Theban Exploits (page 380)

Chapter 13: Herakles

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DS 4.10.3-5 – Diodoros Siculus, Library of History

For though the Thebans had been made subject to Erginus, the king of the Minyans, and were paying him a fixed yearly tribute, Heracles was not dismayed at the superior power of these overlords but had the courage to accomplish a deed of fame. Indeed, when the agents of the Minyans appeared to require the tribute and were insolent in their exactions, Heracles mutilated them and then expelled them from the city. Erginus then demanded that the guilty party be handed over to him, and Creon, the king of the Thebans, dismayed at the great power of Erginus, was prepared to deliver the man who was responsible for the crime complained of. Heracles, however, persuading the young men of his age to strike for the freedom of their fatherland, took out of the temples the suits of armour which had been affixed to their walls, dedicated to the gods by their forefathers as spoil from their wars; for there was not to be found in the city any arms in the hands of a private citizen, the Minyans having stripped the city of its arms in order that the inhabitants of Thebes might not entertain any thought of revolting from them. And when Heracles learned that Erginus, the king of the Minyans, was advancing with troops against the city he went out to meet him in a certain narrow place, whereby he rendered the multitude of the hostile force of no avail, killed Erginus himself, and slew practically all the men who had accompanied him. Then appearing unawares before the city of the Orchomenians and slipping in at their gates he both burned the palace of the Minyans and razed the city to the ground. Greek Text

Od 11.269-70 – Homer, Odyssey

And Megara I saw, daughter of Creon, high-of-heart, whom the son of Amphitryon, ever stubborn in might, had to wife. Greek Text

DS 4.10.6 – Diodoros Siculus, Library of History

After this deed had been noised about throughout the whole of Greece and all men were filled with wonder at the unexpected happening, Creon the king, admiring the high achievement of the young man, united his daughter Megara in marriage to him and entrusted him with the affairs of the city as though he were his lawful son; but Eurystheus, who was ruler of Argolis, viewing with suspicion the growing power of Heracles, summoned him to his side and commanded him to perform Labours. Greek Text

ApB 2.4.11 – Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library)

Indignant at this outrage, Erginus marched against Thebes. But Hercules, having received weapons from Athena and taken the command, killed Erginus, put the Minyans to flight, and compelled them to pay double the tribute to the Thebans. And it chanced that in the fight Amphitryon fell fighting bravely. And Hercules received from Creon his eldest daughter Megara as a prize of valor, and by her he had three sons, Therimachus, Creontiades, and Deicoon. But Creon gave his younger daughter to Iphicles, who already had a son Iolaus by Automedusa, daughter of Alcathus. Greek Text

Kypria p. 40 PEG – Poetae Epici Graeci 1, ed. A. Bernabé. Leipzig 1987.

Stesichoros 230 PMG – Poetae Melici Graeci, p. 122, ed. D. L. Page. Oxford 1962.

Panyasis, Herakleia fr 1 PEG – Poetae Epici Graeci 1, p. 174, ed. A. Bernabé. Leipzig 1987. 

Paus 9.11.2 – Pausanias, Description of Greece

 They show also the tomb of the children of Heracles by Megara. Their account of the death of these is in no way different from that in the poems of Panyassis and of Stesichorus of Himera. But the Thebans add that Heracles in his madness was about to kill Amphitryon as well, but before he could do so he was rendered unconscious by the blow of the stone. Athena, they say, threw at him this stone, which they name Chastiser. Greek Text

Is 4.61-64 – Pindar, Isthmian Odes

For him, above the Electran gates, we Thebans, busily preparing the feast and the circle of newly-built altars, pile up burnt offerings in honor of the eight bronze-clad men, now dead, the sons whom Megara, Creon’s daughter, bore him. Greek Text

Pherekydes 3F14 FGrHDie Fragmente der griechischen Historiker 1, p. 64, ed. F. Jacoby, 2d ed. Leiden 1957.

Greek Text

♠ Σ Is 4.104g – Scholia to Pindar, Isthmian Odes – Scholia vetera in Pindari carmina, 3, p. 237, ed. A.B Drachman. Leipzig 1927.

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Edited by Elena Bianchelli, Senior Lecturer of Classical Languages and Culture, Univ. of Georgia, December 2020

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