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Title: The Argonautica
Author: Rhodius, Apollonius, c. 3rd cent. B.C.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Argonautica" ***

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                    APOLLONIUS RHODIUS

                     THE ARGONAUTICA

              With An English Translation By

                     R.C. SEATON, M.A.

        Formerly Fellow Of Jesus College, Cambridge

                        _ 1912 _




Much has been written about the chronology of Alexandrian literature and
the famous Library, founded by Ptolemy Soter, but the dates of the chief
writers are still matters of conjecture. The birth of Apollonius Rhodius
is placed by scholars at various times between 296 and 260 B.C., while
the year of his death is equally uncertain. In fact, we have very little
information on the subject. There are two "lives" of Apollonius in the
Scholia, both derived from an earlier one which is lost. From these we
learn that he was of Alexandria by birth,[1] that he lived in the time
of the Ptolemies, and was a pupil of Callimachus; that while still a
youth he composed and recited in public his _Argonautica_, and that the
poem was condemned, in consequence of which he retired to Rhodes; that
there he revised his poem, recited it with great applause, and hence
called himself a Rhodian. The second "life" adds: "Some say that he
returned to Alexandria and again recited his poem with the utmost
success, so that he was honoured with the libraries of the Museum[2] and
was buried with Callimachus." The last sentence may be interpreted by
the notice of Suidas, who informs us that Apollonius was a contemporary
of Eratosthenes, Euphorion and Timarchus, in the time of Ptolemy
Euergetes, and that he succeeded Eratosthenes in the headship of the
Alexandrian Library. Suidas also informs us elsewhere that Aristophanes
at the age of sixty-two succeeded Apollonius in this office. Many modern
scholars deny the "bibliothecariate" of Apollonius for chronological
reasons, and there is considerable difficulty about it. The date of
Callimachus' _Hymn to Apollo,_ which closes with some lines (105-113)
that are admittedly an allusion to Apollonius, may be put with much
probability at 248 or 247 B.C. Apollonius must at that date have been at
least twenty years old. Eratosthenes died 196-193 B.C. This would make
Apollonius seventy-two to seventy-five when he succeeded Eratosthenes.
This is not impossible, it is true, but it is difficult. But the
difficulty is taken away if we assume with Ritschl that Eratosthenes
resigned his office some years before his death, which allows us to put
the birth of Apollonius at about 280, and would solve other
difficulties. For instance, if the Librarians were buried within the
precincts, it would account for the burial of Apollonius next to
Callimachus--Eratosthenes being still alive. However that may be, it is
rather arbitrary to take away the "bibliothecariate" of Apollonius,
which is clearly asserted by Suidas, on account of chronological
calculations which are themselves uncertain. Moreover, it is more
probable that the words following "some say" in the second "life" are a
remnant of the original life than a conjectural addition, because the
first "life" is evidently incomplete, nothing being said about the end
of Apollonius' career.

[Footnote 1: "Or of Naucratis," according to Aelian and Athenaeus.]

[Footnote 2: [Greek: hôs kai tôn bibliothêkôn tou mouseiou axiôthênai

The principal event in his life, so far as we know, was the quarrel with
his master Callimachus, which was most probably the cause of his
condemnation at Alexandria and departure to Rhodes. This quarrel appears
to have arisen from differences of literary aims and taste, but, as
literary differences often do, degenerated into the bitterest personal
strife. There are references to the quarrel in the writings of both.
Callimachus attacks Apollonius in the passage at the end of the _Hymn to
Apollo_, already mentioned, also probably in some epigrams, but most of
all in his _Ibis_, of which we have an imitation, or perhaps nearly a
translation, in Ovid's poem of the same name. On the part of Apollonius
there is a passage in the third book of the _Argonautica_ (11. 927-947)
which is of a polemical nature and stands out from the context, and the
well-known savage epigram upon Callimachus.[1] Various combinations have
been attempted by scholars, notably by Couat, in his _Poésie
Alexandrine_, to give a connected account of the quarrel, but we have
not _data_ sufficient to determine the order of the attacks, and
replies, and counter-attacks. The _Ibis_ has been thought to mark the
termination of the feud on the curious ground that it was impossible for
abuse to go further. It was an age when literary men were more inclined
to comment on writings of the past than to produce original work.
Literature was engaged in taking stock of itself. Homer was, of course,
professedly admired by all, but more admired than imitated. Epic poetry
was out of fashion and we find many epigrams of this period--some by
Callimachus--directed against the "cyclic" poets, by whom were meant at
that time those who were always dragging in conventional and commonplace
epithets and phrases peculiar to epic poetry. Callimachus was in
accordance with the spirit of the age when he proclaimed "a great book"
to be "a great evil," and sought to confine poetical activity within the
narrowest limits both of subject and space. Theocritus agreed with him,
both in principle and practice. The chief characteristics of
Alexandrianism are well summarized by Professor Robinson Ellis as
follows: "Precision in form and metre, refinement in diction, a learning
often degenerating into pedantry and obscurity, a resolute avoidance of
everything commonplace in subject, sentiment or allusion." These traits
are more prominent in Callimachus than in Apollonius, but they are
certainly to be seen in the latter. He seems to have written the
_Argonautica_ out of bravado, to show that he _could_ write an epic
poem. But the influence of the age was too strong. Instead of the unity
of an Epic we have merely a series of episodes, and it is the great
beauty and power of one of these episodes that gives the poem its
permanent value--the episode of the love of Jason and Medea. This
occupies the greater part of the third book. The first and second books
are taken up with the history of the voyage to Colchis, while the fourth
book describes the return voyage. These portions constitute a metrical
guide book, filled no doubt with many pleasing episodes, such as the
rape of Hylas, the boxing match between Pollux and Amycus, the account
of Cyzicus, the account of the Amazons, the legend of Talos, but there
is no unity running through the poem beyond that of the voyage itself.

[Footnote 1: Anth. Pal. xi. 275.]

The Tale of the Argonauts had been told often before in verse and prose,
and many authors' names are given in the Scholia to Apollonius, but
their works have perished. The best known earlier account that we have
is that in Pindar's fourth Pythian ode, from which Apollonius has taken
many details. The subject was one for an epic poem, for its unity might
have been found in the working out of the expiation due for the crime of
Athamas; but this motive is barely mentioned by our author.

As we have it, the motive of the voyage is the command of Pelias to
bring back the golden fleece, and this command is based on Pelias'
desire to destroy Jason, while the divine aid given to Jason results
from the intention of Hera to punish Pelias for his neglect of the
honour due to her. The learning of Apollonius is not deep but it is
curious; his general sentiments are not according to the Alexandrian
standard, for they are simple and obvious. In the mass of material from
which he had to choose the difficulty was to know what to omit, and much
skill is shewn in fusing into a tolerably harmonious whole conflicting
mythological and historical details. He interweaves with his narrative
local legends and the founding of cities, accounts of strange customs,
descriptions of works of art, such as that of Ganymede and Eros playing
with knucklebones,[1] but prosaically calls himself back to the point
from these pleasing digressions by such an expression as "but this would
take me too far from my song." His business is the straightforward tale
and nothing else. The astonishing geography of the fourth book reminds
us of the interest of the age in that subject, stimulated no doubt by
the researches of Eratosthenes and others.

[Footnote 1: iii. 117-124.]

The language is that of the conventional epic. Apollonius seems to have
carefully studied Homeric glosses, and gives many examples of isolated
uses, but his choice of words is by no means limited to Homer. He freely
avails himself of Alexandrian words and late uses of Homeric words.
Among his contemporaries Apollonius suffers from a comparison with
Theocritus, who was a little his senior, but he was much admired by
Roman writers who derived inspiration from the great classical writers
of Greece by way of Alexandria. In fact Alexandria was a useful bridge
between Athens and Rome. The _Argonautica_ was translated by Varro
Atacinus, copied by Ovid and Virgil, and minutely studied by Valerius
Flaccus in his poem of the same name. Some of his finest passages have
been appropriated and improved upon by Virgil by the divine right of
superior genius.[1] The subject of love had been treated in the romantic
spirit before the time of Apollonius in writings that have perished, for
instance, in those of Antimachus of Colophon, but the _Argonautica_ is
perhaps the first poem still extant in which the expression of this
spirit is developed with elaboration. The Medea of Apollonius is the
direct precursor of the Dido of Virgil, and it is the pathos and passion
of the fourth book of the Aeneid that keep alive many a passage of

[Footnote 1: e.g. compare _Aen._ iv. 305 foll, with Ap. Rh. iv. 355
foll., _Aen._ iv. 327-330 with Ap. Rh. i. 897, 898, _Aen._ iv. 522
foll., with Ap. Rh. iii. 744 foll.]


Two editions of the Argonautica were published by Apollonius. Of these
we have only the second. The Scholia preserve a few passages of the
first edition, from which the second seems to have differed only
slightly. The old opinion that our MSS. preserve any traces of the first
edition has long been given up. The principal MSS. are the following:--

     The Laurentian, also called the Medicean, XXXII. 9, of the early
     eleventh century, the excellent MS. at Florence which contains
     Sophocles, Aeschylus and Apollonius Rhodius. This is far the best
     authority for the text (here denoted by L).

     The Guelferbytanus of the thirteenth century, which closely agrees
     with another Laurentian, XXXII. 16, of the same date (here denoted
     by G and L^2 respectively).

There were in the early eleventh century two types of text, the first
being best known to us by L, the second by G and L^2 and the corrections
made in L. Quotations in the Etymologicum Magnum agree with the second
type and show that this is as old as the fifth century. Besides these
there are, of inferior MSS., four Vatican and five Parisian which are
occasionally useful. Most of them have Scholia; the best Scholia are
those of L.

The principal editions are:--

Florence, 1496, 4to. This is the _editio princeps_, by Lascaris, based
on L, with Scholia, a very rare book.

Venice, 1521, 8vo. The Aldine, by Franciscus Asulanus, with Scholia.

Paris, 1541, 8vo, based on the Parisian MSS.

Geneva, 1574, 4to, by Stephanus, with Scholia.

Leyden, 1641, 2 vols., 8vo, by J. Hölzlin, with a Latin version.

Oxford, 1777, 2 vols., 4to, by J. Shaw, with a Latin version.

Strassburg, 1780, 8vo and 4to, by R.F.P. Brunck.

Rome, 1791-1794, 2 vols., 4to, by Flangini, with an Italian translation.

Leipzig, 1797, 8vo, by Ch. D. Beck, with a Latin version. A second
volume, to contain the Scholia and a commentary, was never published.

Leipzig, 1810-1813, 2 vols., 8vo. A second edition of Brunck by G.H.
Schäfer, with the Florentine and Parisian Scholia, the latter printed
for the first time.

Leipzig, 1828, 8vo, by A. Wellauer, with the Scholia, both Florentine
and Parisian.

Paris, 1811, 4to, by F.S. Lehrs, with a Latin version. In the Didot

Leipzig, 1852, 8vo, by R. Merkel, "ad cod. MS. Laurentianum." The
Teubner Text.

Leipzig, 1854, 2 vols., 8vo, by R. Merkel. The second volume contains
Merkel's prolegomena and the Scholia to L, edited by H. Keil.

Oxford, 1900, 8vo, by R.C. Seaton. In the "Scriptorum Classicorum
Bibliotheca Oxoniensis" series.

The text of the present edition is, with a few exceptions, that of the
Oxford edition prepared by me for the Delegates of the Clarendon Press,
whom I hereby thank for their permission to use it.

The English translations of Apollonius are as follows:--

By E.B. Greene, by F. Fawkes, both 1780; by W. Preston, 1803. None of
these are of value. There is a prose translation by E.P. Coleridge in
the Bohn Series. The most recent and also the best is a verse
translation by Mr. A.S. Way, 1901, in "The Temple Classics."

I may also mention the excellent translation in French by Prof. H. de La
Ville de Mirmont of the University of Bordeaux, 1892.

Upon Alexandrian literature in general Couat's _Poésie Alexandrine, sous
les trois premiers Ptoletmées_, 1882, may be recommended. Susemihl's
_Geschichte der Griechischen Litteratur in der Alexandinerzeit_, 2
vols., 1891, is a perfect storehouse of facts and authorities, but more
adapted for reference than for general reading. Morris' _Life and Death
of Jason_ is a poem that in many passages singularly resembles
Apollonius in its pessimistic tone and spirit.





     Invocation of Phoebus and cause of the expedition
     (1-22).--Catalogue of the Argonauts (23-233).--March of the heroes
     to the port: farewell of Jason and Alcimede
     (234-305).--Preparations for departure and launching of Argo:
     sacrifice to Apollo: prediction of Idmon (306-447).--The festival,
     insolence of Idas, song of Orpheus and departure (448-558).--Voyage
     along the coast of Thessaly and across to Lemnos (559-608).--Recent
     history of Lemnos and stay of the Argonauts there: farewell of
     Jason and Hypsipyle (609-909).--Voyage from Lemnos by Samothrace to
     the Propontis: reception by the Doliones of Cyzicus
     (910-988).--Fight against the Giants: departure and return of the
     Argonauts to Cyzicus: sacrifice to Rhea on Mt. Dindymum
     (989-1152).--Arrival among the Mysians: rape of Hylas, which is
     announced to Heracles (1153-1260).--While Heracles and Polyphemus
     search for Hylas they are left behind (1261-1328).--The fate of
     Heracles and Polyphemus: arrival of Argo among the Bebrycians



Beginning with thee, O Phoebus, I will recount the famous deeds of men
of old, who, at the behest of King Pelias, down through the mouth of
Pontus and between the Cyanean rocks, sped well-benched Argo in quest of
the golden fleece.

Such was the oracle that Pelias heard, that a hateful doom awaited
him--to be slain at the prompting of the man whom he should see coming
forth from the people with but one sandal. And no long time after, in
accordance with that true report, Jason crossed the stream of wintry
Anaurus on foot, and saved one sandal from the mire, but the other he
left in the depths held back by the flood. And straightway he came to
Pelias to share the banquet which the king was offering to his father
Poseidon and the rest of the gods, though he paid no honour to Pelasgian
Hera. Quickly the king saw him and pondered, and devised for him the
toil of a troublous voyage, in order that on the sea or among strangers
he might lose his home-return.

The ship, as former bards relate, Argus wrought by the guidance of
Athena. But now I will tell the lineage and the names of the heroes, and
of the long sea-paths and the deeds they wrought in their wanderings;
may the Muses be the inspirers of my song!

First then let us name Orpheus whom once Calliope bare, it is said,
wedded to Thracian Oeagrus, near the Pimpleian height. Men say that he
by the music of his songs charmed the stubborn rocks upon the mountains
and the course of rivers. And the wild oak-trees to this day, tokens of
that magic strain, that grow at Zone on the Thracian shore, stand in
ordered ranks close together, the same which under the charm of his lyre
he led down from Pieria. Such then was Orpheus whom Aeson's son welcomed
to share his toils, in obedience to the behest of Cheiron, Orpheus ruler
of Bistonian Pieria.

Straightway came Asterion, whom Cometes begat by the waters of eddying
Apidanus; he dwelt at Peiresiae near the Phylleian mount, where mighty
Apidanus and bright Enipeus join their streams, coming together from

Next to them from Larisa came Polyphemus, son of Eilatus, who aforetime
among the mighty Lapithae, when they were arming themselves against the
Centaurs, fought in his younger days; now his limbs were grown heavy
with age, but his martial spirit still remained, even as of old.

Nor was Iphiclus long left behind in Phylace, the uncle of Aeson's son;
for Aeson had wedded his sister Alcimede, daughter of Phylacus: his
kinship with her bade him be numbered in the host.

Nor did Admetus, the lord of Pherae rich in sheep, stay behind beneath
the peak of the Chalcodonian mount.

Nor at Alope stayed the sons of Hermes, rich in corn-land, well skilled
in craftiness, Erytus and Echion, and with them on their departure their
kinsman Aethalides went as the third; him near the streams of Amphrysus
Eupolemeia bare, the daughter of Myrmidon, from Phthia; the two others
were sprung from Antianeira, daughter of Menetes.

From rich Gyrton came Coronus, son of Caeneus, brave, but not braver
than his father. For bards relate that Caeneus though still living
perished at the hands of the Centaurs, when apart from other chiefs he
routed them; and they, rallying against him, could neither bend nor slay
him; but unconquered and unflinching he passed beneath the earth,
overwhelmed by the downrush of massy pines.

There came too Titaresian Mopsus, whom above all men the son of Leto
taught the augury of birds; and Eurydamas the son of Ctimenus; he dwelt
at Dolopian Ctimene near the Xynian lake.

Moreover Actor sent his son Menoetius from Opus that he might accompany
the chiefs.

Eurytion followed and strong Eribotes, one the son of Teleon, the other
of Irus, Actor's son; the son of Teleon renowned Eribotes, and of Irus
Eurytion. A third with them was Oileus, peerless in courage and well
skilled to attack the flying foe, when they break their ranks.

Now from Euboea came Canthus eager for the quest, whom Canethus son of
Abas sent; but he was not destined to return to Cerinthus. For fate had
ordained that he and Mopsus, skilled in the seer's art, should wander
and perish in the furthest ends of Libya. For no ill is too remote for
mortals to incur, seeing that they buried them in Libya, as far from the
Colchians as is the space that is seen between the setting and the
rising of the sun.

To him Clytius and Iphitus joined themselves, the warders of Oechalia,
sons of Eurytus the ruthless, Eurytus, to whom the Far-shooting god gave
his bow; but he had no joy of the gift; for of his own choice he strove
even with the giver.

After them came the sons of Aeacus, not both together, nor from the same
spot; for they settled far from Aegina in exile, when in their folly
they had slain their brother Phocus. Telamon dwelt in the Attic island;
but Peleus departed and made his home in Phthia.

After them from Cecropia came warlike Butes, son of brave Teleon, and
Phalerus of the ashen spear. Alcon his father sent him forth; yet no
other sons had he to care for his old age and livelihood. But him, his
well-beloved and only son, he sent forth that amid bold heroes he might
shine conspicuous. But Theseus, who surpassed all the sons of
Erechtheus, an unseen bond kept beneath the land of Taenarus, for he had
followed that path with Peirithous; assuredly both would have lightened
for all the fulfilment of their toil.

Tiphys, son of Hagnias, left the Siphaean people of the Thespians, well
skilled to foretell the rising wave on the broad sea, and well skilled
to infer from sun and star the stormy winds and the time for sailing.
Tritonian Athena herself urged him to join the band of chiefs, and he
came among them a welcome comrade. She herself too fashioned the swift
ship; and with her Argus, son of Arestor, wrought it by her counsels.
Wherefore it proved the most excellent of all ships that have made trial
of the sea with oars.

After them came Phlias from Araethyrea, where he dwelt in affluence by
the favour of his father Dionysus, in his home by the springs of Asopus.

From Argos came Talaus and Areius, sons of Bias, and mighty Leodocus,
all of whom Pero daughter of Neleus bare; on her account the Aeolid
Melampus endured sore affliction in the steading of Iphiclus.

Nor do we learn that Heracles of the mighty heart disregarded the eager
summons of Aeson's son. But when he heard a report of the heroes'
gathering and had readied Lyrceian Argos from Arcadia by the road along
which he carried the boar alive that fed in the thickets of Lampeia,
near the vast Erymanthian swamp, the boar bound with chains he put down
from his huge shoulders at the entrance to the market-place of Mycenae;
and himself of his own will set out against the purpose of Eurystheus;
and with him went Hylas, a brave comrade, in the flower of youth, to
bear his arrows and to guard his bow.

Next to him came a scion of the race of divine Danaus, Nauplius. He was
the son of Clytonaeus son of Naubolus; Naubolus was son of Lernus;
Lernus we know was the son of Proetus son of Nauplius; and once Amymone
daughter of Danaus, wedded to Poseidon, bare Nauplius, who surpassed all
men in naval skill.

Idmon came last of all them that dwelt at Argos, though he had learnt
his own fate by augury, he came, that the people might not grudge him
fair renown. He was not in truth the son of Abas, but Leto's son himself
begat him to be numbered among the illustrious Aeolids; and himself
taught him the art of prophecy--to pay heed to birds and to observe the
signs of the burning sacrifice.

Moreover Aetolian Leda sent from Sparta strong Polydeuces and Castor,
skilled to guide swift-footed steeds; these her dearly-loved sons she
bare at one birth in the house of Tyndareus; nor did she forbid their
departure; for she had thoughts worthy of the bride of Zeus.

The sons of Aphareus, Lynceus and proud Idas, came from Arene, both
exulting in their great strength; and Lynceus too excelled in keenest
sight, if the report is true that that hero could easily direct his
sight even beneath the earth.

And with them Neleian Periclymenus set out to come, eldest of all the
sons of godlike Neleus who were born at Pylos; Poseidon had given him
boundless strength and granted him that whatever shape he should crave
during the fight, that he should take in the stress of battle.

Moreover from Arcadia came Amphidamas and Cepheus, who inhabited Tegea
and the allotment of Apheidas, two sons of Aleus; and Ancaeus followed
them as the third, whom his father Lycurgus sent, the brother older than
both. But he was left in the city to care for Aleus now growing old,
while he gave his son to join his brothers. Ancaeus went clad in the
skin of a Maenalian bear, and wielding in his right hand a huge
two-edged battleaxe. For his armour his grandsire had hidden in the
house's innermost recess, to see if he might by some means still stay
his departure.

There came also Augeias, whom fame declared to be the son of Helios; he
reigned over the Eleans, glorying in his wealth; and greatly he desired
to behold the Colchian land and Aeetes himself the ruler of the

Asterius and Amphion, sons of Hyperasius, came from Achaean Pellene,
which once Pelles their grandsire founded on the brows of Aegialus.

After them from Taenarus came Euphemus whom, most swift-footed of men,
Europe, daughter of mighty Tityos, bare to Poseidon. He was wont to skim
the swell of the grey sea, and wetted not his swift feet, but just
dipping the tips of his toes was borne on the watery path.

Yea, and two other sons of Poseidon came; one Erginus, who left the
citadel of glorious Miletus, the other proud Ancaeus, who left
Parthenia, the seat of Imbrasion Hera; both boasted their skill in
sea-craft and in war.

After them from Calydon came the son of Oeneus, strong Meleagrus, and
Laocoon--Laocoon the brother of Oeneus, though not by the same mother,
for a serving-woman bare him; him, now growing old, Oeneus sent to guard
his son: thus Meleagrus, still a youth, entered the bold band of heroes.
No other had come superior to him, I ween, except Heracles, if for one
year more he had tarried and been nurtured among the Aetolians. Yea, and
his uncle, well skilled to fight whether with the javelin or hand to
hand, Iphiclus son of Thestius, bare him company on his way.

With him came Palaemonius, son of Olenian Lernus, of Lernus by repute,
but his birth was from Hephaestus; and so he was crippled in his feet,
but his bodily frame and his valour no one would dare to scorn.
Wherefore he was numbered among all the chiefs, winning fame for Jason.

From the Phocians came Iphitus sprung from Naubolus son of Ornytus; once
he had been his host when Jason went to Pytho to ask for a response
concerning his voyage; for there he welcomed him in his own halls.

Next came Zetes and Calais, sons of Boreas, whom once Oreithyia,
daughter of Erechtheus, bare to Boreas on the verge of wintry Thrace;
thither it was that Thracian Boreas snatched her away from Cecropia as
she was whirling in the dance, hard by Ilissus' stream. And, carrying
her far off, to the spot that men called the rock of Sarpedon, near the
river Erginus, he wrapped her in dark clouds and forced her to his will.
There they were making their dusky wings quiver upon their ankles on
both sides as they rose, a great wonder to behold, wings that gleamed
with golden scales: and round their backs from the top of the head and
neck, hither and thither, their dark tresses were being shaken by the

No, nor had Acastus son of mighty Pelias himself any will to stay behind
in the palace of his brave sire, nor Argus, helper of the goddess
Athena; but they too were ready to be numbered in the host.

So many then were the helpers who assembled to join the son of Aeson.
All the chiefs the dwellers thereabout called Minyae, for the most and
the bravest avowed that they were sprung from the blood of the daughters
of Minyas; thus Jason himself was the son of Alcimede who was born of
Clymene the daughter of Minyas.

Now when all things had been made ready by the thralls, all things that
fully-equipped ships are furnished withal when men's business leads them
to voyage across the sea, then the heroes took their way through the
city to the ship where it lay on the strand that men call Magnesian
Pagasae; and a crowd of people hastening rushed together; but the heroes
shone like gleaming stars among the clouds; and each man as he saw them
speeding along with their armour would say:

"King Zeus, what is the purpose of Pelias? Whither is he driving forth
from the Panachaean land so great a host of heroes? On one day they
would waste the palace of Aeetes with baleful fire, should he not yield
them the fleece of his own goodwill. But the path is not to be shunned,
the toil is hard for those who venture."

Thus they spake here and there throughout the city; but the women often
raised their hands to the sky in prayer to the immortals to grant a
return, their hearts' desire. And one with tears thus lamented to her

"Wretched Alcimede, evil has come to thee at last though late, thou hast
not ended with splendour of life. Aeson too, ill-fated man! Surely
better had it been for him, if he were lying beneath the earth enveloped
in his shroud, still unconscious of bitter toils. Would that the dark
wave, when the maiden Helle perished, had overwhelmed Phrixus too with
the ram: but the dire portent even sent forth a human voice, that it
might cause to Alcimede sorrows and countless pains hereafter."

Thus the women spake at the departure of the heroes. And now many
thralls, men and women, were gathered together, and his mother, smitten
with grief for Jason. And a bitter pang seized every woman's heart; and
with them groaned the father in baleful old age, lying on his bed,
closely wrapped round. But the hero straightway soothed their pain,
encouraging them, and bade the thralls take up his weapons for war; and
they in silence with downcast looks took them up. And even as the mother
had thrown her arms about her son, so she clung, weeping without stint,
as a maiden all alone weeps, falling fondly on the neck of her hoary
nurse, a maid who has now no others to care for her, but she drags on a
weary life under a stepmother, who maltreats her continually with ever
fresh insults, and as she weeps, her heart within her is bound fast with
misery, nor can she sob forth all the groans that struggle for
utterance; so without stint wept Alcimede straining her son in her arms,
and in her yearning grief spake as follows:

"Would that on that day when, wretched woman that I am, I heard King
Pelias proclaim his evil behest, I had straightway given up my life and
forgotten my cares, so that thou thyself, my son, with thine own hands,
mightest have buried me; for that was the only wish left me still to be
fulfilled by thee, all the other rewards for thy nurture have I long
enjoyed. Now I, once so admired among Achaean women, shall be left
behind like a bondwoman in my empty halls, pining away, ill-fated one,
for love of thee, thee on whose account I had aforetime so much splendour
and renown, my only son for whom I loosed my virgin zone first and last.
For to me beyond others the goddess Eileithyia grudged abundant
offspring. Alas for my folly! Not once, not even in my dreams did I
forebode this, that the flight of Phrixus would bring me woe."

Thus with moaning she wept, and her handmaidens, standing by, lamented;
but Jason spake gently to her with comforting words:

"Do not, I pray thee, mother, store up bitter sorrows overmuch, for thou
wilt not redeem me from evil by tears, but wilt still add grief to
grief. For unseen are the woes that the gods mete out to mortals; be
strong to endure thy share of them though with grief in thy heart; take
courage from the promises of Athena, and from the answers of the gods
(for very favourable oracles has Phoebus given), and then from the help
of the chieftains. But do thou remain here, quiet among thy handmaids,
and be not a bird of ill omen to the ship; and thither my clansmen and
thralls will follow me."

He spake, and started forth to leave the house. And as Apollo goes forth
from some fragrant shrine to divine Delos or Claros or Pytho or to broad
Lycia near the stream of Xanthus, in such beauty moved Jason through the
throng of people; and a cry arose as they shouted together. And there
met him aged Iphias, priestess of Artemis guardian of the city, and
kissed his right hand, but she had not strength to say a word, for all
her eagerness, as the crowd rushed on, but she was left there by the
wayside, as the old are left by the young, and he passed on and was gone

Now when he had left the well-built streets of the city he came to the
beach of Pagasae, where his comrades greeted him as they stayed together
near the ship Argo. And he stood at the entering in, and they were
gathered to meet him. And they perceived Acastus and Argus coming from
the city, and they marvelled when they saw them hasting with all speed,
despite the will of Pelias. The one, Argus, son of Arestor, had cast
round his shoulders the hide of a bull reaching to his feet, with the
black hair upon it, the other, a fair mantle of double fold, which his
sister Pelopeia had given him. Still Jason forebore from asking them
about each point but bade all be seated for an assembly. And there, upon
the folded sails and the mast as it lay on the ground, they all took
their seats in order. And among them with goodwill spake Aeson's son:

"All the equipment that a ship needs--for all is in due order--lies
ready for our departure. Therefore we will make no long delay in our
sailing for these things' sake, when the breezes but blow fair. But,
friends,--for common to all is our return to Hellas hereafter, and
common to all is our path to the land of Aeetes--now therefore with
ungrudging heart choose the bravest to be our leader, who shall be
careful for everything, to take upon him our quarrels and covenants with

Thus he spake; and the young heroes turned their eves towards bold
Heracles sitting in their midst, and with one shout they all enjoined
upon him to be their leader; but he, from the place where he sat,
stretched forth his right hand and said:

"Let no one offer this honour to me. For I will not consent, and I will
forbid any other to stand up. Let the hero who brought us together,
himself be the leader of the host."

Thus he spake with high thoughts, and they assented, as Heracles bade;
and warlike Jason himself rose up, glad at heart, and thus addressed the
eager throng:

"If ye entrust your glory to my care, no longer as before let our path
be hindered. Now at last let us propitiate Phoebus with sacrifice and
straightway prepare a feast. And until my thralls come, the overseers of
my steading, whose care it is to choose out oxen from the herd and drive
them hither, we will drag down the ship to the sea, and do ye place all
the tackling within, and draw lots for the benches for rowing. Meantime
let us build upon the beach an altar to Apollo Embasius[1] who by an
oracle promised to point out and show me the paths of the sea, if by
sacrifice to him I should begin my venture for King Pelias."

[Footnote 1: i.e. God of embarcation.]

He spake, and was the first to turn to the work, and they stood up in
obedience to him; and they heaped their garments, one upon the other, on
a smooth stone, which the sea did not strike with its waves, but the
stormy surge had cleansed it long before. First of all, by the command
of Argus, they strongly girded the ship with a rope well twisted
within,[1] stretching it tight on each side, in order that the planks
might be well compacted by the bolts and might withstand the opposing
force of the surge. And they quickly dug a trench as wide as the space
the ship covered, and at the prow as far into the sea as it would run
when drawn down by their hands. And they ever dug deeper in front of the
stem, and in the furrow laid polished rollers; and inclined the ship
down upon the first rollers, that so she might glide and be borne on by
them. And above, on both sides, reversing the oars, they fastened them
round the thole-pins, so as to project a cubit's space. And the heroes
themselves stood on both sides at the oars in a row, and pushed forward
with chest and hand at once. And then Tiphys leapt on board to urge the
youths to push at the right moment; and calling on them he shouted
loudly; and they at once, leaning with all their strength, with one push
started the ship from her place, and strained with their feet, forcing
her onward; and Pelian Argo followed swiftly; and they on each side
shouted as they rushed on. And then the rollers groaned under the sturdy
keel as they were chafed, and round them rose up a dark smoke owing to
the weight, and she glided into the sea; but the heroes stood there and
kept dragging her back as she sped onward. And round the thole-pins they
fitted the oars, and in the ship they placed the mast and the well-made
sails and the stores.

[Footnote 1: Or, reading [Greek: ektothen], "they strongly girded the
ship outside with a well-twisted rope." In either case there is probably
no allusion to [Greek: hupozômata] (ropes for undergirding) which-were
carried loose and only used in stormy weather.]

Now when they had carefully paid heed to everything, first they
distributed the benches by lot, two men occupying one seat; but the
middle bench they chose for Heracles and Ancaeus apart from the other
heroes, Ancaeus who dwelt in Tegea. For them alone they left the middle
bench just as it was and not by lot; and with one consent they entrusted
Tiphys with guarding the helm of the well-stemmed ship.

Next, piling up shingle near the sea, they raised there an altar on the
shore to Apollo, under the name of Actius[1] and Embasius, and quickly
spread above it logs of dried olive-wood. Meantime the herdsmen of
Aeson's son had driven before them from the herd two steers. These the
younger comrades dragged near the altars, and the others brought lustral
water and barley meal, and Jason prayed, calling on Apollo the god of
his fathers:

[Footnote 1: i.e. God of the shore.]

"Hear, O King, that dwellest in Pagasae and the city Aesonis, the city
called by my father's name, thou who didst promise me, when I sought thy
oracle at Pytho, to show the fulfilment and goal of my journey, for thou
thyself hast been the cause of my venture; now do thou thyself guide the
ship with my comrades safe and sound, thither and back again to Hellas.
Then in thy honour hereafter we will lay again on thy altar the bright
offerings of bulls--all of us who return; and other gifts in countless
numbers I will bring to Pytho and Ortygia. And now, come, Far-darter,
accept this sacrifice at our hands, which first of all we have offered
thee for this ship on our embarcation; and grant, O King, that with a
prosperous weird I may loose the hawsers, relying on thy counsel, and
may the breeze blow softly with which we shall sail over the sea in fair

He spake, and with his prayer cast the barley meal. And they two girded
themselves to slay the steers, proud Ancaeus and Heracles. The latter
with his club smote one steer mid-head on the brow, and falling in a
heap on the spot, it sank to the ground; and Ancaeus struck the broad
neck of the other with his axe of bronze, and shore through the mighty
sinews; and it fell prone on both its horns. Their comrades quickly
severed the victims' throats, and flayed the hides: they sundered the
joints and carved the flesh, then cut out the sacred thigh bones, and
covering them all together closely with fat burnt them upon cloven wood.
And Aeson's son poured out pure libations, and Idmon rejoiced beholding
the flame as it gleamed on every side from the sacrifice, and the smoke
of it mounting up with good omen in dark spiral columns; and quickly he
spake outright the will of Leto's son:

"For you it is the will of heaven and destiny that ye shall return here
with the fleece; but meanwhile both going and returning, countless
trials await you. But it is my lot, by the hateful decree of a god, to
die somewhere afar off on the mainland of Asia. Thus, though I learnt my
fate from evil omens even before now, I have left my fatherland to
embark on the ship, that so after my embarking fair fame may be left me
in my house."

Thus he spake; and the youths hearing the divine utterance rejoiced at
their return, but grief seized them for the fate of Idmon. Now at the
hour when the sun passes his noon-tide halt and the ploughlands are just
being shadowed by the rocks, as the sun slopes towards the evening dusk,
at that hour all the heroes spread leaves thickly upon the sand and lay
down in rows in front of the hoary surf-line; and near them were spread
vast stores of viands and sweet wine, which the cupbearers had drawn off
in pitchers; afterwards they told tales one to another in turn, such as
youths often tell when at the feast and the bowl they take delightful
pastime, and insatiable insolence is far away. But here the son of
Aeson, all helpless, was brooding over each event in his mind, like one
oppressed with thought. And Idas noted him and assailed him with loud

"Son of Aeson, what is this plan thou art turning over in mind. Speak
out thy thought in the midst. Does fear come on and master thee, fear,
that confounds cowards? Be witness now my impetuous spear, wherewith in
wars I win renown beyond all others (nor does Zeus aid me so much as my
own spear), that no woe will be fatal, no venture will be unachieved,
while Idas follows, even though a god should oppose thee. Such a
helpmeet am I that thou bringest from Arene."

He spake, and holding a brimming goblet in both hands drank off the
unmixed sweet wine; and his lips and dark cheeks were drenched with it;
and all the heroes clamoured together and Idmon spoke out openly:

"Vain wretch, thou art devising destruction for thyself before the time.
Does the pure wine cause thy bold heart to swell in thy breast to thy
ruin, and has it set thee on to dishonour the gods? Other words of
comfort there are with which a man might encourage his comrade; but thou
hast spoken with utter recklessness. Such taunts, the tale goes, did the
sons of Aloeus once blurt out against the blessed gods, and thou dost no
wise equal them in valour; nevertheless they were both slain by the
swift arrows of Leto's son, mighty though they were."

Thus he spake, and Aphareian Idas laughed out, loud and long, and eyeing
him askance replied with biting words:

"Come now, tell me this by thy prophetic art, whether for me too the
gods will bring to pass such doom as thy father promised for the sons of
Aloeus. And bethink thee how thou wilt escape from my hands alive, if
thou art caught making a prophecy vain as the idle wind."

Thus in wrath Idas reviled him, and the strife would have gone further
had not their comrades and Aeson's son himself with indignant cry
restrained the contending chiefs; and Orpheus lifted his lyre in his
left hand and made essay to sing.

He sang how the earth, the heaven and the sea, once mingled together in
one form, after deadly strife were separated each from other; and how
the stars and the moon and the paths of the sun ever keep their fixed
place in the sky; and how the mountains rose, and how the resounding
rivers with their nymphs came into being and all creeping things. And he
sang how first of all Ophion and Eurynome, daughter of Ocean, held the
sway of snowy Olympus, and how through strength of arm one yielded his
prerogative to Cronos and the other to Rhea, and how they fell into the
waves of Ocean; but the other two meanwhile ruled over the blessed
Titan-gods, while Zeus, still a child and with the thoughts of a child,
dwelt in the Dictaean cave; and the earthborn Cyclopes had not yet armed
him with the bolt, with thunder and lightning; for these things give
renown to Zeus.

He ended, and stayed his lyre and divine voice. But though he had ceased
they still bent forward with eagerness all hushed to quiet, with ears
intent on the enchanting strain; such a charm of song had he left behind
in their hearts. Not long after they mixed libations in honour of Zeus,
with pious rites as is customary, and poured them upon the burning
tongues, and bethought them of sleep in the darkness.

Now when gleaming dawn with bright eyes beheld the lofty peaks of
Pelion, and the calm headlands were being drenched as the sea was
ruffled by the winds, then Tiphys awoke from sleep; and at once he
roused his comrades to go on board and make ready the oars. And a
strange cry did the harbour of Pagasae utter, yea and Pelian Argo
herself, urging them to set forth. For in her a beam divine had been
laid which Athena had brought from an oak of Dodona and fitted in the
middle of the stem. And the heroes went to the benches one after the
other, as they had previously assigned for each to row in his place, and
took their seats in due order near their fighting gear. In the middle
sat Ancaeus and mighty Heracles, and near him he laid his club, and
beneath his tread the ship's keel sank deep. And now the hawsers were
being slipped and they poured wine on the sea. But Jason with tears held
his eyes away from his fatherland. And just as youths set up a dance in
honour of Phoebus either in Pytho or haply in Ortygia, or by the waters
of Ismenus, and to the sound of the lyre round his altar all together in
time beat the earth with swiftly-moving feet; so they to the sound of
Orpheus' lyre smote with their oars the rushing sea-water, and the surge
broke over the blades; and on this side and on that the dark brine
seethed with foam, boiling terribly through the might of the sturdy
heroes. And their arms shone in the sun like flame as the ship sped on;
and ever their wake gleamed white far behind, like a path seen over a
green plain. On that day all the gods looked down from heaven upon the
ship and the might of the heroes, half-divine, the bravest of men then
sailing the sea; and on the topmost heights the nymphs of Pelion
wondered as they beheld the work of Itonian Athena, and the heroes
themselves wielding the oars. And there came down from the mountain-top
to the sea Chiron, son of Philyra, and where the white surf broke he
dipped his feet, and, often waving with his broad hand, cried out to
them at their departure, "Good speed and a sorrowless home-return!" And
with him his wife, bearing Peleus' son Achilles on her arm, showed the
child to his dear father.

Now when they had left the curving shore of the harbour through the
cunning and counsel of prudent Tiphys son of Hagnias, who skilfully
handled the well-polished helm that he might guide them steadfastly,
then at length they set up the tall mast in the mast-box, and secured it
with forestays, drawing them taut on each side, and from it they let
down the sail when they had hauled it to the top-mast. And a breeze came
down piping shrilly; and upon the deck they fastened the ropes
separately round the well-polished pins, and ran quietly past the long
Tisaean headland. And for them the son of Oeagrus touched his lyre and
sang in rhythmical song of Artemis, saviour of ships, child of a
glorious sire, who hath in her keeping those peaks by the sea, and the
land of Iolcos; and the fishes came darting through the deep sea, great
mixed with small, and followed gambolling along the watery paths. And as
when in the track of the shepherd, their master, countless sheep follow
to the fold that have fed to the full of grass, and he goes before gaily
piping a shepherd's strain on his shrill reed; so these fishes followed;
and a chasing breeze ever bore the ship onward.

And straightway the misty land of the Pelasgians, rich in cornfields,
sank out of sight, and ever speeding onward they passed the rugged sides
of Pelion; and the Sepian headland sank away, and Sciathus appeared in
the sea, and far off appeared Piresiae and the calm shore of Magnesia on
the mainland and the tomb of Dolops; here then in the evening, as the
wind blew against them, they put to land, and paying honour to him at
nightfall burnt sheep as victims, while the sea was tossed by the swell:
and for two days they lingered on the shore, but on the third day they
put forth the ship, spreading on high the broad sail. And even now men
call that beach Aphetae[1] of Argo.

[Footnote 1: i.e. The Starting.]

Thence going forward they ran past Meliboea, escaping a stormy beach and
surf-line. And in the morning they saw Homole close at hand leaning on
the sea, and skirted it, and not long after they were about to pass by
the outfall of the river Amyrus. From there they beheld Eurymenae and
the sea-washed ravines of Ossa and Olympus; next they reached the slopes
of Pallene, beyond the headland of Canastra, running all night with the
wind. And at dawn before them as they journeyed rose Athos, the Thracian
mountain, which with its topmost peak overshadows Lemnos, even as far as
Myrine, though it lies as far off as the space that a well-trimmed
merchantship would traverse up to mid-day. For them on that day, till
darkness fell, the breeze blew exceedingly fresh, and the sails of the
ship strained to it. But with the setting of the sun the wind left them,
and it was by the oars that they reached Lemnos, the Sintian isle.

