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Argonauts

In Greek mythology, the Argonauts were a band of heroes who, in the years before the Trojan War, accompanied Jason to Colchis in his quest for the Golden Fleece. Their name comes from their ship, the Argo which in turn was named after its builder Argus. They were sometimes called Minyans, after a prehistoric tribe of the area.


Story

Pelias, king of Iolcus in Thessaly (near the modern city of Volos), had been warned to be on his guard against a man with one shoe and, one day, upon seeing his nephew Jason with only one sandal (the other having been lost in crossing a stream), bade him to go and fetch the Golden Fleece, hoping that he would be killed in the attempt.

Jason was accompanied by some of the principal heroes of ancient Greece. The number of Argonauts varies but usually totals between 40 and 55 – traditional versions of the story place their number at 50.

Some have hypothesised that the legend of the Golden Fleece was based on a practice of the Black Sea tribes of placing a lamb's fleece at the bottom of a stream to entrap particles of gold being washed down from upstream. This practice was still in use in recent times.

The Argonauts (Jason and Medea are sometimes not counted) were:

  1. Acastus
  2. Admetus
  3. Aethalides
  4. Amphion
  5. Argus
  6. Ascalaphus
  7. Atalanta (others claim Jason forbade her because she was a woman)
  8. Autolycus
  9. Butes
  10. Calais
  11. Canthus
  12. Castor
  13. Cytissorus
  14. Echion
  15. Euphemus
  16. Euryalus
  17. Heracles
  18. Hylas
  19. Idas
  20. Idmon
  21. Iolaus
  22. Jason
  23. Laertes
  24. Lynceus
  25. Melas
  26. Meleager
  27. Oileus
  28. Orpheus
  29. Palaemon
  30. Peleus
  31. Philoctetes
  32. Phrontis
  33. Poeas
  34. Polydeuces
  35. Polyphemus
  36. Poriclymenus
  37. Talaus
  38. Telamon
  39. Theseus (others claim he was still in the underworld at the time)
  40. Tiphys
  41. Zetes


See also

Sources

A portion of content for this article is credited to Wikipedia. Content under GNU Free Documentation License(GFDL)