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The Soil's Offspring

When time is reversed aged men come out of the soil and become younger as they live. C. Parada: Sons of the Soil (1987).

AUTOCHTHONOUS are called those who are said to be the children of the soil, which means they have belonged to the land eternally. "Son of the Soil" is not the same as "Son of Earth (Gaia)". The children of the soil have neither father nor mother, and therefore they just arise from the ground like a plant does.

When this race lived

This unusual form of coming to being occurs, as it has been said long ago, during those periods in which the motion of the universe is reversed. For while the divine and immutable cause of the universe's motion goes along with it, the universe revolves in a certain direction, but when the divinity withdraws, the universe, following fate and innate desire, starts of its own accord turning backward in the opposite direction. So the universe, being guided in some periods by the divine cause, moves forwards, and in other periods, having being left to itself, moves, accordingly to its nature, backwards through countless ages. This time of reverse motion has been described as a time of great and severe changes. In these periods many species of animals are destroyed, and among humans only few survive. These survivors are then affected by a complete reversal of everything. So, for example, all mortal creatures stop growing older and instead become younger, and in this way grey hair grows darker, cheeks grow smoother, and all revert to their earlier ages. And as the universe continues to revolve backwards, all young men and women grow smaller and smaller until they become new-born children in both body and mind and finally disappear. Under such conditions, caused by the reversal of the revolution of the heavenly bodies, generation is made impossible, and being begotten is no longer a part of the natural order. So the races, instead of being generated as it is done in our days, came at that time out of the earth. For they were dead, and taking shape they came out of the earth as old men and, through living in the reversed period, they returned to childhood during their lifetime.

Our earliest ancestors saw this race

The memory of these children of the soil, it is said, has been preserved by the earliest ancestors of our own time, who having been born in the beginning of our own forward period, witnessed the end of the previous backward period.

Some remembered as autochthons or "Sons of the Soil" 

Amphictyon is sometimes called son of Deucalion 1 & Pyrrha 1. Deucalion 1, son of Prometheus 1, is the man who survived the Flood. Amphictyon expelled Cranaus from the throne of Athens, became king of Attica and was in turn expelled by Erichthonius 2. Amphictyon married Atthis, after whom the country was called Attica, which before was named Actaea. According to some, however, Atthis, who was the daughter of King Cranaus & Pedias, daughter of Mynes 1, a Lacedaemonian, died a maid. Amphictyon is father of Itonus 1, father of Boeotus, after whom the Boeotians are called. He is also said to have a daughter who consorted with Poseidon giving birth to Cercyon 1, a bandit killed by Theseus. Amphictyon's Daughter, whose name is unknown, is also said to be, by a man called Rarus, the mother of Triptolemus, the young man who received from Demeter a chariot of winged Dragons and wheat with which, flying through the sky, sowed the inhabited earth, teaching the art of growing crops (Apd.1.7.2, 3.14.6; Pau.1.2.6, 1.14.3, 5.1.4).

Aras is considered to be the first man in Phliasia, a place near Sicyonia, not far from the isthmus of Corinth. Aras had a son Aoris, who was a hunter and a warrior, and a daughter Araethyrea. Both were buried after their death in the Arantine Hill in western Argolis. Araethyrea married Cisus, who became King of Argos after Deiphontes; these two are counted among the HERACLIDES. The son of Cisus & Araethyrea, according to the Argives, was Phlias, and he is the eponym of Phliasia and the Phliasians (Pau.2.12.4-5).

Castalius was a Phocian. He had a daughter Thyia 1, who was priestess of Dionysus 2, and as it is said, the first to celebrate orgies in his honour. Some say that Delphus, after whom the city of Delphi was named, is the son of Apollo & Thyia 1 (Pau.10.6.4).

Cecrops 1 had a body compounded of man and serpent. He was the first king of Athens and under his kingdom the country was adjudged to Athena. He received the kingdom from Actaeus 1 who had ruled in Attica, after marrying his daughter Aglaurus 1. Aglaurus 1 gave birth to Erysichthon 1, Aglaurus 2, Herse 2 and Pandrosus. Erysichthon 1 died before his father (for the other children see Athens and Envy). Some have said that Cecrops 1 is a son of Gaia (Apd.3.14.1-2; Hyg.Ast.2.29; Hyg.Fab.48; Lib.Met.6; Nonn.41.59; Pau.1.2.6).

Coresus 1 is known for having founded the sanctuary of Ephesian Artemis (Pau.7.2.7).