Here the whole of the men of the people together had been ruthlessly
slain through the transgressions of the women in the year gone by. For
the men had rejected their lawful wives, loathing them, and had
conceived a fierce passion for captive maids whom they themselves
brought across the sea from their forays in Thrace; for the terrible
wrath of Cypris came upon them, because for a long time they had grudged
her the honours due. O hapless women, and insatiate in jealousy to their
own ruin! Not their husbands alone with the captives did they slay on
account of the marriage-bed, but all the males at the same time, that
they might thereafter pay no retribution for the grim murder. And of all
the women, Hypsipyle alone spared her aged father Thoas, who was king
over the people; and she sent him in a hollow chest to drift over the
sea, if haply he should escape. And fishermen dragged him to shore at
the island of Oenoe, formerly Oenoe, but afterwards called Sicinus from
Sicinus, whom the water-nymph Oenoe bore to Thoas. Now for all the women
to tend kine, to don armour of bronze, and to cleave with the
plough-share the wheat-bearing fields, was easier than the works of
Athena, with which they were busied aforetime. Yet for all that did they
often gaze over the broad sea, in grievous fear against the Thracians'
coming. So when they saw Argo being rowed near the island, straightway
crowding in multitude from the gates of Myrine and clad in their harness
of war, they poured forth to the beach like ravening Thyiades; for they
deemed that the Thracians were come; and with them Hypsipyle, daughter
of Thoas, donned her father's harness. And they streamed down speechless
with dismay; such fear was wafted about them.

Meantime from the ship the chiefs had sent Aethalides the swift herald,
to whose care they entrusted their messages and the wand of Hermes, his
sire, who had granted him a memory of all things, that never grew dim;
and not even now, though he has entered the unspeakable whirlpools of
Acheron, has forgetfulness swept over his soul, but its fixed doom is to
be ever changing its abode; at one time to be numbered among the
dwellers beneath the earth, at another to be in the light of the sun
among living men. But why need I tell at length tales of Aethalides? He
at that time persuaded Hypsipyle to receive the new-comers as the day
was waning into darkness; nor yet at dawn did they loose the ship's
hawsers to the breath of the north wind.

Now the Lemnian women fared through the city and sat down to the
assembly, for Hypsipyle herself had so bidden. And when they were all
gathered together in one great throng straightway she spake among them
with stirring words:

"O friends, come let us grant these men gifts to their hearts' desire,
such as it is fitting that they should take on ship-board, food and
sweet wine, in order that they may steadfastly remain outside our
towers, and may not, passing among us for need's sake, get to know us
all too well, and so an evil report be widely spread; for we have
wrought a terrible deed and in nowise will it be to their liking, should
they learn it. Such is our counsel now, but if any of you can devise a
better plan let her rise, for it was on this account that I summoned you

Thus she spake and sat upon her father's seat of stone, and then rose up
her dear nurse Polyxo, for very age halting upon her withered feet,
bowed over a staff, and she was eager to address them. Near her were
seated four virgins, unwedded, crowned with white hair. And she stood in
the midst of the assembly and from her bent back she feebly raised her
neck and spake thus:

"Gifts, as Hypsipyle herself wishes, let us send to the strangers, for
it is better to give them. But for you what device have ye to get profit
of your life if the Thracian host fall upon us, or some other foe, as
often happens among men, even as now this company is come unforeseen?
But if one of the blessed gods should turn this aside yet countless
other woes worse than battle, remain behind, when the aged women die off
and ye younger ones, without children, reach hateful old age. How then
will ye live, hapless ones? Will your oxen of their own accord yoke
themselves for the deep ploughlands and draw the earth-cleaving share
through the fallow, and forthwith, as the year comes round, reap the
harvest? Assuredly, though the fates till now have shunned me in horror,
I deem that in the coming year I shall put on the garment of earth, when
I have received my meed of burial even so as is right, before the evil
days draw near. But I bid you who are younger give good heed to this.
For now at your feet a way of escape lies open, if ye trust to the
strangers the care of your homes and all your stock and your glorious

Thus she spake, and the assembly was filled with clamour. For the word
pleased them. And after her straightway Hypsipyle rose up again, and
thus spake in reply.

"If this purpose please you all, now will I even send a messenger to the

She spake and addressed Iphinoe close at hand: "Go, Iphinoe, and beg
yonder man, whoever it is that leads this array, to come to our land
that I may tell him a word that pleases the heart of my people, and bid
the men themselves, if they wish, boldly enter the land and the city
with friendly intent."

She spake, and dismissed the assembly, and thereafter started to return
home. And so Iphinoe came to the Minyae; and they asked with what intent
she had come among them. And quickly she addressed her questioners with
all speed in these words:

"The maiden Hypsipyle daughter of Thoas, sent me on my way here to you,
to summon the captain of your ship, whoever he be, that she may tell him
a word that pleases the heart of the people, and she bids yourselves, if
ye wish it, straightway enter the land and the city with friendly

Thus she spake and the speech of good omen pleased all. And they deemed
that Thoas was dead and that his beloved daughter Hypsipyle was queen,
and quickly they sent Jason on his way and themselves made ready to go.

Now he had buckled round his shoulders a purple mantle of double fold,
the work of the Tritonian goddess, which Pallas had given him when she
first laid the keel-props of the ship Argo and taught him how to measure
timbers with the rule. More easily wouldst thou cast thy eyes upon the
sun at its rising than behold that blazing splendour. For indeed in the
middle the fashion thereof was red, but at the ends it was all purple,
and on each margin many separate devices had been skilfully inwoven.

In it were the Cyclops seated at their imperishable work, forging a
thunderbolt for King Zeus; by now it was almost finished in its
brightness and still it wanted but one ray, which they were beating out
with their iron hammers as it spurted forth a breath of raging flame.

In it too were the twin sons of Antiope, daughter of Asopus, Amphion and
Zethus, and Thebe still ungirt with towers was lying near, whose
foundations they were just then laying in eager haste. Zethus on his
shoulders was lifting the peak of a steep mountain, like a man toiling
hard, and Amphion after him, singing loud and clear on his golden lyre,
moved on, and a rock twice as large followed his footsteps.

Next in order had been wrought Cytherea with drooping tresses, wielding
the swift shield of Ares; and from her shoulder to her left arm the
fastening of her tunic was loosed beneath her breast; and opposite in
the shield of bronze her image appeared clear to view as she stood.

And in it there was a well-wooded pasturage of oxen; and about the oxen
the Teleboae and the sons of Electryon were fighting; the one party
defending themselves, the others, the Taphian raiders, longing to rob
them; and the dewy meadow was drenched with their blood, and the many
were overmastering the few herdsmen.

And therein were fashioned two chariots, racing, and the one in front
Pelops was guiding, as he shook the reins, and with him was Hippodameia
at his side, and in pursuit Myrtilus urged his steeds, and with him
Oenomaus had grasped his couched spear, but fell as the axle swerved and
broke in the nave, while he was eager to pierce the back of Pelops.

And in it was wrought Phoebus Apollo, a stripling not yet grown up, in
the act of shooting at mighty Tityos who was boldly dragging his mother
by her veil, Tityos whom glorious Elare bare, but Earth nursed him and
gave him second birth.

And in it was Phrixus the Minyan as though he were in very deed
listening to the ram, while it was like one speaking. Beholding them
thou wouldst be silent and wouldst cheat thy soul with the hope of
hearing some wise speech from them, and long wouldst thou gaze with that

Such then were the gifts of the Tritonian goddess Athena. And in his
right hand Jason held a far-darting spear, which Atalanta gave him once
as a gift of hospitality in Maenalus as she met him gladly; for she
eagerly desired to follow on that quest; but he himself of his own
accord prevented the maid, for he feared bitter strife on account of her

And he went on his way to the city like to a bright star, which maidens,
pent up in new-built chambers, behold as it rises above their homes, and
through the dark air it charms their eyes with its fair red gleam and
the maid rejoices, love-sick for the youth who is far away amid
strangers, for whom her parents are keeping her to be his bride; like to
that star the hero trod the way to the city. And when they had passed
within the gates and the city, the women of the people surged behind
them, delighting in the stranger, but he with his eyes fixed on the
ground fared straight on, till he reached the glorious palace of
Hypsipyle; and when he appeared the maids opened the folding doors,
fitted with well-fashioned panels. Here Iphinoe leading him quickly
through a fair porch set him upon a shining seat opposite her mistress,
but Hypsipyle turned her eyes aside and a blush covered her maiden
cheeks, yet for all her modesty she addressed him with crafty words:

"Stranger, why stay ye so long outside our towers? for the city is not
inhabited by the men, but they, as sojourners, plough the wheat-bearing
fields of the Thracian mainland. And I will tell out truly all our evil
plight, that ye yourselves too may know it well. When my father Thoas
reigned over the citizens, then our folk starting from their homes used
to plunder from their ships the dwellings of the Thracians who live
opposite, and they brought back hither measureless booty and maidens
too. But the counsel of the baneful goddess Cypris was working out its
accomplishment, who brought upon them soul destroying infatuation. For
they hated their lawful wives, and, yielding to their own mad folly,
drove them from their homes; and they took to their beds the captives of
their spear, cruel ones. Long in truth we endured it, if haply again,
though late, they might change their purpose, but ever the bitter woe
grew, twofold. And the lawful children were being dishonoured in their
halls, and a bastard race was rising. And thus unmarried maidens and
widowed mothers too wandered uncared for through the city; no father
heeded his daughter ever so little even though he should see her done to
death before his eyes at the hands of an insolent step-dame, nor did
sons, as before, defend their mother against unseemly outrage; nor did
brothers care at heart for their sister. But in their homes, in the
dance, in the assembly and the banquet all their thought was only for
their captive maidens; until some god put desperate courage in our
hearts no more to receive our lords on their return from Thrace within
our towers so that they might either heed the right or might depart and
begone elsewhither, they and their captives. So they begged of us all
the male children that were left in the city and went back to where even
now they dwell on the snowy tilths of Thrace. Do ye therefore stay and
settle with us; and shouldst them desire to dwell here, and this finds
favour with thee, assuredly thou shalt have the prerogative of my father
Thoas; and I deem that thou wilt not scorn our land at all; for it is
deep-soiled beyond all other islands that lie in the Aegaean sea. But
come now, return to the ship and relate my words to thy comrades, and
stay not outside our city."

She spoke, glozing over the murder that had been wrought upon the men;
and Jason addressed her in answer:

"Hypsipyle, very dear to our hearts is the help we shall meet with,
which thou grantest to us who need thee. And I will return again to the
city when I have told everything in order due. But let the sovereignty
of the island be thine; it is not in scorn I yield it up, but grievous
trials urge me on."

He spake, and touched her right hand; and quickly he turned to go back:
and round him the young maids on every side danced in countless numbers
in their joy till he passed through the gates. And then they came to the
shore in smooth-running wains, bearing with them many gifts, when now he
had related from beginning to end the speech which Hypsipyle had spoken
when she summoned them; and the maids readily led the men back to their
homes for entertainment. For Cypris stirred in them a sweet desire, for
the sake of Hephaestus of many counsels, in order that Lemnos might be
again inhabited by men and not be ruined.

Thereupon Aeson's son started to go to the royal home of Hypsipyle; and
the rest went each his way as chance took them, all but Heracles; for he
of his own will was left behind by the ship and a few chosen comrades
with him. And straightway the city rejoiced with dances and banquets,
being filled with the steam of sacrifice; and above all the immortals
they propitiated with songs and sacrifices the illustrious son of Hera
and Cypris herself. And the sailing was ever delayed from one day to
another; and long would they have lingered there, had not Heracles,
gathering together his comrades apart from the women, thus addressed
them with reproachful words:

"Wretched men, does the murder of kindred keep us from our native land?
Or is it in want of marriage that we have come hither from thence, in
scorn of our countrywomen? Does it please us to dwell here and plough
the rich soil of Lemnos? No fair renown shall we win by thus tarrying so
long with stranger women; nor will some god seize and give us at our
prayer a fleece that moves of itself. Let us then return each to his
own; but him leave ye to rest all day long in the embrace of Hypsipyle
until he has peopled Lemnos with men-children, and so there come to him
great glory."

Thus did he chide the band; but no one dared to meet his eye or to utter
a word in answer. But just as they were in the assembly they made ready
their departure in all haste, and the women came running towards them,
when they knew their intent. And as when bees hum round fair lilies
pouring forth from their hive in the rock, and all around the dewy
meadow rejoices, and they gather the sweet fruit, flitting from one to
another; even so the women eagerly poured forth, clustering round the
men with loud lament, and greeted each one with hands and voice, praying
the blessed gods to grant him a safe return. And so Hypsipyle too
prayed, seizing the hands of Aeson's son, and her tears flowed for the
loss of her lover:

"Go, and may heaven bring thee back again with thy comrades unharmed,
bearing to the king the golden fleece, even as thou wilt and thy heart
desireth; and this island and my father's sceptre will be awaiting thee,
if on thy return hereafter thou shouldst choose to come hither again;
and easily couldst thou gather a countless host of men from other
cities. But thou wilt not have this desire, nor do I myself forbode that
so it will be. Still remember Hypsipyle when thou art far away and when
thou hast returned; and leave me some word of bidding, which I will
gladly accomplish, if haply heaven shall grant me to be a mother."

And Aeson's son in admiration thus replied: "Hypsipyle, so may all these
things prove propitious by the favour of the blessed gods. But do thou
hold a nobler thought of me, since by the grace of Pelias it is enough
for me to dwell in my native land; may the gods only release me from my
toils. But if it is not my destiny to sail afar and return to the land
of Hellas, and if thou shouldst bear a male child, send him when grown
up to Pelasgian Iolcus, to heal the grief of my father and mother if so
be that he find them still living, in order that, far away from the
king, they may be cared for by their own hearth in their home."

He spake, and mounted the ship first of all; and so the rest of the
chiefs followed, and, sitting in order, seized the oars; and Argus
loosed for them the hawsers from under the sea-beaten rock. Whereupon
they mightily smote the water with their long oars, and in the evening
by the injunctions of Orpheus they touched at the island of Electra,[1]
daughter of Atlas, in order that by gentle initiation they might learn
the rites that may not be uttered, and so with greater safety sail over
the chilling sea. Of these I will make no further mention; but I bid
farewell to the island itself and the indwelling deities, to whom belong
those mysteries, which it is not lawful for me to sing.

[Footnote 1: Samothrace.]

Thence did they row with eagerness over the depths of the black Sea,
having on the one side the land of the Thracians, on the other Imbros on
the south; and as the sun was just setting they reached the foreland of
the Chersonesus. There a strong south wind blew for them; and raising
the sails to the breeze they entered the swift stream of the maiden
daughter of Athamas; and at dawn the sea to the north was left behind
and at night they were coasting inside the Rhoeteian shore, with the
land of Ida on their right. And leaving Dardania they directed their
course to Abydus, and after it they sailed past Percote and the sandy
beach of Abarnis and divine Pityeia. And in that night, as the ship sped
on by sail and oar, they passed right through the Hellespont
dark-gleaming with eddies.

There is a lofty island inside the Propontis, a short distance from the
Phrygian mainland with its rich cornfields, sloping to the sea, where an
isthmus in front of the mainland is flooded by the waves, so low does it
lie. And the isthmus has double shores, and they lie beyond the river
Aesepus, and the inhabitants round about call the island the Mount of
Bears. And insolent and fierce men dwell there, Earthborn, a great
marvel to the neighbours to behold; for each one has six mighty hands to
lift up, two from his sturdy shoulders, and four below, fitting close to
his terrible sides. And about the isthmus and the plain the Doliones had
their dwelling, and over them Cyzicus son of Aeneus was king, whom
Aenete the daughter of goodly Eusorus bare. But these men the Earthborn
monsters, fearful though they were, in nowise harried, owing to the
protection of Poseidon; for from him had the Doliones first sprung.
Thither Argo pressed on, driven by the winds of Thrace, and the Fair
haven received her as she sped. There they cast away their small
anchorstone by the advice of Tiphys and left it beneath a fountain, the
fountain of Artacie; and they took another meet for their purpose, a
heavy one; but the first, according to the oracle of the Far-Darter, the
Ionians, sons of Neleus, in after days laid to be a sacred stone, as was
right, in the temple of Jasonian Athena.

Now the Doliones and Cyzicus himself all came together to meet them with
friendliness, and when they knew of the quest and their lineage welcomed
them with hospitality, and persuaded them to row further and to fasten
their ship's hawsers at the city harbour. Here they built an altar to
Ecbasian[1] Apollo and set it up on the beach, and gave heed to
sacrifices. And the king of his own bounty gave them sweet wine and
sheep in their need; for he had heard a report that whenever a godlike
band of heroes should come, straightway he should meet it with gentle
words and should have no thought of war. As with Jason, the soft down
was just blooming on his chin, nor yet had it been his lot to rejoice in
children, but still in his palace his wife was untouched by the pangs of
child-birth, the daughter of Percosian Merops, fair-haired Cleite, whom
lately by priceless gifts he had brought from her father's home from the
mainland opposite. But even so he left his chamber and bridal bed and
prepared a banquet among the strangers, casting all fears from his
heart. And they questioned one another in turn. Of them would he learn
the end of their voyage and the injunctions of Pelias; while they
enquired about the cities of the people round and all the gulf of the
wide Propontis; but further he could not tell them for all their desire
to learn. In the morning they climbed mighty Dindymum that they might
themselves behold the various paths of that sea; and they brought their
ship from its former anchorage to the harbour, Chytus; and the path they
trod is named the path of Jason.

[Footnote 1: i.e. god of disembarcation.]

But the Earthborn men on the other side rushed down from the mountain
and with crags below blocked up the mouth of vast Chytus towards the
sea, like men lying in wait for a wild beast within. But there Heracles
had been left behind with the younger heroes and he quickly bent his
back-springing bow against the monsters and brought them to earth one
after another; and they in their turn raised huge ragged rocks and
hurled them. For these dread monsters too, I ween, the goddess Hera,
bride of Zeus, had nurtured to be a trial for Heracles. And therewithal
came the rest of the martial heroes returning to meet the foe before
they reached the height of outlook, and they fell to the slaughter of
the Earthborn, receiving them with arrows and spears until they slew
them all as they rushed fiercely to battle. And as when woodcutters cast
in rows upon the beach long trees just hewn down by their axes, in order
that, once sodden with brine, they may receive the strong bolts; so
these monsters at the entrance of the foam-fringed harbour lay stretched
one after another, some in heaps bending their heads and breasts into
the salt waves with their limbs spread out above on the land; others
again were resting their heads on the sand of the shore and their feet
in the deep water, both alike a prey to birds and fishes at once.

But the heroes, when the contest was ended without fear, loosed the
ship's hawsers to the breath of the wind and pressed on through the
sea-swell. And the ship sped on under sail all day; but when night came
the rushing wind did not hold steadfast, but contrary blasts caught them
and held them back till they again approached the hospitable Doliones.
And they stepped ashore that same night; and the rock is still called
the Sacred Rock round which they threw the ship's hawsers in their
haste. Nor did anyone note with care that it was the same island; nor in
the night did the Doliones clearly perceive that the heroes were
returning; but they deemed that Pelasgian war-men of the Macrians had
landed. Therefore they donned their armour and raised their hands
against them. And with clashing of ashen spears and shields they fell on
each other, like the swift rush of fire which falls on dry brushwood and
rears its crest; and the din of battle, terrible and furious, fell upon
the people of the Doliones. Nor was the king to escape his fate and
return home from battle to his bridal chamber and bed. But Aeson's son
leapt upon him as he turned to face him, and smote him in the middle of
the breast, and the bone was shattered round the spear; he rolled
forward in the sand and filled up the measure of his fate. For that no
mortal may escape; but on every side a wide snare encompasses us. And
so, when he thought that he had escaped bitter death from the chiefs,
fate entangled him that very night in her toils while battling with
them; and many champions withal were slain; Heracles killed Telecles and
Megabrontes, and Acastus slew Sphodris; and Peleus slew Zelus and
Gephyrus swift in war. Telamon of the strong spear slew Basileus. And
Idas slew Promeus, and Clytius Hyacinthus, and the two sons of Tyndareus
slew Megalossaces and Phlogius. And after them the son of Oeneus slew
bold Itomeneus, and Artaceus, leader of men; all of whom the inhabitants
still honour with the worship due to heroes. And the rest gave way and
fled in terror just as doves fly in terror before swift-winged hawks.
And with a din they rushed in a body to the gates; and quickly the city
was filled with loud cries at the turning of the dolorous fight. But at
dawn both sides perceived the fatal and cureless error; and bitter grief
seized the Minyan heroes when they saw before them Cyzicus son of Aeneus
fallen in the midst of dust and blood. And for three whole days they
lamented and rent their hair, they and the Doliones. Then three times
round his tomb they paced in armour of bronze and performed funeral
rites and celebrated games, as was meet, upon the meadow-plain, where
even now rises the mound of his grave to be seen by men of a later day.
No, nor was his bride Cleite left behind her dead husband, but to crown
the ill she wrought an ill yet more awful, when she clasped a noose
round her neck. Her death even the nymphs of the grove bewailed; and of
all the tears for her that they shed to earth from their eyes the
goddesses made a fountain, which they call Cleite,[1] the illustrious
name of the hapless maid. Most terrible came that day from Zeus upon the
Doliones, women and men; for no one of them dared even to taste food,
nor for a long time by reason of grief did they take thought for the
toil of the cornmill, but they dragged on their lives eating their food
as it was, untouched by fire. Here even now, when the Ionians that dwell
in Cyzicus pour their yearly libations for the dead, they ever grind the
meal for the sacrificial cakes at the common mill.[2]

[Footnote 1: Cleite means illustrious.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. to avoid grinding it at home.]

After this, fierce tempests arose for twelve days and nights together
and kept them there from sailing. But in the next night the rest of the
chieftains, overcome by sleep, were resting during the latest period of
the night, while Acastus and Mopsus the son of Ampycus kept guard over
their deep slumbers. And above the golden head of Aeson's son there
hovered a halcyon prophesying with shrill voice the ceasing of the
stormy winds; and Mopsus heard and understood the cry of the bird of the
shore, fraught with good omen. And some god made it turn aside, and
flying aloft it settled upon the stern-ornament of the ship. And the
seer touched Jason as he lay wrapped in soft sheepskins and woke him at
once, and thus spake:

"Son of Aeson, thou must climb to this temple on rugged Dindymum and
propitiate the mother[1] of all the blessed gods on her fair throne, and
the stormy blasts shall cease. For such was the voice I heard but now
from the halcyon, bird of the sea, which, as as it flew above thee in
thy slumber, told me all. For by her power the winds and the sea and all
the earth below and the snowy seat of Olympus are complete; and to her,
when from the mountains she ascends the mighty heaven, Zeus himself, the
son of Cronos, gives place. In like manner the rest of the immortal
blessed ones reverence the dread goddess."

[Footnote 1: Rhea.]

Thus he spake, and his words were welcome to Jason's ear. And he arose
from his bed with joy and woke all his comrades hurriedly and told them
the prophecy of Mopsus the son of Ampycus. And quickly the younger men
drove oxen from their stalls and began to lead them to the mountain's
lofty summit. And they loosed the hawsers from the sacred rock and rowed
to the Thracian harbour; and the heroes climbed the mountain, leaving a
few of their comrades in the ship. And to them the Macrian heights and
all the coast of Thrace opposite appeared to view close at hand. And
there appeared the misty mouth of Bosporus and the Mysian hills; and on
the other side the stream of the river Aesepus and the city and Nepeian
plain of Adrasteia. Now there was a sturdy stump of vine that grew in
the forest, a tree exceeding old; this they cut down, to be the sacred
image of the mountain goddess; and Argus smoothed it skilfully, and they
set it upon that rugged hill beneath a canopy of lofty oaks, which of
all trees have their roots deepest. And near it they heaped an altar of
small stones, and wreathed their brows with oak leaves and paid heed to
sacrifice, invoking the mother of Dindymum, most venerable, dweller in
Phrygia, and Titias and Cyllenus, who alone of many are called
dispensers of doom and assessors of the Idaean mother,--the Idaean
Dactyls of Crete, whom once the nymph Anchiale, as she grasped with both
hands the land of Oaxus, bare in the Dictaean cave. And with many
prayers did Aeson's son beseech the goddess to turn aside the stormy
blasts as he poured libations on the blazing sacrifice; and at the same
time by command of Orpheus the youths trod a measure dancing in full
armour, and clashed with their swords on their shields, so that the
ill-omened cry might be lost in the air--the wail which the people were
still sending up in grief for their king. Hence from that time forward
the Phrygians propitiate Rhea with the wheel and the drum. And the
gracious goddess, I ween, inclined her heart to pious sacrifices; and
favourable signs appeared. The trees shed abundant fruit, and round
their feet the earth of its own accord put forth flowers from the tender
grass. And the beasts of the wild wood left their lairs and thickets and
came up fawning on them with their tails. And she caused yet another
marvel; for hitherto there was no flow of water on Dindymum, but then
for them an unceasing stream gushed forth from the thirsty peak just as
it was, and the dwellers around in after times called that stream, the
spring of Jason. And then they made a feast in honour of the goddess on
the Mount of Bears, singing the praises of Rhea most venerable; but at
dawn the winds had ceased and they rowed away from the island.

Thereupon a spirit of contention stirred each chieftain, who should be
the last to leave his oar. For all around the windless air smoothed the
swirling waves and lulled the sea to rest. And they, trusting in the
calm, mightily drove the ship forward; and as she sped through the salt
sea, not even the storm-footed steeds of Poseidon would have overtaken
her. Nevertheless when the sea was stirred by violent blasts which were
just rising from the rivers about evening, forspent with toil, they
ceased. But Heracles by the might of his arms pulled the weary rowers
along all together, and made the strong-knit timbers of the ship to
quiver. But when, eager to reach the Mysian mainland, they passed along
in sight of the mouth of Rhyndacus and the great cairn of Aegaeon, a
little way from Phrygia, then Heracles, as he ploughed up the furrows of
the roughened surge, broke his oar in the middle. And one half he held
in both his hands as he fell sideways, the other the sea swept away with
its receding wave. And he sat up in silence glaring round; for his hands
were unaccustomed to lie idle.

Now at the hour when from the field some delver or ploughman goes gladly
home to his hut, longing for his evening meal, and there on the
threshold, all squalid with dust, bows his wearied knees, and, beholding
his hands worn with toil, with many a curse reviles his belly; at that
hour the heroes reached the homes of the Cianian land near the
Arganthonian mount and the outfall of Cius. Them as they came in
friendliness, the Mysians, inhabitants of that land, hospitably
welcomed, and gave them in their need provisions and sheep and abundant
wine. Hereupon some brought dried wood, others from the meadows leaves
for beds which they gathered in abundance for strewing, whilst others
were twirling sticks to get fire; others again were mixing wine in the
bowl and making ready the feast, after sacrificing at nightfall to
Apollo Ecbasius.

But the son of Zeus having duly enjoined on his comrades to prepare the
feast took his way into a wood, that he might first fashion for himself
an oar to fit his hand. Wandering about he found a pine not burdened
with many branches, nor too full of leaves, but like to the shaft of a
tall poplar; so great was it both in length and thickness to look at.
And quickly he laid on the ground his arrow-holding quiver together with
his bow, and took off his lion's skin. And he loosened the pine from the
ground with his bronze-tipped club and grasped the trunk with both hands
at the bottom, relying on his strength; and he pressed it against his
broad shoulder with legs wide apart; and clinging close he raised it
from the ground deep-rooted though it was, together with clods of earth.
And as when unexpectedly, just at the time of the stormy setting of
baleful Orion, a swift gust of wind strikes down from above, and
wrenches a ship's mast from its stays, wedges and all; so did Heracles
lift the pine. And at the same time he took up his bow and arrows, his
lion skin and club, and started on his return.

Meantime Hylas with pitcher of bronze in hand had gone apart from the
throng, seeking the sacred flow of a fountain, that he might be quick in
drawing water for the evening meal and actively make all things ready in
due order against his lord's return. For in such ways did Heracles
nurture him from his first childhood when he had carried him off from
the house of his father, goodly Theiodamas, whom the hero pitilessly
slew among the Dryopians because he withstood him about an ox for the
plough. Theiodamas was cleaving with his plough the soil of fallow land
when he was smitten with the curse; and Heracles bade him give up the
ploughing ox against his will. For he desired to find some pretext for
war against the Dryopians for their bane, since they dwelt there
reckless of right. But these tales would lead me far astray from my
song. And quickly Hylas came to the spring which the people who dwell
thereabouts call Pegae. And the dances of the nymphs were just now being
held there; for it was the care of all the nymphs that haunted that
lovely headland ever to hymn Artemis in songs by night. All who held the
mountain peaks or glens, all they were ranged far off guarding the
woods; but one, a water-nymph was just rising from the fair-flowing
spring; and the boy she perceived close at hand with the rosy flush of
his beauty and sweet grace. For the full moon beaming from the sky smote
him. And Cypris made her heart faint, and in her confusion she could
scarcely gather her spirit back to her. But as soon as he dipped the
pitcher in the stream, leaning to one side, and the brimming water rang
loud as it poured against the sounding bronze, straightway she laid her
left arm above upon his neck yearning to kiss his tender mouth; and with
her right hand she drew down his elbow, and plunged him into the midst
of the eddy.

Alone of his comrades the hero Polyphemus, son of Eilatus, as he went
forward on the path, heard the boy's cry, for he expected the return of
mighty Heracles. And he rushed after the cry, near Pegae, like some
beast of the wild wood whom the bleating of sheep has reached from afar,
and burning with hunger he follows, but does not fall in with the
flocks; for the shepherds beforehand have penned them in the fold, but
he groans and roars vehemently until he is weary. Thus vehemently at
that time did the son of Eilatus groan and wandered shouting round the
spot; and his voice rang piteous. Then quickly drawing his great sword
he started in pursuit, in fear lest the boy should be the prey of wild
beasts, or men should have lain in ambush for him faring all alone, and
be carrying him off, an easy prey. Hereupon as he brandished his bare
sword in his hand he met Heracles himself on the path, and well he knew
him as he hastened to the ship through the darkness. And straightway he
told the wretched calamity while his heart laboured with his panting

"My poor friend, I shall be the first to bring thee tidings of bitter
woe. Hylas has gone to the well and has not returned safe, but robbers
have attacked and are carrying him off, or beasts are tearing him to
pieces; I heard his cry."

Thus he spake; and when Heracles heard his words, sweat in abundance
poured down from his temples and the black blood boiled beneath his
heart. And in wrath he hurled the pine to the ground and hurried along
the path whither his feet bore on his impetuous soul. And as when a bull
stung by a gadfly tears along, leaving the meadows and the marsh land,
and recks not of herdsmen or herd, but presses on, now without check,
now standing still, and raising his broad neck he bellows loudly, stung
by the maddening fly; so he in his frenzy now would ply his swift knees
unresting, now again would cease from toil and shout afar with loud
pealing cry.

But straightway the morning star rose above the topmost peaks and the
breeze swept down; and quickly did Tiphys urge them to go aboard and
avail themselves of the wind. And they embarked eagerly forthwith; and
they drew up the ship's anchors and hauled the ropes astern. And the
sails were bellied out by the wind, and far from the coast were they
joyfully borne past the Posideian headland. But at the hour when
gladsome dawn shines from heaven, rising from the east, and the paths
stand out clearly, and the dewy plains shine with a bright gleam, then
at length they were aware that unwittingly they had abandoned those men.
And a fierce quarrel fell upon them, and violent tumult, for that they
had sailed and left behind the bravest of their comrades. And Aeson's
son, bewildered by their hapless plight, said never a word, good or bad;
but sat with his heavy load of grief, eating out his heart. And wrath
seized Telamon, and thus he spake:

"Sit there at thy ease, for it was fitting for thee to leave Heracles
behind; from thee the project arose, so that his glory throughout Hellas
should not overshadow thee, if so be that heaven grants us a return
home. But what pleasure is there in words? For I will go, I only, with
none of thy comrades, who have helped thee to plan this treachery."

He spake, and rushed upon Tiphys son of Hagnias; and his eyes sparkled
like flashes of ravening flame. And they would quickly have turned back
to the land of the Mysians, forcing their way through the deep sea and
the unceasing blasts of the wind, had not the two sons of Thracian
Boreas held back the son of Aeacus with harsh words. Hapless ones,
assuredly a bitter vengeance came upon them thereafter at the hands of
Heracles, because they stayed the search for him. For when they were
returning from the games over Pelias dead he slew them in sea-girt Tenos
and heaped the earth round them, and placed two columns above, one of
which, a great marvel for men to see, moves at the breath of the
blustering north wind. These things were thus to be accomplished in
after times. But to them appeared Glaucus from the depths of the sea,
the wise interpreter of divine Nereus, and raising aloft his shaggy head
and chest from his waist below, with sturdy hand he seized the ship's
keel, and then cried to the eager crew:

"Why against the counsel of mighty Zeus do ye purpose to lead bold
Heracles to the city of Aeetes? At Argos it is his fate to labour for
insolent Eurystheus and to accomplish full twelve toils and dwell with
the immortals, if so be that he bring to fulfilment a few more yet;
wherefore let there be no vain regret for him. Likewise it is destined
for Polyphemus to found a glorious city at the mouth of Cius among the
Mysians and to fill up the measure of his fate in the vast land of the
Chalybes. But a goddess-nymph through love has made Hylas her husband,
on whose account those two wandered and were left behind."

He spake, and with a plunge wrapped him about with the restless wave;
and round him the dark water foamed in seething eddies and dashed
against the hollow ship as it moved through the sea. And the heroes
rejoiced, and Telamon son of Aeacus came in haste to Jason, and grasping
his hand in his own embraced him with these words:

"Son of Aeson, be not wroth with me, if in my folly I have erred, for
grief wrought upon me to utter a word arrogant and intolerable. But let
me give my fault to the winds and let our hearts be joined as before."

Him the son of Aeson with prudence addressed: "Good friend, assuredly
with an evil word didst thou revile me, saying before them all that I
was the wronger of a kindly man. But not for long will I nurse bitter
wrath, though indeed before I was grieved. For it was not for flocks of
sheep, no, nor for possessions that thou wast angered to fury, but for a
man, thy comrade. And I were fain thou wouldst even champion me against
another man if a like thing should ever befall me."

He spake, and they sat down, united as of old. But of those two, by the
counsel of Zeus, one, Polyphemus son of Eilatus, was destined to found
and build a city among the Mysians bearing the river's name, and the
other, Heracles, to return and toil at the labours of Eurystheus. And he
threatened to lay waste the Mysian land at once, should they not
discover for him the doom of Hylas, whether living or dead. And for him
they gave pledges choosing out the noblest sons of the people and took
an oath that they would never cease from their labour of search.
Therefore to this day the people of Cius enquire for Hylas the son of
Theiodamas; and take thought for the well-built Trachis. For there did
Heracles settle the youths whom they sent from Cius as pledges.

And all day long and all night the wind bore the ship on, blowing fresh
and strong; but when dawn rose there was not even a breath of air. And
they marked a beach jutting forth from a bend of the coast, very broad
to behold, and by dint of rowing came to land at sunrise.



     Fight between Polydeuces and Amycus, King of the Bebrycians; defeat
     and death of Amycus (1-97).--Victory of the Argonauts over the
     Bebrycians; arrival at the abode of Phineus (98-177).--History of
     Phineus and the Harpies, who are chased by Zetes and Calais, sons
     of Boreas (178-300).--Prediction of Phineus and return of the sons
     of Boreas (301-447).--Episode of Paraebius (448-499).--Origin of
     the Etesian winds (500-527).--Argo passes between the Symplegades
     by the aid of Athena (528-647).--Arrival at the isle Thynias;
     apparition of Apollo, to whom they pay honour (648-719).--Arrival
     among the Mariandyni, where King Lycus welcomes them
     (720-814).--Deaths of Idmon and Tiphys: Ancaeus chosen pilot
     (815-910).--The Argonauts pass Sinope and the Cape of the Amazons,
     and reach the Chalybes (911-1008).--Customs of the Tibareni and
     Mossynoeci (1009-1029).--Contest with the birds of the isle
     Aretias, where they meet with the sons of Phrixus, shipwrecked on
     their way to Hellas (1030-1225).--Arrival in Colchis (1226-1285).


Here were the oxstalls and farm of Amycus, the haughty king of the
Bebrycians, whom once a nymph, Bithynian Melie, united to Poseidon
Genethlius, bare--the most arrogant of men; for even for strangers he
laid down an insulting ordinance, that none should depart till they had
made trial of him in boxing; and he had slain many of the neighbours.
And at that time too he went down to the ship and in his insolence
scorned to ask them the occasion of their voyage, and who they were, but
at once spake out among them all:

"Listen, ye wanderers by sea, to what it befits you to know. It is the
rule that no stranger who comes to the Bebrycians should depart till he
has raised his hands in battle against mine. Wherefore select your
bravest warrior from the host and set him here on the spot to contend
with me in boxing. But if ye pay no heed and trample my decrees under
foot, assuredly to your sorrow will stern necessity come upon you."

Thus he spake in his pride, but fierce anger seized them when they heard
it, and the challenge smote Polydeuces most of all. And quickly he stood
forth his comrades' champion, and cried:

"Hold now, and display not to us thy brutal violence, whoever thou art;
for we will obey thy rules, as thou sayest. Willingly now do I myself
undertake to meet thee."

Thus he spake outright; but the other with rolling eyes glared on him,
like to a lion struck by a javelin when hunters in the mountains are
hemming him round, and, though pressed by the throng, he recks no more
of them, but keeps his eyes fixed, singling out that man only who struck
him first and slew him not. Hereupon the son of Tyndareus laid aside his
mantle, closely-woven, delicately-wrought, which one of the Lemnian
maidens had given him as a pledge of hospitality; and the king threw
down his dark cloak of double fold with its clasps and the knotted crook
of mountain olive which he carried. Then straightway they looked and
chose close by a spot that pleased them and bade their comrades sit upon
the sand in two lines; nor were they alike to behold in form or in
stature. The one seemed to be a monstrous son of baleful Typhoeus or of
Earth herself, such as she brought forth aforetime, in her wrath against
Zeus; but the other, the son of Tyndareus, was like a star of heaven,
whose beams are fairest as it shines through the nightly sky at
eventide. Such was the son of Zeus, the bloom of the first down still on
his cheeks, still with the look of gladness in his eyes. But his might
and fury waxed like a wild beast's; and he poised his hands to see if
they were pliant as before and were not altogether numbed by toil and
rowing. But Amycus on his side made no trial; but standing apart in
silence he kept his eyes upon his foe, and his spirit surged within him
all eager to dash the life-blood from his breast. And between them
Lycoreus, the henchman of Amycus, placed at their feet on each side two
pairs of gauntlets made of raw hide, dry, exceeding tough. And the king
addressed the hero with arrogant words:

"Whichever of these thou wilt, without casting lots, I grant thee
freely, that thou mayst not blame me hereafter. Bind them about thy
hands; thou shalt learn and tell another how skilled I am to carve the
dry oxhides and to spatter men's cheeks with blood."

Thus he spake; but the other gave back no taunt in answer, but with a
light smile readily took up the gauntlets that lay at his feet; and to
him came Castor and mighty Talaus, son of Bias, and they quickly bound
the gauntlets about his hands, often bidding him be of good courage. And
to Amycus came Aretus and Ornytus, but little they knew, poor fools,
that they had bound them for the last time on their champion, a victim
of evil fate.

Now when they stood apart and were ready with their gauntlets,
straightway in front of their faces they raised their heavy hands and
matched their might in deadly strife. Hereupon the Bebrycian king--even
as a fierce wave of the sea rises in a crest against a swift ship, but
she by the skill of the crafty pilot just escapes the shock when the
billow is eager to break over the bulwark--so he followed up the son of
Tyndareus, trying to daunt him, and gave him no respite. But the hero,
ever unwounded, by his skill baffled the rush of his foe, and he quickly
noted the brutal play of his fists to see where he was invincible in
strength, and where inferior, and stood unceasingly and returned blow
for blow. And as when shipwrights with their hammers smite ships'
timbers to meet the sharp clamps, fixing layer upon layer; and the blows
resound one after another; so cheeks and jaws crashed on both sides, and
a huge clattering of teeth arose, nor did they cease ever from striking
their blows until laboured gasping overcame both. And standing a little
apart they wiped from their foreheads sweat in abundance, wearily
panting for breath. Then back they rushed together again, as two bulls
fight in furious rivalry for a grazing heifer. Next Amycus rising on
tiptoe, like one who slays an ox, sprung to his full height and swung
his heavy hand down upon his rival; but the hero swerved aside from the
rush, turning his head, and just received the arm on his shoulder; and
coming near and slipping his knee past the king's, with a rush he struck
him above the ear, and broke the bones inside, and the king in agony
fell upon his knees; and the Minyan heroes shouted for joy; and his life
was poured forth all at once.

Nor were the Bebrycians reckless of their king; but all together took up
rough clubs and spears and rushed straight on Polydeuces. But in front
of him stood his comrades, their keen swords drawn from the sheath.
First Castor struck upon the head a man as he rushed at him: and it was
cleft in twain and fell on each side upon his shoulders. And Polydeuces
slew huge Itymoneus and Mimas. The one, with a sudden leap, he smote
beneath the breast with his swift foot and threw him in the dust; and as
the other drew near he struck him with his right hand above the left
eyebrow, and tore away his eyelid and the eyeball was left bare. But
Oreides, insolent henchman of Amycus, wounded Talaus son of Bias in the
side, but did not slay him, but only grazing the skin the bronze sped
under his belt and touched not the flesh. Likewise Aretus with
well-seasoned club smote Iphitus, the steadfast son of Eurytus, not yet
destined to an evil death; assuredly soon was he himself to be slain by
the sword of Clytius. Then Ancaeus, the dauntless son of Lycurgus,
quickly seized his huge axe, and in his left hand holding a bear's dark
hide, plunged into the midst of the Bebrycians with furious onset; and
with him charged the sons of Aeacus, and with them started warlike
Jason. And as when amid the folds grey wolves rush down on a winter's
day and scare countless sheep, unmarked by the keen-scented dogs and the
shepherds too, and they seek what first to attack and carry off, often
glaring around, but the sheep are just huddled together and trample on
one another; so the heroes grievously scared the arrogant Bebrycians.
And as shepherds or beekeepers smoke out a huge swarm of bees in a rock,
and they meanwhile, pent up in their hive, murmur with droning hum,
till, stupefied by the murky smoke, they fly forth far from the rock; so
they stayed steadfast no longer, but scattered themselves inland through
Bebrycia, proclaiming the death of Amycus; fools, not to perceive that
another woe all unforeseen was hard upon them. For at that hour their
vineyards and villages were being ravaged by the hostile spear of Lycus
and the Mariandyni, now that their king was gone. For they were ever at
strife about the ironbearing land. And now the foe was destroying their
steadings and farms, and now the heroes from all sides were driving off
their countless sheep, and one spake among his fellows thus:

"Bethink ye what they would have done in their cowardice if haply some
god had brought Heracles hither. Assuredly, if he had been here, no
trial would there have been of fists, I ween, but when the king drew
near to proclaim his rules, the club would have made him forget his
pride and the rules to boot. Yea, we left him uncared for on the strand
and we sailed oversea; and full well each one of us shall know our
baneful folly, now that he is far away."

