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Chapter 14

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Classical Studies
Xuefeng Liu

Chapter 14 – Perseus and Myths of the Argive plain • Argive plain – richest physical plains ever • Victorian Lion gate is the only largest surviving sculpture from Bronze age • Ten miles south Mycenae stands Tiryns, smaller but surrounded by walls. IO and her Descendants • Melia, nymph of an ash tree was an Oceanid, daughter of Oceanus and Tethys • She united with Inachus, god of the river and bore two sons and a daughter IO Ancestor of three dynasties • Argos, Thebes and and Crete • Io was a priestess and Zeus hid her in a cloud to hide from Hera but when she came to investigate, he turned her into a cow • She asked for the cow as a gift and he had to give it to her • Hera tied her to an olive tree and sent Argus monster (child of Gaea) who had 100eyes and never slept • To free IO, Zeus sent Hermes (god of stealth and thieves) but he lost • The monsters eyes slept one by one as he sang a lullaby disguised as a Sheppard and he cut his head off. He is now called Argus-killer – Argeiphontes • He placed its eyes in the tail of her favorite peacock bird • Hera sent a gradfly to torment IO and IO fleed to caucasus mountain at the east end of black sea where she found Prometheus. She tells him about her love but leaves out the fact that Hera knows • He says In Egypt she will regain her human form when Zeus touches her and be pregnant with Epaphus (he who has been touched), future king of Egypt • And her descendant in the third generation Heracles will set her him, Prometheus free. • Isis and IO are shown as cows The Crimes of Danaids • Epaphus became king of Egypt and married Memphis. • They had Libya • Libya and Poseidon had two sons Agenor and Belus • Belus had twin sons/kings Aegyptus(Arabia, 50sons) and Danaus (Libya, 50 daughters) • When A suggested to D that they all marry, he suspected that maybe he wanted to gain Libya • With Athena’s help he built ship and fled with daughters to IO • A came after them and D accepted his demands • He gave all daughters a dagger to kill husband that night • Only Hypermnestra spared her husband Lynces because he had spared her virginity (all but one motif) • They put heads in swamps and buried bodies • From the couple came the House of Argos • He had trouble finding grooms so he sold them off at a footrace along with fancy shields Obsevations: Springs and Dangers of Women • When Danaids came to Argos, there was no water. Cursed by Poseidon because the citizens chose Hera over him as president of divinity. • One of the danaids, Amymone looked for a spring but a satyr tried to rape her, Poseidon chased away the satyr and raped her himself. • When he pulled it out of the rock, out sprang Lerna THE LEGEND OF PERSEUS • Danae and the shower of gold o Lynceus rules Argos after Danaus died. His son Abas had two sons Acrisius and Proetus who hated each other so much. o Acrisius had daughter Danae but her wanted a m
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