Medea Side Notes

Medea Side Notes
Medea was a devotee of the goddess Queen Hecate, and one of the great
sorceresses of the ancient world. She was the daughter of Aeetes of Colchis, and the
granddaughter of Helios, the sun god. In “Jason and the Argonauts,” Medea helped
Jason procure the Golden Fleece from her father, and she fell in love with Jason. She
killed her younger brother on the way to Iolcus. When she and Jason arrived in Iolcus,
Jason’s homeland, she restored the you of Jason’s father Aeson with a magical potion.
Pelias usurped Aeson’s throne, became the king, and Medea tricked Pelias’s daughter
into killing him and Medea and Jason left Iolcus for Corinth. Start Euripides’s Medea.
Sisyphus was considered the most cunning knave on Earth. He was the founder
and first king of Corinth. Hades came to him personally when he died, to bring him into
the kingdom of the dead. Sisyphus tricked Hades and locked Hades up in secrecy for a
long time (unknown). During this time, no one could die. Finally, Hades was released
and Sisyphus was ordered into the Underworld (Tartarus) to live out his eternal
assignment. When he reached Tartarus, he complained to Persephone, that his wife
didn’t bury him properly, and he couldn’t cross the river Styx to perform his assignment.
Persephone allowed Sisyphus to travel back to Earth to finish the burial, but he left it go
for a long time. Eventually he was dragged back to Tartarus, and put on trial for his
tricks. For commiting crimes against the gods, he was condemned to rolling a boulder
uphill for all eternity. Whenever the boulder would reach the peak of the hill, it would
roll down the hill and he’d have to start over.
“The Radiant One,” literally. An epithet of Apollo because of his connection to the sun
or as the descendant of the Titaness Phoebe (his grandmother). The Romans venerated
him as Phoebus Apollo. The lamp of Apollo is the sun. God of: Sun, Music, Prophecy.
Euxine Sea
The Black Sea.
Daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia. Second wife of King Athamas. His first wife,
Nephele, complained to Hera about her husband’s infidelity. Ino tried to have Nephele’s
son killed, as to have one of her own sons inherit the kingdom. He was on the altar, about
to die, when a golden ram saved his life. He sacrificed the ram to Zeus for saving him
and gave the fleece to Aeetes (Hence, Jason and the Golden Fleece: enter Medea). Hera
struck Athamas with madness. He killed one of Ino’s sons, prompting Ino to flee with her
other son. He chased them to the Molurian Rock, where she jumped to her death,
dragging her son with her. She was the first woman to kill her own child.
A nymph, fisherman-turned-sea-god Glaucus fell in love with her. She fled away from
him to the land, he could not chase her up there. He visited Circe to get a potion to make
Scylla fall in love with him, but in telling the tale, Circe fell in love with Glaucus and
began to hate Scylla. She put a potion in Scylla’s bath water to turn her into a monster.
She then had 12 arms and 6 heads, each with 3 rows of teeth, as well as “legs” made of
beasts that barked constantly like a dog.