Thus he spake, but all these things had been wrought by the counsels of
Zeus. Then they remained there through the night and tended the hurts of
the wounded men, and offered sacrifice to the immortals, and made ready
a mighty meal; and sleep fell upon no man beside the bowl and the
blazing sacrifice. They wreathed their fair brows with the bay that grew
by the shore, whereto their hawsers were bound, and chanted a song to
the lyre of Orpheus in sweet harmony; and the windless shore was charmed
by their song; and they celebrated the Therapnaean son of Zeus.[1]

[Footnote 1: i.e. Polydeuces.]

But when the sun rising from far lands lighted up the dewy hills and
wakened the shepherds, then they loosed their hawsers from the stem of
the bay-tree and put on board all the spoil they had need to take; and
with a favouring wind they steered through the eddying Bosporus.
Hereupon a wave like a steep mountain rose aloft in front as though
rushing upon them, ever upheaved above the clouds; nor would you say
that they could escape grim death, for in its fury it hangs over the
middle of the ship, like a cloud, yet it sinks away into calm if it
meets with a skilful helmsman. So they by the steering-craft of Tiphys
escaped, unhurt but sore dismayed. And on the next day they fastened the
hawsers to the coast opposite the Bithynian land.

There Phineus, son of Agenor, had his home by the sea, Phineus who above
all men endured most bitter woes because of the gift of prophecy which
Leto's son had granted him aforetime. And he reverenced not a whit even
Zeus himself, for he foretold unerringly to men his sacred will.
Wherefore Zeus sent upon him a lingering old age, and took from his eyes
the pleasant light, and suffered him not to have joy of the dainties
untold that the dwellers around ever brought to his house, when they
came to enquire the will of heaven. But on a sudden, swooping through
the clouds, the Harpies with their crooked beaks incessantly snatched
the food away from his mouth and hands. And at times not a morsel of
food was left, at others but a little, in order that he might live and
be tormented. And they poured forth over all a loathsome stench; and no
one dared not merely to carry food to his mouth but even to stand at a
distance; so foully reeked the remnants of the meal. But straightway
when he heard the voice and the tramp of the band he knew that they were
the men passing by, at whose coming Zeus' oracle had declared to him
that he should have joy of his food. And he rose from his couch, like a
lifeless dream, bowed over his staff, and crept to the door on his
withered feet, feeling the walls; and as he moved, his limbs trembled
for weakness and age; and his parched skin was caked with dirt, and
naught but the skin held his bones together. And he came forth from the
hall with wearied knees and sat on the threshold of the courtyard; and a
dark stupor covered him, and it seemed that the earth reeled round
beneath his feet, and he lay in a strengthless trance, speechless. But
when they saw him they gathered round and marvelled. And he at last drew
laboured breath from the depths of his chest and spoke among them with
prophetic utterance:

"Listen, bravest of all the Hellenes, if it be truly ye, whom by a
king's ruthless command Jason is leading on the ship Argo in quest of
the fleece. It is ye truly. Even yet my soul by its divination knows
everything. Thanks I render to thee, O king, son of Leto, plunged in
bitter affliction though I be. I beseech you by Zeus the god of
suppliants, the sternest foe to sinful men, and for the sake of Phoebus
and Hera herself, under whose especial care ye have come hither, help
me, save an ill-fated man from misery, and depart not uncaring and
leaving me thus as ye see. For not only has the Fury set her foot on my
eyes and I drag on to the end a weary old age; but besides my other woes
a woe hangs over me--the bitterest of all. The Harpies, swooping down
from some unseen den of destruction ever snatch the food from my mouth.
And I have no device to aid me. But it were easier, when I long for a
meal, to escape my own thoughts than them, so swiftly do they fly
through the air. But if haply they _do_ leave me a morsel of food it
reeks of decay and the stench is unendurable, nor could any mortal bear
to draw near even for a moment, no, not if his heart were wrought of
adamant. But necessity, bitter and insatiate, compels me to abide and
abiding to put food in my cursèd belly. These pests, the oracle
declares, the sons of Boreas shall restrain. And no strangers are they
that shall ward them off if indeed I am Phineus who was once renowned
among men for wealth and the gift of prophecy, and if I am the son of my
father Agenor; and, when I ruled among the Thracians, by my bridal gifts
I brought home their sister Cleopatra to be my wife."

So spake Agenor's son; and deep sorrow seized each of the heroes, and
especially the two sons of Boreas. And brushing away a tear they drew
nigh, and Zetes spake as follows, taking in his own the hand of the
grief-worn sire:

"Unhappy one, none other of men is more wretched than thou, methinks.
Why upon thee is laid the burden of so many sorrows? Hast thou with
baneful folly sinned against the gods through thy skill in prophecy? For
this are they greatly wroth with thee? Yet our spirit is dismayed within
us for all our desire to aid thee, if indeed the god has granted this
privilege to us two. For plain to discern to men of earth are the
reproofs of the immortals. And we will never check the Harpies when they
come, for all our desire, until thou hast sworn that for this we shall
not lose the favour of heaven."

Thus he spake; and towards him the aged sire opened his sightless eyes,
and lifted them up and replied with these words:

"Be silent, store not up such thoughts in thy heart, my child. Let the
son of Leto be my witness, he who of his gracious will taught me the
lore of prophecy, and be witness the ill-starred doom which possesses me
and this dark cloud upon my eyes, and the gods of the underworld--and
may their curse be upon me if I die perjured thus--no wrath from heaven
will fall upon you two for your help to me."

Then were those two eager to help him because of the oath. And quickly
the younger heroes prepared a feast for the aged man, a last prey for
the Harpies; and both stood near him, to smite with the sword those
pests when they swooped down. Scarcely had the aged man touched the food
when they forthwith, like bitter blasts or flashes of lightning,
suddenly darted from the clouds, and swooped down with a yell, fiercely
craving for food; and the heroes beheld them and shouted in the midst of
their onrush; but they at the cry devoured everything and sped away over
the sea afar; and an intolerable stench remained. And behind them the
two sons of Boreas raising their swords rushed in pursuit. For Zeus
imparted to them tireless strength; but without Zeus they could not have
followed, for the Harpies used ever to outstrip the blasts of the west
wind when they came to Phineus and when they left him. And as when, upon
the mountain-side, hounds, cunning in the chase, run in the track of
horned goats or deer, and as they strain a little behind gnash their
teeth upon the edge of their jaws in vain; so Zetes and Calais rushing
very near just grazed the Harpies in vain with their finger-tips. And
assuredly they would have torn them to pieces, despite heaven's will,
when they had overtaken them far off at the Floating Islands, had not
swift Iris seen them and leapt down from the sky from heaven above, and
checked them with these words:

"It is not lawful, O sons of Boreas, to strike with your swords the
Harpies, the hounds of mighty Zeus; but I myself will give you a pledge,
that hereafter they shall not draw near to Phineus."

With these words she took an oath by the waters of Styx, which to all
the gods is most dread and most awful, that the Harpies would never
thereafter again approach the home of Phineus, son of Agenor, for so it
was fated. And the heroes yielding to the oath, turned back their flight
to the ship. And on account of this men call them the Islands of Turning
though aforetime they called them the Floating Islands. And the Harpies
and Iris parted. They entered their den in Minoan Crete; but she sped up
to Olympus, soaring aloft on her swift wings.

Meanwhile the chiefs carefully cleansed the old man's squalid skin and
with due selection sacrificed sheep which they had borne away from the
spoil of Amycus. And when they had laid a huge supper in the hall, they
sat down and feasted, and with them feasted Phineus ravenously,
delighting his soul, as in a dream. And there, when they had taken their
fill of food and drink, they kept awake all night waiting for the sons
of Boreas. And the aged sire himself sat in the midst, near the hearth,
telling of the end of their voyage and the completion of their journey:

"Listen then. Not everything is it lawful for you to know clearly; but
whatever is heaven's will, I will not hide. I was infatuated aforetime,
when in my folly I declared the will of Zeus in order and to the end.
For he himself wishes to deliver to men the utterances of the prophetic
art incomplete, in order that they may still have some need to know the
will of heaven.

"First of all, after leaving me, ye will see the twin Cyanean rocks
where the two seas meet. No one, I ween, has won his escape between
them. For they are not firmly fixed with roots beneath, but constantly
clash against one another to one point, and above a huge mass of salt
water rises in a crest, boiling up, and loudly dashes upon the hard
beach. Wherefore now obey my counsel, if indeed with prudent mind and
reverencing the blessed gods ye pursue your way; and perish not
foolishly by a self-sought death, or rush on following the guidance of
youth. First entrust the attempt to a dove when ye have sent her forth
from the ship. And if she escapes safe with her wings between the rocks
to the open sea, then no more do ye refrain from the path, but grip your
oars well in your hands and cleave the sea's narrow strait, for the
light of safety will be not so much in prayer as in strength of hands.
Wherefore let all else go and labour boldly with might and main, but ere
then implore the gods as ye will, I forbid you not. But if she flies
onward and perishes midway, then do ye turn back; for it is better to
yield to the immortals. For ye could not escape an evil doom from the
rocks, not even if Argo were of iron.

"O hapless ones, dare not to transgress my divine warning, even though
ye think that I am thrice as much hated by the sons of heaven as I am,
and even more than thrice; dare not to sail further with your ship in
despite of the omen. And as these things will fall, so shall they fall.
But if ye shun the clashing rocks and come scatheless inside Pontus,
straightway keep the land of the Bithynians on your right and sail on,
and beware of the breakers, until ye round the swift river Rhebas and
the black beach, and reach the harbour of the Isle of Thynias. Thence ye
must turn back a little space through the sea and beach your ship on the
land of the Mariandyni lying opposite. Here is a downward path to the
abode of Hades, and the headland of Acherusia stretches aloft, and
eddying Acheron cleaves its way at the bottom, even through the
headland, and sends its waters forth from a huge ravine. And near it ye
will sail past many hills of the Paphlagonians, over whom at the first
Eneteian Pelops reigned, and of his blood they boast themselves to be.

"Now there is a headland opposite Helice the Bear, steep on all sides,
and they call it Carambis, about whose crests the blasts of the north
wind are sundered. So high in the air does it rise turned towards the
sea. And when ye have rounded it broad Aegialus stretches before you;
and at the end of broad Aegialus, at a jutting point of coast, the
waters of the river Halys pour forth with a terrible roar; and after it
Iris flowing near, but smaller in stream, rolls into the sea with white
eddies. Onward from thence the bend of a huge and towering cape reaches
out from the land, next Thermodon at its mouth flows into a quiet bay at
the Themiscyreian headland, after wandering through a broad continent.
And here is the plain of Doeas, and near are the three cities of the
Amazons, and after them the Chalybes, most wretched of men, possess a
soil rugged and unyielding--sons of toil, they busy themselves with
working iron. And near them dwell the Tibareni, rich in sheep, beyond
the Genetaean headland of Zeus, lord of hospitality. And bordering on it
the Mossynoeci next in order inhabit the well-wooded mainland and the
parts beneath the mountains, who have built in towers made from trees
their wooden homes and well-fitted chambers, which they call Mossynes,
and the people themselves take their name from them. After passing them
ye must beach your ship upon a smooth island, when ye have driven away
with all manner of skill the ravening birds, which in countless numbers
haunt the desert island. In it the Queens of the Amazons, Otrere and
Antiope, built a stone temple of Ares what time they went forth to war.
Now here an unspeakable help will come to you from the bitter sea;
wherefore with kindly intent I bid you stay. But what need is there that
I should sin yet again declaring everything to the end by my prophetic
art? And beyond the island and opposite mainland dwell the Philyres: and
above the Philyres are the Macrones, and after them the vast tribes of
the Becheiri. And next in order to them dwell the Sapeires, and the
Byzeres have the lands adjoining to them, and beyond them at last live
the warlike Colchians themselves. But speed on in your ship, till ye
touch the inmost bourne of the sea. And here at the Cytaean mainland and
from the Amarantine mountains far away and the Circaean plain eddying
Phasis rolls his broad stream to the sea. Guide your ship to the mouth
of that river and ye shall behold the towers of Cytaean Aeetes and the
shady grove of Ares, where a dragon, a monster terrible to behold, ever
glares around, keeping watch over the fleece that is spread upon the top
of an oak; neither by day nor by night does sweet sleep subdue his
restless eyes."

Thus he spake, and straightway fear seized them as they heard. And for a
long while they were struck with silence; till at last the hero, son of
Aeson, spake, sore dismayed at their evil plight:

"O aged sire, now hast thou come to the end of the toils of our
sea-journeying and hast told us the token, trusting to which we shall
make our way to Pontus through the hateful rocks; but whether, when we
have escaped them, we shall have a return back again to Hellas, this too
would we gladly learn from thee. What shall I do, how shall I go over
again such a long path through the sea, unskilled as I am, with
unskilled comrades? And Colchian Aea lies at the edge of Pontus and of
the world."

Thus he spake, and him the aged sire addressed in reply: "O son, when
once thou hast escaped through the deadly rocks, fear not; for a deity
will be the guide from Aea by another track; and to Aea there will be
guides enough. But, my friends, take thought of the artful aid of the
Cyprian goddess. For on her depends the glorious issue of your venture.
And further than this ask me not."

Thus spake Agenor's son, and close at hand the twin sons of Thracian
Boreas came darting from the sky and set their swift feet upon the
threshold; and the heroes rose up from their seats when they saw them
present. And Zetes, still drawing hard breath after his toil, spake
among the eager listeners, telling them how far they had driven the
Harpies and how Iris prevented their slaying them, and how the goddess
of her grace gave them pledges, and how those others in fear plunged
into the vast cave of the Dictaean cliff. Then in the mansion all their
comrades were joyful at the tidings and so was Phineus himself. And
quickly Aeson's son, with good will exceeding, addressed him:

"Assuredly there was then, Phineus, some god who cared for thy bitter
woe, and brought us hither from afar, that the sons of Boreas might aid
thee; and if too he should bring sight to thine eyes, verily I should
rejoice, methinks, as much as if I were on my homeward way."

Thus he spake, but Phineus replied to him with downcast look: "Son of
Aeson, that is past recall, nor is there any remedy hereafter, for
blasted are my sightless eyes. But instead of that, may the god grant me
death at once, and after death I shall take my share in perfect bliss."

Then they two returned answering speech, each to other, and soon in the
midst of their converse early dawn appeared; and round Phineus were
gathered the neighbours who used to come thither aforetime day by day
and constantly bring a portion of their food. To all alike, however poor
he was that came, the aged man gave his oracles with good will, and
freed many from their woes by his prophetic art; wherefore they visited
and tended him. And with them came Paraebius, who was dearest to him,
and gladly did he perceive these strangers in the house. For long ere
now the seer himself had said that a band of chieftains, faring from
Hellas to the city of Aeetes, would make fast their hawsers to the
Thynian land, and by Zeus' will would check the approach of the Harpies.
The rest the old man pleased with words of wisdom and let them go;
Paraebius only he bade remain there with the chiefs; and straightway he
sent him and bade him bring back the choicest of his sheep. And when he
had left the hall Phineus spake gently amid the throng of oarsmen:

"O my friends, not all men are arrogant, it seems, nor unmindful of
benefits. Even as this man, loyal as he is, came hither to learn his
fate. For when he laboured the most and toiled the most, then the needs
of life, ever growing more and more, would waste him, and day after day
ever dawned more wretched, nor was there any respite to his toil. But he
was paying the sad penalty of his father's sin. For he when alone on the
mountains, felling trees, once slighted the prayers of a Hamadryad, who
wept and sought to soften him with plaintive words, not to cut down the
stump of an oak tree coeval with herself, wherein for a long time she
had lived continually; but he in the arrogance of youth recklessly cut
it down. So to him the nymph thereafter made her death a curse, to him
and to his children. I indeed knew of the sin when he came; and I bid
him build an altar to the Thynian nymph, and offer on it an atoning
sacrifice, with prayer to escape his father's fate. Here, ever since he
escaped the god-sent doom, never has he forgotten or neglected me; but
sorely and against his will do I send him from my doors, so eager is he
to remain with me in my affliction."

Thus spake Agenor's son; and his friend straightway came near leading
two sheep from the flock. And up rose Jason and up rose the sons of
Boreas at the bidding of the aged sire. And quickly they called upon
Apollo, lord of prophecy, and offered sacrifice upon the hearth as the
day was just sinking. And the younger comrades made ready a feast to
their hearts' desire. Thereupon having well feasted they turned
themselves to rest, some near the ship's hawsers, others in groups
throughout the mansion. And at dawn the Etesian winds blew strongly,
which by the command of Zeus blow over every land equally.

Cyrene, the tale goes, once tended sheep along the marsh-meadow of
Peneus among men of old time; for dear to her were maidenhood and a
couch unstained. But, as she guarded her flock by the river, Apollo
carried her off far from Haemonia and placed her among the nymphs of the
land, who dwelt in Libya near the Myrtosian height. And here to Phoebus
she bore Aristaeus whom the Haemonians, rich in corn-land, call "Hunter"
and "Shepherd." Her, of his love, the god made a nymph there, of long
life and a huntress, and his son he brought while still an infant to be
nurtured in the cave of Cheiron. And to him when he grew to manhood the
Muses gave a bride, and taught him the arts of healing and of prophecy;
and they made him the keeper of their sheep, of all that grazed on the
Athamantian plain of Phthia and round steep Othrys and the sacred stream
of the river Apidanus. But when from heaven Sirius scorched the Minoan
Isles, and for long there was no respite for the inhabitants, then by
the injunction of the Far-Darter they summoned Aristaeus to ward off the
pestilence. And by his father's command he left Phthia and made his home
in Ceos, and gathered together the Parrhasian people who are of the
lineage of Lycaon, and he built a great altar to Zeus Icmaeus, and duly
offered sacrifices upon the mountains to that star Sirius, and to Zeus
son of Cronos himself. And on this account it is that Etesian winds from
Zeus cool the land for forty days, and in Ceos even now the priests
offer sacrifices before the rising of the Dog-star.

So the tale is told, but the chieftains stayed there by constraint, and
every day the Thynians, doing pleasure to Phineus, sent them gifts
beyond measure. And afterwards they raised an altar to the blessed
twelve on the sea-beach opposite and laid offerings thereon and then
entered their swift ship to row, nor did they forget to bear with them a
trembling dove; but Euphemus seized her and brought her all quivering
with fear, and they loosed the twin hawsers from the land.

Nor did they start unmarked by Athena, but straightway swiftly she set
her feet on a light cloud, which would waft her on, mighty though she
was, and she swept on to the sea with friendly thoughts to the oarsmen.
And as when one roveth far from his native land, as we men often wander
with enduring heart, nor is any land too distant but all ways are clear
to his view, and he sees in mind his own home, and at once the way over
sea and land seems plain, and swiftly thinking, now this way, now that,
he strains with eager eyes; so swiftly the daughter of Zeus darted down
and set her foot on the cheerless shore of Thynia.

Now when they reached the narrow strait of the winding passage, hemmed
in on both sides by rugged cliffs, while an eddying current from below
was washing against the ship as she moved on, they went forward sorely
in dread; and now the thud of the crashing rocks ceaselessly struck
their ears, and the sea-washed shores resounded, and then Euphemus
grasped the dove in his hand and started to mount the prow; and they, at
the bidding of Tiphys, son of Hagnias, rowed with good will to drive
Argo between the rocks, trusting to their strength. And as they rounded
a bend they saw the rocks opening for the last time of all. Their spirit
melted within them; and Euphemus sent forth the dove to dart forward in
flight; and they all together raised their heads to look; but she flew
between them, and the rocks again rushed together and crashed as they
met face to face. And the foam leapt up in a mass like a cloud; awful
was the thunder of the sea; and all round them the mighty welkin roared.

The hollow caves beneath the rugged cliffs rumbled as the sea came
surging in; and the white foam of the dashing wave spurted high above
the cliff. Next the current whirled the ship round. And the rocks shore
away the end of the dove's tail-feathers; but away she flew unscathed.
And the rowers gave a loud cry; and Tiphys himself called to them to row
with might and main. For the rocks were again parting asunder. But as
they rowed they trembled, until the tide returning drove them back
within the rocks. Then most awful fear seized upon all; for over their
head was destruction without escape. And now to right and left broad
Pontus was seen, when suddenly a huge wave rose up before them, arched,
like a steep rock; and at the sight they bowed with bended heads. For it
seemed about to leap down upon the ship's whole length and to overwhelm
them. But Tiphys was quick to ease the ship as she laboured with the
oars; and in all its mass the wave rolled away beneath the keel, and at
the stern it raised Argo herself and drew her far away from the rocks;
and high in air was she borne. But Euphemus strode among all his
comrades and cried to them to bend to their oars with all their might;
and they with a shout smote the water. And as far as the ship yielded to
the rowers, twice as far did she leap back, and the oars were bent like
curved bows as the heroes used their strength.

Then a vaulted billow rushed upon them, and the ship like a cylinder ran
on the furious wave plunging through the hollow sea. And the eddying
current held her between the clashing rocks; and on each side they shook
and thundered; and the ship's timbers were held fast. Then Athena with
her left hand thrust back one mighty rock and with her right pushed the
ship through; and she, like a winged arrow, sped through the air.
Nevertheless the rocks, ceaselessly clashing, shore off as she passed
the extreme end of the stern-ornament. But Athena soared up to Olympus,
when they had escaped unscathed. And the rocks in one spot at that
moment were rooted fast for ever to each other, which thing had been
destined by the blessed gods, when a man in his ship should have passed
between them alive. And the heroes breathed again after their chilling
fear, beholding at the same time the sky and the expanse of sea
spreading far and wide. For they deemed that they were saved from Hades;
and Tiphys first of all began to speak:

"It is my hope that we have safely escaped this peril--we, and the ship;
and none other is the cause so much as Athena, who breathed into Argo
divine strength when Argus knitted her together with bolts; and she may
not be caught. Son of Aeson, no longer fear thou so much the best of thy
king, since a god hath granted us escape between the rocks; for Phineus,
Agenor's son, said that our toils hereafter would be lightly

He spake, and at once he sped the ship onward through the midst of the
sea past the Bithynian coast. But Jason with gentle words addressed him
in reply: "Tiphys, why dost thou comfort thus my grieving heart? I have
erred and am distraught in wretched and helpless ruin. For I ought, when
Pelias gave the command, to have straightway refused this quest to his
face, yea, though I were doomed to die pitilessly, torn limb from limb,
but now I am wrapped in excessive fear and cares unbearable, dreading to
sail through the chilling paths of the sea, and dreading when we shall
set foot on the mainland. For on every side are unkindly men. And ever
when day is done I pass a night of groans from the time when ye first
gathered together for my sake, while I take thought for all things; but
thou talkest at thine ease, caring only for thine own life; while for
myself I am dismayed not a whit; but I fear for this man and for that
equally, and for thee, and for my other comrades, if I shall not bring
you back safe to the land of Hellas."

Thus he spake, making trial of the chiefs; but they shouted loud with
cheerful words. And his heart was warmed within him at their cry and
again he spake outright among them: "My friends, in your valour my
courage is quickened. Wherefore now, even though I should take my way
through the gulfs of Hades, no more shall I let fear seize upon me,
since ye are steadfast amid cruel terrors. But now that we have sailed
out from the striking rocks, I trow that never hereafter will there be
another such fearful thing, if indeed we go on our way following the
counsel of Phineus."

Thus he spake, and straightway they ceased from such words and gave
unwearying labour to the oar; and quickly they passed by the swiftly
flowing river Rhebas and the peak of Colone, and soon thereafter the
black headland, and near it the mouth of the river Phyllis, where
aforetime Dipsacus received in his home the son of Athamas, when with
his ram he was flying from the city of Orchomenus; and Dipsacus was the
son of a meadow-nymph, nor was insolence his delight, but contented by
his father's stream he dwelt with his mother, pasturing his flocks by
the shore. And quickly they sighted and sailed past his shrine and the
broad banks of the river and the plain, and deep-flowing Calpe, and all
the windless night and the day they bent to their tireless oars. And
even as ploughing oxen toil as they cleave the moist earth, and sweat
streams in abundance from flank and neck; and from beneath the yoke
their eyes roll askance, while the breath ever rushes from their mouths
in hot gasps; and all day long they toil, planting their hoofs deep in
the ground; like them the heroes kept dragging their oars through the

Now when divine light has not yet come nor is it utter darkness, but a
faint glimmer has spread over the night, the time when men wake and call
it twilight, at that hour they ran into the harbour of the desert island
Thynias and, spent by weary toil, mounted the shore. And to them the son
of Leto, as he passed from Lycia far away to the countless folk of the
Hyperboreans, appeared; and about his cheeks on both sides his golden
locks flowed in clusters as he moved; in his left hand he held a silver
bow, and on his back was slung a quiver hanging from his shoulders; and
beneath his feet all the island quaked, and the waves surged high on the
beach. Helpless amazement seized them as they looked; and no one dared
to gaze face to face into the fair eyes of the god. And they stood with
heads bowed to the ground; but he, far off, passed on to the sea through
the air; and at length Orpheus spake as follows, addressing the chiefs:

"Come, let us call this island the sacred isle of Apollo of the Dawn
since he has appeared to all, passing by at dawn; and we will offer such
sacrifices as we can, building an altar on the shore; and if hereafter
he shall grant us a safe return to the Haemonian land, then will we lay
on his altar the thighs of horned goats. And now I bid you propitiate
him with the steam of sacrifice and libations. Be gracious, O king, be
gracious in thy appearing."

Thus he spake, and they straightway built up an altar with shingle; and
over the island they wandered, seeking if haply they could get a glimpse
of a fawn or a wild goat, that often seek their pasture in the deep
wood. And for them Leto's son provided a quarry; and with pious rites
they wrapped in fat the thigh bones of them all and burnt them on the
sacred altar, celebrating Apollo, Lord of Dawn. And round the burning
sacrifice they set up a broad dancing-ring, singing, "All hail, fair god
of healing, Phoebus, all hail," and with them Oeagrus' goodly son began
a clear lay on his Bistonian lyre; how once beneath the rocky ridge of
Parnassus he slew with his bow the monster Delphyne, he, still young and
beardless, still rejoicing in his long tresses. Mayst thou be gracious!
Ever, O king, be thy locks unshorn, ever unravaged; for so is it right.
And none but Leto, daughter of Coeus, strokes them with her dear hands.
And often the Corycian nymphs, daughters of Pleistus, took up the
cheering strain crying "Healer"; hence arose this lovely refrain of the
hymn to Phoebus.

Now when they had celebrated him with dance and song they took an oath
with holy libations, that they would ever help each other with concord
of heart, touching the sacrifice as they swore; and even now there
stands there a temple to gracious Concord, which the heroes themselves
reared, paying honour at that time to the glorious goddess.

Now when the third morning came, with a fresh west wind they left the
lofty island. Next, on the opposite side they saw and passed the mouth
of the river Sangarius and the fertile land of the Mariandyni, and the
stream of Lycus and the Anthemoeisian lake; and beneath the breeze the
ropes and all the tackling quivered as they sped onward. During the
night the wind ceased and at dawn they gladly reached the haven of the
Acherusian headland. It rises aloft with steep cliffs, looking towards
the Bithynian sea; and beneath it smooth rocks, ever washed by the sea,
stand rooted firm; and round them the wave rolls and thunders loud, but
above, wide-spreading plane trees grow on the topmost point. And from it
towards the land a hollow glen slopes gradually away, where there is a
cave of Hades overarched by wood and rocks. From here an icy breath,
unceasingly issuing from the chill recess, ever forms a glistening rime
which melts again beneath the midday sun. And never does silence hold
that grim headland, but there is a continual murmur from the sounding
sea and the leaves that quiver in the winds from the cave. And here is
the outfall of the river Acheron which bursts its way through the
headland and falls into the Eastern sea, and a hollow ravine brings it
down from above. In after times the Nisaean Megarians named it
Soönautes[1] when they were about to settle in the land of the
Mariandyni. For indeed the river saved them with their ships when they
were caught in a violent tempest. By this way the heroes took the ship
through[2] the Acherusian headland and came to land over against it as
the wind had just ceased.

[Footnote 1: i.e. Saviour of sailors.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. through the ravine that divides the headland.]

Not long had they come unmarked by Lycus, the lord of that land, and the
Mariandyni--they, the slayers of Amycus, according to the report which
the people heard before; but for that very deed they even made a league
with the heroes. And Polydeuces himself they welcomed as a god, flocking
from every side, since for a long time had they been warring against the
arrogant Bebrycians. And so they went up all together into the city, and
all that day with friendly feelings made ready a feast within the palace
of Lycus and gladdened their souls with converse. Aeson's son told him
the lineage and name of each of his comrades and the behests of Pelias,
and how they were welcomed by the Lemnian women, and all that they did
at Dolionian Cyzicus; and how they reached the Mysian land and Cius,
where, sore against their will, they left behind the hero Heracles, and
he told the saying of Glaucus, and how they slew the Bebrycians and
Amycus, and he told of the prophecies and affliction of Phineus, and how
they escaped the Cyanean rocks, and how they met with Leto's son at the
island. And as he told all, Lycus was charmed in soul with listening;
and he grieved for Heracles left behind, and spake as follows among them

"O friends, what a man he was from whose help ye have fallen away, as ye
cleave your long path to Aeetes; for well do I know that I saw him here
in the halls of Dascylus my father, when he came hither on foot through
the land of Asia bringing the girdle of warlike Hippolyte; and me he
found with the down just growing on my cheeks. And here, when my brother
Priolas was slain by the Mysians--my brother, whom ever since the people
lament with most piteous dirges--he entered the lists with Titias in
boxing and slew him, mighty Titias, who surpassed all the youths in
beauty and strength; and he dashed his teeth to the ground. Together
with the Mysians he subdued beneath my father's sway the Phrygians also,
who inhabit the lands next to us, and he made his own the tribes of the
Bithynians and their land, as far as the mouth of Rhebas and the peak of
Colone; and besides them the Paphlagonians of Pelops yielded just as
they were, even all those round whom the dark water of Billaeus breaks.
But now the Bebrycians and the insolence of Amycus have robbed me, since
Heracles dwells far away, for they have long been cutting off huge
pieces of my land until they have set their bounds at the meadows of
deep-flowing Hypius. Nevertheless, by your hands have they paid the
penalty; and it was not without the will of heaven, I trow, that he
brought war on the Bebrycians this day--he, the son of Tyndareus, when
he slew that champion. Wherefore whatever requital I am now able to pay,
gladly will I pay it, for that is the rule for weaker men when the
stronger begin to help them. So with you all, and in your company, I bid
Dascylus my son follow; and if he goes, you will find all men friendly
that ye meet on your way through the sea even to the mouth of the river
Thermodon. And besides that, to the sons of Tyndareus will I raise a
lofty temple on the Acherusian height, which all sailors shall mark far
across the sea and shall reverence; and hereafter for them will I set
apart outside the city, as for gods, some fertile fields of the
well-tilled plain."

Thus all day long they revelled at the banquet. But at dawn they hied
down to the ship in haste; and with them went Lycus himself, when he had
given them countless gifts to bear away; and with them he sent forth his
son from his home.

And here his destined fate smote Idmon, son of Abas, skilled in
soothsaying; but not at all did his soothsaying save him, for necessity
drew him on to death. For in the mead of the reedy river there lay,
cooling his flanks and huge belly in the mud, a white-tusked boar, a
deadly monster, whom even the nymphs of the marsh dreaded, and no man
knew it; but all alone he was feeding in the wide fen. But the son of
Abas was passing along the raised banks of the muddy river, and the boar
from some unseen lair leapt out of the reed-bed, and charging gashed his
thigh and severed in twain the sinews and the bone. And with a sharp cry
the hero fell to the ground; and as he was struck his comrades flocked
together with answering cry. And quickly Peleus with his hunting spear
aimed at the murderous boar as he fled back into the fen; and again he
turned and charged; but Idas wounded him, and with a roar he fell
impaled upon the sharp spear. And the boar they left on the ground just
as he had fallen there; but Idmon, now at the last gasp, his comrades
bore to the ship in sorrow of heart, and he died in his comrades' arms.

And here they stayed from taking thought for their voyaging and abode in
grief for the burial of their dead friend. And for three whole days they
lamented; and on the next they buried him with full honours, and the
people and King Lycus himself took part in the funeral rites; and, as is
the due of the departed, they slaughtered countless sheep at his tomb.
And so a barrow to this hero was raised in that land, and there stands a
token for men of later days to see, the trunk of a wild olive tree, such
as ships are built of; and it flourishes with its green leaves a little
below the Acherusian headland. And if at the bidding of the Muses I must
tell this tale outright, Phoebus strictly commanded the Boeotians and
Nisaeans to worship him as guardian of their city, and to build their
city round the trunk of the ancient wild olive; but they, instead of the
god-fearing Aeolid Idmon, at this day honour Agamestor.

Who was the next that died? For then a second time the heroes heaped up
a barrow for a comrade dead. For still are to be seen two monuments of
those heroes. The tale goes that Tiphys son of Hagnias died; nor was it
his destiny thereafter to sail any further. But him there on the spot a
short sickness laid to rest far from his native land, when the company
had paid due honours to the dead son of Abas. And at the cruel woe they
were seized with unbearable grief. For when with due honours they had
buried him also hard by the seer, they cast themselves down in
helplessness on the sea-shore silently, closely wrapped up, and took no
thought for meat or drink; and their spirit drooped in grief, for all
hope of return was gone. And in their sorrow they would have stayed from
going further had not Hera kindled exceeding courage in Ancaeus, whom
near the waters of Imbrasus Astypalaea bore to Poseidon; for especially
was he skilled in steering and eagerly did he address Peleus:

"Son of Aeacus, is it well for us to give up our toils and linger on in
a strange land? Not so much for my prowess in war did Jason take me with
him in quest of the fleece, far from Parthenia, as for my knowledge of
ships. Wherefore, I pray, let there be no fear for the ship. And so
there are here other men of skill, of whom none will harm our voyaging,
whomsoever we set at the helm. But quickly tell forth all this and
boldly urge them to call to mind their task."

Thus he spake; and Peleus' soul was stirred with gladness, and
straightway he spake in the midst of all: "My friends, why do we thus
cherish a bootless grief like this? For those two have perished by the
fate they have met with; but among our host are steersmen yet, and many
a one. Wherefore let us not delay our attempt, but rouse yourselves to
the work and cast away your griefs."

And him in reply Aeson's son addressed with helpless words: "Son of
Aeacus, where are these steersmen of thine? For those whom we once
deemed to be men of skill, they even more than I are bowed with vexation
of heart. Wherefore I forebode an evil doom for us even as for the dead,
if it shall be our lot neither to reach the city of fell Aeetes, nor
ever again to pass beyond the rocks to the land of Hellas, but a
wretched fate will enshroud us here ingloriously till we grow old for

Thus he spake, but Ancaeus quickly undertook to guide the swift ship;
for he was stirred by the impulse of the goddess. And after him Erginus
and Nauplius and Euphemus started up, eager to steer. But the others
held them back, and many of his comrades granted it to Ancaeus.

So on the twelfth day they went aboard at dawn, for a strong breeze of
westerly wind was blowing. And quickly with the oars they passed out
through the river Acheron and, trusting to the wind, shook out their
sails, and with canvas spread far and wide they were cleaving their
passage through the waves in fair weather. And soon they passed the
outfall of the river Callichorus, where, as the tale goes, the Nysean
son of Zeus, when he had left the tribes of the Indians and came to
dwell at Thebes, held revels and arrayed dances in front of a cave,
wherein he passed unsmiling sacred nights, from which time the
neighbours call the river by the name of Callichorus[1] and the cave

[Footnote 1: i.e. river of fair dances.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. the bedchamber.]

Next they beheld the barrow of Sthenelus, Actor's son, who on his way
back from the valorous war against the Amazons--for he had been the
comrade of Heracles--was struck by an arrow and died there upon the
sea-beach. And for a time they went no further, for Persephone herself
sent forth the spirit of Actor's son which craved with many tears to
behold men like himself, even for a moment. And mounting on the edge of
the barrow he gazed upon the ship, such as he was when he went to war;
and round his head a fair helm with four peaks gleamed with its
blood-red crest. And again he entered the vast gloom; and they looked
and marvelled; and Mopsus, son of Ampycus, with word of prophecy urged
them to land and propitiate him with libations. Quickly they drew in
sail and threw out hawsers, and on the strand paid honour to the tomb of
Sthenelus, and poured out drink offerings to him and sacrificed sheep as
victims. And besides the drink offerings they built an altar to Apollo,
saviour of ships, and burnt thigh bones; and Orpheus dedicated his lyre;
whence the place has the name of Lyra.

And straightway they went aboard as the wind blew strong; and they drew
the sail down, and made it taut to both sheets; then Argo was borne over
the sea swiftly, even as a hawk soaring high through the air commits to
the breeze its outspread wings and is borne on swiftly, nor swerves in
its flight, poising in the clear sky with quiet pinions. And lo, they
passed by the stream of Parthenius as it flows into the sea, a most
gentle river, where the maid, daughter of Leto, when she mounts to
heaven after the chase, cools her limbs in its much-desired waters. Then
they sped onward in the night without ceasing, and passed Sesamus and
lofty Erythini, Crobialus, Cromna and woody Cytorus. Next they swept
round Carambis at the rising of the sun, and plied the oars past long
Aegialus, all day and on through the night.

And straightway they landed on the Assyrian shore where Zeus himself
gave a home to Sinope, daughter of Asopus, and granted her virginity,
beguiled by his own promises. For he longed for her love, and he
promised to grant her whatever her heart's desire might be. And she in
her craftiness asked of him virginity. And in like manner she deceived
Apollo too who longed to wed her, and besides them the river Halys, and
no man ever subdued her in love's embrace. And there the sons of noble
Deimachus of Tricca were still dwelling, Deileon, Autolycus and
Phlogius, since the day when they wandered far away from Heracles; and
they, when they marked the array of chieftains, went to meet them and
declared in truth who they were; and they wished to remain there no
longer, but as soon as Argestes[1] blew went on ship-board. And so with
them, borne along by the swift breeze, the heroes left behind the river
Halys, and left behind Iris that flows hard by, and the delta-land of
Assyria; and on the same day they rounded the distant headland of the
Amazons that guards their harbour.

[Footnote 1: The north-west wind.]

Here once when Melanippe, daughter of Ares, had gone forth, the hero
Heracles caught her by ambuscade and Hippolyte gave him her glistening
girdle as her sister's ransom, and he sent away his captive unharmed. In
the bay of this headland, at the outfall of Thermodon, they ran ashore,
for the sea was rough for their voyage. No river is like this, and none
sends forth from itself such mighty streams over the land. If a man
should count every one he would lack but four of a hundred, but the real
spring is only one. This flows down to the plain from lofty mountains,
which, men say, are called the Amazonian mountains. Thence it spreads
inland over a hilly country straight forward; wherefrom its streams go
winding on, and they roll on, this way and that ever more, wherever best
they can reach the lower ground, one at a distance and another near at
hand; and many streams are swallowed up in the sand and are without a
name; but, mingled with a few, the main stream openly bursts with its
arching crest of foam into the Inhospitable Pontus. And they would have
tarried there and have closed in battle with the Amazons, and would have
fought not without bloodshed--for the Amazons were not gentle foes and
regarded not justice, those dwellers on the Doeantian plain; but
grievous insolence and the works of Ares were all their care; for by
race they were the daughters of Ares and the nymph Harmonia, who bare to
Ares war-loving maids, wedded to him in the glens of the Acmonian
wood--had not the breezes of Argestes come again from Zeus; and with the
wind they left the rounded beach, where the Themiscyreian Amazons were
arming for war. For they dwelt not gathered together in one city, but
scattered over the land, parted into three tribes. In one part dwelt the
Themiscyreians, over whom at that time Hippolyte reigned, in another the
Lycastians, and in another the dart-throwing Chadesians. And the next
day they sped on and at nightfall they reached the land of the Chalybes.

That folk have no care for ploughing with oxen or for any planting of
honey-sweet fruit; nor yet do they pasture flocks in the dewy meadow.
But they cleave the hard iron-bearing land and exchange their wages for
daily sustenance; never does the morn rise for them without toil, but
amid bleak sooty flames and smoke they endure heavy labour.

And straightway thereafter they rounded the headland of Genetaean Zeus
and sped safely past the land of the Tibareni. Here when wives bring
forth children to their husbands, the men lie in bed and groan with
their heads close bound; but the women tend them with food, and prepare
child-birth baths for them.

Next they reached the sacred mount and the land where the Mossynoeci
dwell amid high mountains in wooden huts,[1] from which that people take
their name. And strange are their customs and laws. Whatever it is right
to do openly before the people or in the market place, all this they do
in their homes, but whatever acts we perform at home, these they perform
out of doors in the midst of the streets, without blame. And among them
is no reverence for the marriage-bed, but, like swine that feed in
herds, no whit abashed in others' presence, on the earth they lie with
the women. Their king sits in the loftiest hut and dispenses upright
judgments to the multitude, poor wretch! For if haply he err at all in
his decrees, for that day they keep him shut up in starvation.

[Footnote 1: called "Mossynes."]

They passed them by and cleft their way with oars over against the
island of Ares all day long; for at dusk the light breeze left them. At
last they spied above them, hurtling through the air, one of the birds
of Ares which haunt that isle. It shook its wings down over the ship as
she sped on and sent against her a keen feather, and it fell on the left
shoulder of goodly Oileus, and he dropped his oar from his hands at the
sudden blow, and his comrades marvelled at the sight of the winged bolt.
And Eribotes from his seat hard by drew out the feather, and bound up
the wound when he had loosed the strap hanging from his own
sword-sheath; and besides the first, another bird appeared swooping
down; but the hero Clytius, son of Eurytus--for he bent his curved bow,
and sped a swift arrow against the bird--struck it, and it whirled round
and fell close to the ship. And to them spake Amphidamas, son of Aleus:

"The island of Ares is near us; you know it yourselves now that ye have
seen these birds. But little will arrows avail us, I trow, for landing.
But let us contrive some other device to help us, if ye intend to land,
bearing in mind the injunction of Phineus. For not even could Heracles,
when he came to Arcadia, drive away with bow and arrow the birds that
swam on the Stymphalian lake. I saw it myself. But he shook in his hand
a rattle of bronze and made a loud clatter as he stood upon a lofty
peak; and the birds fled far off, screeching in bewildered fear.
Wherefore now too let us contrive some such device, and I myself will
speak, having pondered the matter beforehand. Set on your heads your
helmets of lofty crest, then half row by turns, and half fence the ship
about with polished spears and shields. Then all together raise a mighty
shout so that the birds may be scared by the unwonted din, the nodding
crests, and the uplifted spears on high. And if we reach the island
itself, then make mighty noise with the clashing of shields."

