Meleager

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This article is about the mythological figure Meleager. For the Macedonian general, see Meleager (general), for the anthologist see Meleager of Gadara.

In Greek mythology, Meleager was the son of Althaea and Oeneus and, according to some accounts father of Parthenopeus and Polydora. His story as similarities with the Scandinavian Norna-Gests ttr.

When Meleager was born, the Moirae predicted he would only live until a brand, burning in the family hearth, was consumed by fire. Althaea immediately hid the brand.

Meleager married Cleopatra, daughter of Idas.

Missing image
Jakob_Jordaens_008.jpg
Meleager and Atalanta, Jacob Jordaens, first half of 17th century.

Oeneus sent Meleager to gather up heroes to hunt the Calydonian Boar that had been stalking the area. Among many others, he chose Atalanta, a fierce huntress, whom he loved. According to one account of the hunt, Hylaeus and Rhaecus, two centaurs, tried to rape Atalanta. Meleager killed them. Then, Atalanta wounded the boar and Meleager killed it. He awarded her the hide since she had drawn the first drop of blood. Toxeus and Plexippus (Althaea's brothers) grew enraged that the prize was given to a woman. Meleager killed them in the ensuing argument. He also killed Iphicles and Eurypylus for insulting Atalanta.

Since Meleager had killed her two brothers, Althaea placed the brand back upon the fire, killing him.

Later, Meleager was one of the Argonauts. This may, or may not, have been the same Meleager.

With Atalanta, Meleager may have been the father of Parthenopeus, although in other versions Hippomenes was his father.

Apollodorus. Bibliotheke I, viii, 1-3; Ovid. Metamorphoses VIII, 269-525; Homer. Iliad IX, 529-99.de:Meleagros fr:Mlagre it:Meleagro nl:Meleager uk:Мелеагр

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