In Greek mythology, Thanatos was the symbol of death. When humans died, he cut off a lock of their hair and took them to the underworld. Thanatos was the son of Nyx (night) and the brother of Hypnos (sleep).
underworld land of the dead
In one famous myth, a woman named Alcestis agreed to let Thanatos take her in the place of her husband, Admetus. However, when Thanatos appeared before her, the hero Hercules* wrestled him and forced him to release Alcestis. A different story tells how a mortal named Sisyphus tricked Thanatos. As a punishment, Sisyphus was forced to spend eternity rolling a boulder up a hill in the underworld. As soon as it reached the top, it would roll to the bottom again.