Thus he spake, and the helpful device pleased all. And on their heads
they placed helmets of bronze, gleaming terribly, and the blood-red
crests were tossing. And half of them rowed in turn, and the rest
covered the ship with spears and shields. And as when a man roofs over a
house with tiles, to be an ornament of his home and a defence against
rain, and one tile fits firmly into another, each after each; so they
roofed over the ship with their shields, locking them together. And as a
din arises from a warrior-host of men sweeping on, when lines of battle
meet, such a shout rose upward from the ship into the air. Now they saw
none of the birds yet, but when they touched the island and clashed upon
their shields, then the birds in countless numbers rose in flight hither
and thither. And as when the son of Cronos sends from the clouds a dense
hail storm on city and houses, and the people who dwell beneath hear the
din above the roof and sit quietly, since the stormy season has not come
upon them unawares, but they have first made strong their roofs; so the
birds sent against the heroes a thick shower of feather-shafts as they
darted over the sea to the mountains of the land opposite.

What then was the purpose of Phineus in bidding the divine band of
heroes land there? Or what kind of help was about to meet their desire?

The sons of Phrixus were faring towards the city of Orchomenus from Aea,
coming from Cytaean Aeetes, on board a Colchian ship, to win the
boundless wealth of their father; for he, when dying, had enjoined this
journey upon them. And lo, on that day they were very near that island.
But Zeus had impelled the north wind's might to blow, marking by rain
the moist path of Arcturus; and all day long he was stirring the leaves
upon the mountains, breathing gently upon the topmost sprays; but at
night he rushed upon the sea with monstrous force, and with his
shrieking blasts uplifted the surge; and a dark mist covered the
heavens, nor did the bright stars anywhere appear from among the clouds,
but a murky gloom brooded all around. And so the sons of Phrixus,
drenched and trembling in fear of a horrible doom, were borne along by
the waves helplessly. And the force of the wind had snatched away their
sails and shattered in twain the hull, tossed as it was by the breakers.
And hereupon by heaven's prompting those four clutched a huge beam, one
of many that were scattered about, held together by sharp bolts, when
the ship broke to pieces. And on to the island the waves and the blasts
of wind bore the men in their distress, within a little of death. And
straightway a mighty rain burst forth, and rained upon the sea and the
island, and all the country opposite the island, where the arrogant
Mossynoeci dwelt. And the sweep of the waves hurled the sons of Phrixus,
together with their massy beam, upon the beach of the island, in the
murky night; and the floods of rain from Zeus ceased at sunrise, and
soon the two bands drew near and met each other, and Argus spoke first:

"We beseech you, by Zeus the Beholder, whoever ye are, to be kindly and
to help us in our need. For fierce tempests, falling on the sea, have
shattered all the timbers of the crazy ship in which we were cleaving
our path on business bent. Wherefore we entreat you, if haply ye will
listen, to grant us just a covering for our bodies, and to pity and
succour men in misfortune, your equals in age. Oh, reverence suppliants
and strangers for Zeus' sake, the god of strangers and suppliants. To
Zeus belong both suppliants and strangers; and his eye, methinks,
beholdeth even us."

And in reply the son of Aeson prudently questioned him, deeming that the
prophecies of Phineus were being fulfilled: "All these things will we
straightway grant you with right good will. But come tell me truly in
what country ye dwell and what business bids you sail across the sea,
and tell me your own glorious names and lineage."

And him Argus, helpless in his evil plight, addressed: "That one Phrixus
an Aeolid reached Aea from Hellas you yourselves have clearly heard ere
this, I trow; Phrixus, who came to the city of Aeetes, bestriding a ram,
which Hermes had made all gold; and the fleece ye may see even now. The
ram, at its own prompting, he then sacrificed to Zeus, son of Cronos,
above all, the god of fugitives. And him did Aeetes receive in his
palace, and with gladness of heart gave him his daughter Chalciope in
marriage without gifts of wooing.[1] From those two are we sprung. But
Phrixus died at last, an aged man, in the home of Aeetes; and we, giving
heed to our father's behests, are journeying to Orchomenus to take the
possessions of Athamas. And if thou dost desire to learn our names, this
is Cytissorus, this Phrontis, and this Melas, and me ye may call Argus."

[Footnote 1: i.e. without exacting gifts from the bridegroom. So in the
Iliad (ix. 146) Agamemnon offers Achilles any of his three daughters
[Greek: anhaednos]]

Thus he spake, and the chieftains rejoiced at the meeting, and tended
them, much marvelling. And Jason again in turn replied, as was fitting,
with these words:

"Surely ye are our kinsmen on my father's side, and ye pray that with
kindly hearts we succour your evil plight. For Cretheus and Athamas were
brothers. I am the grandson of Cretheus, and with these comrades here I
am journeying from that same Hellas to the city of Aeetes. But of these
things we will converse hereafter. And do ye first put clothing upon
you. By heaven's devising, I ween, have ye come to my hands in your sore

He spake, and out of the ship gave them raiment to put on. Then all
together they went to the temple of Ares to offer sacrifice of sheep;
and in haste they stood round the altar, which was outside the roofless
temple, an altar built of pebbles; within a black stone stood fixed, a
sacred thing, to which of yore the Amazons all used to pray. Nor was it
lawful for them, when they came from the opposite coast, to burn on this
altar offerings of sheep and oxen, but they used to slay horses which
they kept in great herds. Now when they had sacrificed and eaten the
feast prepared, then Aeson's son spake among them and thus began:

"Zeus' self, I ween, beholds everything; nor do we men escape his eye,
we that be god-fearing and just, for as he rescued your father from the
hands of a murderous step-dame and gave him measureless wealth besides;
even so hath he saved you harmless from the baleful storm. And on board
this ship ye may sail hither and thither, where ye will, whether to Aea
or to the wealthy city of divine Orchomenus. For our ship Athena built
and with axe of bronze cut her timbers near the crest of Pelion, and
with the goddess wrought Argus. But yours the fierce surge hath
shattered, before ye came nigh to the rocks which all day long clash
together in the straits of the sea. But come, be yourselves our helpers,
for we are eager to bring to Hellas the golden fleece, and guide us on
our voyage, for I go to atone for the intended sacrifice of Phrixus, the
cause of Zeus' wrath against the sons of Aeolus."

He spake with soothing words; but horror seized them when they heard.
For they deemed that they would not find Aeetes friendly if they desired
to take away the ram's fleece. And Argus spake as follows, vexed that
they should busy themselves with such a quest:

"My friends, our strength, so far as it avails, shall never cease to
help you, not one whit, when need shall come. But Aeetes is terribly
armed with deadly ruthlessness; wherefore exceedingly do I dread this
voyage. And he boasts himself to be the son of Helios; and all round
dwell countless tribes of Colchians; and he might match himself with
Ares in his dread war-cry and giant strength. Nay, to seize the fleece
in spite of Aeetes is no easy task; so huge a serpent keeps guard round
and about it, deathless and sleepless, which Earth herself brought forth
on the sides of Caucasus, by the rock of Typhaon, where Typhaon, they
say, smitten by the bolt of Zeus, son of Cronos, when he lifted against
the god his sturdy hands, dropped from his head hot gore; and in such
plight he reached the mountains and plain of Nysa, where to this day he
lies whelmed beneath the waters of the Serbonian lake."

Thus he spake, and straightway many a cheek grew pale when they heard of
so mighty an adventure. But quickly Peleus answered with cheering words,
and thus spake:

"Be not so fearful in spirit, my good friend. For we are not so lacking
in prowess as to be no match for Aeetes to try his strength with arms;
but I deem that we too are cunning in war, we that go thither, near akin
to the blood of the blessed gods. Wherefore if he will not grant us the
fleece of gold for friendship's sake, the tribes of the Colchians will
not avail him, I ween."

Thus they addressed each other in turn, until again, satisfied with
their feast, they turned to rest. And when they rose at dawn a gentle
breeze was blowing; and they raised the sails, which strained to the
rush of the wind, and quickly they left behind the island of Ares.

And at nightfall they came to the island of Philyra, where Cronos, son
of Uranus, what time in Olympus he reigned over the Titans, and Zeus was
yet being nurtured in a Cretan cave by the Curetes of Ida, lay beside
Philyra, when he had deceived Rhea; and the goddess found them in the
midst of their dalliance; and Cronos leapt up from the couch with a rush
in the form of a steed with flowing mane, but Ocean's daughter, Philyra,
in shame left the spot and those haunts, and came to the long Pelasgian
ridges, where by her union with the transfigured deity she brought forth
huge Cheiron, half like a horse, half like a god.

Thence they sailed on, past the Macrones and the far-stretching land of
the Becheiri and the overweening Sapeires, and after them the Byzeres;
for ever forward they clave their way, quickly borne by the gentle
breeze. And lo, as they sped on, a deep gulf of the sea was opened, and
lo, the steep crags of the Caucasian mountains rose up, where, with his
limbs bound upon the hard rocks by galling fetters of bronze, Prometheus
fed with his liver an eagle that ever rushed back to its prey. High
above the ship at even they saw it flying with a loud whirr, near the
clouds; and yet it shook all the sails with the fanning of those huge
wings. For it had not the form of a bird of the air but kept poising its
long wing-feathers like polished oars. And not long after they heard the
bitter cry of Prometheus as his liver was being torn away; and the air
rang with his screams until they marked the ravening eagle rushing back
from the mountain on the self-same track. And at night, by the skill of
Argus, they reached broad-flowing Phasis, and the utmost bourne of the

And straightway they let down the sails and the yard-arm and stowed them
inside the hollow mast-crutch, and at once they lowered the mast itself
till it lay along; and quickly with oars they entered the mighty stream
of the river; and round the prow the water surged as it gave them way.
And on their left hand they had lofty Caucasus and the Cytaean city of
Aea, and on the other side the plain of Ares and the sacred grove of
that god, where the serpent was keeping watch and ward over the fleece
as it hung on the leafy branches of an oak. And Aeson's son himself from
a golden goblet poured into the river libations of honey and pure wine
to Earth and to the gods of the country, and to the souls of dead
heroes; and he besought them of their grace to give kindly aid, and to
welcome their ship's hawsers with favourable omen. And straightway
Ancaeus spake these words:

"We have reached the Colchian land and the stream of Phasis; and it is
time for us to take counsel whether we shall make trial of Aeetes with
soft words, or an attempt of another kind shall be fitting."

Thus he spake, and by the advice of Argus Jason bade them enter a shaded
backwater and let the ship ride at anchor off shore; and it was near at
hand in their course and there they passed the night. And soon the dawn
appeared to their expectant eyes.



     Invocation of the Muse, Erato (1-5).--Hera and Athena, after
     consultation, visit Cypris to ask the aid of her son Eros on behalf
     of the Argonauts (6-110).--Eros promises to pierce with an arrow
     Medea, daughter of Aeetes: Jason lays his plans before his comrades
     (111-209).--Arrival of Jason and a few chosen companions at the
     palace of Aeetes, which is described: Eros performs his promise
     (210-298).--Interview between Aeetes and the heroes: Jason
     undertakes the task imposed by the king as the price of obtaining
     the golden fleece (299-438).--Anguish of Medea because of her love
     for Jason (439-470).--On the advice of Argus, it is decided to
     apply for Medea's aid through Chalciope, mother of Argus and sister
     of Medea (471-575).--Plans of Aeetes against the Argonauts
     (576-608).--Medea promises Chalciope to aid her sons and their
     companions (609-743)--After long hesitation Medea prepares to carry
     magic drugs to Jason and goes with her attendants to meet him at
     Hecate's temple (744-911).--Interview of Jason and Medea: return of
     Medea to the palace (912-1162).--Aeetes hands over the dragons
     teeth to Jason's messengers. Jason offers a nocturnal sacrifice to
     Hecate (1163-1224).--Preparations of Jason: he yokes the fiery
     bulls, sows the dragons teeth, and compels the giants who spring up
     to slay one another, himself joining in the slaughter: the task is
     accomplished (1225-1407).


Come now, Erato, stand by my side, and say next how Jason brought back
the fleece to Iolcus aided by the love of Medea. For thou sharest the
power of Cypris, and by thy love-cares dost charm unwedded maidens;
wherefore to thee too is attached a name that tells of love.

Thus the heroes, unobserved, were waiting in ambush amid the thick
reed-beds; but Hera and Athena took note of them, and, apart from Zeus
and the other immortals, entered a chamber and took counsel together;
and Hera first made trial of Athena:

"Do thou now first, daughter of Zeus, give advice. What must be done?
Wilt thou devise some scheme whereby they may seize the golden fleece of
Aeetes and bear it to Hellas, or can they deceive the king with soft
words and so work persuasion? Of a truth he is terribly overweening.
Still it is right to shrink from no endeavour."

Thus she spake, and at once Athena addressed her: "I too was pondering
such thoughts in my heart, Hera, when thou didst ask me outright. But
not yet do I think that I have conceived a scheme to aid the courage of
the heroes, though I have balanced many plans."

She ended, and the goddesses fixed their eyes on the ground at their
feet, brooding apart; and straightway Hera was the first to speak her
thought: "Come, let us go to Cypris; let both of us accost her and urge
her to bid her son (if only he will obey) speed his shaft at the
daughter of Aeetes, the enchantress, and charm her with love for Jason.
And I deem that by her device he will bring back the fleece to Hellas."

Thus she spake, and the prudent plan pleased Athena, and she addressed
her in reply with gentle words:

"Hera, my father begat me to be a stranger to the darts of love, nor do
I know any charm to work desire. But if the word pleases thee, surely I
will follow; but thou must speak when we meet her."

So she said, and starting forth they came to the mighty palace of
Cypris, which her husband, the halt-footed god, had built for her when
first he brought her from Zeus to be his wife. And entering the court
they stood beneath the gallery of the chamber where the goddess prepared
the couch of Hephaestus. But he had gone early to his forge and anvils
to a broad cavern in a floating island where with the blast of flame he
wrought all manner of curious work; and she all alone was sitting
within, on an inlaid seat facing the door. And her white shoulders on
each side were covered with the mantle of her hair and she was parting
it with a golden comb and about to braid up the long tresses; but when
she saw the goddesses before her, she stayed and called them within, and
rose from her seat and placed them on couches. Then she herself sat
down, and with her hands gathered up the locks still uncombed. And
smiling she addressed them with crafty words:

"Good friends, what intent, what occasion brings you here after so long?
Why have ye come, not too frequent visitors before, chief among
goddesses that ye are?"

And to her Hera replied: "Thou dost mock us, but our hearts are stirred
with calamity. For already on the river Phasis the son of Aeson moors
his ship, he and his comrades in quest of the fleece. For all their
sakes we fear terribly (for the task is nigh at hand) but most for
Aeson's son. Him will I deliver, though he sail even to Hades to free
Ixion below from his brazen chains, as far as strength lies in my limbs,
so that Pelias may not mock at having escaped an evil doom--Pelias who
left me unhonoured with sacrifice. Moreover Jason was greatly loved by
me before, ever since at the mouth of Anaurus in flood, as I was making
trial of men's righteousness, he met me on his return from the chase;
and all the mountains and long ridged peaks were sprinkled with snow,
and from them the torrents rolling down were rushing with a roar. And he
took pity on me in the likeness of an old crone, and raising me on his
shoulders himself bore me through the headlong tide. So he is honoured
by me unceasingly; nor will Pelias pay the penalty of his outrage,
unless thou wilt grant Jason his return."

Thus she spake, and speechlessness seized Cypris. And beholding Hera
supplicating her she felt awe, and then addressed her with friendly
words: "Dread goddess, may no viler thing than Cypris ever be found, if
I disregard thy eager desire in word or deed, whatever my weak arms can
effect; and let there be no favour in return."

She spake, and Hera again addressed her with prudence: "It is not in
need of might or of strength that we have come. But just quietly bid thy
boy charm Aeetes' daughter with love for Jason. For if she will aid him
with her kindly counsel, easily do I think he will win the fleece of
gold and return to Iolcus, for she is full of wiles."

Thus she spake, and Cypris addressed them both: "Hera and Athena, he
will obey you rather than me. For unabashed though he is, there will be
some slight shame in his eyes before you: but he has no respect for me,
but ever slights me in contentious mood. And, overborne by his
naughtiness, I purpose to break his ill-sounding arrows and his bow in
his very sight. For in his anger he has threatened that if I shall not
keep my hands off him while he still masters his temper, I shall have
cause to blame myself thereafter."

So she spake, and the goddesses smiled and looked at each other. But
Cypris again spoke, vexed at heart: "To others my sorrows are a jest;
nor ought I to tell them to all; I know them too well myself. But now,
since this pleases you both, I will make the attempt and coax him, and
he will not say me nay."

Thus she spake, and Hera took her slender hand and gently smiling,
replied: "Perform this task, Cytherea, straightway, as thou sayest; and
be not angry or contend with thy boy; he will cease hereafter to vex

She spake, and left her seat, and Athena accompanied her and they went
forth both hastening back. And Cypris went on her way through the glens
of Olympus to find her boy. And she found him apart, in the blooming
orchard of Zeus, not alone, but with him Ganymedes, whom once Zeus had
set to dwell among the immortal gods, being enamoured of his beauty. And
they were playing for golden dice, as boys in one house are wont to do.
And already greedy Eros was holding the palm of his left hand quite full
of them under his breast, standing upright; and on the bloom of his
cheeks a sweet blush was glowing. But the other sat crouching hard by,
silent and downcast, and he had two dice left which he threw one after
the other, and was angered by the loud laughter of Eros. And lo, losing
them straightway with the former, he went off empty-handed, helpless,
and noticed not the approach of Cypris. And she stood before her boy,
and laying her hand on his lips, addressed him:

"Why dost thou smile in triumph, unutterable rogue? Hast thou cheated
him thus, and unjustly overcome the innocent child? Come, be ready to
perform for me the task I will tell thee of, and I will give thee Zeus'
all-beauteous plaything--the one which his dear nurse Adrasteia made for
him, while he still lived a child, with childish ways, in the Idaean
cave--a well-rounded ball; no better toy wilt thou get from the hands of
Hephaestus. All of gold are its zones, and round each double seams run
in a circle; but the stitches are hidden, and a dark blue spiral
overlays them all. But if thou shouldst cast it with thy hands, lo, like
a star, it sends a flaming track through the sky. This I will give thee;
and do thou strike with thy shaft and charm the daughter of Aeetes with
love for Jason; and let there be no loitering. For then my thanks would
be the slighter."

Thus she spake, and welcome were her words to the listening boy. And he
threw down all his toys, and eagerly seizing her robe on this side and
on that, clung to the goddess. And he implored her to bestow the gift at
once; but she, facing him with kindly words, touched his cheeks, kissed
him and drew him to her, and replied with a smile:

"Be witness now thy dear head and mine, that surely I will give thee the
gift and deceive thee not, if thou wilt strike with thy shaft Aeetes'

She spoke, and he gathered up his dice, and having well counted them all
threw them into his mother's gleaming lap. And straightway with golden
baldric he slung round him his quiver from where it leant against a
tree-trunk, and took up his curved bow. And he fared forth through the
fruitful orchard of the palace of Zeus. Then he passed through the gates
of Olympus high in air; hence is a downward path from heaven; and the
twin poles rear aloft steep mountain tops--the highest crests of earth,
where the risen sun grows ruddy with his first beams. And beneath him
there appeared now the life-giving earth and cities of men and sacred
streams of rivers, and now in turn mountain peaks and the ocean all
around, as he swept through the vast expanse of air.

Now the heroes apart in ambush, in a back-water of the river, were met
in council, sitting on the benches of their ship. And Aeson's son
himself was speaking among them; and they were listening silently in
their places sitting row upon row: "My friends, what pleases myself that
will I say out; it is for you to bring about its fulfilment. For in
common is our task, and common to all alike is the right of speech; and
he who in silence withholds his thought and his counsel, let him know
that it is he alone that bereaves this band of its home-return. Do ye
others rest here in the ship quietly with your arms; but I will go to
the palace of Aeetes, taking with me the sons of Phrixus and two
comrades as well. And when I meet him I will first make trial with words
to see if he will be willing to give up the golden fleece for
friendship's sake or not, but trusting to his might will set at nought
our quest. For so, learning his frowardness first from himself, we will
consider whether we shall meet him in battle, or some other plan shall
avail us, if we refrain from the war-cry. And let us not merely by
force, before putting words to the test, deprive him of his own
possession. But first it is better to go to him and win his favour by
speech. Oftentimes, I ween, does speech accomplish at need what prowess
could hardly carry through, smoothing the path in manner befitting. And
he once welcomed noble Phrixus, a fugitive from his stepmother's wiles
and the sacrifice prepared by his father. For all men everywhere, even
the most shameless, reverence the ordinance of Zeus, god of strangers,
and regard it."

Thus he spake, and the youths approved the words of Aeson's son with one
accord, nor was there one to counsel otherwise. And then he summoned to
go with him the sons of Phrixus, and Telamon and Augeias; and himself
took Hermes' wand; and at once they passed forth from the ship beyond
the reeds and the water to dry land, towards the rising ground of the
plain. The plain, I wis, is called Circe's; and here in line grow many
willows and osiers, on whose topmost branches hang corpses bound with
cords. For even now it is an abomination with the Colchians to burn dead
men with fire; nor is it lawful to place them in the earth and raise a
mound above, but to wrap them in untanned oxhides and suspend them from
trees far from the city. And so earth has an equal portion with air,
seeing that they bury the women; for that is the custom of their land.

And as they went Hera with friendly thought spread a thick mist through
the city, that they might fare to the palace of Aeetes unseen by the
countless hosts of the Colchians. But soon when from the plain they came
to the city and Aeetes' palace, then again Hera dispersed the mist. And
they stood at the entrance, marvelling at the king's courts and the wide
gates and columns which rose in ordered lines round the walls; and high
up on the palace a coping of stone rested on brazen triglyphs. And
silently they crossed the threshold. And close by garden vines covered
with green foliage were in full bloom, lifted high in air. And beneath
them ran four fountains, ever-flowing, which Hephaestus had delved out.
One was gushing with milk, one with wine, while the third flowed with
fragrant oil; and the fourth ran with water, which grew warm at the
setting of the Pleiads, and in turn at their rising bubbled forth from
the hollow rock, cold as crystal. Such then were the wondrous works that
the craftsman-god Hephaestus had fashioned in the palace of Cytaean
Aeetes. And he wrought for him bulls with feet of bronze, and their
mouths were of bronze, and from them they breathed out a terrible flame
of fire; moreover he forged a plough of unbending adamant, all in one
piece, in payment of thanks to Helios, who had taken the god up in his
chariot when faint from the Phlegraean fight.[1] And here an inner-court
was built, and round it were many well-fitted doors and chambers here
and there, and all along on each side was a richly-wrought gallery. And
on both sides loftier buildings stood obliquely. In one, which was the
loftiest, lordly Aeetes dwelt with his queen; and in another dwelt
Apsyrtus, son of Aeetes, whom a Caucasian nymph, Asterodeia, bare before
he made Eidyia his wedded wife, the youngest daughter of Tethys and
Oceanus. And the sons of the Colchians called him by the new name of
Phaëthon,[2] because he outshone all the youths. The other buildings the
handmaidens had, and the two daughters of Aeetes, Chalciope and Medea.
Medea then [they found] going from chamber to chamber in search of her
sister, for Hera detained her within that day; but beforetime she was
not wont to haunt the palace, but all day long was busied in Hecate's
temple, since she herself was the priestess of the goddess. And when she
saw them she cried aloud, and quickly Chalciope caught the sound; and
her maids, throwing down at their feet their yarn and their thread,
rushed forth all in a throng. And she, beholding her sons among them,
raised her hands aloft through joy; and so they likewise greeted their
mother, and when they saw her embraced her in their gladness; and she
with many sobs spoke thus:

[Footnote 1: i.e. the fight between the gods and the giants.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. the Shining One.]

"After all then, ye were not destined to leave me in your heedlessness
and to wander far; but fate has turned you back. Poor wretch that I am!
What a yearning for Hellas from some woeful madness seized you at the
behest of your father Phrixus. Bitter sorrows for my heart did he ordain
when dying. And why should ye go to the city of Orchomenus, whoever this
Orchomenus is, for the sake of Athamas' wealth, leaving your mother
alone to bear her grief?"

Such were her words; and Aeetes came forth last of all and Eidyia
herself came, the queen of Aeetes, on hearing the voice of Chalciope;
and straightway all the court was filled with a throng. Some of the
thralls were busied with a mighty bull, others with the axe were
cleaving dry billets, and others heating with fire water for the baths;
nor was there one who relaxed his toil, serving the king.

Meantime Eros passed unseen through the grey mist, causing confusion, as
when against grazing heifers rises the gadfly, which oxherds call the
breese. And quickly beneath the lintel in the porch he strung his bow
and took from the quiver an arrow unshot before, messenger of pain. And
with swift feet unmarked he passed the threshold and keenly glanced
around; and gliding close by Aeson's son he laid the arrow-notch on the
cord in the centre, and drawing wide apart with both hands he shot at
Medea; and speechless amazement seized her soul. But the god himself
flashed back again from the high-roofed hall, laughing loud; and the
bolt burnt deep down in the maiden's heart, like a flame; and ever she
kept darting bright glances straight up at Aeson's son, and within her
breast her heart panted fast through anguish, all remembrance left her,
and her soul melted with the sweet pain. And as a poor woman heaps dry
twigs round a blazing brand--a daughter of toil, whose task is the
spinning of wool, that she may kindle a blaze at night beneath her roof,
when she has waked very early--and the flame waxing wondrous great from
the small brand consumes all the twigs together; so, coiling round her
heart, burnt secretly Love the destroyer; and the hue of her soft cheeks
went and came, now pale, now red, in her soul's distraction.

Now when the thralls had laid a banquet ready before them, and they had
refreshed themselves with warm baths, gladly did they please their souls
with meat and drink. And thereafter Aeetes questioned the sons of his
daughter, addressing them with these words:

"Sons of my daughter and of Phrixus, whom beyond all strangers I
honoured in my halls, how have ye come returning back to Aea? Did some
calamity cut short your escape in the midst? Ye did not listen when I
set before you the boundless length of the way. For I marked it once,
whirled along in the chariot of my father Helios, when he was bringing
my sister Circe to the western land and we came to the shore of the
Tyrrhenian mainland, where even now she abides, exceeding far from
Colchis. But what pleasure is there in words? Do ye tell me plainly what
has been your fortune, and who these men are, your companions, and where
from your hollow ship ye came ashore."

Such were his questions, and Argus, before all his brethren, being
fearful for the mission of Aeson's son, gently replied, for he was the

"Aeetes, that ship forthwith stormy blasts tore asunder, and ourselves,
crouching on the beams, a wave drove on to the beach of the isle of
Enyalius[1] in the murky night; and some god preserved us. For even the
birds of Ares that haunted the desert isle beforetime, not even them did
we find. But these men had driven them off, having landed from their
ship on the day before; and the will of Zeus taking pity on us, or some
fate, detained them there, since they straightway gave us both food and
clothing in abundance, when they heard the illustrious name of Phrixus
and thine own; for to thy city are they faring. And if thou dost wish to
know their errand, I will not hide it from thee. A certain king,
vehemently longing to drive this man far from his fatherland and
possessions, because in might he outshone all the sons of Aeolus, sends
him to voyage hither on a bootless venture; and asserts that the stock
of Aeolus will not escape the heart-grieving wrath and rage of
implacable Zeus, nor the unbearable curse and vengeance due for Phrixus,
until the fleece comes back to Hellas. And their ship was fashioned by
Pallas Athena, not such a one as are the ships among the Colchians, on
the vilest of which we chanced. For the fierce waves and wind broke her
utterly to pieces; but the other holds firm with her bolts, even though
all the blasts should buffet her. And with equal swiftness she speedeth
before the wind and when the crew ply the oar with unresting hands. And
he hath gathered in her the mightiest heroes of all Achaea, and hath
come to thy city from wandering far through cities and gulfs of the
dread ocean, in the hope that thou wilt grant him the fleece. But as
thou dost please, so shall it be, for he cometh not to use force, but is
eager to pay thee a recompense for the gift. He has heard from me of thy
bitter foes the Sauromatae, and he will subdue them to thy sway. And if
thou desirest to know their names and lineage I will tell thee all. This
man on whose account the rest were gathered from Hellas, they call
Jason, son of Aeson, whom Cretheus begat. And if in truth he is of the
stock of Cretheus himself, thus he would be our kinsman on the father's
side. For Cretheus and Athamas were both sons of Aeolus; and Phrixus was
the son of Athamas, son of Aeolus. And here, if thou hast heard at all
of the seed of Helios, thou dost behold Augeias; and this is Telamon
sprung from famous Aeacus; and Zeus himself begat Aeacus. And so all the
rest, all the comrades that follow him, are the sons or grandsons of the

[Footnote 1: A name of Ares.]

Such was the tale of Argus; but the king at his words was filled with
rage as he heard; and his heart was lifted high in wrath. And he spake
in heavy displeasure; and was angered most of all with the son of
Chalciope; for he deemed that on their account the strangers had come;
and in his fury his eyes flashed forth beneath his brows:

"Begone from my sight, felons, straightway, ye and your tricks, from the
land, ere someone see a fleece and a Phrixus to his sorrow. Banded
together with your friends from Hellas, not for the fleece, but to seize
my sceptre and royal power have ye come hither. Had ye not first tasted
of my table, surely would I have cut out your tongues and hewn off both
hands and sent you forth with your feet alone, so that ye might be
stayed from starting hereafter. And what lies have ye uttered against
the blessed gods!"

Thus he spake in his wrath; and mightily from its depths swelled the
heart of Aeacus' son, and his soul within longed to speak a deadly word
in defiance, but Aeson's son checked him, for he himself first made
gentle answer:

"Aeetes, bear with this armed band, I pray. For not in the way thou
deemest have we come to thy city and palace, no, nor yet with such
desires. For who would of his own will dare to cross so wide a sea for
the goods of a stranger? But fate and the ruthless command of a
presumptuous king urged me. Grant a favour to thy suppliants, and to all
Hellas will I publish a glorious fame of thee; yea, we are ready now to
pay thee a swift recompense in war, whether it be the Sauromatae or some
other people that thou art eager to subdue to thy sway."

He spake, flattering him with gentle utterance; but the king's soul
brooded a twofold purpose within him, whether he should attack and slay
them on the spot or should make trial of their might. And this, as he
pondered, seemed the better way, and he addressed Jason in answer:

"Stranger, why needest thou go through thy tale to the end? For if ye
are in truth of heavenly race, or have come in no wise inferior to me,
to win the goods of strangers, I will give thee the fleece to bear away,
if thou dost wish, when I have tried thee. For against brave men I bear
no grudge, such as ye yourselves tell me of him who bears sway in
Hellas. And the trial of your courage and might shall be a contest which
I myself can compass with my hands, deadly though it be. Two bulls with
feet of bronze I have that pasture on the plain of Ares, breathing forth
flame from their jaws; them do I yoke and drive over the stubborn field
of Ares, four plough-gates; and quickly cleaving it with the share up to
the headland, I cast into the furrows for seed, not the corn of Demeter,
but the teeth of a dread serpent that grow up into the fashion of armed
men; them I slay at once, cutting them down beneath my spear as they
rise against me on all sides. In the morning do I yoke the oxen, and at
eventide I cease from the harvesting. And thou, if thou wilt accomplish
such deeds as these, on that very day shalt carry off the fleece to the
king's palace; ere that time comes I will not give it, expect it not.
For indeed it is unseemly that a brave man should yield to a coward."

Thus he spake; and Jason, fixing his eyes on the ground, sat just as he
was, speechless, helpless in his evil plight. For a long time he turned
the matter this way and that, and could in no way take on him the task
with courage, for a mighty task it seemed; and at last he made reply
with crafty words:

"With thy plea of right, Aeetes, thou dost shut me in overmuch.
Wherefore also I will dare that contest, monstrous as it is, though it
be my doom to die. For nothing will fall upon men more dread than dire
necessity, which indeed constrained me to come hither at a king's

Thus he spake, smitten by his helpless plight; and the king with grim
words addressed him, sore troubled as he was: "Go forth now to the
gathering, since thou art eager for the toil; but if thou shouldst fear
to lift the yoke upon the oxen or shrink from the deadly harvesting,
then all this shall be my care, so that another too may shudder to come
to a man that is better than he."

He spake outright; and Jason rose from his seat, and Augeias and Telamon
at once; and Argus followed alone, for he signed to his brothers to stay
there on the spot meantime; and so they went forth from the hall. And
wonderfully among them all shone the son of Aeson for beauty and grace;
and the maiden looked at him with stealthy glance, holding her bright
veil aside, her heart smouldering with pain; and her soul creeping like
a dream flitted in his track as he went. So they passed forth from the
palace sorely troubled. And Chalciope, shielding herself from the wrath
of Aeetes, had gone quickly to her chamber with her sons. And Medea
likewise followed, and much she brooded in her soul all the cares that
the Loves awaken. And before her eyes the vision still appeared--himself
what like he was, with what vesture he was clad, what things he spake,
how he sat on his seat, how he moved forth to the door--and as she
pondered she deemed there never was such another man; and ever in her
ears rung his voice and the honey-sweet words which he uttered. And she
feared for him, lest the oxen or Aeetes with his own hand should slay
him; and she mourned him as though already slain outright, and in her
affliction a round tear through very grievous pity coursed down her
cheek: and gently weeping she lifted up her voice aloud:

"Why does this grief come upon me, poor wretch? Whether he be the best
of heroes now about to perish, or the worst, let him go to his doom. Yet
I would that he had escaped unharmed; yea, may this be so, revered
goddess, daughter of Perses, may he avoid death and return home; but if
it be his lot to be o'ermastered by the oxen, may he first learn this
that I at least do not rejoice in his cruel calamity."

Thus then was the maiden's heart racked by love-cares. But when the
others had gone forth from the people and the city, along the path by
which at the first they had come from the plain, then Argus addressed
Jason with these words:

"Son of Aeson, thou wilt despise the counsel which I will tell thee,
but, though in evil plight, it is not fitting to forbear from the trial.
Ere now thou hast heard me tell of a maiden that uses sorcery under the
guidance of Hecate, Perses' daughter. If we could win her aid there will
be no dread, methinks, of thy defeat in the contest; but terribly do I
fear that my mother will not take this task upon her. Nevertheless I
will go back again to entreat her, for a common destruction overhangs us

He spake with goodwill, and Jason answered with these words: "Good
friend, if this is good in thy sight, I say not nay. Go and move thy
mother, beseeching her aid with prudent words; pitiful indeed is our
hope when we have put our return in the keeping of women." So he spake,
and quickly they reached the back-water. And their comrades joyfully
questioned them, when they saw them close at hand; and to them spoke
Aeson's son grieved at heart:

"My friends, the heart of ruthless Aeetes is utterly filled with wrath
against us, for not at all can the goal be reached either by me or by
you who question me. He said that two bulls with feet of bronze pasture
on the plain of Ares, breathing forth flame from their jaws. And with
these he bade me plough the field, four plough-gates; and said that he
would give me from a serpent's jaws seed which will raise up earthborn
men in armour of bronze; and on the same day I must slay them. This
task--for there was nothing better to devise--I took on myself

Thus he spake; and to all the contest seemed one that none could
accomplish, and long, quiet and silent, they looked at one another,
bowed down with the calamity and their despair; but at last Peleus spake
with courageous words among all the chiefs: "It is time to be
counselling what we shall do. Yet there is not so much profit, I trow,
in counsel as in the might of our hands. If thou then, hero son of
Aeson, art minded to yoke Aeetes' oxen, and art eager for the toil,
surely thou wilt keep thy promise and make thyself ready. But if thy
soul trusts not her prowess utterly, then neither bestir thyself nor sit
still and look round for some one else of these men. For it is not I who
will flinch, since the bitterest pain will be but death."

So spake the son of Aeacus; and Telamon's soul was stirred, and quickly
he started up in eagerness; and Idas rose up the third in his pride; and
the twin sons of Tyndareus; and with them Oeneus' son who was numbered
among strong men, though even the soft down on his cheek showed not yet;
with such courage was his soul uplifted. But the others gave way to
these in silence. And straightway Argus spake these words to those that
longed for the contest:

"My friends, this indeed is left us at the last. But I deem that there
will come to you some timely aid from my mother. Wherefore, eager though
ye be, refrain and abide in your ship a little longer as before, for it
is better to forbear than recklessly to choose an evil fate. There is a
maiden, nurtured in the halls of Aeetes, whom the goddess Hecate taught
to handle magic herbs with exceeding skill--all that the land and
flowing waters produce. With them is quenched the blast of unwearied
flame, and at once she stays the course of rivers as they rush roaring
on, and checks the stars and the paths of the sacred moon. Of her we
bethought us as we came hither along the path from the palace, if haply
my mother, her own sister, might persuade her to aid us in the venture.
And if this is pleasing to you as well, surely on this very day will I
return to the palace of Aeetes to make trial; and perchance with some
god's help shall I make the trial."

Thus he spake, and the gods in their goodwill gave them a sign. A
trembling dove in her flight from a mighty hawk fell from on high,
terrified, into the lap of Aeson's son, and the hawk fell impaled on the
stern-ornament. And quickly Mopsus with prophetic words spake among them

"For you, friends, this sign has been wrought by the will of heaven; in
no other way is it possible to interpret its meaning better, than to
seek out the maiden and entreat her with manifold skill. And I think she
will not reject our prayer, if in truth Phineus said that our return
should be with the help of the Cyprian goddess. It was her gentle bird
that escaped death; and as my heart within me foresees according to this
omen, so may it prove! But, my friends, let us call on Cytherea to aid
us, and now at once obey the counsels of Argus."

He spake, and the warriors approved, remembering the injunctions of
Phineus; but all alone leapt up Aphareian Idas and shouted loudly in
terrible wrath: "Shame on us, have we come here fellow-voyagers with
women, calling on Cypris for help and not on the mighty strength of
Enyalius? And do ye look to doves and hawks to save yourselves from
contests? Away with you, take thought not for deeds of war, but by
supplication to beguile weakling girls."

Such were his eager words; and of his comrades many murmured low, but
none uttered a word of answer back. And he sat down in wrath; and at
once Jason roused them and uttered his own thought: "Let Argus set forth
from the ship, since this pleases all; but we will now move from the
river and openly fasten our hawsers to the shore. For surely it is not
fitting for us to hide any longer cowering from the battle-cry."

So he spake, and straightway sent Argus to return in haste to the city;
and they drew the anchors on board at the command of Aeson's son, and
rowed the ship close to the shore, a little away from the back-water.

But straightway Aeetes held an assembly of the Colchians far aloof from
his palace at a spot where they sat in times before, to devise against
the Minyae grim treachery and troubles. And he threatened that when
first the oxen should have torn in pieces the man who had taken upon him
to perform the heavy task, he would hew down the oak grove above the
wooded hill, and burn the ship and her crew, that so they might vent
forth in ruin their grievous insolence, for all their haughty schemes.
For never would he have welcomed the Aeolid Phrixus as a guest in his
halls, in spite of his sore need, Phrixus, who surpassed all strangers
in gentleness and fear of the gods, had not Zeus himself sent Hermes his
messenger down from heaven, so that he might meet with a friendly host;
much less would pirates coming to his land be let go scatheless for
long, men whose care it was to lift their hands and seize the goods of
others, and to weave secret webs of guile, and harry the steadings of
herdsmen with ill-sounding forays. And he said that besides all that the
sons of Phrixus should pay a fitting penalty to himself for returning in
consort with evil-doers, that they might recklessly drive him from his
honour and his throne; for once he had heard a baleful prophecy from his
father Helios, that he must avoid the secret treachery and schemes of
his own offspring and their crafty mischief. Wherefore he was sending
them, as they desired, to the Achaean land at the bidding of their
father--a long journey. Nor had he ever so slight a fear of his
daughters, that they would form some hateful scheme, nor of his son
Apsyrtus; but this curse was being fulfilled in the children of
Chalciope. And he proclaimed terrible things in his rage against the
strangers, and loudly threatened to keep watch over the ship and its
crew, so that no one might escape calamity.

Meantime Argus, going to Aeetes' palace, with manifold pleading besought
his mother to pray Medea's aid; and Chalciope herself already had the
same thoughts, but fear checked her soul lest haply either fate should
withstand and she should entreat her in vain, all distraught as she
would be at her father's deadly wrath, or, if Medea yielded to her
prayers, her deeds should be laid bare and open to view.

Now a deep slumber had relieved the maiden from her love-pains as she
lay upon her couch. But straightway fearful dreams, deceitful, such as
trouble one in grief, assailed her. And she thought that the stranger
had taken on him the contest, not because he longed to win the ram's
fleece, and that he had not come on that account to Aeetes' city, but to
lead her away, his wedded wife, to his own home; and she dreamed that
herself contended with the oxen and wrought the task with exceeding
ease; and that her own parents set at naught their promise, for it was
not the maiden they had challenged to yoke the oxen but the stranger
himself; from that arose a contention of doubtful issue between her
father and the strangers; and both laid the decision upon her, to be as
she should direct in her mind. But she suddenly, neglecting her parents,
chose the stranger. And measureless anguish seized them and they shouted
out in their wrath; and with the cry sleep released its hold upon her.
Quivering with fear she started up, and stared round the walls of her
chamber, and with difficulty did she gather her spirit within her as
before, and lifted her voice aloud:

"Poor wretch, how have gloomy dreams affrighted me! I fear that this
voyage of the heroes will bring some great evil. My heart is trembling
for the stranger. Let him woo some Achaean girl fair away among his own
folk; let maidenhood be mine and the home of my parents. Yet, taking to
myself a reckless heart, I will no more keep aloof but will make trial
of my sister to see if she will entreat me to aid in the contest,
through grief for her own sons; this would quench the bitter pain in my

She spake, and rising from her bed opened the door of her chamber,
bare-footed, clad in one robe; and verily she desired to go to her
sister, and crossed the threshold. And for long she stayed there at the
entrance of her chamber, held back by shame; and she turned back once
more; and again she came forth from within, and again stole back; and
idly did her feet bear her this way and that; yea, as oft as she went
straight on, shame held her within the chamber, and though held back by
shame, bold desire kept urging her on. Thrice she made the attempt and
thrice she checked herself, the fourth time she fell on her bed face
downward writhing in pain. And as when a bride in her chamber bewails
her youthful husband, to whom her brothers and parents have given her,
nor yet does she hold converse with all her attendants for shame and for
thinking of him; but she sits apart in her grief; and some doom has
destroyed him, before they have had pleasure of each other's charms; and
she with heart on fire silently weeps, beholding her widowed couch, in
fear lest the women should mock and revile her: like, to her did Medea
lament. And suddenly as she was in the midst of her tears, one of the
handmaids came forth and noticed her, one who was her youthful
attendant; and straightway she told Chalciope, who sat in the midst of
her sons devising how to win over her sister. And when Chalciope heard
the strange tale from the handmaid, not even so did she disregard it.
And she rushed in dismay from her chamber right on to the chamber where
the maiden lay in her anguish, having torn her cheeks on each side; and
when Chalciope saw her eyes all dimmed with tears, she thus addressed

"Ah me, Medea, why dost thou weep so? What hath befallen thee? What
terrible grief has entered thy heart? Has some heaven-sent disease
enwrapt thy frame, or hast thou heard from our father some deadly threat
concerning me and my sons? Would that I did not behold this home of my
parents, or the city, but dwelt at the ends of the earth, where not even
the name of Colchians is known!"

