Mythology EFYRA ILIAKI (Ancient city) ILIA - GTP - Greek Travel Pages

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Mythology (8)

Ancient myths

The Fifth Labor of Heracles - The Augean Stables

  For the fifth labor, Eurystheus ordered Hercules to clean up King Augeas' stables. Hercules knew this job would mean getting dirty and smelly, but sometimes even a hero has to do these things. Then Eurystheus made Hercules' task even harder: he had to clean up after the cattle of Augeas in a single day.
  For the fifth labor, Eurystheus ordered Hercules to clean up King Augeas' stables. Hercules knew this job would mean getting dirty and smelly, but sometimes even a hero has to do these things. Then Eurystheus made Hercules' task even harder: he had to clean up after the cattle of Augeas in a single day.
  Every night the cowherds, goatherds and shepherds drove the thousands of animals to the stables. Every night the cowherds, goatherds and shepherds drove the thousands of animals to the stables.
  Hercules went to King Augeas, and without telling anything about Eurystheus, said that he would clean out the stables in one day, if Augeas would give him a tenth of his fine cattle. Augeas couldn't believe his ears, but promised. Hercules brought Augeas's son along to watch. First the hero tore a big opening in the wall of the cattle-yard where the stables were. Then he made another opening in the wall on the opposite side of the yard.
Next, he dug wide trenches to two rivers which flowed nearby. He turned the course of the rivers into the yard. The rivers rushed through the stables, flushing them out, and all the mess flowed out the hole in the wall on other side of the yard.
   When Augeas learned that Eurystheus was behind all this, he would not pay Hercules his reward. Not only that, he denied that he had even promised to pay a reward. Augeas said that if Hercules didn't like it, he could take the matter to a judge to decide.
 The judge took his seat. Hercules called the son of Augeas to testify. The boy swore that his father had agreed to give Hercules a reward. The judge ruled that Hercules would have to be paid. In a rage, Augeas ordered both his own son and Hercules to leave his kingdom at once. So the boy went to the north country to live with his aunts, and Hercules headed back to Mycenae. But Eurystheus said that this labour didn't count, because Hercules was paid for having done the work.

This text is cited July 2004 from Perseus Project URL bellow, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Eleius had a son Augeas. This Augeas had so many cattle and flocks of goats that actually most of his land remained untilled because of the dung of the animals. Now he persuaded Heracles to cleanse for him the land from dung, either in return for a part of Elis or possibly for some other reward. Heracles accomplished this feat too, turning aside the stream of the Menius into the dung. But, because Heracles had accomplished his task by cunning, without toil, Augeas refused to give him his reward, and banished Phyleus, the elder of his two sons, for objecting that he was wronging a man who had been his benefactor.

Heracles. 5. The stables of Augeas. Eurystheus imposed upon Heracles the task of cleaning the stables of Augeas in one day. Augeas was king of Elis, and extremely rich in cattle. Heracles, without mentioning the command of Eurystheus, went to Augeas, offering in one day to clean his stables, if he would give him the tenth part of the cattle for his trouble, or, according to Pausanias (v. i.7) a part of his territory. Augeas, believing that Heracles could not possibly accomplish what he promised, agreed, and Heracles took Phyleus, the son of Augeas, as his witness, and then led the rivers Alpheius and Peneius through the stables, which were thus cleaned in the time fixed upon. But Augeas, who learned that Heracles had undertaken the work by the command of Eurystheus, refused the reward, denied his promise, and declared that he would have the matter decided by a judicial verdict. Phyleus then bore witness against his father, who exiled him from Elis. Eurystheus declared the work thus performed to be unlawful, because Heracles had stipulated with Augeas a payment for it. (Apollod. ii. 5.5; Theocrit. xxv. 88, &c.; Ptolem. Heph. 5; Athen. x.; Schol. ad Pind. Ol. xi. 42.) At a subsequent time Hferacles, to revenge the faithlessness of Augeas, marched with an army of Argives and Tirynthians against Augeas, but in a narrow defile in Elis he was taken by surprise by Cteatus and Eurytus, and lost a great number of his warriors. But afterwards Heracles slew Cteatus and Eurytus, invaded Elis, and killed Augeas and his sons. After this victory, Heracles marked out the sacred ground on which the Olympian games were to be celebrated, built altars, and instituted the Olympian festival and games. (Apollod. ii. 7.2; Paus. v. 1.7. 3.1, &c., 4.1; viii. 15.2; Pind. Ol. xi. 25, &c., comp. v. 5, iii. 13, &c.)

This text is from: A dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology, 1873 (ed. William Smith). Cited Nov 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Kings

Eleius

Eleius (Eleios), a son of Poseidon and Eurydice, the daughter of Endymion, was king of the Epeians and father of Augeas. (Paus. v. 1.6, &c.)

Amphimachus II

Polyxenus came back safe from Troy and begat a son, Amphimachus. This name I think Polyxenus gave his son because of his friendship with Amphimachus, the son of Cteatus, who died at Troy. Amphimachus begat Eleius (Paus. 5.3.4)

Eleus (Eleius) II

Amphimachus begat Eleius, and it was while Eleius was king in Elis that the assembly of the Dorian army under the sons of Aristomachus took place, with a view to returning to the Peloponnesus. (Paus. 5.3.5)

Heroines

Epicaste

Daughter of Augeias, mother of Thestalus by Herakles: Apollod. 2.7.8

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