Mystical tales Children

Prophecy fulfilled

Last time, you read about how Perseus killed the gorgon Medusa. His adventures didn’t end with that. Let’s see what happened to him on the way back home.

As Perseus flew away with Medusa’s head, he passed through the kingdom of Aethiopia. Along the shore, he saw a beautiful girl tied to a rock. Curious about what was going on, he flew down to find out. The girl was Andromeda, the princess of the country and she was being offered as a sacrifice to a monster.

Returning home

Want to know why? Here’s that story. Andromeda’s mother, Queen Cassiopeia, had boasted that her daughter was more beautiful than the Nereids, the sea nymphs. The angry nymphs got the sea god Poseidon to send a monster to ravage the kingdom. Many people were killed before the king consulted an oracle on how to appease the angry god. The answer was to sacrifice Andromeda. So the poor princess was left to face the monster.

When Perseus heard this sad tale, he promised that he would save her. So he stayed on until the monster rose out of the sea. Even as it advanced towards them, Perseus warned Andromeda to turn away and close her eyes. He then opened his bag and held up Medusa’s head. Immediately the monster was turned to stone. The jubilant couple returned to the city. The king and queen were only too happy to let Andromeda marry Persues. Once the marriage festivities were over, Perseus and his wife began the journey back to Seriphos.

When they got there, Perseus found that Polydectes had imprisoned Dictys and Danae. So he went on to the palace Polydectes and his friends were angry at seeing him but before they could do anything, Perseus used Medusa’s head and turned them all into stone. Dictys was now made the king and he married Danae.

Now that his mother was settled, Perseus wanted to connect with his grandfather Acrisius. Having heard that the king was in Larissa to watch the athletic games, Perseus decided to enter as a contestant and then reveal himself after winning a few laurels. When he threw the discus, it hit Acrisius on the head causing his death. Thus was the oracle’s prophecy fulfilled. Perseus did not want to take over the kingdom of Seriphos, so he gave it to his uncle Megapenthes and took over the latter’s kingdom of Tirnys.

Up in the sky

The ancient Greeks believed that both Perseus and Andromeda were placed in the sky as stars after their death. Go ahead and try to identify the two constellations.


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Printable version | Jan 28, 2022 2:51:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/children/prophecy-fulfilled/article17892864.ece

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