Thus she spake, and her sister's cheeks flushed; and though she was
eager to reply, long did maiden shame restrain her. At one moment the
word rose on the end of her tongue, at another it fluttered back deep
within her breast. And often through her lovely lips it strove for
utterance; but no sound came forth; till at last she spoke with guileful
words; for the bold Loves were pressing her hard:

"Chalciope, my heart is all trembling for thy sons, lest my father
forthwith destroy them together with the strangers. Slumbering just now
in a short-lived sleep such a ghastly dream did I see--may some god
forbid its fulfilment and never mayst thou win for thyself bitter care
on thy sons' account."

She spake, making trial of her sister to see if she first would entreat
help for her sons. And utterly unbearable grief surged over Chalciope's
soul for fear at what she heard; and then she replied: "Yea, I myself
too have come to thee in eager furtherance of this purpose, if thou
wouldst haply devise with me and prepare some help. But swear by Earth
and Heaven that thou wilt keep secret in thy heart what I shall tell
thee, and be fellow-worker with me. I implore thee by the blessed gods,
by thyself and by thy parents, not to see them destroyed by an evil doom
piteously; or else may I die with my dear sons and come back hereafter
from Hades an avenging Fury to haunt thee."

Thus she spake, and straightway a torrent of tears gushed forth, and low
down she clasped her sister's knees with both hands and let her head
sink on to her breast. Then they both made piteous lamentation over each
other, and through the halls rose the faint sound of women weeping in
anguish. Medea, sore troubled, first addressed her sister:

"God help thee, what healing can I bring thee for what thou speakest of,
horrible curses and Furies? Would that it were firmly in my power to
save thy sons! Be witness that mighty oath of the Colchians by which
thou urgest me to swear, the great Heaven, and Earth beneath, mother of
the gods, that as far as strength lies in me, never shalt thou fail of
help, if only thy prayers can be accomplished."

She spake, and Chalciope thus replied: "Couldst thou not then, for the
stranger--who himself craves thy aid--devise some trick or some wise
thought to win the contest, for the sake of my sons? And from him has
come Argus urging me to try to win thy help; I left him in the palace
meantime while I came hither."

Thus she spake, and Medea's heart bounded with joy within her, and at
once her fair cheeks flushed, and a mist swam before her melting eyes,
and she spake as follows: "Chalciope, as is dear and delightful to thee
and thy sons, even so will I do. Never may the dawn appear again to my
eyes, never mayst thou see me living any longer, if I should take
thought for anything before thy life or thy sons' lives, for they are my
brothers, my dear kinsmen and youthful companions. So do I declare
myself to be thy sister, and thy daughter too, for thou didst lift me to
thy breast when an infant equally with them, as I ever heard from my
mother in past days. But go, bury my kindness in silence, so that I may
carry out my promise unknown to my parents; and at dawn I will bring to
Hecate's temple charms to cast a spell upon the bulls."

Thus Chalciope went back from the chamber, and made known to her sons
the help given by her sister. And again did shame and hateful fear seize
Medea thus left alone, that she should devise such deeds for a man in
her father's despite.

Then did night draw darkness over the earth; and on the sea sailors from
their ships looked towards the Bear and the stars of Orion; and now the
wayfarer and the warder longed for sleep, and the pall of slumber
wrapped round the mother whose children were dead; nor was there any
more the barking of dogs through the city, nor sound of men's voices;
but silence held the blackening gloom. But not indeed upon Medea came
sweet sleep. For in her love for Aeson's son many cares kept her
wakeful, and she dreaded the mighty strength of the bulls, beneath whose
fury he was like to perish by an unseemly fate in the field of Ares. And
fast did her heart throb within her breast, as a sunbeam quivers upon
the walls of a house when flung up from water, which is just poured
forth in a caldron or a pail may be; and hither and thither on the swift
eddy does it dart and dance along; even so the maiden's heart quivered
in her breast. And the tear of pity flowed from her eyes, and ever
within anguish tortured her, a smouldering fire through her frame, and
about her fine nerves and deep down beneath the nape of the neck where
the pain enters keenest, whenever the unwearied Loves direct against the
heart their shafts of agony. And she thought now that she would give him
the charms to cast a spell on the bulls, now that she would not, and
that she herself would perish; and again that she would not perish and
would not give the charms, but just as she was would endure her fate in
silence. Then sitting down she wavered in mind and said:

"Poor wretch, must I toss hither and thither in woe? On every side my
heart is in despair; nor is there any help for my pain; but it burneth
ever thus. Would that I had been slain by the swift shafts of Artemis
before I had set eyes on him, before Chalciope's sons reached the
Achaean land. Some god or some Fury brought them hither for our grief, a
cause of many tears. Let him perish in the contest if it be his lot to
die in the field. For how could I prepare the charms without my parents'
knowledge? What story can I tell them? What trick, what cunning device
for aid can I find? If I see him alone, apart from his comrades, shall I
greet him? Ill-starred that I am! I cannot hope that I should rest from
my sorrows even though he perished; then will evil come to me when he is
bereft of life. Perish all shame, perish all glory; may he, saved by my
effort, go scatheless wherever his heart desires. But as for me, on the
day when he bides the contest in triumph, may I die either straining my
neck in the noose from the roof-tree or tasting drugs destructive of
life. But even so, when I am dead, they will fling out taunts against
me; and every city far away will ring with my doom, and the Colchian
women, tossing my name on their lips hither and thither, will revile me
with unseemly mocking--the maid who cared so much for a stranger that
she died, the maid who disgraced her home and her parents, yielding to a
mad passion. And what disgrace will not be mine? Alas for my
infatuation! Far better would it be for me to forsake life this very
night in my chamber by some mysterious fate, escaping all slanderous
reproach, before I complete such nameless dishonour."

She spake, and brought a casket wherein lay many drugs, some for
healing, others for killing, and placing it upon her knees she wept. And
she drenched her bosom with ceaseless tears, which flowed in torrents as
she sat, bitterly bewailing her own fate. And she longed to choose a
murderous drug to taste it, and now she was loosening the bands of the
casket eager to take it forth, unhappy maid! But suddenly a deadly fear
of hateful Hades came upon her heart. And long she held back in
speechless horror, and all around her thronged visions of the pleasing
cares of life. She thought of all the delightful things that are among
the living, she thought of her joyous playmates, as a maiden will; and
the sun grew sweeter than ever to behold, seeing that in truth her soul
yearned for all. And she put the casket again from off her knees, all
changed by the prompting of Hera, and no more did she waver in purpose;
but longed for the rising dawn to appear quickly, that she might give
him the charms to work the spell as she had promised, and meet him face
to face. And often did she loosen the bolts of her door, to watch for
the faint gleam: and welcome to her did the dayspring shed its light,
and folk began to stir throughout the city.

Then Argus bade his brothers remain there to learn the maiden's mind and
plans, but himself turned back and went to the ship.

Now soon as ever the maiden saw the light of dawn, with her hands she
gathered up her golden tresses which were floating round her shoulders
in careless disarray, and bathed her tear-stained cheeks, and made her
skin shine with ointment sweet as nectar; and she donned a beautiful
robe, fitted with well-bent clasps, and above on her head, divinely
fair, she threw a veil gleaming like silver. And there, moving to and
fro in the palace, she trod the ground forgetful of the heaven-sent woes
thronging round her and of others that were destined to follow. And she
called to her maids. Twelve they were, who lay during the night in the
vestibule of her fragrant chamber, young as herself, not yet sharing the
bridal couch, and she bade them hastily yoke the mules to the chariot to
bear her to the beauteous shrine of Hecate. Thereupon the handmaids were
making ready the chariot; and Medea meanwhile took from the hollow
casket a charm which men say is called the charm of Prometheus. If a man
should anoint his body therewithal, having first appeased the Maiden,
the only-begotten, with sacrifice by night, surely that man could not be
wounded by the stroke of bronze nor would he flinch from blazing fire;
but for that day he would prove superior both in prowess and in might.
It shot up first-born when the ravening eagle on the rugged flanks of
Caucasus let drip to the earth the blood-like ichor[1] of tortured
Prometheus. And its flower appeared a cubit above ground in colour like
the Corycian crocus, rising on twin stalks; but in the earth the root
was like newly-cut flesh. The dark juice of it, like the sap of a
mountain-oak, she had gathered in a Caspian shell to make the charm
withal, when she had first bathed in seven ever-flowing streams, and had
called seven times on Brimo, nurse of youth, night-wandering Brimo, of
the underworld, queen among the dead,--in the gloom of night, clad in
dusky garments. And beneath, the dark earth shook and bellowed when the
Titanian root was cut; and the son of Iapetus himself groaned, his soul
distraught with pain. And she brought the charm forth and placed it in
the fragrant band which engirdled her, just beneath her bosom, divinely
fair. And going forth she mounted the swift chariot, and with her went
two handmaidens on each side. And she herself took the reins and in her
right hand the well-fashioned whip, and drove through the city; and the
rest, the handmaids, laid their hands on the chariot behind and ran
along the broad highway; and they kilted up their light robes above
their white knees. And even as by the mild waters of Parthenius, or
after bathing in the river Amnisus, Leto's daughter stands upon her
golden chariot and courses over the hills with her swift-footed roes, to
greet from afar some richly-steaming hecatomb; and with her come the
nymphs in attendance, gathering, some at the spring of Amnisus itself,
others by the glens and many-fountained peaks; and round her whine and
fawn the beasts cowering as she moves along: thus they sped through the
city; and on both sides the people gave way shunning the eyes of the
royal maiden. But when she had left the city's well paved streets, and
was approaching the shrine as she drove over the plains, then she
alighted eagerly from the smooth-running chariot and spake as follows
among her maidens:

[Footnote 1: i.e. the liquid that flows in the veins of gods.]

"Friends, verily have I sinned greatly and took no heed not to go among
the stranger-folk[1] who roam over our land. The whole city is smitten
with dismay; wherefore no one of the women who formerly gathered here
day by day has now come hither. But since we have come and no one else
draws near, come, let us satisfy our souls without stint with soothing
song, and when we have plucked the fair flowers amid the tender grass,
that very hour will we return. And with many a gift shall ye reach home
this very day, if ye will gladden me with this desire of mine. For Argus
pleads with me, also Chalciope herself; but this that ye hear from me
keep silently in your hearts, lest the tale reach my father's ears. As
for yon stranger who took on him the task with the oxen, they bid me
receive his gifts and rescue him from the deadly contest. And I approved
their counsel, and I have summoned him to come to my presence apart from
his comrades, so that we may divide the gifts among ourselves if he
bring them in his hands, and in return may give him a baleful charm. But
when he comes, do ye stand aloof."

[Footnote 1: Or, reading [Greek: mênim], "took no heed of the cause of
wrath with the stranger-folk"]

So she spake, and the crafty counsel pleased them all. And straightway
Argus drew Aeson's son apart from his comrades as soon as he heard from
his brothers that Medea had gone at daybreak to the holy shrine of
Hecate, and led him over the plain; and with them went Mopsus, son of
Ampycus, skilled to utter oracles from the appearance of birds, and
skilled to give good counsel to those who set out on a journey.

Never yet had there been such a man in the days of old, neither of all
the heroes of the lineage of Zeus himself, nor of those who sprung from
the blood of the other gods, as on that day the bride of Zeus made
Jason, both to look upon and to hold converse with. Even his comrades
wondered as they gazed upon him, radiant with manifold graces; and the
son of Ampycus rejoiced in their journey, already foreboding how all
would end.

Now by the path along the plain there stands near the shrine a poplar
with its crown of countless leaves, whereon often chattering crows would
roost. One of them meantime as she clapped her wings aloft in the
brandies uttered the counsels of Hera:

"What a pitiful seer is this, that has not the wit to conceive even what
children know, how that no maiden will say a word of sweetness or love
to a youth when strangers be near. Begone, sorry prophet, witless one;
on thee neither Cypris nor the gentle Loves breathe in their kindness."

She spake chiding, and Mopsus smiled to hear the god-sent voice of the
bird, and thus addressed them: "Do thou, son of Aeson, pass on to the
temple, where thou wilt find the maiden; and very kind will her greeting
be to thee through the prompting of Cypris, who will be thy helpmate in
the contest, even as Phineus, Agenor's son, foretold. But we two, Argus
and I, will await thy return, apart in this very spot do thou all alone
be a suppliant and win her over with prudent words."

He spake wisely, and both at once gave approval. Nor was Medea's heart
turned to other thoughts, for all her singing, and never a song that she
essayed pleased her long in her sport. But in confusion she ever
faltered, nor did she keep her eyes resting quietly upon the throng of
her handmaids; but to the paths far off she strained her gaze, turning
her face aside. Oft did her heart sink fainting within Tier bosom
whenever she fancied she heard passing by the sound of a footfall or of
the wind. But soon he appeared to her longing eyes, striding along
loftily, like Sirius coming from ocean, which rises fair and clear to
see, but brings unspeakable mischief to flocks; thus then did Aeson's
son come to her, fair to see, but the sight of him brought love-sick
care. Her heart fell from out her bosom, and a dark mist came over her
eyes, and a hot blush covered her cheeks. And she had no strength to
lift her knees backwards or forwards, but her feet beneath were rooted
to the ground; and meantime all her handmaidens had drawn aside. So they
two stood face to face without a word, without a sound, like oaks or
lofty pines, which stand quietly side by side on the mountains when the
wind is still; then again, when stirred by the breath of the wind, they
murmur ceaselessly; so they two were destined to tell out all their
tale, stirred by the breath of Love. And Aeson's son saw that she had
fallen into some heaven-sent calamity, and with soothing words thus
addressed her:

"Why, pray, maiden, dost thou fear me so much, all alone as I am? Never
was I one of these idle boasters such as other men are--not even
aforetime, when I dwelt in my own country. Wherefore, maiden, be not too
much abashed before me, either to enquire whatever thou wilt or to speak
thy mind. But since we have met one another with friendly hearts, in a
hallowed spot, where it is wrong to sin, speak openly and ask questions,
and beguile me not with pleasing words, for at the first thou didst
promise thy sister to give me the charms my heart desires. I implore
thee by Hecate herself, by thy parents, and by Zeus who holds his
guardian hand over strangers and suppliants; I come here to thee both a
suppliant and a stranger, bending the knee in my sore need. For without
thee and thy sister never shall I prevail in the grievous contest. And
to thee will I render thanks hereafter for thy aid, as is right and
fitting for men who dwell far off, making glorious thy name and fame;
and the rest of the heroes, returning to Hellas, will spread thy renown
and so will the heroes' wives and mothers, who now perhaps are sitting
on the shore and making moan for us; their painful affliction thou
mightest scatter to the winds. In days past the maiden Ariadne, daughter
of Minos, with kindly intent rescued Theseus from grim contests--the
maiden whom Pasiphae daughter of Helios bare. But she, when Minos had
lulled his wrath to rest, went aboard the ship with him and left her
fatherland; and her even the immortal gods loved, and, as a sign in
mid-sky, a crown of stars, which men call Ariadne's crown, rolls along
all night among the heavenly constellations. So to thee too shall be
thanks from the gods, if thou wilt save so mighty an array of
chieftains. For surely from thy lovely form thou art like to excel in
gentle courtesy."

Thus he spake, honouring her; and she cast her eyes down with a smile
divinely sweet; and her soul melted within her, uplifted by his praise,
and she gazed upon him face to face; nor did she know what word to utter
first, but was eager to pour out everything at once. And forth from her
fragrant girdle ungrudgingly she brought out the charm; and he at once
received it in his hands with joy. And she would even have drawn out all
her soul from her breast and given it to him, exulting in his desire; so
wonderfully did love flash forth a sweet flame from the golden head of
Aeson's son; and he captivated her gleaming eyes; and her heart within
grew warm, melting away as the dew melts away round roses when warmed by
the morning's light. And now both were fixing their eyes on the ground
abashed, and again were throwing glances at each other, smiling with the
light of love beneath their radiant brows. And at last and scarcely then
did the maiden greet him:

"Take heed now, that I may devise help for thee. When at thy coming my
father has given thee the deadly teeth from the dragon's jaws for
sowing, then watch for the time when the night is parted in twain, then
bathe in the stream of the tireless river, and alone, apart from others,
clad in dusky raiment, dig a rounded pit; and therein slay a ewe, and
sacrifice it whole, heaping high the pyre on the very edge of the pit.
And propitiate only-begotten Hecate, daughter of Perses, pouring from a
goblet the hive-stored labour of bees. And then, when thou hast
heedfully sought the grace of the goddess, retreat from the pyre; and
let neither the sound of feet drive thee to turn back, nor the baying of
hounds, lest haply thou shouldst maim all the rites and thyself fail to
return duly to thy comrades. And at dawn steep this charm in water,
strip, and anoint thy body therewith as with oil; and in it there will
be boundless prowess and mighty strength, and thou wilt deem thyself a
match not for men but for the immortal gods. And besides, let thy spear
and shield and sword be sprinkled. Thereupon the spear-heads of the
earthborn men shall not pierce thee, nor the flame of the deadly bulls
as it rushes forth resistless. But such thou shalt be not for long, but
for that one day; still never flinch from the contest. And I will tell
thee besides of yet another help. As soon as thou hast yoked the strong
oxen, and with thy might and thy prowess hast ploughed all the stubborn
fallow, and now along the furrows the Giants are springing up, when the
serpent's teeth are sown on the dusky clods, if thou markest them
uprising in throngs from the fallow, cast unseen among them a massy
stone; and they over it, like ravening hounds over their food, will slay
one another; and do thou thyself hasten to rush to the battle-strife,
and the fleece thereupon thou shalt bear far away from Aea;
nevertheless, depart wherever thou wilt, or thy pleasure takes thee,
when thou hast gone hence."

Thus she spake, and cast her eyes to her feet in silence, and her cheek,
divinely fair, was wet with warm tears as she sorrowed for that he was
about to wander far from her side over the wide sea: and once again she
addressed him face to face with mournful words, and took his right hand;
for now shame had left her eyes:

"Remember, if haply thou returnest to thy home, Medea's name; and so
will I remember thine, though thou be far away. And of thy kindness tell
me this, where is thy home, whither wilt thou sail hence in thy ship
over the sea; wilt thou come near wealthy Orchomenus, or near the Aeaean
isle? And tell me of the maiden, whosoever she be that thou hast named,
the far-renowned daughter of Pasiphae, who is kinswoman to my father."

Thus she spake; and over him too, at the tears of the maiden, stole Love
the destroyer, and he thus answered her:

"All too surely do I deem that never by night and never by day will I
forget thee if I escape death and indeed make my way in safety to the
Achaean land, and Aeetes set not before us some other contest worse than
this. And if it pleases thee to know about my fatherland, I will tell it
out; for indeed my own heart bids me do that. There is a land encircled
by lofty mountains, rich in sheep and in pasture, where Prometheus, son
of Iapetus, begat goodly Deucalion, who first founded cities and reared
temples to the immortal gods, and first ruled Over men. This land the
neighbours who dwell around call Haemonia. And in it stands Iolcus, my
city, and in it many others, where they have not so much as heard the
name of the Aeaean isle; yet there is a story that Minyas starting
thence, Minyas son of Aeolus, built long ago the city of Orchomenus that
borders on the Cadmeians. But why do I tell thee all this vain talk, of
our home and of Minos' daughter, far-famed Ariadne, by which glorious
name they called that lovely maiden of whom thou askest me? Would that,
as Minos then was well inclined to Theseus for her sake, so may thy
father be joined to us in friendship!"

Thus he spake, soothing her with gentle converse. But pangs most bitter
stirred her heart and in grief did she address him with vehement words:

"In Hellas, I ween, this is fair--to pay heed to covenants; but Aeetes
is not such a man among men as thou sayest was Pasiphae's husband,
Minos; nor can I liken myself to Ariadne; wherefore speak not of
guest-love. But only do thou, when thou hast reached Iolcus, remember
me, and thee even in my parents' despite, will I remember. And from far
off may a rumour come to me or some messenger-bird, when thou forgettest
me; or me, even me, may swift blasts catch up and bear over the sea
hence to Iolcus, that so I may cast reproaches in thy face and remind
thee that it was by my good will thou didst escape. May I then be seated
in thy halls, an unexpected guest!"

Thus she spake with piteous tears falling down her cheeks, and to her
Jason replied: "Let the empty blasts wander at will, lady, and the
messenger-bird, for vain is thy talk. But if thou comest to those abodes
and to the land of Hellas, honoured and reverenced shalt thou be by
women and men; and they shall worship thee even as a goddess, for that
by thy counsel their sons came home again, their brothers and kinsmen,
and stalwart husbands were saved from calamity. And in our bridal
chamber shalt thou prepare our couch; and nothing shall come between our
love till the doom of death fold us round."

Thus he spake; and her soul melted within her to hear his words;
nevertheless she shuddered to behold the deeds of destruction to come.
Poor wretch! Not long was she destined to refuse a home in Hellas. For
thus Hera devised it, that Aeaean Medea might come to Iolcus for a bane
to Pelias, forsaking her native land.

And now her handmaids, glancing at them from a distance, were grieving
in silence; and the time of day required that the maiden should return
home to her mother's side. But she thought not yet of departing, for her
soul delighted both in his beauty and in his winsome words, but Aeson's
son took heed, and spake at last, though late: "It is time to depart,
lest the sunlight sink before we know it, and some stranger notice all;
but again will we come and meet here."

So did they two make trial of one another thus far with gentle words;
and thereafter parted. Jason hastened to return in joyous mood to his
comrades and the ship, she to her handmaids; and they all together came
near to meet her, but she marked them not at all as they thronged
around. For her soul had soared aloft amid the clouds. And her feet of
their own accord mounted the swift chariot, and with one hand she took
the reins, and with the other the whip of cunning workmanship, to drive
the mules; and they rushed hasting to the city and the palace. And when
she was come Chalciope in grief for her sons questioned her; but Medea,
distraught by swiftly-changing thoughts, neither heard her words nor was
eager to speak in answer to her questions. But she sat upon a low stool
at the foot of her couch, bending down, her cheek leaning on her left
hand, and her eyes were wet with tears as she pondered what an evil deed
she had taken part in by her counsels.

Now when Aeson's son had joined his comrades again in the spot where he
had left them when he departed, he set out to go with them, telling them
all the story, to the gathering of the heroes; and together they
approached the ship. And when they saw Jason they embraced him and
questioned him. And he told to all the counsels of the maiden and showed
the dread charm; but Idas alone of his comrades sat apart biting down
his wrath; and the rest joyous in heart, at the hour when the darkness
of night stayed them, peacefully took thought for themselves. But at
daybreak they sent two men to go to Aeetes and ask for the seed, first
Telamon himself, dear to Ares, and with him Aethalides, Hermes' famous
son. So they went and made no vain journey; but when they came, lordly
Aeetes gave them for the contest the fell teeth of the Aonian dragon
which Cadmus found in Ogygian Thebes when he came seeking for Europa and
there slew--the warder of the spring of Ares. There he settled by the
guidance of the heifer whom Apollo by his prophetic word granted him to
lead him on his way. But the teeth the Tritonian goddess tore away from
the dragon's jaws and bestowed as a gift upon Aeetes and the slayer. And
Agenor's son, Cadmus, sowed them on the Aonian plains and founded an
earthborn people of all who were left from the spear when Ares did the
reaping; and the teeth Aeetes then readily gave to be borne to the ship,
for he deemed not that Jason would bring the contest to an end, even
though he should cast the yoke upon the oxen.

Far away in the west the sun was sailing beneath the dark earth, beyond
the furthest hills of the Aethiopians; and Night was laying the yoke
upon her steeds; and the heroes were preparing their beds by the
hawsers. But Jason, as soon as the stars of Helice, the bright-gleaming
bear, had set, and the air had all grown still under heaven, went to a
desert spot, like some stealthy thief, with all that was needful; for
beforehand in the daytime had he taken thought for everything; and Argus
came bringing a ewe and milk from the flock; and them he took from the
ship. But when the hero saw a place which was far away from the tread of
men, in a clear meadow beneath the open sky, there first of all he
bathed his tender body reverently in the sacred river; and round him he
placed a dark robe, which Hypsipyle of Lemnos had given him aforetime, a
memorial of many a loving embrace. Then he dug a pit in the ground of a
cubit's depth and heaped up billets of wood, and over it he cut the
throat of the sheep, and duly placed the carcase above; and he kindled
the logs placing fire beneath, and poured over them mingled libations,
calling on Hecate Brimo to aid him in the contests. And when he had
called on her he drew back; and she heard him, the dread goddess, from
the uttermost depths and came to the sacrifice of Aeson's son; and round
her horrible serpents twined themselves among the oak boughs; and there
was a gleam of countless torches; and sharply howled around her the
hounds of hell. All the meadows trembled at her step; and the nymphs
that haunt the marsh and the river shrieked, all who dance round that
mead of Amarantian Phasis. And fear seized Aeson's son, but not even so
did he turn round as his feet bore him forth, till he came back to his
comrades; and now early dawn arose and shed her light above snowy

Then Aeetes arrayed his breast in the stiff corslet which Ares gave him
when he had slain Phlegraean Mimas with his own hands; and upon his head
he placed a golden helmet with four plumes, gleaming like the sun's
round light when he first rises from Ocean. And he wielded his shield of
many hides, and his spear, terrible, resistless; none of the heroes
could have withstood its shock now that they had left behind Heracles
far away, who alone could have met it in battle. For the king his
well-fashioned chariot of swift steeds was held near at hand by
Phaethon, for him to mount; and he mounted, and held the reins in his
hands. Then from the city he drove along the broad highway, that he
might be present at the contest; and with him countless multitude rushed
forth. And as Poseidon rides, mounted in his chariot, to the Isthmian
contest or to Taenarus, or to Lerna's water, or through the grove of
Hyantian Onchestus, and thereafter passes even to Calaureia with his
steeds, and the Haemonian rock or well-wooded Geraestus; even so was
Aeetes, lord of the Colchians, to behold.

Meanwhile, prompted by Medea, Jason steeped the charm in water and
sprinkled with it his shield and sturdy spear, and sword; and his
comrades round him made proof of his weapons with might and main, but
could not bend that spear even a little, but it remained firm in their
stalwart hands unbroken as before. But in furious rage with them Idas,
Aphareus' son, with his great sword hewed at the spear near the butt,
and the edge leapt back repelled by the shock, like a hammer from the
anvil; and the heroes shouted with joy for their hope in the contest.
And then he sprinkled his body, and terrible prowess entered into him,
unspeakable, dauntless; and his hands on both sides thrilled vigorously
as they swelled with strength. And as when a warlike steed eager for the
fight neighs and beats the ground with his hoof, while rejoicing he
lifts his neck on high with ears erect; in such wise did Aeson's son
rejoice in the strength of his limbs. And often hither and thither did
he leap high in air tossing in his hands his shield of bronze and ashen
spear. Thou wouldst say that wintry lightning flashing from the gloomy
sky kept on darting forth from the clouds what time they bring with them
their blackest rainstorm. Not long after that were the heroes to hold
back from the contests; but sitting in rows on their benches they sped
swiftly on to the plain of Ares. And it lay in front of them on the
opposite side of the city, as far off as is the turning-post that a
chariot must reach from the starting-point, when the kinsmen of a dead
king appoint funeral games for footmen and horsemen. And they found
Aeetes and the tribes of the Colchians; these were stationed on the
Caucasian heights, but the king by the winding brink of the river.

Now Aeson's son, as soon as his comrades had made the hawsers fast,
leapt from the ship, and with spear and shield came forth to the
contest; and at the same time he took the gleaming helmet of bronze
filled with sharp teeth, and his sword girt round his shoulders, his
body stripped, in somewise resembling Ares and in somewise Apollo of the
golden sword. And gazing over the field he saw the bulls' yoke of bronze
and near it the plough, all of one piece, of stubborn adamant. Then he
came near, and fixed his sturdy spear upright on its butt, and taking
his helmet off leant it against the spear. And he went forward with
shield alone to examine the countless tracks of the bulls, and they from
some unseen lair beneath the earth, where was their strong steading,
wrapt in murky smoke, both rushed out together, breathing forth flaming
fire. And sore afraid were the heroes at the sight. But Jason, setting
wide his feet, withstood their onset, as in the sea a rocky reef
withstands the waves tossed by the countless blasts. Then in front of
him he held his shield; and both the bulls with loud bellowing attacked
him with their mighty horns; nor did they stir him a jot by their onset.
And as when through the holes of the furnace the armourers' bellows anon
gleam brightly, kindling the ravening flame, and anon cease from
blowing, and a terrible roar rises from the fire when it darts up from
below; so the bulls roared, breathing forth swift flame from their
mouths, while the consuming heat played round him, smiting like
lightning; but the maiden's charms protected him. Then grasping the tip
of the horn of the right-hand bull, he dragged it mightily with all his
strength to bring it near the yoke of bronze, and forced it down on to
its knees, suddenly striking with his foot the foot of bronze. So also
he threw the other bull on to its knees as it rushed upon him, and smote
it down with one blow. And throwing to the ground his broad shield, he
held them both down where they had fallen on their fore-knees, as he
strode from side to side, now here, now there, and rushed swiftly
through the flame. But Aeetes marvelled at the hero's might. And
meantime the sons of Tyndareus--for long since had it been thus ordained
for them--near at hand gave him the yoke from the ground to cast round
them. Then tightly did he bind their necks; and lifting the pole of
bronze between them, he fastened it to the yoke by its golden tip. So
the twin heroes started back from the fire to the ship. But Jason took
up again his shield and cast it on his back behind him, and grasped the
strong helmet filled with sharp teeth, and his resistless spear,
wherewith, like some ploughman with a Pelasgian goad, he pricked the
bulls beneath, striking their flanks; and very firmly did he guide the
well fitted plough handle, fashioned of adamant.

The bulls meantime raged exceedingly, breathing forth furious flame of
fire; and their breath rose up like the roar of blustering winds, in
fear of which above all seafaring men furl their large sail. But not
long after that they moved on at the bidding of the spear; and behind
them the rugged fallow was broken up, cloven by the might of the bulls
and the sturdy ploughman. Then terribly groaned the clods withal along
the furrows of the plough as they were rent, each a man's burden; and
Jason followed, pressing down the cornfield with firm foot; and far from
him he ever sowed the teeth along the clods as each was ploughed,
turning his head back for fear lest the deadly crop of earthborn men
should rise against him first; and the bulls toiled onwards treading
with their hoofs of bronze.

But when the third part of the day was still left as it wanes from dawn,
and wearied labourers call for the sweet hour of unyoking to come to
them straightway, then the fallow was ploughed by the tireless
ploughman, four plough-gates though it was; and he loosed the plough
from the oxen. Them he scared in flight towards the plain; but he went
back again to the ship, while he still saw the furrows free of the
earthborn men. And all round his comrades heartened him with their
shouts. And in the helmet he drew from the river's stream and quenched
his thirst with the water. Then he bent his knees till they grew supple,
and filled his mighty heart with courage, raging like a boar, when it
sharpens its teeth against the hunters, while from its wrathful mouth
plenteous foam drips to the ground. By now the earthborn men were
springing up over all the field; and the plot of Ares, the death-dealer,
bristled with sturdy shields and double-pointed spears and shining
helmets; and the gleam reached Olympus from beneath, flashing through
the air. And as when abundant snow has fallen on the earth and the storm
blasts have dispersed the wintry clouds under the murky night, and all
the hosts of the stars appear shining through the gloom; so did those
warriors shine springing up above the earth. But Jason bethought him of
the counsels of Medea full of craft, and seized from the plain a huge
round boulder, a terrible quoit of Ares Enyalius; four stalwart youths
could not have raised it from the ground even a little. Taking it in his
hands he threw it with a rush far away into their midst; and himself
crouched unseen behind his shield, with full confidence. And the
Colchians gave a loud cry, like the roar of the sea when it beats upon
sharp crags; and speechless amazement seized Aeetes at the rush of the
sturdy quoit. And the Earthborn, like fleet-footed hounds, leaped upon
one another and slew with loud yells; and on earth their mother they
fell beneath their own spears, likes pines or oaks, which storms of wind
beat down. And even as a fiery star leaps from heaven, trailing a furrow
of light, a portent to men, whoever see it darting with a gleam through
the dusky sky; in such wise did Aeson's son rush upon the earthborn men,
and he drew from the sheath his bare sword, and smote here and there,
mowing them down, many on the belly and side, half risen to the air--and
some that had risen as far as the shoulders--and some just standing
upright, and others even now rushing to battle. And as when a fight is
stirred up concerning boundaries, and a husbandman, in fear lest they
should ravage his fields, seizes in his hand a curved sickle, newly
sharpened, and hastily cuts the unripe crop, and waits not for it to be
parched in due season by the beams of the sun; so at that time did Jason
cut down the crop of the Earthborn; and the furrows were filled with
blood, as the channels of a spring with water. And they fell, some on
their faces biting the rough clod of earth with their teeth, some on
their backs, and others on their hands and sides, like to sea-monsters
to behold. And many, smitten before raising their feet from the earth,
bowed down as far to the ground as they had risen to the air, and rested
there with the damp of death on their brows. Even so, I ween, when Zeus
has sent a measureless rain, new planted orchard-shoots droop to the
ground, cut off by the root--the toil of gardening men; but heaviness of
heart and deadly anguish come to the owner of the farm, who planted
them; so at that time did bitter grief come upon the heart of King
Aeetes. And he went back to the city among the Colchians, pondering how
he might most quickly oppose the heroes. And the day died, and Jason's
contest was ended.



     Invocation of the Muse (1-5).--Grief of Medea, who flies from the
     palace during the night and joins the Argonauts (6-91).--By the aid
     of Medea, Jason seizes and carries off the golden fleece, after
     which the Argonauts depart (92-211).--Pursued by the Colchians,
     they land in Paphlagonia, where Argus shows them the route to take
     (212-293).--The Argonauts sail up the Ister, by a branch of which
     they make their way into the Adriatic, where they find their
     progress barred by the Colchians, who had come by a shorter route
     (294-337).--Agreement between the Argonauts and the Colchians:
     Medea's reproaches to Jason (338-451).--Murder of Apsyrtus by
     Jason: the Colchians give up the pursuit (452-551).--The Argonauts
     sail along the Eridanus into the Rhone, and reach the abode of
     Circe in Italy (552-684).--Jason and Medea are purified by Circe:
     the Argonauts pass the isle of the Sirens, Scylla, Charybdis, and
     the Planctae (685-981).--Arrival among the Phaeacians: here other
     Colchians reclaim Medea, and, to prevent her surrender, her
     marriage with Jason is celebrated (982-1169).--Departure of the
     Argonauts, who are driven by a storm on to the Syrtes: they carry
     Argo on their shoulders to the Tritonian lake (1170-1484).--Deaths
     of Canthus and Mopsus (1485-1536).--The god Triton conducts Argo
     from the lake into the sea (1537-1637).--Episode of the giant Talos
     in Crete (1638-1693).--Arrival at the isle Anaphe: the dream of
     Euphemus, which is interpreted by Jason: arrival at Aegina and at
     Pagasae, the end of the voyage (1694-1781).


Now do thou thyself, goddess Muse, daughter of Zeus, tell of the labour
and wiles of the Colchian maiden. Surely my soul within me wavers with
speechless amazement as I ponder whether I should call it the lovesick
grief of mad passion or a panic flight, through which she left the
Colchian folk.

Aeetes all night long with the bravest captains of his people was
devising in his halls sheer treachery against the heroes, with fierce
wrath in his heart at the issue of the hateful contest; nor did he deem
at all that these things were being accomplished without the knowledge
of his daughters.

But into Medea's heart Hera cast most grievous fear; and she trembled
like a nimble fawn whom the baying of hounds hath terrified amid the
thicket of a deep copse. For at once she truly forboded that the aid she
had given was not hidden from her father, and that quickly she would
fill up the cup of woe. And she dreaded the guilty knowledge of her
handmaids; her eyes were filled with fire and her ears rung with a
terrible cry. Often did she clutch at her throat, and often did she drag
out her hair by the roots and groan in wretched despair. There on that
very day the maiden would have tasted the drugs and perished and so have
made void the purposes of Hera, had not the goddess driven her, all
bewildered, to flee with the sons of Phrixus; and her fluttering soul
within her was comforted; and then she poured from her bosom all the
drugs back again into the casket. Then she kissed her bed, and the
folding-doors on both sides, and stroked the walls, and tearing away in
her hands a long tress of hair, she left it in the chamber for her
mother, a memorial of her maidenhood, and thus lamented with passionate

"I go, leaving this long tress here in my stead, O mother mine; take
this farewell from me as I go far hence; farewell Chalciope, and all my
home. Would that the sea, stranger, had dashed thee to pieces, ere thou
earnest to the Colchian land!"

Thus she spake, and from her eyes shed copious tears. And as a bondmaid
steals away from a wealthy house, whom fate has lately severed from her
native land, nor yet has she made trial of grievous toil, but still
unschooled to misery and shrinking in terror from slavish tasks, goes
about beneath the cruel hands of a mistress; even so the lovely maiden
rushed forth from her home. But to her the bolts of the doors gave way
self-moved, leaping backwards at the swift strains of her magic song.
And with bare feet she sped along the narrow paths, with her left hand
holding her robe over her brow to veil her face and fair cheeks, and
with her right lifting up the hem of her tunic. Quickly along the dark
track, outside the towers of the spacious city, did she come in fear;
nor did any of the warders note her, but she sped on unseen by them.
Thence she was minded to go to the temple; for well she knew the way,
having often aforetime wandered there in quest of corpses and noxious
roots of the earth, as a sorceress is wont to do; and her soul fluttered
with quivering fear. And the Titanian goddess, the moon, rising from a
far land, beheld her as she fled distraught, and fiercely exulted over
her, and thus spake to her own heart:

"Not I alone then stray to the Latmian cave, nor do I alone burn with
love for fair Endymion; oft times with thoughts of love have I been
driven away by thy crafty spells, in order that in the darkness of night
thou mightest work thy sorcery at ease, even the deeds dear to thee. And
now thou thyself too hast part in a like mad passion; and some god of
affliction has given thee Jason to be thy grievous woe. Well, go on, and
steel thy heart, wise though thou be, to take up thy burden of pain,
fraught with many sighs."

"Thus spake the goddess; but swiftly the maiden's feet bore her, hasting
on. And gladly did she gain the high bank of the river and beheld on the
opposite side the gleam of fire, which all night long the heroes were
kindling in joy at the contest's issue. Then through the gloom, with
clear-pealing voice from across the stream, she called on Phrontis, the
youngest of Phrixus' sons, and he with his brothers and Aeson's son
recognised the maiden's _voice_; and in silence his comrades wondered
when they knew that it was so in truth. Thrice she called, and thrice at
the bidding of the company Phrontis called out in reply; and meantime
the heroes were rowing with swift-moving oars in search of her. Not yet
were they casting the ship's hawsers upon the opposite bank, when Jason
with light feet leapt to land from the deck above, and after him
Phrontis and Argus, sons of Phrixus, leapt to the ground; and she,
clasping their knees with both hands, thus addressed them:

"Save me, the hapless one, my friends, from Aeetes, and yourselves too,
for all is brought to light, nor doth any remedy come. But let us flee
upon the ship; before the king mounts his swift chariot. And I will lull
to sleep the guardian serpent and give you the fleece of gold; but do
thou, stranger, amid thy comrades make the gods witness of the vows thou
hast taken on thyself for my sake; and now that I have fled far from my
country, make me not a mark for blame and dishonour for want of

She spake in anguish; but greatly did the heart of Aeson's son rejoice,
and at once, as she fell at his knees, he raised her gently and embraced
her, and spake words of comfort: "Lady, let Zeus of Olympus himself be
witness to my oath, and Hera, queen of marriage, bride of Zeus, that I
will set thee in my halls my own wedded wife, when we have reached the
land of Hellas on our return."

Thus he spake, and straightway clasped her right hand in his; and she
bade them row the swift ship to the sacred grove near at hand, in order
that, while it was still night, they might seize and carry off the
fleece against the will of Aeetes. Word and deed were one to the eager
crew. For they took her on board, and straightway thrust the ship from
shore; and loud was the din as the chieftains strained at their oars,
but she, starting back, held out her hands in despair towards the shore.
But Jason spoke cheering words and restrained her grief.

Now at the hour when men have cast sleep from their eyes--huntsmen, who,
trusting to their bounds, never slumber away the end of night, but avoid
the light of dawn lest, smiting with its white beams, it efface the
track and scent of the quarry--then did Aeson's son and the maiden step
forth from the ship over a grassy spot, the "Ram's couch" as men call
it, where it first bent its wearied knees in rest, bearing on its back
the Minyan son of Athamas. And close by, all smirched with soot, was the
base of the altar, which the Aeolid Phrixus once set up to Zeus, the
aider of fugitives, when he sacrificed the golden wonder at the bidding
of Hermes who graciously met him on the way. There by the counsels of
Argus the chieftains put them ashore.