Cranaus is the king of Athens who was dethroned by Amphictyon (see above) and after fleeing died and was buried in Lamptrae in Attica. It was in his time that the Flood in the age of Deucalion 1 took place. Cranaus was by Pedias, father of Cranae 1, Cranaechme and Atthis (Apd.3.14.5-6; Pau.1.2.6, 1.31.3).

Erichthonius 2. The lower part of Erichthonius 2's body was snakeformed, as it was the case with Cecrops 1 (see above). Erichthonius 2 became king of Athens after having expelled Amphictyon. Some say that Erichthonius 2 was not a son of the soil bu that his father was Hephaestus, and some call his mother Atthis, others Gaia, and still others Athena. These add that Athena brought him up unknown to the other gods, and that when Erichthonius 2 died he was buried in the same precinct of Athena where he had been brought up by the goddess (see more details at Envy). Erichthonius 2 married the Naiad Praxithea 2 and their son was Pandion 2, who became King of Athens after the death of his father (Apd.3.14.6-7; Eur.Ion.21; Hyg.Ast.2.13; Hyg.Fab.48, 166; Pau.1.2.6).

Evenor 4 is a inhabitant of Atlantis. He had a daughter Cleito 2 by Leucippe 6. Cleito 2 consorted with Poseidon and they had five pairs of twins (see Atlantis) (Pla.Cri.113d et seq.).

Indus 2. The Indians are sprung from Indus 2. He was killed by Zeus (Nonn.18.271).

Lelex 2 is the first king of Laconia (the southernmost part of the Peloponnesus), said to have arrived from Egypt. Yet some say that Lelex 2 was AUTOCHTHONOUS; others say he was son of Poseidon and Libya. By the naiad Cleocharia he fathered Eurotas, Myles, Polycaon 1, Cleson, and Bias 6 (Apd.3.10.3, 3.15.5; Pau.1.39.6, 1.44.3, 3.1.1).

Lycaon 2.

Palaechthon is the father of Pelasgus 1 (see below) (Aes.Supp.250).

Pelasgus 1. King in Peloponnesus before the time of Lycaon 2 after whom the inhabitants of the Peloponnesus were called Pelasgians. Otherwise he is remembered as the king of Argos to whom the DANAIDS came (see also these). Pelasgus 1 was either an autochthon, or a son of Zeus and Niobe 1 (the daughter of Phoroneus), or a son of Palaechthon (see above). He is father of Lycaon 2 and Temenus 3; his wife was either Meliboea 1 (one of the OCEANIDS), or Cyllene 1 (one of the NYMPHS), or Deianira 4 (daughter of Lycaon 6, son of Aezeius, one of the first kings of the Peloponnesus) (Aes.Supp.250 and passim; Apd.2.1.1, 3.8.1; DH.1.11.2; Pau.8.22.1).

Periphas 6 is said to have reigned in Attica before the time of Cecrops 1 (see Cecrops 1 above). He was turned by Zeus into an eagle (Lib.Met.6).

Phigalus is the founder of Phigalia, a city in Arcadia. Some say that he was the son of Lycaon 2 (Pau.8.39.1-2).

Phlegyas 1. King of the Phlegyans in Boeotia. He was succeeded on the throne by Chryses 1, father of Minyas according to some. Phlegyas 1 is sometimes said to be the father of Coronis 2, mother of Asclepius. Some have said that Phlegyas 1's father was Ares, and that his mother was either Dotis, or Chryse 1, daughter of Almus, son of Sisyphus. Phlegyas 1 was murdered by Lycus 5 and Nycteus 2, the brothers who usurped power in Thebes (Apd.3.5.5, 3.10.3; Hom.Asc.16; Hes.CWE.89; Nonn.29.31; Pau.9.36.1-4).

Tyllus is father of Halie 2, who married Cotys 2, son of Manes, said to be the first king of Lydia. The children of Cotys 2 and Halie 2 were Asies and Atys 3. The latter was King of Lydia after his father and was also said to be a descendant of Heracles 1 and Omphale (DH.1.27.1).

Related sections  

Aes.Supp.250; Apd.2.1.1, 3.8.1, 3.10.3, 3.14.1-2, 3.14.5-6; DH.1.27.1; Eur.Ion.21; Lib.Met.6; Nonn.18.271, 29.31; Pau.2.12.4-5, 7.2.7, 8.39.1-2, 10.6.4; Pla.Cri.113dff.; Pla.Sta.269cff.