Centaurs are the inhabitants of mountains and forests; they accompany god of wine Dionysus and have a violent temper. Presumably, the centaurs were originally the embodiment of mountain rivers and turbulent streams.
A popular poetic plot of antiquity was the centaurmachia, a battle between lapifs and centaurs that was fuelled by the unruly temper of the latter at the wedding feast of King Pyrifoy of the Lapifs.
Among those invited to the wedding were representatives of a large tribe of Centaurs, neighbors and kinsmen of the Lapifes. Before that they had never drank wine, and at this wedding they threw themselves on it, got drunk and started to rampage. One of the centaurs attacked the bride, and the others attacked women and boys nearest to them. Pyrifoy, the groom, and his friend Theseus rushed to save Hippodamia, cutting off the centaur’s ears and nose.