And they two by the pathway came to the sacred grove, seeking the huge
oak tree on which was hung the fleece, like to a cloud that blushes red
with the fiery beams of the rising sun. But right in front the serpent
with his keen sleepless eyes saw them coming, and stretched out his long
neck and hissed in awful wise; and all round the long banks of the river
echoed and the boundless grove. Those heard it who dwelt in the Colchian
land very far from Titanian Aea, near the outfall of Lycus, the river
which parts from loud-roaring Araxes and blends his sacred stream with
Phasis, and they twain flow on together in one and pour their waters
into the Caucasian Sea. And through fear young mothers awoke, and round
their new-born babes, who were sleeping in their arms, threw their hands
in agony, for the small limbs started at that hiss. And as when above a
pile of smouldering wood countless eddies of smoke roll up mingled with
soot, and one ever springs up quickly after another, rising aloft from
beneath in wavering wreaths; so at that time did that monster roll his
countless coils covered with hard dry scales. And as he writhed, the
maiden came before his eyes, with sweet voice calling to her aid Sleep,
highest of gods, to charm the monster; and she cried to the queen of the
underworld, the night-wanderer, to be propitious to her enterprise. And
Aeson's son followed in fear, but the serpent, already charmed by her
song, was relaxing the long ridge of his giant spine, and lengthening
out his myriad coils, like a dark wave, dumb and noiseless, rolling over
a sluggish sea; but still he raised aloft his grisly head, eager to
enclose them both in his murderous jaws. But she with a newly cut spray
of juniper, dipping and drawing untempered charms from her mystic brew,
sprinkled his eyes, while she chanted her song; and all around the
potent scent of the charm cast sleep; and on the very spot he let his
jaw sink down; and far behind through the wood with its many trees were
those countless coils stretched out.

Hereupon Jason snatched the golden fleece from the oak, at the maiden's
bidding; and she, standing firm, smeared with the charm the monster's
head, till Jason himself bade her turn back towards their ship, and she
left the grove of Ares, dusky with shade. And as a maiden catches on her
finely wrought robe the gleam of the moon at the full, as it rises above
her high-roofed chamber; and her heart rejoices as she beholds the fair
ray; so at that time did Jason uplift the mighty fleece in his hands;
and from the shimmering of the flocks of wool there settled on his fair
cheeks and brow a red flush like a flame. And great as is the hide of a
yearling ox or stag, which huntsmen call a brocket, so great in extent
was the fleece all golden above. Heavy it was, thickly clustered with
flocks; and as he moved along, even beneath his feet the sheen rose up
from the earth. And he strode on now with the fleece covering his left
shoulder from the height of his neck to his feet, and now again he
gathered it up in his hands; for he feared exceedingly, lest some god or
man should meet him and deprive him thereof.

Dawn was spreading over the earth when they reached the throng of
heroes; and the youths marvelled to behold the mighty fleece, which
gleamed like the lightning of Zeus. And each one started up eager to
touch it and clasp it in his hands. But the son of Aeson restrained them
all, and threw over it a mantle newly-woven; and he led the maiden to
the stern and seated her there, and spake to them all as follows:

"No longer now, my friends, forbear to return to your fatherland. For
now the task for which we dared this grievous voyage, toiling with
bitter sorrow of heart, has been lightly fulfilled by the maiden's
counsels. Her--for such is her will--I will bring home to be my wedded
wife; do ye preserve her, the glorious saviour of all Achaea and of
yourselves. For of a surety, I ween, will Aeetes come with his host to
bar our passage from the river into the sea. But do some of you toil at
the oars in turn, sitting man by man; and half of you raise your shields
of oxhide, a ready defence against the darts of the enemy, and guard our
return. And now in our hands we hold the fate of our children and dear
country and of our aged parents; and on our venture all Hellas depends,
to reap either the shame of failure or great renown."

Thus he spake, and donned his armour of war; and they cried aloud,
wondrously eager. And he drew his sword from the sheath and cut the
hawsers at the stern. And near the maiden he took his stand ready armed
by the steersman Ancaeus, and with their rowing the ship sped on as they
strained desperately to drive her clear of the river.

By this time Medea's love and deeds had become known to haughty Aeetes
and to all the Colchians. And they thronged to the assembly in arms; and
countless as the waves of the stormy sea when they rise crested by the
wind, or as the leaves that fall to the ground from the wood with its
myriad branches in the month when the leaves fall--who could reckon
their tale?--so they in countless number poured along the banks of the
river shouting in frenzy; and in his shapely chariot Aeetes shone forth
above all with his steeds, the gift of Helios, swift as the blasts of
the wind. In his left hand he raised his curved shield, and in his right
a huge pine-torch, and near him in front stood up his mighty spear. And
Apsyrtus held in his hands the reins of the steeds. But already the ship
was cleaving the sea before her, urged on by stalwart oarsmen, and the
stream of the mighty river rushing down. But the king in grievous
anguish lifted his hands and called on Helios and Zeus to bear witness
to their evil deeds; and terrible threats he uttered against all his
people, that unless they should with their own hands seize the maiden,
either on the land or still finding the ship on the swell of the open
sea, and bring her back, that so he might satisfy his eager soul with
vengeance for all those deeds, at the cost of their own lives they
should learn and abide all his rage and revenge.

Thus spake Aeetes; and on that same day the Colchians launched their
ships and cast the tackle on board, and on that same day sailed forth on
the sea; thou wouldst not say so mighty a host was a fleet of ships, but
that a countless flight of birds, swarm on swarm, was clamouring over
the sea.

Swiftly the wind blew, as the goddess Hera planned, so that most quickly
Aeaean Medea might reach the Pelasgian land, a bane to the house of
Pelias, and on the third morn they bound the ship's stern cables to the
shores of the Paphlagonians, at the mouth of the river Halys. For Medea
bade them land and propitiate Hecate with sacrifice. Now all that the
maiden prepared for offering the sacrifice may no man know, and may my
soul not urge me to sing thereof. Awe restrains my lips, yet from that
time the altar which the heroes raised on the beach to the goddess
remains till now, a sight to men of a later day.

And straightway Aeson's son and the rest of the heroes bethought them of
Phineus, how that he had said that their course from Aea should be
different, but to all alike his meaning was dim. Then Argus spake, and
they eagerly hearkened:

"We go to Orchomenus, whither that unerring seer, whom ye met aforetime,
foretold your voyage. For there is another course, signified by those
priests of the immortal gods, who have sprung from Tritonian Thebes. As
yet all the stars that wheel in the heaven were not, nor yet, though one
should inquire, could aught be heard of the sacred race of the Danai.
Apidanean Arcadians alone existed, Arcadians who lived even before the
moon, it is said, eating acorns on the hills; nor at that time was the
Pelasgian land ruled by the glorious sons of Deucalion, in the days when
Egypt, mother of men of an older time, was called the fertile
Morning-land, and the river fair-flowing Triton, by which all the
Morning-land is watered; and never does the rain from Zeus moisten the
earth; but from the flooding of the river abundant crops spring up. From
this land, it is said, a king[1] made his way all round through the
whole of Europe and Asia, trusting in the might and strength and courage
of his people; and countless cities did he found wherever he came,
whereof some are still inhabited and some not; many an age hath passed
since then. But Aea abides unshaken even now and the sons of those men
whom that king settled to dwell in Aea. They preserve the writings of
their fathers, graven on pillars, whereon are marked all the ways and
the limits of sea and land as ye journey on all sides round. There is a
river, the uttermost horn of Ocean, broad and exceeding deep, that a
merchant ship may traverse; they call it Ister and have marked it far
off; and for a while it cleaves the boundless tilth alone in one stream;
for beyond the blasts of the north wind, far off in the Rhipaean
mountains, its springs burst forth with a roar. But when it enters the
boundaries of the Thracians and Scythians, here, dividing its stream
into two, it sends its waters partly into the Ionian sea,[2] and partly
to the south into a deep gulf that bends upwards from the Trinacrian
sea, that sea which lies along your land, if indeed Achelous flows forth
from your land."

[Footnote 1: The allusion is to Sesostris, see Herod, ii. 102 foll.]

[Footnote 2: Or, reading [Greek: hêmeterên], "into our sea." The Euxine
is meant in any case and the word Ionian is therefore wrong.]

Thus he spake, and to them the goddess granted a happy portent, and all
at the sight shouted approval, that this was their appointed path. For
before them appeared a trail of heavenly light, a sign where they might
pass. And gladly they left behind there the son of Lycus and with canvas
outspread sailed over the sea, with their eyes on the Paphlagonian
mountains. But they did not round Carambis, for the winds and the gleam
of the heavenly fire stayed with them till they reached Ister's mighty

Now some of the Colchians, in a vain search, passed out from Pontus
through the Cyanean rocks; but the rest went to the river, and them
Apsyrtus led, and, turning aside, he entered the mouth called Fair.
Wherefore he outstripped the heroes by crossing a neck of land into the
furthest gulf of the Ionian sea. For a certain island is enclosed by
Ister, by name Peuce, three-cornered, its base stretching along the
coast, and with a sharp angle towards the river; and round it the
outfall is cleft in two. One mouth they call the mouth of Narex, and the
other, at the lower end, the Fair mouth. And through this Apsyrtus and
his Colchians rushed with all speed; but the heroes went upwards far
away towards the highest part of the island. And in the meadows the
country shepherds left their countless flocks for dread of the ships,
for they deemed that they were beasts coming forth from the
monster-teeming sea. For never yet before had they seen seafaring ships,
neither the Scythians mingled with the Thracians, nor the Sigynni, nor
yet the Graucenii, nor the Sindi that now inhabit the vast desert plain
of Laurium. But when they had passed near the mount Angurum, and the
cliff of Cauliacus, far from the mount Angurum, round which Ister,
dividing his stream, falls into the sea on this side and on that, and
the Laurian plain, then indeed the Colchians went forth into the Cronian
sea and cut off all the ways, to prevent their foes' escape. And the
heroes came down the river behind and reached the two Brygean isles of
Artemis near at hand. Now in one of them was a sacred temple; and on the
other they landed, avoiding the host of Apsyrtus; for the Colchians had
left these islands out of many within the river, just as they were,
through reverence for the daughter of Zeus; but the rest, thronged by
the Colchians, barred the ways to the sea. And so on other islands too,
close by, Apsyrtus left his host as far as the river Salangon and the
Nestian land.

There the Minyae would at that time have yielded in grim fight, a few to
many; but ere then they made a covenant, shunning a dire quarrel; as to
the golden fleece, that since Aeetes himself had so promised them if
they should fulfil the contests, they should keep it as justly won,
whether they carried it off by craft or even openly in the king's
despite; but as to Medea--for that was the cause of strife--that they
should give her in ward to Leto's daughter apart from the throng, until
some one of the kings that dispense justice should utter his doom,
whether she must return to her father's home or follow the chieftains to
the land of Hellas.

Now when the maiden had mused upon all this, sharp anguish shook her
heart unceasingly; and quickly she called forth Jason alone apart from
his comrades, and led him aside until they were far away, and before his
face uttered her speech all broken with sobs:

"What is this purpose that ye are now devising about me, O son of Aeson?
Has thy triumph utterly cast forgetfulness upon thee, and reckest thou
nothing of all that thou spakest when held fast by necessity? whither
are fled the oaths by Zeus the suppliants' god, whither are fled thy
honied promises? for which in no seemly wise, with shameless will, I
have left my country, the glories of my home and even my parents--things
that were dearest to me; and far away all alone I am borne over the sea
with the plaintive kingfishers because of thy trouble, in order that I
might save thy life in fulfilling the contests with the oxen and the
earthborn men. Last of all the fleece--when the matter became known, it
was by my folly thou didst win it; and a foul reproach have I poured on
womankind. Wherefore I say that as thy child, thy bride and thy sister,
I follow thee to the land of Hellas. Be ready to stand by me to the end,
abandon me not left forlorn of thee when thou dost visit the kings. But
only save me; let justice and right, to which we have both agreed, stand
firm; or else do thou at once shear through this neck with the sword,
that I may gain the guerdon due to my mad passion. Poor wretch! if the
king, to whom you both commit your cruel covenant, doom me to belong to
my brother. How shall I come to my father's sight? Will it be with a
good name? What revenge, what heavy calamity shall I not endure in agony
for the terrible deeds I have done? And wilt thou win the return that
thy heart desires? Never may Zeus' bride, the queen of all, in whom thou
dost glory, bring that to pass. Mayst thou some time remember me when
thou art racked with anguish; may the fleece like a dream vanish into
the nether darkness on the wings of the wind! And may my avenging Furies
forthwith drive thee from thy country, for all that I have suffered
through thy cruelty! These curses will not be allowed to fall
unaccomplished to the ground. A mighty oath hast thou transgressed,
ruthless one; but not long shalt thou and thy comrades sit at ease
casting eyes of mockery upon me, for all your covenants."

Thus she spake, seething with fierce wrath; and she longed to set fire
to the ship and to hew it utterly in pieces, and herself to fall into
the raging flame. But Jason, half afraid, thus addressed her with gentle

"Forbear, lady; me too this pleases not. But we seek some respite from
battle, for such a cloud of hostile men, like to a fire, surrounds us,
on thy account. For all that inhabit this land are eager to aid
Apsyrtus, that they may lead thee back home to thy father, like some
captured maid. And all of us would perish in hateful destruction, if we
closed with them in fight; and bitterer still will be the pain, if we
are slain and leave thee to be their prey. But this covenant will weave
a web of guile to lead him to ruin. Nor will the people of the land for
thy sake oppose us, to favour the Colchians, when their prince is no
longer with them, who is thy champion and thy brother; nor will I shrink
from matching myself in fight with the Colchians, if they bar my way

Thus he spake soothing her; and she uttered a deadly speech: "Take heed
now. For when sorry deeds are done we must needs devise sorry counsel,
since at first I was distraught by my error, and by heaven's will it was
I wrought the accomplishment of evil desires. Do thou in the turmoil
shield me from the Colchians' spears; and I will beguile Apsyrtus to
come into thy hands--do thou greet him with splendid gifts--if only I
could persuade the heralds on their departure to bring him alone to
hearken to my words. Thereupon if this deed pleases thee, slay him and
raise a conflict with the Colchians, I care not."

So they two agreed and prepared a great web of guile for Apsyrtus, and
provided many gifts such as are due to guests, and among them gave a
sacred robe of Hypsipyle, of crimson hue. The Graces with their own
hands had wrought it for Dionysus in sea-girt Dia, and he gave it to his
son Thoas thereafter, and Thoas left it to Hypsipyle, and she gave that
fair-wrought guest-gift with many another marvel to Aeson's son to wear.
Never couldst thou satisfy thy sweet desire by touching it or gazing on
it. And from it a divine fragrance breathed from the time when the king
of Nysa himself lay to rest thereon, flushed with wine and nectar as he
clasped the beauteous breast of the maiden-daughter of Minos, whom once
Theseus forsook in the island of Dia, when she had followed him from
Cnossus. And when she had worked upon the heralds to induce her brother
to come, as soon as she reached the temple of the goddess, according to
the agreement, and the darkness of night surrounded them that so she
might devise with him a cunning plan for her to take the mighty fleece
of gold and return to the home of Aeetes, for, she said, the sons of
Phrixus had given her by force to the strangers to carry off; with such
beguiling words she scattered to the air and the breezes her witching
charms, which even from afar would have drawn down the savage beast from
the steep mountain-height.

Ruthless Love, great bane, great curse to mankind, from thee come deadly
strifes and lamentations and groans, and countless pains as well have
their stormy birth from thee. Arise, thou god, and arm thyself against
the sons of our foes in such guise as when thou didst fill Medea's heart
with accursed madness. How then by evil doom did she slay Apsyrtus when
he came to meet her? For that must our song tell next.

When the heroes had left the maiden on the island of Artemis, according
to the covenant, both sides ran their ships to land separately. And
Jason went to the ambush to lie in wait for Apsyrtus and then for his
comrades. But he, beguiled by these dire promises, swiftly crossed the
swell of the sea in his ship, and in dark night set foot on the sacred
island; and faring all alone to meet her he made trial in speech of his
sister, as a tender child tries a wintry torrent which not even strong
men can pass through, to see if she would devise some guile against the
strangers. And so they two agreed together on everything; and
straightway Aeson's son leapt forth from the thick ambush, lifting his
bare sword in his hand, and quickly the maiden turned her eyes aside and
covered them with her veil that she might not see the blood of her
brother when he was smitten. And Jason marked him and struck him down,
as a butcher strikes down a mighty strong-horned bull, hard by the
temple which the Brygi on the mainland opposite had once built for
Artemis. In its vestibule he fell on his knees; and at last the hero
breathing out his life caught up in both hands the dark blood as it
welled from the wound; and he dyed with red his sister's silvery veil
and robe as she shrank away. And with swift side-glance the irresistible
pitiless Fury beheld the deadly deed they had done. And the hero,
Aeson's son, cut off the extremities of the dead man, and thrice licked
up some blood and thrice spat the pollution from his teeth, as it is
right for the slayer to do, to atone for a treacherous murder. And the
clammy corpse he hid in the ground where even now those bones lie among
the Apsyrtians.

Now as soon as the heroes saw the blaze of a torch, which the maiden
raised for them as a sign to pursue, they laid their own ship near the
Colchian ship, and they slaughtered the Colchian host, as kites slay the
tribes of wood-pigeons, or as lions of the wold, when they have leapt
amid the steading, drive a great flock of sheep huddled together. Nor
did one of them escape death, but the heroes rushed upon the whole crew,
destroying them like a flame; and at last Jason met them, and was eager
to give aid where none was needed; but already they were taking thought
for him too. Thereupon they sat to devise some prudent counsel for their
voyage, and the maiden came upon them as they pondered, but Peleus spake
his word first:

"I now bid you embark while it is still night, and take with your oars
the passage opposite to that which the enemy guards, for at dawn when
they see their plight I deem that no word urging to further pursuit of
us will prevail with them; but as people bereft of their king, they will
be scattered in grievous dissension. And easy, when the people are
scattered, will this path be for us on our return."

Thus he spake; and the youths assented to the words of Aeacus' son. And
quickly they entered the ship, and toiled at their oars unceasingly
until they reached the sacred isle of Electra, the highest of them all,
near the river Eridanus.

But when the Colchians learnt the death of their prince, verily they
were eager to pursue Argo and the Minyans through all the Cronian sea.
But Hera restrained them by terrible lightnings from the sky. And at
last they loathed their own homes in the Cytaean land, quailing before
Aeetes' fierce wrath; so they landed and made abiding homes there,
scattered far and wide. Some set foot on those very islands where the
heroes had stayed, and they still dwell there, bearing a name derived
from Apsyrtus; and others built a fenced city by the dark deep Illyrian
river, where is the tomb of Harmonia and Cadmus, dwelling among the
Encheleans; and others live amid the mountains which are called the
Thunderers, from the day when the thunders of Zeus, son of Cronos,
prevented them from crossing over to the island opposite.

Now the heroes, when their return seemed safe for them, fared onward and
made their hawsers fast to the land of the Hylleans. For the islands lay
thick in the river and made the path dangerous for those who sailed
thereby. Nor, as aforetime, did the Hylleans devise their hurt, but of
their own accord furthered their passage, winning as guerdon a mighty
tripod of Apollo. For tripods twain had Phoebus given to Aeson's son to
carry afar in the voyage he had to make, at the time when he went to
sacred Pytho to enquire about this very voyage; and it was ordained by
fate that in whatever land they should be placed, that land should never
be ravaged by the attacks of foemen. Therefore even now this tripod is
hidden in that land near the pleasant city of Hyllus, far beneath the
earth, that it may ever be unseen by mortals. Yet they found not King
Hyllus still alive in the land, whom fair Melite bare to Heracles in the
land of the Phaeacians. For he came to the abode of Nausithous and to
Macris, the nurse of Dionysus, to cleanse himself from the deadly murder
of his children; here he loved and overcame the water nymph Melite, the
daughter of the river Aegaeus, and she bare mighty Hyllus. But when he
had grown up he desired not to dwell in that island under the rule of
Nausithous the king; but he collected a host of native Phaeacians and
came to the Cronian sea; for the hero King Nausithous aided his journey,
and there he settled, and the Mentores slew him as he was fighting for
the oxen of his field.

Now, goddesses, say how it is that beyond this sea, near the land of
Ausonia and the Ligystian isles, which are called Stoechades, the mighty
tracks of the ship Argo are clearly sung of? What great constraint and
need brought the heroes so far? What breezes wafted them?

When Apsyrtus had fallen in mighty overthrow Zeus himself, king of gods,
was seized with wrath at what they had done. And he ordained that by the
counsels of Aeaean Circe they should cleanse themselves from the
terrible stain of blood and suffer countless woes before their return.
Yet none of the chieftains knew this; but far onward they sped starting
from the Hyllean land, and they left behind all the islands that were
beforetime thronged by the Colchians--the Liburnian isles, isle after
isle, Issa, Dysceladus, and lovely Pityeia. Next after them they came to
Corcyra, where Poseidon settled the daughter of Asopus, fair-haired
Corcyra, far from the land of Phlius, whence he had carried her off
through love; and sailors beholding it from the sea, all black with its
sombre woods, call it Corcyra the Black. And next they passed Melite,
rejoicing in the soft-blowing breeze, and steep Cerossus, and Nymphaea
at a distance, where lady Calypso, daughter of Atlas, dwelt; and they
deemed they saw the misty mountains of Thunder. And then Hera bethought
her of the counsels and wrath of Zeus concerning them. And she devised
an ending of their voyage and stirred up storm-winds before them, by
which they were caught and borne back to the rocky isle of Electra. And
straightway on a sudden there called to them in the midst of their
course, speaking with a human voice, the beam of the hollow ship, which
Athena had set in the centre of the stem, made of Dodonian oak. And
deadly fear seized them as they heard the voice that told of the
grievous wrath of Zeus. For it proclaimed that they should not escape
the paths of an endless sea nor grievous tempests, unless Circe should
purge away the guilt of the ruthless murder of Apsyrtus; and it bade
Polydeuces and Castor pray to the immortal gods first to grant a path
through the Ausonian sea where they should find Circe, daughter of Perse
and Helios.

Thus Argo cried through the darkness; and the sons of Tyndareus uprose,
and lifted their hands to the immortals praying for each boon: but
dejection held the rest of the Minyan heroes. And far on sped Argo under
sail, and entered deep into the stream of Eridanus; where once, smitten
on the breast by the blazing bolt, Phaëthon half-consumed fell from the
chariot of Helios into the opening of that deep lake; and even now it
belcheth up heavy steam clouds from the smouldering wound. And no bird
spreading its light wings can cross that water; but in mid-course it
plunges into the flame, fluttering. And all around the maidens, the
daughters of Helios, enclosed in tall poplars, wretchedly wail a piteous
plaint; and from their eyes they shed on the ground bright drops of
amber. These are dried by the sun upon the sand; but whenever the waters
of the dark lake flow over the strand before the blast of the wailing
wind, then they roll on in a mass into Eridanus with swelling tide. But
the Celts have attached this story to them, that these are the tears of
Leto's son, Apollo, that are borne along by the eddies, the countless
tears that he shed aforetime when he came to the sacred race of the
Hyperboreans and left shining heaven at the chiding of his father, being
in wrath concerning his son whom divine Coronis bare in bright Lacereia
at the mouth of Amyrus. And such is the story told among these men. But
no desire for food or drink seized the heroes nor were their thoughts
turned to joy. But they were sorely afflicted all day, heavy and faint
at heart, with the noisome stench, hard to endure, which the streams of
Eridanus sent forth from Phaethon still burning; and at night they heard
the piercing lament of the daughters of Helios, wailing with shrill
voice; and, as they lamented, their tears were borne on the water like
drops of oil.

Thence they entered the deep stream of Rhodanus which flows into
Eridanus; and where they meet there is a roar of mingling waters. Now
that river, rising from the ends of the earth, where are the portals and
mansions of Night, on one side bursts forth upon the beach of Ocean, at
another pours into the Ionian sea, and on the third through seven mouths
sends its stream to the Sardinian sea and its limitless bay.[1] And from
Rhodanus they entered stormy lakes, which spread throughout the Celtic
mainland of wondrous size; and there they would have met with an
inglorious calamity; for a certain branch of the river was bearing them
towards a gulf of Ocean which in ignorance they were about to enter, and
never would they have returned from there in safety. But Hera leaping
forth from heaven pealed her cry from the Hercynian rock; and all
together were shaken with fear of her cry; for terribly crashed the
mighty firmament. And backward they turned by reason of the goddess, and
noted the path by which their return was ordained. And after a long
while they came to the beach of the surging sea by the devising of Hera,
passing unharmed through countless tribes of the Celts and Ligyans. For
round them the goddess poured a dread mist day by day as they fared on.
And sailing through the midmost mouth, they reached the Stoechades
islands in safety by the aid of the sons of Zeus; wherefore altars and
sacred rites are established in their honour for ever; and not that
sea-faring alone did they attend to succour; but Zeus granted to them
the ships of future sailors too. Then leaving the Stoechades they passed
on to the island Aethalia, where after their toil they wiped away with
pebbles sweat in abundance; and pebbles like skin in colour are strewn
on the beach[2]; and there are their quoits and their wondrous armour;
and there is the Argoan harbour called after them.

[Footnote 1: Apollonius seems to have thought that the Po, the Rhone,
and the Rhine are all connected together.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. like the scrapings from skin, [Greek: apostlengismata];
see Strabo p. 224 for this adventure.]

And quickly from there they passed through the sea, beholding the
Tyrrhenian shores of Ausonia; and they came to the famous harbour of
Aeaea, and from the ship they cast hawsers to the shore near at hand.
And here they found Circe bathing her head in the salt sea-spray, for
sorely had she been scared by visions of the night. With blood her
chambers and all the walls of her palace seemed to be running, and flame
was devouring all the magic herbs with which she used to bewitch
strangers whoever came; and she herself with murderous blood quenched
the glowing flame, drawing it up in her hands; and she ceased from
deadly fear. Wherefore when morning came she rose, and with sea-spray
was bathing her hair and her garments. And beasts, not resembling the
beasts of the wild, nor yet like men in body, but with a medley of
limbs, went in a throng, as sheep from the fold in multitudes follow the
shepherd. Such creatures, compacted of various limbs, did earth herself
produce from the primeval slime when she had not yet grown solid beneath
a rainless sky nor yet had received a drop of moisture from the rays of
the scorching sun; but time combined these forms and marshalled them in
their ranks; in such wise these monsters shapeless of form followed her.
And exceeding wonder seized the heroes, and at once, as each gazed on
the form and face of Circe, they readily guessed that she was the sister
of Aeetes.

Now when she had dismissed the fears of her nightly visions, straightway
she fared backwards, and in her subtlety she bade the heroes follow,
charming them on with her hand. Thereupon the host remained stedfast at
the bidding of Aeson's son, but Jason drew with him the Colchian maid.
And both followed the selfsame path till they reached the hall of Circe,
and she in amaze at their coming bade them sit on brightly burnished
seats. And they, quiet and silent, sped to the hearth and sat there, as
is the wont of wretched suppliants. Medea hid her face in both her
hands, but Jason fixed in the ground the mighty hilted sword with which
he had slain Aeetes' son; nor did they raise their eyes to meet her
look. And straightway Circe became aware of the doom of a suppliant and
the guilt of murder. Wherefore in reverence for the ordinance of Zeus,
the god of suppliants, who is a god of wrath yet mightily aids slayers
of men, she began to offer the sacrifice with which ruthless suppliants
are cleansed from guilt when they approach the altar. First to atone for
the murder still unexpiated, she held above their heads the young of a
sow whose dugs yet swelled from the fruit of the womb, and, severing its
neck, sprinkled their hands with the blood; and again she made
propitiation with other drink offerings, calling on Zeus the Cleanser,
the protector of murder-stained suppliants. And all the defilements in a
mass her attendants bore forth from the palace--the Naiad nymphs who
ministered all things to her. And within, Circe, standing by the hearth,
kept burning atonement-cakes without wine, praying the while that she
might stay from their wrath the terrible Furies, and that Zeus himself
might be propitious and gentle to them both, whether with hands stained
by the blood of a stranger or, as kinsfolk, by the blood of a kinsman,
they should implore his grace.

But when she had wrought all her task, then she raised them up and
seated them on well polished seats, and herself sat near, face to face
with them. And at once she asked them clearly of their business and
their voyaging, and whence they had come to her land and palace, and had
thus seated themselves as suppliants at her hearth. For in truth the
hideous remembrance of her dreams entered her mind as she pondered; and
she longed to hear the voice of the maiden, her kinswoman, as soon as
she saw that she had raised her eyes from the ground. For all those of
the race of Helios were plain to discern, since by the far flashing of
their eyes they shot in front of them a gleam as of gold. So Medea told
her all she asked--the daughter of Aeetes of the gloomy heart, speaking
gently in the Colchian tongue, both of the quest and the journeyings of
the heroes, and of their toils in the swift contests, and how she had
sinned through the counsels of her much-sorrowing sister, and how with
the sons of Phrixus she had fled afar from the tyrannous horrors of her
father; but she shrank from telling of the murder of Apsyrtus. Yet she
escaped not Circe's ken; nevertheless, in spite of all she pitied the
weeping maiden, and spake thus:

"Poor wretch, an evil and shameful return hast thou planned. Not for
long, I ween, wilt thou escape the heavy wrath of Aeetes; but soon will
he go even to the dwellings of Hellas to avenge the blood of his son,
for intolerable are the deeds thou hast done. But since thou art my
suppliant and my kinswoman, no further ill shall I devise against thee
at thy coming; but begone from my halls, companioning the stranger,
whosoever he be, this unknown one that thou hast taken in thy father's
despite; and kneel not to me at my hearth, for never will I approve thy
counsels and thy shameful flight."

Thus she spake, and measureless anguish seized the maid; and over her
eyes she cast her robe and poured forth a lamentation, until the hero
took her by the hand and led her forth from the hall quivering with
fear. So they left the home of Circe.

But they were not unmarked by the spouse of Zeus, son of Cronos; but
Iris told her when she saw them faring from the hall. For Hera had
bidden her watch what time they should come to the ship; so again she
urged her and spake:

"Dear Iris, now come, if ever thou hast fulfilled bidding, his thee away
on light pinions, and bid Thetis arise from the sea and come hither. For
need of her is come upon me. Then go to the sea-beaches where the bronze
anvils of Hephaestus are smitten by sturdy hammers, and tell him to
still the blasts of fire until Argo pass by them. Then go to Aeolus too,
Aeolus who rules the winds, children of the clear sky; and to him also
tell my purpose so that he may make all winds cease under heaven and no
breeze may ruffle the sea; yet let the breath of the west wind blow
until the heroes have reached the Phaeacian isle of Alcinous."

So she spake, and straightway Iris leapt down from Olympus and cleft her
way, with light wings outspread. And she plunged into the Aegean Sea,
where is the dwelling of Nereus. And she came to Thetis first and, by
the promptings of Hera, told her tale and roused her to go to the
goddess. Next she came to Hephaestus, and quickly made him cease from
the clang of his iron hammers; and the smoke-grimed bellows were stayed
from their blast. And thirdly she came to Aeolus, the famous son of
Hippotas. And when she had given her message to him also and rested her
swift knees from her course, then Thetis leaving Nereus and her sisters
had come from the sea to Olympus to the goddess Hera; and the goddess
made her sit by her side and uttered her word:

"Hearken now, lady Thetis, to what I am eager to tell thee. Thou knowest
how honoured in my heart is the hero, Aeson's son, and the others that
have helped him in the contest, and how I saved them when they passed
between the Wandering rocks[1] where roar terrible storms of fire and
the waves foam round the rugged reefs. And now past the mighty rock of
Scylla and Charybdis horribly belching, a course awaits them. But thee
indeed from thy infancy did I tend with my own hands and love beyond all
others that dwell in the salt sea because thou didst refuse to share the
couch of Zeus for all his desire. For to him such deeds are ever dear,
to embrace either goddesses or mortal women. But in reverence for me and
with fear in thy heart thou didst shrink from his love; and he then
swore a mighty oath that thou shouldst never be called the bride of an
immortal god. Yet he ceased not from spying thee against thy will, until
reverend Themis declared to him the whole truth, how that it was thy
fate to bear a son mightier than his sire; wherefore he gave thee up,
for all his desire, fearing lest another should be his match and rule
the immortals, and in order that he might ever hold his own dominion.
But I gave thee the best of the sons of earth to be thy husband, that
thou mightest find a marriage dear to thy heart and bear children; and I
summoned to the feast the gods, one and all. And with my own hand I
raised the bridal torch, in return for the kindly honour thou didst pay
me. But come, let me tell a tale that erreth not. When thy son shall
come to the Elysian plain, he whom now in the home of Cheiron the
Centaur water-nymphs are tending, though he still craves thy mother
milk, it is fated that he be the husband of Medea, Aeetes' daughter; do
thou aid thy daughter-in-law as a mother-in-law should, and aid Peleus
himself. Why is thy wrath so steadfast? He was blinded by folly. For
blindness comes even upon the gods. Surely at my behest I deem that
Hephaestus will cease from kindling the fury of his flame, and that
Aeolus, son of Hippotas, will check his swift rushing winds, all but the
steady west wind, until they reach the havens of the Phaeacians; do thou
devise a return without bane. The rocks and the tyrannous waves are my
fear, they alone, and them thou canst foil with thy sisters' aid. And
let them not fall in their helplessness into Charybdis lest she swallow
them at one gulp, or approach the hideous lair of Scylla, Ausonian
Scylla the deadly, whom night-wandering Hecate, who is called
Crataeis,[2] bare to Phorcys, lest swooping upon them with her horrible
jaws she destroy the chiefest of the heroes. But guide their ship in the
course where there shall be still a hair's breadth escape from

[Footnote 1: The _Symplegades_ are referred to, where help was given by
Athena, not by Hera. It is strange that no mention is made of the
_Planctae_, properly so called, past which they are soon to be helped.
Perhaps some lines have fallen out.]

[Footnote 2: i.e. the Mighty One.]

Thus she spake, and Thetis answered with these words: "If the fury of
the ravening flame and the stormy winds cease in very deed, surely will
I promise boldly to save the ship, even though the waves bar the way, if
only the west wind blows fresh and clear. But it is time to fare on a
long and measureless path, in quest of my sisters who will aid me, and
to the spot where the ship's hawsers are fastened, that at early dawn
the heroes may take thought to win their home-return."

She spake, and darting down from the sky fell amid the eddies of the
dark blue sea; and she called aid her the rest of the Nereids, her own
sisters; and they heard her and gathered together; and Thetis declared
to them Hera's behests, and quickly sped them all on their way to the
Ausonian sea. And herself, swifter than the flash of an eye or the hafts
of the sun, when it rises upwards from a far-distant land, hastened
swiftly through the sea, until she reached the Aeaean beach of the
Tyrrhenian mainland. And the heroes she found by the ship taking their
pastime, with quoits and shooting of arrows; and she drew near and just
touched the hand of Aeacus' son Peleus, for he was her husband; nor
could anyone see her clearly, but she appeared to his eyes alone, and
thus addressed him:

"No longer now must ye stay sitting on the Tyrrhenian beach, but at dawn
loosen the hawsers of your swift ship, in obedience to Hera, your
helper. For at her behest the maiden daughters of Nereus have met
together to draw your ship through the midst of the rocks which are
called Planctae,[1] for that is your destined path. But do thou show my
person to no one, when thou seest us come to meet thee, but keep it
secret in thy mind, lest thou anger me still more than thou didst anger
me before so recklessly."

[Footnote 1: i.e. the Wanderers.]

She spake, and vanished into the depths of the sea; but sharp pain smote
Peleus, for never before had he seen her come, since first she left her
bridal chamber and bed in anger, on account of noble Achilles, then a
babe. For she ever encompassed the child's mortal flesh in the night
with the flame of fire; and day by day she anointed with ambrosia his
tender frame, so that he might become immortal and that she might keep
off from his body loathsome old age. But Peleus leapt up from his bed
and saw his dear son gasping in the flame; and at the sight he uttered a
terrible cry, fool that he was; and she heard it, and catching up the
child threw him screaming to the ground, and herself like a breath of
wind passed swiftly from the hall as a dream and leapt into the sea,
exceeding wroth, and thereafter returned not again. Wherefore blank
amazement fettered his soul; nevertheless he declared to his comrades
all the bidding of Thetis. And they broke off in the midst and hurriedly
ceased their contests, and prepared their meal and earth-strewn beds,
whereon after supper they slept through the night as aforetime.

Now when dawn the light-bringer was touching the edge of heaven, then at
the coming of the swift west wind they went to their thwarts from the
land; and gladly did they draw up the anchors from the deep and made the
tackling ready in due order; and above spread the sail, stretching it
taut with the sheets from the yard-arm. And a fresh breeze wafted the
ship on. And soon they saw a fair island, Anthemoessa, where the
clear-voiced Sirens, daughters of Achelous, used to beguile with their
sweet songs whoever cast anchor there, and then destroy him. Them lovely
Terpsichore, one of the Muses, bare, united with Achelous; and once they
tended Demeter's noble daughter still unwed, and sang to her in chorus;
and at that time they were fashioned in part like birds and in part like
maidens to behold. And ever on the watch from their place of prospect
with its fair haven, often from many had they taken away their sweet
return, consuming them with wasting desire; and suddenly to the heroes,
too, they sent forth from their lips a lily-like voice. And they were
already about to cast from the ship the hawsers to the shore, had not
Thracian Orpheus, son of Oeagrus, stringing in his hands his Bistonian
lyre, rung forth the hasty snatch of a rippling melody so that their
ears might be filled with the sound of his twanging; and the lyre
overcame the maidens' voice. And the west wind and the sounding wave
rushing astern bore the ship on; and the Sirens kept uttering their
ceaseless song. But even so the goodly son of Teleon alone of the
comrades leapt before them all from the polished bench into the sea,
even Butes, his soul melted by the clear ringing voice of the Sirens;
and he swam through the dark surge to mount the beach, poor wretch.
Quickly would they have robbed him of his return then and there, but the
goddess that rules Eryx, Cypris, in pity snatched him away, while yet in
the eddies, and graciously meeting him saved him to dwell on the
Lilybean height. And the heroes, seized by anguish, left the Sirens, but
other perils still worse, destructive to ships, awaited them in the
meeting-place of the seas.

For on one side appeared the smooth rock of Scylla; on the other
Charybdis ceaselessly spouted and roared; in another part the Wandering
rocks were booming beneath the mighty surge, where before the burning
flame spurted forth from the top of the crags, above the rock glowing
with fire, and the air was misty with smoke, nor could you have seen the
sun's light. Then, though Hephaestus had ceased from his toils, the sea
was still sending up a warm vapour. Hereupon on this side and on that
the daughters of Nereus met them; and behind, lady Thetis set her hand
to the rudder-blade, to guide them amid the Wandering rocks. And as when
in fair weather herds of dolphins come up from the depths and sport in
circles round a ship as it speeds along, now seen in front, now behind,
now again at the side--and delight comes to the sailors; so the Nereids
darted upward and circled in their ranks round the ship Argo, while
Thetis guided its course. And when they were about to touch the
Wandering rocks, straightway they raised the edge of their garments over
their snow-white knees, and aloft on the very rocks and where the waves
broke, they hurried along on this side and on that apart from one
another. And the ship was raised aloft as the current smote her, and all
around the furious wave mounting up broke over the rocks, which at one
time touched the sky like towering crags, at another, down in the
depths, were fixed fast at the bottom of the sea and the fierce waves
poured over them in floods. And the Nereids, even as maidens near some
sandy beach roll their garments up to their waists out of their way and
sport with a shapely-rounded ball; then they catch it one from another
and send it high into the air; and it never touches the ground; so they
in turn one from another sent the ship through the air over the waves,
as it sped on ever away from the rocks; and round them the water spouted
and foamed. And lord Hephaestus himself standing on the summit of a
smooth rock and resting his massy shoulder on the handle of his hammer,
beheld them, and the spouse of Zeus beheld them as she stood above the
gleaming heaven; and she threw her arms round Athena, such fear seized
her as she gazed. And as long as the space of a day is lengthened out in
springtime, so long a time did they toil, heaving the ship between the
loud-echoing rocks; then again the heroes caught the wind and sped
onward; and swiftly they passed the mead of Thrinacia, where the kine of
Helios fed. There the nymphs, like sea-mews, plunged beneath the depths,
when they had fulfilled the behests of the spouse of Zeus. And at the
same time the bleating of sheep came to the heroes through the mist and
the lowing of kine, near at hand, smote their ears. And over the dewy
leas Phaëthusa, the youngest of the daughters of Helios, tended the
sheep, bearing in her hand a silver crook; while Lampetia, herding the
kine, wielded a staff of glowing orichalcum[1] as she followed. These
kine the heroes saw feeding by the river's stream, over the plain and
the water-meadow; not one of them was dark in hue but all were white as
milk and glorying in their horns of gold. So they passed them by in the
day-time, and when night came on they were cleaving a great sea-gulf,
rejoicing, until again early rising dawn threw light upon their course.

[Footnote 1: A fabulous metal, resembling gold in appearance.]

Fronting the Ionian gulf there lies an island in the Ceraunian sea, rich
in soil, with a harbour on both sides, beneath which lies the sickle, as
legend saith--grant me grace, O Muses, not willingly do I tell this tale
of olden days--wherewith Cronos pitilessly mutilated his father; but
others call it the reaping-hook of Demeter, goddess of the nether world.
For Demeter once dwelt in that island, and taught the Titans to reap the
ears of corn, all for the love of Macris. Whence it is called
Drepane,[1] the sacred nurse of the Phaeacians; and thus the Phaeacians
themselves are by birth of the blood of Uranus. To them came Argo, held
fast by many toils, borne by the breezes from the Thrinacian sea; and
Alcinous and his people with kindly sacrifice gladly welcomed their
coming; and over them all the city made merry; thou wouldst say they
were rejoicing over their own sons. And the heroes themselves strode in
gladness through the throng, even as though they had set foot in the
heart of Haemonia; but soon were they to arm and raise the battle-cry;
so near to them appeared a boundless host of Colchians, who had passed
through the mouth of Pontus and between the Cyanean rocks in search of
the chieftains. They desired forthwith to carry off Medea to her
father's house apart from the rest, or else they threatened with fierce
cruelty to raise the dread war-cry both then and thereafter on the
coming of Aeetes. But lordly Alcinous checked them amid their eagerness
for war. For he longed to allay the lawless strife between both sides
without the clash of battle. And the maiden in deadly fear often
implored the comrades of Aeson's son, and often with her hands touched
the knees of Arete, the bride of Alcinous:

[Footnote 1: i.e. the Sickle-island.]

"I beseech thee, O queen, be gracious and deliver me not to the
Colchians to be borne to my father, if thou thyself too art one of the
race of mortals, whose heart rushes swiftly to ruin from light
transgressions. For my firm sense forsook me--it was not for wantonness.
Be witness the sacred light of Helios, be witness the rites of the
maiden that wanders by night, daughter of Perses. Not willingly did I
haste from my home with men of an alien race but a horrible fear wrought
on me to bethink me of flight when I sinned; other device was there
none. Still my maiden's girdle remains, as in the halls of my father,
unstained, untouched. Pity me, lady, and turn thy lord to mercy; and may
the immortals grant thee a perfect life, and joy, and children, and the
glory of a city unravaged!"

