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Calydon and Pleuron

5903: The surroundings of Calydon, AD 2001.

Location of Calydon in Aetolia

Calydon is a city in Aetolia, a region in mainland Greece, north of the Gulf of Patrae between the rivers Achelous and Evenus. The river Evenus, formerly called Lycormas, is called after a son of Ares and Demonice who perished after throwing himself in that river.

The eponym of Aetolia

Aetolia is called after Endymion's son Aetolus 2, who left Elis because he had been convicted of an unintentional homicide. However, on arriving to the new country, he did commit some intentional homicides, killing his hosts in the Curetian country: Dorus 2, Laodocus 2 and Polypoetes 2, all three sons of Apollo and Phthia 2.

His sons founded two fine cities

Aetolus 2 married Pronoe 2 and had by her two sons, Calydon and Pleuron, who gave their names to the Aetolian cities they founded. Calydon's daughter Epicasta 1 married her cousin Agenor 6, son of Pleuron and Xanthippe 1. This Xanthippe 1 was a daughter of Dorus 2, one of the three hosts that Aetolus 2 killed when he came to the land of the Curetes.

3108: Oeneus, King of Calydon, neglects Artemis in a sacrifice. Engraving by Bernard Picart, 1673-1733.

Thestius 1 and Porthaon

Agenor 6 and Epicasta 1 had children: Porthaon, Demonice and Thestius 1. Thestius 1 is also called son of Ares and Demonice. When King Tyndareus of Sparta was banished by Hippocoon 2, he came to Thestius 1, who at the time was king of Pleuron. Tyndareus married Thestius 1's daughter Leda, and once Heracles 1 had defeated Hippocoon 2 and his sons, he restored Tyndareus and entrusted the kingdom of Sparta to him. Porthaon married a granddaughter of the river god Achelous, Euryte 2, and became father by her of, among others, Oeneus 2, who in time became King of Calydon.

Oeneus 2

It is told that when Oeneus 2 was king of Calydon, he was negligent towards Artemis, and the goddess punished him and his country by sending a boar of huge size and strength, which destroyed the cattle and the people, and prevented the land from being sown. To get rid of this ravaging beast, King Oeneus 2 assembled the noblest men of Hellas, who are now known as the CALYDONIAN HUNTERS, and promised to give the Boar's skin as a prize to him who should kill it. King Oeneus 2 is also remembered for having entertained Bellerophon in his palace, exchanging friendship gifts with him. Later, during the Trojan War, the descendants of Oeneus 2 and BellerophonDiomedes 2 and Glaucus 3—met as enemies in the battlefield, but instead of fighting they also exchanged gifts to honor their ancestors' friendship.

Coup d'état

King Oeneus 2 was, in his old days, deposed by the sons of his brother Agrius 3 and put in jail by them. But after the fall of Troy, his grandson Diomedes 2 liberated him, killing Agrius 3 and his son Lycopeus, and restored the kingdom to him (see details at Diomedes 2). However, some affirm that Diomedes 2 did not restore the kingdom to Oeneus 2 because of his advanced age, but to the latter's son-in-law Andraemon 1, who had married Oeneus 2's daughter Gorge 2. Others assert that Lycopeus was killed by Tydeus 2, son of Oeneus 2 and father of Diomedes 2. Because of this, they say, Tydeus 2 fled to Argos, arriving at the same time as Polynices, who had been banished from Thebes by his twin brother Eteocles 1. Both exiles were received by King Adrastus 1 of Argos, who gave them his daughters as wives and promised them to restore them to their native lands. And having decided to restore Polynices first, they jointly organized the expedition of the SEVEN AGAINST THEBES, which ultimately meant death for both Tydeus 2 and Polynices.

Thoas 2

5906: The river Evenus, AD 2001.

When Andraemon 1 and Gorge 2 died, their son Thoas 2 became king of Pleuron and Calydon, and during the Trojan War, Thoas 2 became leader of the Aetolians, contributing forty ships to the Achaean fleet. Some say that after the war the exiled Odysseus came to him and married his daughter, having by her a son Leontophonus.

The circle almost closed

Thoas 2 had a son Haemon 2, who in turn was father of Oxylus 2. The story of Oxylus 2 reminds of the story of Aetolus 2, but emigrating in the opposite direction. Oxylus 2 fled from Aetolia to Elis on account of the murder of Thermius or else of Alcidocus. Oxylus 2 became guide of the HERACLIDES, and subsequently king of Elis. It is told that as he was throwing the quoit he missed the mark and committed unintentional homicide. The man killed by the quoit, according to one account, was Thermius, brother of Oxylus 2; according to another, it was Alcidocus. Oxylus 2 and Pieria 2 had a son Aetolus 3, who could have inherited the throne fulfilling the circle, had he not died so young. He was buried in a tomb in the gate leading to Olympia because an oracle forbade the corpse to be laid either outside the city or within it.

Related sections Map of Greece, CALYDONIAN HUNTERS  

Apd.1.7.7, 1.7.10, 1.8.1-5, 3.10.5; Hes.CWE.98; Lib.Met.2; Pau.3.13.8, 4.35.1, 7.4.1, 8.45.7. Other mentions of Calydon: Apd.1.8.1-3, 2.6.3, 2.7.5, 2.7.6, 3.6.1, 3.7.5, 3.9.2, 3.13.2; Arg.1.190; Hom.Il.2.640, 9.531, 9.577, 13.217, 14.116; Hyg.Fab.14, 69, 70, 172, 173a, 174, 248; Nonn.35.85; Ov.Met.6.415, 8.324, 8.495, 8.526, 8.528, 9.147, 14.512.