloween ParadeMickey and his Magic Halloween NightRe-Villains! Halloween ParadeSorcerers of the Magic KingdomThe Disney Villains Halloween ShowtimeThe Nightmare ExperimentThe Villains WorldUnleash the VillainsVillains GardensVillainy in the SkyVillains Mix and MingleVillains Night Out!Villains Tonight!WishesWorld of Color
Mickey's House of VillainsOnce Upon a HalloweenDisney Villains: Simply Sinister Songs

Video Games: Disney Villains ChallengeDisney's Villains' Revenge
Books: Disney Villains: The Essential GuideDisney Villains: Delightfully Evil: The Creation • The Inspiration • The Fascination

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