Thus did she implore Arete, shedding tears, and thus each of the
chieftains in turn:

"On your account, ye men of peerless might, and on account of my toils
in your ventures am I sorely afflicted; even I, by whose help ye yoked
the bulls, and reaped the deadly harvest of the earthborn men; even I,
through whom on your homeward path ye shall bear to Haemonia the golden
fleece. Lo, here am I, who have lost my country and my parents, who have
lost my home and all the delights of life; to you have I restored your
country and your homes; with eyes of gladness ye will see again your
parents; but from me a heavy-handed god has reft all joy; and with
strangers I wander, an accursed thing. Fear your covenant and your
oaths, fear the Fury that avenges suppliants and the retribution of
heaven, if I fall into Aeetes' hands and am slain with grievous outrage.
To no shrines, no tower of defence, no other refuge do I pay heed,
but/only to you. Hard and pitiless in your cruelty! No reverence have ye
for me in your heart though ye see me helpless, stretching my hands
towards the knees of a stranger queen; yet, when ye longed to seize the
fleece, would have met all the Colchians face to face and haughty Aeetes
himself; but now ye have forgotten your courage, now that they are all
alone and cut off."

Thus she spake, beseeching; and to whomsoever she bowed in prayer, that
man tried to give her heart and to check her anguish. And in their hands
they shook their sharp pointed spears, and drew the swords from their
sheaths; and they swore they would not hold back from giving succour, if
she should meet with an unrighteous judgement. And the host were all
wearied and Night came on them, Night that puts to rest the works of
men, and lulled all the earth to sleep; but to the maid no sleep brought
rest, but in her bosom her heart was wrung with anguish. Even as when a
toiling woman turns her spindle through the night, and round her moan
her orphan children, for she is a widow, and down her cheeks fall the
tears, as she bethinks her how dreary a lot hath seized her; so Medea's
cheeks were wet; and her heart within her was in agony, pierced with
sharp pain.

Now within the palace in the city, as aforetime, lay lordly Alcinous and
Arete, the revered wife of Alcinous, and on their couch through the
night they were devising plans about the maiden; and him, as her wedded
husband, the wife addressed with loving words:

"Yea, my friend, come, save the woe-stricken maid from the Colchians and
show grace to the Minyae. Argos is near our isle and the men of
Haemonia; but Aeetes dwells not near, nor do we know of Aeetes one whit:
we hear but his name; but this maiden of dread suffering hath broken my
heart by her prayers. O king, give her not up to the Colchians to be
borne back to her father's home. She was distraught when first she gave
him the drugs to charm the oxen; and next, to cure one ill by another,
as in our sinning we do often, she fled from her haughty sire's heavy
wrath. But Jason, as I hear, is bound to her by mighty oaths that he
will make her his wedded wife within his halls. Wherefore, my friend,
make not, of thy will, Aeson's son to be forsworn, nor let the father,
if thou canst help, work with angry heart some intolerable mischief on
his child. For fathers are all too jealous against their children; what
wrong did Nycteus devise against Antiope, fair of face! What woes did
Danae endure on the wide sea through her sire's mad rage! Of late, and
not far away, Echetus in wanton cruelty thrust spikes of bronze in his
daughter's eyes; and by a grievous fate is she wasting away, grinding
grains of bronze in a dungeon's gloom."

Thus she spake, beseeching; and by his wife's words his heart was
softened, and thus he spake:

"Arete, with arms I could drive forth the Colchians, showing grace to
the heroes for the maiden's sake. But I fear to set at nought the
righteous judgment of Zeus. Nor is it well to take no thought of Aeetes,
as thou sayest: for none is more lordly than Aeetes. And, if he willed,
he might bring war upon Hellas, though he dwell afar. Wherefore it is
right for me to deliver the judgement that in all men's eyes shall be
best; and I will not hide it from thee. If she be yet a maid I decree
that they carry her back to her father; but if she shares a husband's
bed, I will not separate her from her lord; nor, if she bear a child
beneath her breast, will I give it up to an enemy."

Thus he spake, and at once sleep laid him to rest. And she stored up in
her heart the word of wisdom, and straightway rose from her couch and
went through the palace; and her handmaids came hasting together,
eagerly tending their mistress. But quietly she summoned her herald and
addressed him, in her prudence urging Aeson's son to wed the maiden, and
not to implore Alcinous; for he himself, she said, will decree to the
Colchians that if she is still a maid he will deliver her up to be borne
to her father's house, but that if she shares a husband's bed he will
not sever her from wedded love.

Thus she spake, and quickly from the hall his feet bore him, that be
might declare to Jason the fair-omened speech of Arete and the counsel
of god-fearing Alcinous. And he found the heroes watching in full armour
in the haven of Hyllus, near the city; and out he spake the whole
message; and each hero's heart rejoiced; for the word that he spake was

And straightway they mingled a bowl to the blessed ones, as is right,
and reverently led sheep to the altar, and for that very night prepared
for the maiden the bridal couch in the sacred cave, where once dwelt
Macris, the daughter of Aristaeus, lord of honey, who discovered the
works of bees and the fatness of the olive, the fruit of labour. She it
was that first received in her bosom the Nysean son of Zeus in Abantian
Euboea, and with honey moistened his parched lips when Hermes bore him
out of the flame. And Hera beheld it, and in wrath drove her from the
whole island. And she accordingly came to dwell far off, in the sacred
cave of the Phaeacians, and granted boundless wealth to the inhabitants.
There at that time did they spread a mighty couch; and thereon they laid
the glittering fleece of gold, that so the marriage might be made
honoured and the theme of song. And for them nymphs gathered flowers of
varied hue and bore them thither in their white bosoms; and a splendour
as of flame played round them all, such a light gleamed from the golden
tufts. And in their eyes it kindled a sweet longing; yet for all her
desire, awe withheld each one from laying her hand thereon. Some were
called daughters of the river Aegaeus; others dwelt round the crests of
the Meliteian mount; and others were woodland nymphs from the plains.
For Hera herself, the spouse of Zeus, had sent them to do honour to
Jason. That cave is to this day called the sacred cave of Medea, where
they spread the fine and fragrant linen and brought these two together.
And the heroes in their hands wielded their spears for war, lest first a
host of foes should burst upon them for battle unawares, and, their
heads enwreathed with leafy sprays, all in harmony, while Orpheus' harp
rang clear, sang the marriage song at the entrance to the bridal
chamber. Yet not in the house of Alcinous was the hero, Aeson's son,
minded to complete his marriage, but in his father's hall when he had
returned home to Iolcus; and such was the mind of Medea herself; but
necessity led them to wed at this time. For never in truth do we tribes
of woe-stricken mortals tread the path of delight with sure foot; but
still some bitter affliction keeps pace with our joy; Wherefore they
too, though their souls were melted with sweet love, were held by fear,
whether the sentence of Alcinous would be fulfilled.

Now dawn returning with her beams divine scattered the gloomy night
through the sky; and the island beaches laughed out and the paths over
the plains far off, drenched with dew, and there was a din in the
streets; the people were astir throughout the city, and far away the
Colchians were astir at the bounds of the isle of Macris. And
straightway to them went Alcinous, by reason of his covenant, to declare
his purpose concerning the maiden, and in his hand he held a golden
staff, his staff of justice, whereby the people had righteous judgments
meted out to them throughout the city. And with him in order due and
arrayed in their harness of war went marching, band by band, the chiefs
of the Phaeacians. And from the towers came forth the women in crowds to
gaze upon the heroes; and the country folk came to meet them when they
heard the news, for Hera had sent forth a true report. And one led the
chosen ram of his Hock, and another a heifer that had never toiled; and
others set hard by jars of wine for mixing; and the smoke of sacrifice
leapt up far away. And women bore fine linen, the fruit of much toil, as
women will, and gifts of gold and varied ornaments as well, such as are
brought to newly-wedded brides; and they marvelled when they saw the
shapely forms and beauty of the gallant heroes, and among them the son
of Oeagrus, oft beating the ground with gleaming sandal, to the time of
his loud-ringing lyre and song. And all the nymphs together, whenever he
recalled the marriage, uplifted the lovely bridal-chant; and at times
again they sang alone as they circled in the dance, Hera, in thy honour;
for it was thou that didst put it into the heart of Arete to proclaim
the wise word of Alcinous. And as soon as he had uttered the decree of
his righteous judgement, and the completion of the marriage had been
proclaimed, he took care that thus it should abide fixed; and no deadly
fear touched him nor Aeetes' grievous wrath, but he kept his judgement
fast bound by unbroken oaths. So when the Colchians learnt that they
were beseeching in vain and he bade them either observe his judgements
or hold their ships away from his harbours and land, then they began to
dread the threats of their own king and besought Alcinous to receive
them as comrades; and there in the island long time they dwelt with the
Phaeacians, until in the course of years, the Bacchiadae, a race sprung
from Ephyra,[1] settled among them; and the Colchians passed to an
island opposite; and thence they were destined to reach the Ceraunian
hills of the Abantes, and the Nestaeans and Oricum; but all this was
fulfilled after long ages had passed. And still the altars which Medea
built on the spot sacred to Apollo, god of shepherds, receive yearly
sacrifices in honour of the Fates and the Nymphs. And when the Minyae
departed many gifts of friendship did Alcinous bestow, and many Arete;
moreover she gave Medea twelve Phaeacian handmaids from the palace, to
bear her company. And on the seventh day they left Drepane; and at dawn
came a fresh breeze from Zeus. And onward they sped borne along by the
wind's breath. Howbeit not yet was it ordained for the heroes to set
foot on Achaea, until they had toiled even in the furthest bounds of

[Footnote 1: The old name of Corinth.]

Now had they left behind the gulf named after the Ambracians, now with
sails wide spread the land of the Curetes, and next in order the narrow
islands with the Echinades, and the land of Pelops was just descried;
even then a baleful blast of the north wind seized them in mid-course
and swept them towards the Libyan sea nine nights and as many days,
until they came far within Syrtis, wherefrom is no return for ships,
when they are once forced into that gulf. For on every hand are shoals,
on every hand masses of seaweed from the depths; and over them the light
foam of the wave washes without noise; and there is a stretch of sand to
the dim horizon; and there moveth nothing that creeps or flies. Here
accordingly the flood-tide--for this tide often retreats from the land
and bursts back again over the beach coming on with a rush and
roar--thrust them suddenly on to the innermost shore, and but little of
the keel was left in the water. And they leapt forth from the ship, and
sorrow seized them when they gazed on the mist and the levels of vast
land stretching far like a mist and continuous into the distance; no
spot for water, no path, no steading of herdsmen did they descry afar
off, but all the scene was possessed by a dead calm. And thus did one
hero, vexed in spirit, ask another:

"What land is this? Whither has the tempest hurled us? Would that,
reckless of deadly fear, we had dared to rush on by that same path
between the clashing rocks! Better were it to have overleapt the will of
Zeus and perished in venturing some mighty deed. But now what should we
do, held back by the winds to stay here, if ever so short a time? How
desolate looms before us the edge of the limitless land!"

Thus one spake; and among them Ancaeus the helmsman, in despair at their
evil case, spoke with grieving heart: "Verily we are undone by a
terrible doom; there is no escape from ruin; we must suffer the
cruellest woes, having fallen on this desolation, even though breezes
should blow from the land; for, as I gaze far around, on every side do I
behold a sea of shoals, and masses of water, fretted line upon line, run
over the hoary sand. And miserably long ago would our sacred ship have
been shattered far from the shore; but the tide itself bore her high on
to the land from the deep sea. But now the tide rushes back to the sea,
and only the foam, whereon no ship can sail, rolls round us, just
covering the land. Wherefore I deem that all hope of our voyage and of
our return is cut off. Let someone else show his skill; let him sit at
the helm--the man that is eager for our deliverance. But Zeus has no
will to fulfil our day of return after all our toils."

Thus he spake with tears, and all of them that had knowledge of ships
agreed thereto; but the hearts of all grew numb, and pallor overspread
their cheeks. And as, like lifeless spectres, men roam through a city
awaiting the issue of war or of pestilence, or some mighty storm which
overwhelms the countless labours of oxen, when the images of their own
accord sweat and run down with blood, and bellowings are heard in
temples, or when at mid-day the sun draws on night from heaven, and the
stars shine clear through the mist; so at that time along the endless
strand the chieftains wandered, groping their way. Then straightway dark
evening came upon them; and piteously did they embrace each other and
say farewell with tears, that they might, each one apart from his
fellow, fall on the sand and die. And this way and that they went
further to choose a resting-place; and they wrapped their heads in their
cloaks and, fasting and unfed, lay down all that night and the day,
awaiting a piteous death. But apart the maidens huddled together
lamented beside the daughter of Aeetes. And as when, forsaken by their
mother, unfledged birds that have fallen from a cleft in the rock chirp
shrilly; or when by the banks of fair-flowing Pactolus, swans raise
their song, and all around the dewy meadow echoes and the river's fair
stream; so these maidens, laying in the dust their golden hair, all
through the night wailed their piteous lament. And there all would have
parted from life without a name and unknown to mortal men, those bravest
of heroes, with their task unfulfilled; but as they pined in despair,
the heroine-nymphs, warders of Libya, had pity on them, they who once
found Athena, what time she leapt in gleaming armour from her father's
head, and bathed her by Trito's waters. It was noon-tide and the
fiercest rays of the sun were scorching Libya; they stood near Aeson's
son, and lightly drew the cloak from his head. And the hero cast down
his eyes and looked aside, in reverence for the goddesses, and as he lay
bewildered all alone they addressed him openly with gentle words:

"Ill-starred one, why art thou so smitten with despair? We know how ye
went in quest of the golden fleece; we know each toil of yours, all the
mighty deeds ye wrought in your wanderings over land and sea. We are the
solitary ones, goddesses of the land, speaking with human voice, the
heroines, Libya's warders and daughters. Up then; be not thus afflicted
in thy misery, and rouse thy comrades. And when Amphitrite has
straightway loosed Poseidon's swift-wheeled car, then do ye pay to your
mother a recompense for all her travail when she bare you so long in her
womb; and so ye may return to the divine land of Achaea."

Thus they spake, and with the voice vanished at once, where they stood.
But Jason sat upon the earth as he gazed around, and thus cried:

"Be gracious, noble goddesses of the desert, yet the saying about our
return I understand not clearly. Surely I will gather together my
comrades and tell them, if haply we can find some token of our escape,
for the counsel of many is better."

He spake, and leapt to his feet, and shouted afar to his comrades, all
squalid with dust, like a lion when he roars through the woodland
seeking his mate; and far off in the mountains the glens tremble at the
thunder of his voice; and the oxen of the field and the herdsmen shudder
with fear; yet to them Jason's voice was no whit terrible--the voice of
a comrade calling to his friends. And with looks downcast they gathered
near, and hard by where the ship lay he made them sit down in their
grief and the women with them, and addressed them and told them

"Listen, friends; as I lay in my grief, three goddesses girded with
goat-skins from the neck downwards round the back and waist, like
maidens, stood over my head nigh at hand; and they uncovered me, drawing
my cloak away with light hand, and they bade me rise up myself and go
and rouse you, and pay to our mother a bounteous recompense for all her
travail when she bare us so long in her womb, when Amphitrite shall have
loosed Poseidon's swift-wheeled car. But I cannot fully understand
concerning this divine message. They said indeed that they were
heroines, Libya's warders land daughters; and all the toils that we
endured aforetime by land and sea, all these they declared that they
knew full well. Then I saw them no more in their place, but a mist or
cloud came between and hid them from my sight."

Thus he spake, and all marvelled as they heard. Then was wrought for the
Minyae the strangest of portents. From the sea to the land leapt forth a
monstrous horse, of vast size, with golden mane tossing round his neck;
and quickly from his limbs he shook off abundant spray and started on
his course, with feet like the wind. And at once Peleus rejoiced and
spake among the throng of his comrades:

"I deem that Poseidon's car has even now been loosed by the hands of his
dear wife, and I divine that our mother is none else than our ship
herself; for surely she bare us in her womb and groans unceasingly with
grievous travailing. But with unshaken strength and untiring shoulders
will we lift her up and bear her within this country of sandy wastes,
where yon swift-footed steed has sped before. For he will not plunge
beneath the earth; and his hoof-prints, I ween, will point us to some
bay above the sea."

Thus he spake, and the fit counsel pleased all. This is the tale the
Muses told; and I sing obedient to the Pierides, and this report have I
heard most truly; that ye, O mightiest far of the sons of kings, by your
might and your valour over the desert sands of Libya raised high aloft
on your shoulders the ship and all that ye brought therein, and bare her
twelve days and nights alike. Yet who could tell the pain and grief
which they endured in that toil? Surely they were of the blood of the
immortals, such a task did they take on them, constrained by necessity.
How forward and how far they bore her gladly to the waters of the
Tritonian lake! How they strode in and set her down from their stalwart

Then, like raging hounds, they rushed to search for a spring; for
besides their suffering and anguish, a parching thirst lay upon them,
and not in vain did they wander; but they came to the sacred plain where
Ladon, the serpent of the land, till yesterday kept watch over the
golden apples in the garden of Atlas; and all around the nymphs, the
Hesperides, were busied, chanting their lovely song. But at that time,
stricken by Heracles, he lay fallen by the trunk of the apple-tree; only
the tip of his tail was still writhing; but from his head down his dark
spine he lay lifeless; and where the arrows had left in his blood the
bitter gall of the Lernaean hydra, flies withered and died over the
festering wounds And close at hand the Hesperides, their white arms
flung over their golden heads, lamented shrilly; and the heroes drew
near suddenly; but the maidens, at their quick approach, at once became
dust and earth where they stood. Orpheus marked the divine portent, and
for his comrades addressed them in prayer: "O divine ones, fair and
kind, be gracious, O queens, whether ye be numbered among the heavenly
goddesses, or those beneath the earth, or be called the Solitary nymphs;
come, O nymphs, sacred race of Oceanus, appear manifest to our longing
eyes and show us some spring of water from the rock or some sacred flow
gushing from the earth, goddesses, wherewith we may quench the thirst
that burns us unceasingly. And if ever again we return in our voyaging
to the Achaean land, then to you among the first of goddesses with
willing hearts will we bring countless gifts, libations and banquets."

So he spake, beseeching them with plaintive voice; and they from their
station near pitied their pain; and lo! first of all they caused grass
to spring from the earth; and above the grass rose up tall shoots; and
then flourishing saplings grew standing upright far above the earth.
Hespere became a poplar and Eretheis an elm, and Aegle a willow's sacred
trunk. And forth from these trees their forms looked out, as clear as
they were before, a marvel exceeding great, and Aegle spake with gentle
words answering their longing looks:

"Surely there has come hither a mighty succour to your toils, that most
accursed man, who robbed our guardian serpent of life and plucked the
golden apples of the goddesses and is gone; and has left bitter grief
for us. For yesterday came a man most fell in wanton violence, most grim
in form; and his eyes flashed beneath his scowling brow; a ruthless
wretch; and he was clad in the skin of a monstrous lion of raw hide,
untanned; and he bare a sturdy bow of olive, and a bow, wherewith he
shot and killed this monster here. So he too came, as one traversing the
land on foot, parched with thirst; and he rushed wildly through this
spot, searching for water, but nowhere was he like to see it. Now here
stood a rock near the Tritonian lake; and of his own device, or by the
prompting of some god, he smote it below with his foot; and the water
gushed out in full flow. And he, leaning both his hands and chest upon
the ground, drank a huge draught from the rifted rock, until, stooping
like a beast of the field, he had satisfied his mighty maw."

Thus she spake; and they gladly with joyful steps ran to the spot where
Aegle had pointed out to them the spring, until they reached it. And as
when earth-burrowing ants gather in swarms round a narrow cleft, or when
flies lighting upon a tiny drop of sweet honey cluster round with
insatiate eagerness; so at that time, huddled together, the Minyae
thronged about the spring from the rock. And thus with wet lips one
cried to another in his delight:

"Strange! In very truth Heracles, though far away, has saved his
comrades, fordone with thirst. Would that we might find him on his way
as we pass through the mainland!"

So they spake, and those who were ready for this work answered, and they
separated this way and that, each starting to search. For by the night
winds the footsteps had been effaced where the sand was stirred. The two
sons of Boreas started up, trusting in their wings; and Euphemus,
relying on his swift feet, and Lynceus to cast far his piercing eyes;
and with them darted off Canthus, the fifth. He was urged on by the doom
of the gods and his own courage, that he might learn for certain from
Heracles where he had left Polyphemus, son of Eilatus; for he was minded
to question him on every point concerning his comrade. But that hero had
founded a glorious city among the Mysians, and, yearning for his
home-return, had passed far over the mainland in search of Argo; and in
time he reached the land of the Chalybes, who dwell near the sea; there
it was that his fete subdued him. And to him a monument stands under a
tall poplar, just facing the sea. But that day Lynceus thought he saw
Heracles all alone, far off, over measureless land, as a man at the
month's beginning sees, or thinks he sees, the moon through a bank of
cloud. And he returned and told his comrades that no other searcher
would find Heracles on his way, and they also came back, and
swift-footed Euphemus and the twin sons of Thracian Boreas, after a vain

But thee, Canthus, the fates of death seized in Libya. On pasturing
flocks didst thou light; and there followed a shepherd who, in defence
of his own sheep, while thou wert leading them off[1] to thy comrades in
their need, slew thee by the cast of a stone; for he was no weakling,
Caphaurus, the grandson of Lycoreian Phoebus and the chaste maiden
Acacallis, whom once Minos drove from home to dwell in Libya, his own
daughter, when she was bearing the gods' heavy load; and she bare to
Phoebus a glorious son, whom they call Amphithemis and Garamas. And
Amphithemis wedded a Tritonian nymph; and she bare to him Nasamon and
strong Caphaurus, who on that day in defending his sheep slew Canthus.
But he escaped not the chieftains' avenging hands, when they learned the
deed he had done. And the Minyae, when they knew it, afterwards took up
the corpse and buried it in the earth, mourning; and the sheep they took
with them.

[Footnote 1: This seems to be the only possible translation, but the
optative is quite anomalous. We should expect [Greek: ekomizes].]

Thereupon on the same day a pitiless fate seized Mopsus too, son of
Ampycus; and he escaped not a bitter doom by his prophesying; for there
is no averting of death. Now there lay in the sand, avoiding the midday
heat, a dread serpent, too sluggish of his own will to strike at an
unwilling foe, nor yet would he dart full face at one that would shrink
back. But into whatever of all living beings that life-giving earth
sustains that serpent once injects his black venom, his path to Hades
becomes not so much as a cubit's length, not even if Paeëon, if it is
right for me to say this openly, should tend him, when its teeth have
only grazed the skin. For when over Libya flew godlike Perseus
Eurymedon--for by that name his mother called him--bearing to the king
the Gorgon's head newly severed, all the drops of dark blood that fell
to the earth, produced a brood of those serpents. Now Mopsus stepped on
the end of its spine, setting thereon the sole of his left foot; and it
writhed round in pain and bit and tore the flesh between the shin and
the muscles. And Medea and her handmaids fled in terror; but Canthus
bravely felt the bleeding wound; for no excessive pain harassed him.
Poor wretch! Already a numbness that loosed his limbs was stealing
beneath his skin, and a thick mist was spreading over his eyes.
Straightway his heavy limbs sank helplessly to the ground and he grew
cold; and his comrades and the hero, Aeson's son, gathered round,
marvelling at the close-coming doom. Nor yet though dead might he lie
beneath the sun even for a little space. For at once the poison began to
rot his flesh within, and the hair decayed and fell from the skin. And
quickly and in haste they dug a deep grave with mattocks of bronze; and
they tore their hair, the heroes and the maidens, bewailing the dead
man's piteous suffering; and when he had received due burial rites,
thrice they marched round the tomb in full armour, and heaped above him
a mound of earth.

But when they had gone aboard, as the south wind blew over the sea, and
they were searching for a passage to go forth from the Tritonian lake,
for long they had no device, but all the day were borne on aimlessly.
And as a serpent goes writhing along his crooked path when the sun's
fiercest rays scorch him; and with a hiss he turns his head to this side
and that, and in his fury his eyes glow like sparks of fire, until he
creeps to his lair through a cleft in the rock; so Argo seeking an
outlet from the lake, a fairway for ships, wandered for a long time.
Then straightway Orpheus bade them bring forth from the ship Apollo's
massy tripod and offer it to the gods of the land as propitiation for
their return. So they went forth and set Apollo's gift on the shore;
then before them stood, in the form of a youth, far-swaying Triton, and
he lifted a clod from the earth and offered it as a stranger's gift, and
thus spake:

"Take it, friends, for no stranger's gift of great worth have I here by
me now to place in the hands of those who beseech me. But if ye are
searching for a passage through this sea, as often is the need of men
passing through a strange land, I will declare it. For my sire Poseidon
has made me to be well versed in this sea. And I rule the shore--if
haply in your distant land you have ever heard of Eurypylus, born in
Libya, the home of wild beasts."

Thus he spake, and readily Euphemus held out his hands towards the clod,
and thus addressed him in reply:

"If haply, hero, thou knowest aught of Apis[1] and the sea of Minos,
tell us truly, who ask it of you. For not of our will have we come
hither, but by the stress of heavy storms have we touched the borders of
this land, and have borne our ship aloft on our shoulders to the waters
of this lake over the mainland, grievously burdened; and we know not
where a passage shows itself for our course to the land of Pelops."

[Footnote 1: An old name of the Peloponnesus.]

So he spake; and Triton stretched out his hand and showed afar the sea
and the lake's deep mouth, and then addressed them: "That is the outlet
to the sea, where the deep water lies unmoved and dark; on each side
roll white breakers with shining crests; and the way between for your
passage out is narrow. And that sea stretches away in mist to the divine
land of Pelops beyond Crete; but hold to the right, when ye have entered
the swell of the sea from the lake, and steer your course hugging the
land, as long as it trends to the north; but when the coast bends,
falling away in the other direction, then your course is safely laid for
you if ye go straight forward from the projecting cape. But go in joy,
and as for labour let there be no grieving that limbs in youthful vigour
should still toil."

He spake with kindly counsel; and they at once went aboard, intent to
come forth from the lake by the use of oars. And eagerly they sped on;
meanwhile Triton took up the mighty tripod, and they saw him enter the
lake; but thereafter did no one mark how he vanished so near them along
with the tripod. But their hearts were cheered, for that one of the
blessed had met them in friendly guise. And they bade Aeson's son offer
to him the choicest of the sheep and when he had slain it chant the hymn
of praise. And straightway he chose in haste and raising the victim slew
it over the stern, and prayed with these words:

"Thou god, who hast manifested thyself on the borders of this land,
whether the daughters born of the sea call thee Triton, the great
sea-marvel, or Phorcys, or Nereus, be gracious, and grant the return
home dear to our hearts."

He spake, and cut the victim's throat over the water and cast it from
the stern. And the god rose up from the depths in form such as he really
was. And as when a man trains a swift steed for the broad race-course,
and runs along, grasping the bushy mane, while the steed follows obeying
his master, and rears his neck aloft in his pride, and the gleaming bit
rings loud as he champs it in his jaws from side to side; so the god,
seizing hollow Argo's keel, guided her onward to the sea. And his body,
from the crown of his head, round his back and waist as far as the
belly, was wondrously like that of the blessed ones in form; but below
his sides the tail of a sea monster lengthened far, forking to this side
and that; and he smote the surface of the waves with the spines, which
below parted into curving fins, like the horns of the new moon. And he
guided Argo on until he sped her into the sea on her course; and quickly
he plunged into the vast abyss; and the heroes shouted when they gazed
with their eyes on that dread portent. There is the harbour of Argo and
there are the signs of her stay, and altars to Poseidon and Triton; for
during that day they tarried. But at dawn with sails outspread they sped
on before the breath of the west wind, keeping the desert land on their
right. And on the next morn they saw the headland and the recess of the
sea, bending inward beyond the jutting headland. And straightway the
west wind ceased, and there came the breeze of the clear south wind: and
their hearts rejoiced at the sound it made. But when the sun sank and
the star returned that bids the shepherd fold, which brings rest to
wearied ploughmen, at that time the wind died down in the dark night; so
they furled the sails and lowered the tall mast and vigorously plied
their polished oars all night and through the day, and again when the
next night came on. And rugged Carpathus far away welcomed them; and
thence they were to cross to Crete, which rises in the sea above other

And Talos, the man of bronze, as he broke off rocks from the hard cliff,
stayed them from fastening hawsers to the shore, when they came to the
road-stead of Dicte's haven. He was of the stock of bronze, of the men
sprung from ash-trees, the last left among the sons of the gods; and the
son of Cronos gave him to Europa to be the warder of Crete and to stride
round the island thrice a day with his feet of bronze. Now in all the
rest of his body and limbs was he fashioned of bronze and invulnerable;
but beneath the sinew by his ankle was a blood-red vein; and this, with
its issues of life and death, was covered by a thin skin. So the heroes,
though outworn with toil, quickly backed their ship from the land in
sore dismay. And now far from Crete would they have been borne in
wretched plight, distressed both by thirst and pain, had not Medea
addressed them as they turned away:

"Hearken to me. For I deem that I alone can subdue for you that man,
whoever he be, even though his frame be of bronze throughout, unless his
life too is everlasting. But be ready to keep your ship here beyond the
cast of his stones, till he yield the victory to me."

Thus she spake; and they drew the ship out of range, resting on their
oars, waiting to see what plan unlooked for she would bring to pass; and
she, holding the fold of her purple robe over her cheeks on each side,
mounted on the deck; and Aeson's son took her hand in his and guided her
way along the thwarts. And with songs did she propitiate and invoke the
Death-spirits, devourers of life, the swift hounds of Hades, who,
hovering through all the air, swoop down on the living. Kneeling in
supplication, thrice she called on them with songs, and thrice with
prayers; and, shaping her soul to mischief, with her hostile glance she
bewitched the eyes of Talos, the man of bronze; and her teeth gnashed
bitter wrath against him, and she sent forth baneful phantoms in the
frenzy of her rage.

Father Zeus, surely great wonder rises in my mind, seeing that dire
destruction meets us not from disease and wounds alone, but lo! even
from afar, may be, it tortures us! So Talos, for all his frame of
bronze, yielded the victory to the might of Medea the sorceress. And as
he was heaving massy rocks to stay them from reaching the haven, he
grazed his ankle on a pointed crag; and the ichor gushed forth like
melted lead; and not long thereafter did he stand towering on the
jutting cliff. But even as some huge pine, high up on the mountains,
which woodmen have left half hewn through by their sharp axes when they
returned from the forest--at first it shivers in the wind by night, then
at last snaps at the stump and crashes down; so Talos for a while stood
on his tireless feet, swaying to and fro, then at last, all
strengthless, fell with a mighty thud. For that night there in Crete the
heroes lay; then, just as dawn was growing bright, they built a shrine
to Minoan Athena, and drew water and went aboard, so that first of all
they might by rowing pass beyond Salmone's height.

But straightway as they sped over the wide Cretan sea night scared them,
that night which they name the Pall of Darkness; the stars pierced not
that fatal night nor the beams of the moon, but black chaos descended
from heaven, or haply some other darkness came, rising from the
nethermost depths. And the heroes, whether they drifted in Hades or on
the waters, knew not one whit; but they committed their return to the
sea in helpless doubt whither it was bearing them. But Jason raised his
hands and cried to Phoebus with mighty voice, calling on him to save
them; and the tears ran down in his distress; and often did he promise
to bring countless offerings to Pytho, to Amyclae, and to Ortygia. And
quickly, O son of Leto, swift to hear, didst thou come down from heaven
to the Melantian rocks, which lie there in the sea. Then darting upon
one of the twin peaks, thou raisedst aloft in thy right hand thy golden
bow; and the bow flashed a dazzling gleam all round. And to their sight
appeared a small island of the Sporades, over against the tiny isle
Hippuris, and there they cast anchor and stayed; and straightway dawn
arose and gave them light; and they made for Apollo a glorious abode in
a shady wood, and a shady altar, calling on Phoebus the "Gleamer,"
because of the gleam far-seen; and that bare island they called
Anaphe,[1] for that Phoebus had revealed it to men sore bewildered. And
they sacrificed all that men could provide for sacrifice on a desolate
strand; wherefore when Medea's Phaeacian handmaids saw them pouring
water for libations on the burning brands, they could no longer restrain
laughter within their bosoms, for that ever they had seen oxen in plenty
slain in the halls of Alcinous. And the heroes delighted in the jest and
attacked them with taunting words; and merry railing and contention
flung to and fro were kindled among them. And from that sport of the
heroes such scoffs do the women fling at the men in that island whenever
they propitiate with sacrifices Apollo the gleaming god, the warder of

[Footnote 1: i.e. the isle of Revealing.]

But when they had loosed the hawsers thence in fair weather, then
Euphemus bethought him of a dream of the night, reverencing the glorious
son of Maia. For it seemed to him that the god-given clod of earth held
in his palm close to his breast was being suckled by white streams of
milk, and that from it, little though it was, grew a woman like a
virgin; and he, overcome by strong desire, lay with her in love's
embrace; and united with her he pitied her, as though she were a maiden
whom he was feeding with his own milk; but she comforted him with gentle

"Daughter of Triton am I, dear friend, and nurse of thy children, no
maiden; Triton and Libya are my parents. But restore me to the daughters
of Nereus to dwell in the sea near Anaphe; I shall return again to the
light of the sun, to prepare a home for thy descendants."

Of this he stored in his heart the memory, and declared it to Aeson's
son; and Jason pondered a prophecy of the Far-Darter and lifted up his
voice and said:

"My friend, great and glorious renown has fallen to thy lot. For of this
clod when thou hast cast it into the sea, the gods will make an island,
where thy children's children shall dwell; for Triton gave this to thee
as a stranger's gift from the Libyan mainland. None other of the
immortals it was than he that gave thee this when he met thee."

Thus he spake; and Euphemus made not vain the answer of Aeson's son;
but, cheered by the prophecy, he cast the clod into the depths.
Therefrom rose up an island, Calliste, sacred nurse of the sons of
Euphemus, who in former days dwelt in Sintian Lemnos, and from Lemnos
were driven forth by Tyrrhenians and came to Sparta as suppliants; and
when they left Sparta, Theras, the goodly son of Autesion, brought them
to the island Calliste, and from himself he gave it the name of Thera.
But this befell after the days of Euphemus.

And thence they steadily left behind long leagues of sea and stayed on
the beach of Aegina; and at once they contended in innocent strife about
the fetching of water, who first should draw it and reach the ship. For
both their need and the ceaseless breeze urged them on. There even to
this day do the youths of the Myrmidons take up on their shoulders
full-brimming jars, and with swift feet strive for victory in the race.

Be gracious, race of blessed chieftains! And may these songs year after
year be sweeter to sing among men. For now have I come to the glorious
end of your toils; for no adventure befell you as ye came home from
Aegina, and no tempest of winds opposed you; but quietly did ye skirt
the Cecropian land and Aulis inside of Euboea and the Opuntian cities of
the Locrians, and gladly did ye step forth upon the beach of Pagasae.


              Oceanus               ==           Tethys
                 |                                  |
         Helios == Perse                            |
           -----+----------------------------       |
           |         |                      |       |
Minos == Pasiphae  Circe  (1)Asterodeia = Aeetes = Eidyia (2)
      |                                         |
    Ariadne                    -----------------+-----------
                               |        |                  |
                          Apsyrtus  Chalciope = Phrixus  Medea =Jason
                          (Phaëthon)           |
                                 |         |        |       |
                               Argus  Cytissorus  Melas  Phrontis


References to the following names are not given in full on account of
their large number: Aeetes, Aesonides, Colchians, Hellas, Jason, Medea,

Abantes, a people of Epirus, iv, 1214

Abantiades, son of Abas,
  (1) Canethus, I, 78:
  (2) Idmon, II, 815, 824, 857

Abantian, epithet of the island Euboea, IV, 1135

Abarnis, a city of the Troad, I, 932

Abas, reputed father of Idmon, I, 142

Abydos, a city of the Troad, I, 931

Acacallis, a daughter of Minos, IV, 1491

Acastus, son of Pelias, an Argonaut, I, 224, 321, 1041, 1082

Achaean, I, 177:
  put for Greek in general, I, 284; III, 601, 639, 775, 1081; IV, 195,
    1226, 1329, 1419

Acheloïdes, daughters of Achelous, the Sirens, IV, 893

Achelous, a river of Aetolia, IV, 293, 895

Acheron, (1) a river of Hades, I, 644:
  (2) a river of Bithynia, II, 355, 743, 901

Acherusian headland, II, 354, 728, 750, 806, 814

Achilles, son of Peleus, I, 558; IV, 868

Acmonian wood, near the river Thermodon, II, 992

Actor, I, 69

Actorides, son of Actor,
  (1) Irus, I, 72:
  (2) Sthenelus, II, 911, 916

Admetus king of Pherae, I, 49

Adrasteia, (1) a city and plain of Mysia I, 1116:
  (2) a nymph, the nurse of Zeus, III, 133

Aea, a city of Colchis, II, 417, 422, 1094, 1141, 1183, 1267; III, 306,
    1061; IV, 131, 255, 277, 278

Aeacides, son of Aeacus,
  (1) Peleus, an Argonaut, II, 869, 886; III 515; IV, 503, 853:
  (2) Telamon, an Argonaut, I, 1301, 1330; III, 382:
  in the plur., of both I 90; II, 122

Aeacus, a son of Zeus, III, 364

Aeaean, (1) of Aea, III, 1074, 1093, 1136; IV, 243:
  (2) of a district in Tyrrhenia, IV, 559, 850:
  as _subst._, IV, 661

Aeetes, king of the Colchians, I, 175, 245 etc.; II, 403, 459 etc.; III,
    13, 27, etc.; IV, 9, 102 etc.

Aegaean sea, I, 831; IV, 772

Aegaeon, a giant, I, 1165

Aegaeus, a river, iv, 542, 1149

Aegialus, (1) coast in Achaea, 178:
  (2) coast of the Euxine, II, 365, 945

Aegina, an island near Attica, I, 92; IV, 1766, 1777

Aegle, one of the Hesperides, iv, 1428, 1430, 1450

Aeneius, _adj._, of Aeneus. I, 948, 1055

Aenete, I, 950

Aeolides, son or descendant of Aeolus.
  (1) Athamas, III, 361:
  (2) Idmon, an Argonaut, 11, 849:
  (3) Melampus, I,121:
  (4) Minyas, III, 1094:
  (5) Phrixus, II, 1141; III, 584; IV, 119:
  in the plur., I, 143; II, 1195; III, 335, 339

Aeolus, (1) a son of Zeus, father of Cretheus and Athamas, III, 360:
  (2) king of the winds, iv, 764, 765, 778, 820

Aesepus, a river of Mysia, I, 940, 1115

Aeson, son of Cretheus and father of Jason, I, 47, 253, 331, 899, 1336;
    II, 410, 885, 1134; III, 357, 443, 1380

Aesonides, son of Aeson, Jason, I, 33, 46, etc.; II, 437, 444, etc.;
    III, 58, 60 etc.; IV, 73, 92, etc.

Aesonis, a city of Magnesia, I, 411

Aethalia, an island, now Elba, IV, 654

Aethalides, son of Hermes, an Argonaut, I, 54, 641, 649; III, 1175

Aetolian, I, 146; in plur. as _subst._, I, 198

Agamestor, II, 850

Agenor, II, 237

Agenorides, son of Agenor, Phineus, II, 178, 240, 293, 426, 490, 618;
    III, 943, 1186

Alcimede, mother of Jason, I, 47, 233, 251, 259, 277

Alcinous, king of the Phaeacians, IV, 769, 995, 1009, 1013, 1069, 1116,
    1123, 1161, 1169, 1176, 1200, 1220, 1724

Alcon, I, 97

Aleus, I, 163, 166, 170; II, 1046

Aloïades, sons of Aloeus, I, 482, 489

Alope, a city of Thessaly, I, 51

Amarantes, a people of Colchis, II, 399

Amarantian, epithet of the river Phasis, III, 1220

Amazonian, II, 977

Amazons, II, 374, 386, 912, 965, 985, 987, 995, 1173

Ambracians, inhabitants of Ambracia, a city of Epirus, IV, 1228

Amnisus, a river of Crete, III, 877, 882

Amphidamas, an Argonaut, I, 161; II, 1046

Amphion, (1) an Argonaut, I, 176:
  (2) son of Zeus and Antiope, I, 736, 740

Amphithemis, son of Phoebus and Acacallis, also called Garamas, IV,
    1494, 1495

Amphitrite, wife of Poseidon, IV, 1325, 1355

Amphrysus, a river of Thessaly, I, 54

Ampycides, son of Ampycus, Mopsus, an Argonaut, I, 1083, 1106; II, 923;
    III, 917, 926; IV, 1502

Amyclae, a city of Laconia, IV, 1704

Amycus, king of the Bebrycians, II, 1, 48, 51, 90, 110, 136, 303, 754,
    768, 792

Amymone, daughter of Danaus, I, 137

Amyrus, a river of Thessaly, I, 596; IV, 617

Anaphe, an island, one of the Sporades, IV, 1717, 1730, 1744

Anaurus, a river of Thessaly, I, 9; III, 67

Ancaeus,(1) son of Lycurgus, an Argonaut, I, 161, 398, 426, 429, 531;
    II, 118:
  (2) son of Poseidon, an Argonaut, I, 188; II, 865, 894, 898, 1276; IV,
    210, 1260

Anchiale, a nymph, I, 1130

Angurum, a mountain in Scythia, IV, 323, 324

Anthemoeisian lake, in Bithynia, II, 724

Anthemoessa, the island of the Sirens, in the Tyrrhenian sea, IV, 892

Antianeira, I, 56

Antiope, (1) daughter of Asopus, I, 735:
  (2) daughter of Nycteus, IV, 1090:
  (3) a queen of the Amazons, II, 387

Aonian, Boeotian, III, 1178, 1185

Aphareïan, of Aphareus, I 485; III, 556, 1252

Apharetiadae, sons of Aphareus, I, 151

Apheidantian allotment, in Arcadia, I, 162

Aphetae, starting-place of Argo, I, 591

Apidaneans, name of Arcadians, IV, 263

Apidanus, a river of Thessaly, I, 36, 38; II, 515

Apis, a name of the Peloponnese, IV, 1564

Apollo, I, 307, 360, 403, 410, 759, II, 493, 502, 927, 952; III, 1181,
    1283; IV, 528, 612, 1548, 1714, 1729:
  god of the shore ([Greek: Aktios]), I,104:
  of disembarcation ([Greek: Ekbasios]), I, 966, 1186:
  of embarcation ([Greek: Embasios]), I, 359, 404:
  of the dawn ([Greek: Eôios]), II, 686, 700:
  of shepherds ([Greek: Nomios]), IV, 1218:
  the Healer ([Greek: Iêios]), II, 712:
  the gleaner ([Greek: Aiglêtês]), IV, 1716, 1730

Apsyrtians, IV, 481

Apsyrtus, son of Aeetes, III, 241, 604; IV, 225, 306, 314, 332, 399,
    422, 451, 455, 515, 557, 587, 737

Araethyrea, a city of Argolis, I, 115

Araxis, a river of Armenia, IV, 133

Arcadia, I, 125, 161; II, 1052

Arcadians, IV, 263, 264

Arcton, "of bears," a mountain near Cyzicus, I, 941, 1150

Arcturus, II, 1099

Areius, son of Bias, an Argonaut, I, 118

Areïus, _adj._, of Ares, II, 1033, 1268; III, 325, 409, 495, 1270

Arene, a city of Messenia, I, 152, 471

Ares, I, 743; II, 385, 404, 989, 990, 991, 1169, 1205, 1230; III, 411,
    754, 1187, 1227, 1282, 1357, 1366; IV, 166

Arestorides, son of Arestor, Argus, I, 112, 325

Arete, wife of Alcinous, IV, 1013, 1029, 1070, 1098, 1101, 1123, 1200,

Aretias, (1) daughter of Ares, Melanippe, II, 966:
  (2) fem. _adj._ II, 1031, 1047; III, 1180

Aretus, a Bebrycian, II, 65, 114

Arganthonian mountain, in Bithynia, I, 1178

Argo, I, 4, 386, 525, 591, 633, 724, 953; II, 340; IV, 509, 592, 763,
    993, 1473, 1546, 1609

Argoan, I, 319; II, 211; IV, 554, 658, 938, 1620

Argos, (1) a city of the Peloponnese, I, 125, 140, 1317:
  (2) put for Greece in general, IV, 1074

Argus, (1) son of Arestor, an Argonaut, I, 19, 111, 226, 321, 325, 367,
    912, 1119; II, 613, 1188:
  (2) son of Phrixus, II, 1122, 1140, 1156, 1199, 1260, 1281; III, 318,
    367, 440, 474, 521, 554, 568, 610, 722, 826, 902, 914, 944, 1200;
    IV, 80, 122, 256

Ariadne, a daughter of Minos, III, 998, 1003, 1097, 1107

Aristaeus, son of Apollo and Cyrene, II, 506; IV, 1132

Artaceus, one of the Doliones, I, 1047

Artacie, a spring near Cyzicus, I, 957

Artemis, I, 312, 571, 1225; III, 774; IV, 330, 452, 470

Asia, i.e. Asia Minor, I, 444; II, 777; IV, 273

Asopis, daughter of Asopus,
  (1) Antiope, I, 735;
  (2) Corcyra, IV, 567

Asopus, (1) a river of the Peloponnese, I, 117;
  (2) father of Sinope, II, 947

Assyrian, II, 946, 964

Asterion, an Argonaut, I, 35

Asterius, an Argonaut, I, 176

Asterodeia, mother of Apsyrtus, III, 242

Astypalaea, mother of Ancaeus, II, 866

Atalanta, I, 769

Athamantian plain, in Thessaly, II, 514

Athamantis, daughter of Athamas, Helle, I, 927

Athamas, son of Aeolus, king of Orchomenus, II, 653, 1153, 1162; III,
    266, 360, 361; IV, 117

Athena, I, 19, 110, 226, 300, 527, 551, 629, 768, 960; II, 537, 598,
    602, 612, 1187; III, 8, 10, 17, 30, 91, 111, 340; IV, 583, 959,
    1309, 1691

Athos, a mountain in Chalcidice, I, 601

Atlantis, daughter of Atlas,
  (1) Electra, I, 916:
  (2) Calypso, IV, 575

Atlas, IV, 1398

Attic island, Salamis, I, 93

Augeias, an Argonaut, I, 172; III, 197, 363, 440

Aulion, a cave in Bithynia, II, 910

Aulis, a city of Boeotia, IV, 1779

Ausonian, Italian, IV, 553, 590, 660, 828, 846

Autesion, IV, 1762

Autolycus, a son of Deimachus, II, 956

Bacchiadae, the ruling race in Corinth, IV, 1212

Basileus, one of the Doliones, I, 1043

Bebryces, a people of Bithynia, II, 2, 13, 70, 98, 121, 129, 758, 768,
    792, 798

Bebrycia, II, 136

Becheiri, a people of Pontus, II, 394, 1242

Biantiades, son of Bias, Talaus, II, 63, 111

Bias, I, 118

Billaeus, a river of Bithynia, II, 791

Bistonian, Thracian, I, 34; II, 704; IV, 906

Bithynian, II, 4, 177, 619, 730:
  as _subst._ in plur., II, 347, 788

Boeotians, II, 846

Boreas, father of Zetes and Calais, I, 211, 212, 214, 1300; II, 234,
    241, 273, 288, 308, 427, 440, 492; IV, 1464, 1484

Bosporus, I, 1114; II, 168

Brimo, a name of Hecate, III, 861, 862, 1211

Brygi, a people of Illyria, IV, 330, 470

Butes, an Argonaut, I, 95; IV, 914

Byzeres, a people of Pontus, II, 396, 1244

Cadmeians, Thebans, III, 1095

Cadmus, king of Thebes, III, 1179, 1186; IV, 517

Caeneides, son of Caineus, Coronus, I, 58

Caeneus, I, 59

Calais, an Argonaut, I, 211; II, 282

Calaureia, an island in the Saronic gulf, III, 1243

Callichorus, a river of Paphlagonia, II, 904, 909

Calliope, one of the Muses, I, 24

Calliste, an island in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1758, 1763

Calon, a mouth of the Ister, the Fair mouth, IV, 306, 313

Calos, a harbour of Cyzicus, the Fair haven, I, 954

Calpe, a river of Bithynia, II, 659

Calydon, a city of Aetolia, I, 190

Calypso, daughter of Atlas, IV, 574

Canastra, a headland in Chalcidice, I, 599

Canethus, I, 77

Canthus, an Argonaut, I, 77; IV, 1467, 1485, 1497

Caphaurus, a Libyan, IV, 1490, 1496

Carambis, a promontory in Paphlagonia, II, 361, 943; IV, 300

Carpathus, an island in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1636

Caspian, III, 859

Castor, I, 147; II, 62; IV, 589

Caucasus, a mountain, II, 1210, 1247, 1267; III, 242, 852, 1224, 1276;
    IV, 135

Cauliacus, a rock near the river Ister, IV, 324

Cecropia, old name of Attica, I, 95, 214; IV, 1779

Celts, IV, 611, 635, 646

Centaurs, a fabulous savage race, I, 42, 60; IV, 812

Ceos, one of the Cyclades, II, 520, 526

Cepheus, an Argonaut, I, 161

Ceraunian, mountains, IV, 519, 576, 1214;
  sea, the Adriatic, IV, 983

Cerinthus, a city of Euboea, I, 79

Cerossus, an island off Illyria, IV, 573

Chadesians, a tribe of Amazons, II, 1000

Chalciope, daughter of Aeetes and sister of Medea, II, 1149; III, 248,
    254, 270, 370, 449, 605, 667, 688, 718, 727, 776, 903, 1156; IV, 32

Chalcodonian mountain, in Thessaly, I, 50

Chalybes, a people of Pontus, I, 1323; II, 375, 1001; IV, 1475

Charites, the Graces, IV, 425

Charybdis, IV, 789, 825, 923

Cheiron, a Centaur, I, 33, 554; II, 510, 1240; IV, 812

Chersonesus, in Thrace, I, 925

Chytus, a harbour of Cyzicus, I, 987, 990

Cianian, I, 1177, as _subst._ in plur., I, 1354

Circaean plain, II, 400; III, 200

Circe, sister of Aeetes, III, 311; IV, 559, 587, 590, 662, 683, 691,
    699, 752

Cius, (1) a city of Mysia, II, 767:
  (2) a river of Mysia, I, 1178, 1321

Claros, a city of Ionia, I, 308

Cleite, (1) wife of Cyzicus, I, 976, 1063:
   (2) a fountain, called after her. I, 1069

Cleopatra, wife of Phineus, II, 239

Clymene, grandmother of Jason, I, 233

Clytius, an Argonaut, I, 86, 1044; II, 117, 1043

Clytonaeus, I, 134

Cnossus, a city of Crete, IV, 434

Coeogeneia, daughter of Coeus, Leto, II, 710

Colchian, I, 174; II, 417, 1095, 1277; III, 313; IV, 2, 33, 132, 484,
    485, 689, 731:
  as _subst._ in plur., I, 84, 175 etc.; II, 397, 1204 etc.; III,
    203, 212, etc.; IV, 5, 212 etc.

Colone, a rock in Bithynia, II, 650, 789

Cometes, I, 35

Concord, a temple to, II, 718

Corcyra, (1) daughter of Asopus, IV, 568:
  (2) an island in the Adriatic sea, Black Corcyra, IV, 566, 571

Core, a name of Persephone, III, 847

Coronis, mother of Asclepius by Apollo, IV, 617

Coronus, an Argonaut, I, 57

Corycian, of Corycus, a mountain in Cilicia, II, 711; III, 855

Crataeis, a name of Hecate, IV, 829

Cretan, I, 1129; II, 1233; IV, 1694

Crete, II, 299; IV, 1578, 1637, 1644, 1651, 1689

Cretheïdes, son of Cretheus, Aeson, III, 357

Cretheus, brother of Athamas, II, 1162, 1163; III, 358, 360

Crobialus, a city of Paphlagonia, II, 942

Cromna, a city of Paphlagonia, II, 942

Cronian, IV, 327, 509, 548

Cronos, I, 505; II, 1232; IV, 986

Ctimene, a city of Thessaly, I, 68

Ctimenus, I, 67

Curetes, (1) in Crete, II, 1234:
  (2) in Aetolia, IV, 1229

Cyanean rocks, I, 3; II, 318, 770; IV, 304, 1003

Cyclopes, I, 510, 730

Cyllenus, one of the Idaean Dactyls, I, 1126

Cypris, a name of Aphrodite, I, 615, 803, 850, 860, 1233; II, 424; III,
    3, 25, 37, 76, 80, 90, 127, 549, 559, 936, 942; IV, 918.

Cyrene, mother of Aristaeus II, 500

Cytaean, i.e. Colchian, II, 399, 403, 1094, 1267; III, 228; IV, 511

Cytherea, a name of Aphrodite, I, 742; III, 108, 553

Cytissorus, a son of Phrixus, II, 1155

Cytorus, a city of Paphlagonia, II, 942

Cyzicus, (1) king of the Doliones, I, 949, 962, 1056, 1076:
  (2) a city on a peninsula in the Propontis, II, 765

Dactyls, fabulous iron-workers on Mt. Ida, in Crete, I, 1129

Danae, IV, 1091

Danai, IV, 262

Danais, daughter of Danaus, I, 137

Danaus, I, 133

Dardania, I, 931

Dascylus (1) father of Lycus, II, 776:
  (2) son of Lycus, II, 803

Deileon, a son of Deimachus, II, 956

Deimachus, II, 955

Delos, I, 308

Delphyne, a dragon, II, 706

Deo, the goddess Demeter, III, 413; IV, 896, 986, 988

Deucalidae, descendants of Deucalion, IV, 266

Deucalion, son of Prometheus, III, 1087

Dia, an island in the Aegaean sea, IV, 425, 434

Dictaean, of Dicte, in Crete, I, 509, 1130; II, 434; IV, 1640

Dindymum, a mountain of Phrygia, I, 985, 1093, 1125, 1147

Dionysus, I, 116; IV, 424, 540

Dipsacus, II, 653

Dodonian oak, I, 527; IV, 583

Doeantian plain, II, 373, 988

Doliones, inhabitants of Cyzicus, I, 947, 952, 961, 1018, 1022, 1058

Dolionian, I, 1029, 1070; II, 765

Dolopian, I, 68, 585

Drepane, the island of the Phaeacians, later Corcyra, IV, 990, 1223

Dryopians, I, 1213, 1218

Dysceladus, an island in the Adriatic, IV, 565

Echetus, a mythical king of Epirus, IV, 1093

Echinades, islands at the mouth of the Acheloüs, IV, 1230

Echion, an Argonaut, I, 52

Egypt, IV. 268

Eidyia, wife of Aeetes, III, 243, 269

Eilatides, son of Eilatus, Polyphemus, I, 41, 1241, 1248, 1347; IV, 1470

Eileithyia, the goddess of birth, I, 289

Elare, mother of Tityos, I, 762

Eleans, I, 173

Electra, daughter of Atlas, I, 916

Electris, an island, IV, 505, 580

Electryon, I, 748

Elysian plain, IV, 811

Encheleans, a people of Illyria, IV, 518

Endymion, IV, 58

Eneteian, i.e. Paphlagonian, an epithet of Pelops, II, 358

Enipeus, a river of Thessaly, I, 38

Enyalius, a name of Ares, III, 322, 560, 1366

Ephyra, the old name of Corinth, IV, 1212

Erato, one of the Muses, III, 1

Erectheïdae, descendants of Erechtheus, the Athenians, I, 101

Erectheis, daughter of Erechtheus, Oreithyia, I, 212

Erginus, (1) son of Poseidon, an Argonaut, I, 187; II, 896:
  (2) a river of Thrace, I, 217

Eribotes, an Argonaut, I, 71, 78; II, 1039

Eridanus, the river Po, IV, 506, 596, 610, 623, 628

Erinys, a Fury, II, 220; III, 704, 776; IV, 476, 1042:
  in the plur., III, 712; IV, 386, 714

Eros, son of Aphrodite, III, 120, 275, 297, 972, 1018, 1078; IV, 445:
  in the plural, "the Loves," III, 452, 687, 765, 937

Erymanthian marsh, I, 127

Erytheis, one of the Hesperides, IV, 1427

Erythini, a town in Paphlagonia, II, 941

Erytus, an Argonaut, I, 52

Eryx, a mountain in Sicily, IV, 917

Etesian winds, II, 498, 525

Ethiopians, III, 1192

Euboea, an island, I, 77; IV, 1135, 1780

Euphemus, an Argonaut, I 179; II, 536, 556, 562, 588, 896; IV, 1466,
    1483, 1563, 1732 1756, 1758, 1764

Eupolemeia, I, 55

Europa, (1) daughter of Tityos, I, 181:
  (2) daughter of Agenor, III, 1179; IV, 1643:
  (3) a division of the earth, IV, 273

Eurydamas, an Argonaut, I, 67

Eurymedon, a name of Perseus IV, 1514

Eurymenae, a city of Thessaly, I, 597

Eurynome, I, 503

Eurypylus, IV, 1561

Eurystheus, I, 130, 1317, 1347

Eurytides, son of Eurytus, Clytius, II, 1043

Eurytion, son of Teleon, an Argonaut, I, 71

Eurytus, I, 87, 88; II, 114

Eusorus, I, 949

Gaea, the earth-goddess, I, 762; II, 39, 1209, 1273; III, 699, 716

Ganymedes, III, 115

Garamas, also called Amphithemis, which see, IV, 1494

Genetaean headland, in Pontus, II, 378, 1009

Gephyrus, one of the Doliones, I, 1042

Geraestus, a promontory of Euboea, III, 1244

Glaucus, I, 1310; II, 767

Gorgon, IV, 1515

Graucenii, a people near the Ister, IV, 321

Gyrton, a city of Thessaly, I, 57

Hades, (1) god of the under world, II, 353, 609, 642, 735; III, 704,
    810; IV, 1666:
  (2) the under world, IV, 1699

Haemonia, a name of Thessaly, II, 504, 690; III, 1090, 1244; IV, 1000,

Haemonians, II, 507; IV, 1075

Hagniades, son of Hagnias, Tiphys, I, 105, 560, 1296; II, 557, 854

Halys, a river of Paphlagonia, II, 366, 953, 963; IV, 245

Harmonia (1) a nymph, mother of the Amazons, II, 990:
  (2) wife of Cadmus, IV, 517

Harpies, II, 188, 223, 252, 264, 289, 298, 461

Hecate, III, 251, 478, 529, 738, 842, 915, 985, 1035, 1211; IV, 247, 829

Heliades, daughters of Helios, IV, 604, 625

Helice, the great Bear, II, 360; III, 745, 1195

Helios, the Sun-god, I, 172; II, 1204; III, 233, 309, 362, 598, 999; IV,
    221, 229, 591, 598, 727, 965, 971, 1019

Hellas, I, 336, 416, etc.; II, 414, 459, etc.; III, 13, 29, etc.; IV,
    98, 204, etc.

Helle, sister of Phrixus, I, 256

Hellespont, I, 935

Hephaestus, I, 203, 851; III, 40, 136, 223, 229; IV, 761, 775, 818, 929,

Hera, I, 14, 187, 859, 997; II, 216, 865; III, 8, 10, 19, 23, 32, 55,
    77, 83, 91, 106, 210, 214, 250, 818, 931, 1134; IV, 11, 21, 242,
    510, 577, 640, 646, 774, 781, 846, 858, 1137, 1152, 1185, 1199:
  goddess of marriage ([Greek: Zugiê]), IV, 96

Heracles, I, 122, 197, 341, 349, 397, 426, 531, 855, 864, 993, 997,
    1040, 1163, 1242, 1253, 1291, 1303, 1316; II, 146, 767, 772, 793,
    913, 957, 967, 1052; III, 1233; IV, 538, 1400, 1459, 1469, 1477

Hercynian rock, IV, 640

Hermes, I, 51, 642; II, 1145; III, 197, 588, 1175; IV, 121 1137

Hespere, one of the Hesperides, IV, 1427

Hesperides, IV, 1399, 1406

Hippodameia, I, 754

Hippolyte, a queen of the Amazons, II, 779, 968, 999

Hippotades, son of Hippotas, Aeolus, IV, 819

Hippotas, IV, 778

Hippuris, an island in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1712

Homole, a mountain of Thessaly, I, 594

Hyacinthus, one of the Doliones, I 1044

Hyantian, Boeotian, III, 1242

Hylas, I, 131, 1207, 1258, 1324, 1350, 1354

Hyllean, IV, 535, 562, 1125:
   as _subst._ in plur., IV, 524, 527

Hyllus, a son of Heracles, IV, 538, 543

Hyperasius, I, 176

Hyperboreans, II, 675; IV, 614

Hypius, a river of Bithynia, II, 795

Hypnos, the god of sleep, IV, 146

Hypsipyle, queen of Lemnos, I, 621, 637, 650, 654, 675, 699, 713, 718,
    786, 836, 848, 853, 873, 886, 897, 900; III, 1206; IV, 423, 426

Iapetionides, son of Iapetus, Prometheus, III, 1087

Iapetus, III, 866

Idaean (1) of Mt. Ida, in the Troad, I, 930:
  (2) of Mt. Ida, in Crete, I, 1128, 1129; II, 1234; III, 134

Idas, son of Aphareus, an Argonaut, I, 151, 462, 470, 485, 1044; II,
    830; III, 516, 556, 1170, 1252

Idmon, son of Apollo, an Argonaut, I, 139, 436, 449, 475; II, 816, 850

Ilissus, a river of Attica, I, 215

Illyrian, IV, 516

Imbrasian, of Imbrasus, a river of the island Samos, I, 187; II, 866

Imbros, an island in the Aegaean sea, I, 924

Indians, II, 906

Iolcus, a city of Thessaly, I, 572, 906; III, 2, 89, 1091, 1109, 1114,
    1135; IV, 1163

Ionian, IV, 289, 308, 632, 982:
  as _subst._ in plur., I, 959, 1076

Iphias, a priestess of Artemis, I, 312

Iphiclus (1) uncle of Jason, I, 45, 121:
  (2) son of Thestius, an Argonaut, I, 201

Iphinoe, a woman of Lemnos, I, 702, 703, 709, 788

Iphitus, (1) son of Eurytus, an Argonaut, I, 86; II, 115:
  (2) son of Naubolus, an Argonaut, I, 207

Iris, (1) a goddess, messenger of Hera, II, 286, 298, 432; IV, 753,
    757, 770:
  (2) a river of Pontus, II, 367, 963

Irus, I, 72, 74

Ismenus, a river of Boeotia, I, 537

Issa, an island in the Adriatic, IV, 565

Ister, a river of Thrace, the Danube, IV, 284, 302, 309, 325

Isthmian, of the isthmus of Corinth, III, 1240

Itonian, epithet of Athena, I, 551

Itymoneus, (1) one of the Doliones, I, 1046:
  (2) a Bebrycian, II, 105

Ixion, III, 62

Jason, I, 8, 232, etc.; II, 122, 211, etc.; III, 66, 143, etc.; IV, 63,
    79, etc.

Jasonian, I, 960, 988, 1148

Keres, spirits of death, I, 690; IV, 1485, 1665

Lacereia, a city of Thessaly, IV, 616

Ladon, the dragon of the Hesperides, IV, 1396

Lampeia, a district in Arcadia, I, 127

Lampetia, a daughter of Helios, IV, 973

Laocoon, an Argonaut, I, 191, 192

Lapithae, a people of Thessaly, I, 41, 42

Larisa, a city of Thessaly, I, 40

Latmian cave, in Caria, IV, 57

Laurium, a plain near the river Ister, IV, 321, 326

Leda, mother of Castor and Polydeuces, I, 146

Lemnian, I, 653; II, 32, 764; III, 1206

Lemnos, an island in the Aegaean sea, I, 602, 608, 852, 868, 873; IV,
    1759, 1760

Leodocus, an Argonaut, I, 119

Lerna, a lake in Argolis, III, 1241

Lernaean hydra, IV, 1404

Lernus, (1) son of Proetus, I, 135:
  (2) father of Palaemonius, I, 202, 203

Leto, mother of Apollo and Artemis, II, 213, 257, 674, 710

Letoïdes, son of Leto, Apollo, I, 66, 144, 439, 484; II, 181, 698, 771;
    IV, 612, 1706

Letoïs, daughter of Leto, Artemis, II, 938; III, 878; IV, 346

Liburnian islands, in the Adriatic, IV, 564

Libya (1) I, 81, 83; II, 505; IV, 1227, 1309, 1313, 1323, 1358, 1384,
    1485, 1492, 1513, 1561:
  (2) a nymph, IV, 1742

Libyan, IV, 1233, 1753

Ligystian or Ligurian islands, IV, 553

Ligyans, IV, 647

Lilybean promontory, in Sicily, IV, 919

Locrians, IV, 1780

Lycaon, a king of Arcadia, II, 521

Lycastians, a tribe of Amazons, II, 999

Lycia, I, 309; II, 674

Lycoreian, an epithet of Phoebus, IV, 1490

Lycoreus, a servant of Amycus, II, 51

Lycurgus, son of Aleus, I, 164; II, 118

Lycus (1) king of the Mariandyni, II, 139, 752, 759, 813, 839; IV, 298:
  (2) a river of Bithynia, II, 724:
  (3) a river of Armenia, IV, 132

Lynceus, son of Aphareus, an Argonaut, I, 151, 153; IV, 1466, 1478

Lyra, II, 829

Lyrceian, epithet of the city Argos, I, 125

Macrians, a people near Cyzicus, I, 1025, 1112

Macris, (1) the island of the Phaeacians, also called Drepane, later
    Corcyra, IV, 540, 990, 1175:
  (2) daughter of Aristaeus, IV, 1131

Macrones, a people of Pontus, II, 394, 1242

Maenalus, a mountain in Arcadia, I, 168, 770

Magnesia, a district in Thessaly, I, 238, 584

Maia, the mother of Hermes, IV, 1733

Mariandyni, a people of Bithynia, II, 140, 352, 723, 748, 753

Medea, daughter of Aeetes, III, 3, 248, etc.; IV, 213, 243, etc.

Megabrontes, one of the Doliones, I, 1041

Megalossaces, one of the Doliones, I, 1045

Megarians, II, 747

Melaena (1) a promontory in Bithynia, II, 349, 651:
  (2) an island, Black Corcyra, IV, 571

Melampus, I, 121

Melanippe, an Amazon, II, 966

Melantian rocks, in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1707

Melas, (1) a son of Phrixus, II, 1156:
  (2) a sea near Thrace, I, 922

Meleagrus, son of Oeneus, an Argonaut, I, 191

Meliboea, a city of Magnesia, I, 592

Melie, a nymph, mother of Amycus, II, 4

Melite (1) a nymph, mother of Hyllus, IV, 538, 543:
  (2) an island in the Adriatic, IV, 572

Meliteian mountain, in Corcyra, IV, 1150

Mene, the moon, IV, 55

Meneteis, daughter of Menetes, Antianeira, I, 56

Menoetius, son of Actor, an Argonaut, I, 69

Mentores, a people of Illyria, IV, 551

Merops, father of Cleite, I, 975

Miletus, a city of Ionia, I, 186

Mimas, (1) a Bebrycian, II, 105:
  (2) a giant, III, 1227

Minoan, of Minos, i.e. Cretan, II, 299, 516; IV, 1564, 1691

Minoïs, daughter of Minos, Ariadne III, 908; IV, 433

Minos, king of Crete, III, 1000, 1098, 1100, 1107; IV, 1491

Minyan, of Minyas, IV, 117

Minyans, the Argonauts, I, 229, 709, 1055; II, 97; III, 578; IV, 338, 509,
    595, 1074, 1220, 1364, 1456, 1500

Minyas, son of Aeolus, I, 230; III, 1093, 1094

Mopsus, son of Ampycus, an Argonaut, I, 65, 80, 1083, 1086, 1106; II,
    923; III, 543, 916, 938; IV, 1502, 1518

Mossynoeci, a people of Pontus, II, 379, 1016, 1117

Mycenaeans, I, 128

Myrine, a city of Lemnos, I, 604, 634

Myrmidon, father of Eupolemeia, I, 55

Myrmidons, old inhabitants of Aegina, IV, 1772

Myrtilus, charioteer of Oenomaus, I, 755

Myrtosian height, in Libya, II, 505

Mysian, I, 1115, 1349; II, 766:
  as _subst._ in plur., I, 1164, 1179, 1298, 1322, 1345; II, 781,
    786; IV, 1472

Narex, a mouth of the river Ister, IV, 312

Nasamon, a Libyan, IV, 1496

Naubolides, son of Naubolus Clytoneus, I, 134

Naubolus, (1) son of Lernus, I, 135:
  (2) son of Ornytus, I, 203

Naupliades, son of Nauplius, Proetus, I, 136

Nauplius (1) son of Poseidon, I, 138:
  (2) son of Clytoneus, an Argonaut, I, 134; II, 896

Nausithous, king of the Phaeacians before Alcinous, IV, 539, 547, 550

Neleïdae, descendants of Neleus, I, 959

Neleis, daughter of Neleus, Pero, I, 120

Neleus, king of Pylos, I, 156, 158

Nepeian plain, near Cyzicus, I, 1116

Nereïdes, daughters of Nereus, IV, 844, 859, 930

Nereus, a sea-god, I, 1311; IV, 772, 1599, 1743

Nestaeans, a people of Illyria, IV, 1215

Nestian lands, in Illyria, IV, 337

Nisaeans, II, 747, 847

Nycteus, a king, father of Antiope, IV, 1090

Nymphaea, the island of Calypso, IV, 574

Nyseian, of Nysa, epithet of Dionysus, II, 905, 1214; IV, 431, 1134

Nyx, the goddess Night, III, 1193; IV, 630, 1059

Oaxus, a river of Crete, I, 1131

Oceanis, daughter of Oceanus, (1) Eurynome, I, 504:
  (2) Philyra, II, 1239

Oceanus, I, 506; III, 244, 957, 1230; IV, 282, 632, 638, 1414

Oeagrus, father of Orpheus, I, 25, 570; II, 703; IV, 905, 1193

Oechalia, a city of Euboea, I, 87

Oeneïdes, son of Oeneus, Meleagrus, I, 190, 1046; III, 518

Oeneus, I, 192, 193

Oenoe, (1) an island in the Aegaean, I, 623:
  (2) a nymph, I, 626

Oenomaus, I, 756

Ogygian, epithet of Thebes, III, 1178

Oileus, an Argonaut, I, 74; II, 1037

Olenian, of Olenus, a city in Aetolia, I, 202

Olympian, IV, 95

Olympus, (1) a mountain in Thessaly, I, 598:
  (2) the abode of the gods, I, 504, 1099; II, 300, 603, 1232; III, 113,
    159, 1358; IV, 770, 781

Onchestus, a city of Boeotia, III, 1242

Ophion, I, 503

Opuntian, of Opus, IV, 1780

Opus, a city of Locris, I, 69

Orchomenus (1) son of Minyas and king of Orchomenus, II, 654, 1093,
    1186; III, 265, 266:
  (2) a city of Boeotia, II, 1153; III, 1073, 1094; IV, 257

Oreides, an attendant of Amycus, II, 110

Oreithyia, daughter of Erechtheus, I, 212

Oricus (or Oricum), a city of Epirus, IV, 1215

Orion, the constellation, I, 1202; III, 745

Ornytides, the son of Ornytus, Naubolus, I, 207

Ornytus, a Bebrycian (not father of Naubolus), II, 65

Orpheus, I, 23, 32, 494, 540, 915, 1134; II, 161, 685, 928; IV, 905,
    1159, 1409, 1547

Ortygia, a name of Delos, I, 419, 537; IV, 1705

Ossa, a mountain in Thessaly, I, 598

Othrys, a mountain in Thessaly, II, 515

Otrere, a queen of the Amazons, II, 387

Pactolus, a river of Lydia, IV, 1300

Paeëon, the physician of the gods, IV, 1511

Pagasae, a city of Thessaly, I, 238, 411

Pagaseian, I, 318, 524; IV, 1781

Palaemonius, an Argonaut, I, 202

Pallas, the goddess Athena, I, 723; III, 340

Pallenaean, of Pallene, a promontory in Chalcidice, I, 599

Panachaean, I, 243; III, 347

Panhellenes, II, 209

Paphlagonians, II, 358, 790; IV, 245, 300

Paraebius, a friend of Phineus, II, 456, 463

Parnassus, a mountain between Phocis and Locris, II, 705

Parrhasian, of Parrhasia, a district in Arcadia, II, 521

Parthenia, a name of the island Samos, I, 188; II, 872

Parthenius, a river of Paphlagonia, II, 936; III, 876

Pasiphae, wife of Minos, III, 999, 1076, 1107

Pegae, a spring in Mysia, I, 1222, 1243

Peiresiae, a city of Thessaly, I, 37, 584

Peirithous, king of the Lapithae, I, 103

Pelasgian, I, 14, 906; III, 1323; IV, 243, 265:
  as _subst._ in plur., I, 580; II, 1239

Peleïdes, son of Peleus, Achilles, I, 558

Peleus, son of Aeacus, an Argonaut, I, 94, 1042; II, 829, 868, 1217;
    III, 504; IV, 494, 816, 853, 880, 1368

Pelian, of Mt. Pelion, I, 386, 525, 550, 581; II, 1188

Pelias, king of Iolcus, I, 3, 5, 12, 225, 242, 279, 323, 902, 981,
    1304; II, 624, 763; III, 64, 75, 1135; IV, 242

Pelion, a mountain in Thessaly, I, 520

Pellene, a city of Achaea, I, 177

Pelles, the founder of Pellene, I, 177

Pelopeia, daughter of Pelias, I, 326

Pelopeian, of Pelops, I, 758; II, 790; IV, 1570, 1577

Pelops, I, 753; II, 359; IV, 1231

Peneus, a river of Thessaly, II, 500

Percosian, of Percote, I, 975

Percote, a city in the Troad, I, 932

Periclymenus, an Argonaut, I, 156

Pero, daughter of Neleus, I, 119

Perse, mother of Circe, IV, 591

Perseis, daughter of Perses, Hecate, III, 467, 478, 1035; IV, 1020

Persephone, goddess of the under world, II, 916

Perseus, IV, 1513

Peuce, an island at the mouth of the Ister, IV, 300

Phaeacian, IV, 769, 1222, 1722:
  as _subst._ in plur., IV, 539, 549, 822, 991, 992, 1139, 1181,

Phaëthon, (1) a name of Apsyrtus, III, 245, 1236:
  (2) son of Helios, IV, 598, 623

Phaëthusa, a daughter of Helios, IV, 971

Phalerus, an Argonaut, I, 96

Phasis, a river of Colchis, II, 401, 1261, 1278; III, 57, 1220; IV, 134

Pherae, a city of Thessaly, I, 49

Phillyrides, son of Philyra, Cheiron, I, 554

Philyra, a daughter of Ocean, II, 1232, 1239

Philyrean, of Philyra, II, 1231

Philyres, a people of Pontus, II, 393

Phineus, a blind seer, II, 178, 236, 277, 294, 305, 436, 438, 530, 618,
    647, 769, 1051, 1090, 1135; III, 549, 555, 943; IV, 254

Phlegraean, of Phlegra, III, 234, 1227

Phlias, son of Dionysus, an Argonaut, I, 115

Phliuntian, of Phlius, a city of the Peloponnese, IV, 568

Phlogius, (1) one of the Doliones, I, 1045:
  (2) son of Deimachus, II, 956

Phocians, I, 207

Phocus, brother of Telamon and Peleus, I, 92

Phoebus, Apollo, I, 1, 301, 353, 536, 759; II, 216, 506, 702, 713, 847;
    IV, 529, 1490, 1493, 1550, 1702, 1717, 1718

Phorcys, father of Scylla, IV, 828, 1598

Phrixus, son of Athamas, I, 256, 291, 763; II, 1093, 1107, 1119, 1141,
    1143, 1151, 1194; III, 178, 190, 196, 263, 304, 330, 338, 361, 374,
    584, 595; IV, 22, 71, 81, 119, 441, 736

Phrontis, a son of Phrixus, II, 1155; IV, 72, 76, 80

Phrygia, I, 937, 1126, 1166

Phrygians, I, 1139; II, 787

Phthia, a city of Thessaly, I, 94; II, 514, 520

Phthian, I, 55

Phylace, a city of Thessaly, I, 45

Phylaceis, daughter of Phylacus, Alcimede, I, 47

Phylleian, (1) of the river Phyllis, in Bithynia, II, 652:
  (2) of a mountain in Thessaly, I, 37

Pieria, a district in Thessaly, I, 31, 34

Pierides, a name of the Muses, IV, 1382

Pimpleian, of Pimpleia, in Pieria, 1, 25

Pityeia, (1) a city of the Troad, I, 933:
  (2) one of the Liburnian islands, IV, 565

Planctae, rocks past which Argo sailed, IV, 860, 924, 932, 939

Plegades, the clashing rocks, the Symplegades, II, 596, 645

Pleiads, III, 226

Pleistus, II, 711

Plotae, floating islands, II, 285, 297

Polydeuces, son of Zeus and Leda, an Argonaut, I, 146; II, 20, 100,
    756; IV, 588

Polyphemus, son of Eilatus, an Argonaut, I, 40, 1241, 1321, 1347; IV,

Polyxo, aged nurse of Hypsipyle, I, 668

Pontus, the Euxine or Black Sea, I, 2; II, 346, 413, 418, 579, 984; IV,
    304, 1002

Poseidon, I, 13, 136, 158, 180, 185, 951, 1158; II, 867; III, 1240; IV,
    567, 1326, 1356, 1370, 1559, 1621;
  god of the family ([Greek: Genethlios]), II, 3

Posideian headland, in Bithynia, I, 1279

Priolas, II, 780

Proetus, I, 136

Prometheus, II, 1249, 1257; III, 845, 853, 1086

Promeus, one of the Doliones, I, 1044

Propontis, I, 936, 983

Pylos, a city of Messenia, I, 157

Pytho, the old name of Delphi, I, 209, 308, 413, 418, 536; IV, 530, 1704

Rhea, a goddess, wife of Cronos, mother of Zeus, I, 506, 1139, 1151; II,

Rhebas, a river of Bithynia, II, 349, 650, 789

Rhipaean mountains, in Scythia, IV, 287

Rhodanus, the river Rhone, IV, 627

Rhoeteian shore, in the Troad, I, 929

Rhyndacus, a river of Bithynia, I, 1165

Salangon, a river of Illyria, IV, 337

Salmonian promontory, in Crete, IV, 1693

Sangarius, a river of Bithynia, II, 722

Sapeires, a people of Pontus, II, 395, 1243

Sardinian sea, IV, 633

Sarpedonian rock, in Thrace, I, 216

Sauromatae, a people of Scythia, III, 353, 394

Sciathus, an island near Magnesia, I, 583

Scylla, IV, 789, 827, 828, 922

Scythians, IV, 288, 320

Sepian headland, in Thessaly, I, 582

Serbonian lake, in Egypt, II, 1215

Sesamus, a city of Paphlagonia, II, 941

Sicinus, (1) son of Thoas, I, 625:
  (2) an island, also called Oenoe, in the Aegaean sea, I, 624

Sigynni, a people near the river Ister, IV, 320

Sindi, a people near the river Ister, IV, 322

Sinope, daughter of Asopus, II, 946

Sintian, an epithet of the island Lemnos, I, 608; IV, 1759

Siphaean, an epithet of the Thespians, I, 105

Sirens, IV, 893, 914

Sirius, the dog star, II, 517, 524; III, 957

Sparta, I, 148; IV, 1761, 1762

Sphodris, one of the Doliones, I, 1041

Sporades, islands in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1711

Sthenelus, II, 911, 925

Stoechades, islands off Liguria, IV, 554, 650, 654

Strophades, islands in the Ionian sea, II, 296

Stymphalian birds, II, 1053

Styx, a river of Hades, II, 291

Syrtis, quicksands in Libya, IV, 1235

Taenarus, a city of Laconia, I, 102, 179; III, 1241

Talaus, an Argonaut, I, 118; II, 63, 111

Talos, a giant, guardian of Crete, IV, 1638, 1670

Taphians, inhabitants of islands off the coast of Acarnania, same as
    the Teleboae, I, 750

Tegea, a city of Arcadia, I, 162, 398

Telamon, son of Aeacus, an Argonaut, I, 93, 1043, 1289, 1330; III,
    196, 363, 440, 515, 1174

Teleboans, _see_ Taphians, I, 748

Telecles, one of the Doliones, I, 1040

Teleon, (1) father of Eribotes, I, 72, 73:
  (2) father of Butes, I, 96; IV, 912

Tenos, an island in the Aegaean sea, I, 1305

Terpsichore, one of the Muses, IV, 896

Tethys, wife of Oceanus, mother of Eidyia, III, 244

Thebes, I, 736; II, 906; III, 1178; IV, 260

Theiodamas, king of the Dryopians, I, 1213, 1216, 1355

Themis, IV, 800

Themiscyreian headland, II, 371, 995

Thera, an island in the Aegaean sea, IV, 1763

Therapnaean, of Therapnae, a city of Laconia, II, 163

Theras, IV, 1762

Thermodon, a river of Pontus, II, 370, 805, 970

Theseus, I, 101; III, 997; IV, 433

Thespians, I, 106

Thestiades, son of Thestius, Iphiclus, I, 201

Thetis, a Nereid, wife of Peleus, IV, 759, 773, 780, 783, 800, 833, 845,
    881, 932, 938

Thoantias, daughter of Thoas, Hypsipyle, I, 637, 712

Thoas, former king of Lemnos, I, 621, 625, 718, 798, 829; IV, 426

Thrace, I, 213, 614, 799, 826, 1113

Thracian, I, 24, 29, 214, 602, 678, 795, 954, 1110, 1300; II, 427; IV,
    905, 1484:
  as _subst._ in plur., I, 632, 637, 821, 923; II, 238; IV, 288, 320

Thrinacia, the island Sicily, IV, 965

Thrinacian sea, IV, 994

Thyiades, Bacchants, I, 636

Thynian, II, 350, 460, 485, 548, 673:
  as _subst._ in plur., II, 529

Tibareni, a people of Pontus, II, 377, 1010

Tiphys, the pilot of Argo, I, 105, 381, 401, 522, 561, 956, 1274, 1296;
    II, 175, 557, 574, 584, 610, 622, 854

Tisaean headland, in Thessaly, I, 568

Titanian, III, 865; IV, 54, 131

Titans, I, 507; II, 1233; IV, 989

Titaresian, of Titaresus, a river of Thessaly, I, 65

Titias, (1) one of the Idaean Dactyls, I, 1126:
  (2) a boxer, II, 783

Tityos, I, 181, 761

Trachis, a city of Thessaly, I, 1356

Triccaean, of Tricca, a city of Thessaly, II, 955

Trinacrian sea, IV, 291

Triton, (1) a sea-god, IV, 1552, 1589, 1598, 1621, 1741, 1742, 1752:
  (2) the river Nile, IV, 269:
  (3) a lake in Libya, IV, 1311

Tritonian, I, 721, 768; III, 1183; IV, 260, 1391, 1444, 1495, 1539

Tyndareus, I,148; III, 517

Tyndarides, the son of Tyndareus, Polydeuces, II, 30, 41, 74, 798:
  in plur., Castor and Polydeuces, I, 1045; II, 806; III, 1315; IV, 593

Typhaon, II, 1211

Typhaonian rock, II, 1210

Typhoeus, II, 38

Tyrrhenian, Etruscan, III, 312; IV, 660, 850, 856:
  as _subst._ in plur., IV, 1760

Uranides, son of Uranus, Cronos, II, 1232:
  in plur., the gods, II, 342

Uranus, III, 699, 746; IV, 992

Xanthus, a river of Lycia, I, 309

Xynian lake, in Thessaly, I, 68

Zelys, one of the Doliones, I, 1042

Zetes, son of Boreas, an Argonaut, I, 211; II, 243, 282, 430

Zethus, son of Zeus and Antiope, I, 736, 738

Zeus, I, 150, 242, etc.; II, 43, 154, etc.; III, 8, 11, etc.; IV, 2,
    95, etc.;
  god of suppliants ([Greek: Hikesios]), II, 215, 1132; IV, 358;
  of fugitives ([Greek: Phuxios]), II, 1147; IV, 119:
  of strangers ([Greek: Xeinios]), II, 1132; III, 103:
  of rain ([Greek: Ikmaios]), II, 522:
  lord of hospitality ([Greek: Euxeinos]), II, 378:
  the Beholder ([Greek: Epopsios]), II, 1123:
  the Cleanser ([Greek: Katharsios]), IV, 708

Zone, a town of Thrace, I, 29

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Argonautica" ***

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