Fandom

Mythology Wiki

Agamemnon

1,324pages on
this wiki
Add New Page
Comments0 Share

Ad blocker interference detected!


Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.

600px-MaskOfAgamemnon

Mask of Agamemnon

King Agamemnon, more commonly known as Agamemnon (Ancient Greek: Ἀγαμέμνων; Modern Greek: Αγαμέμνονας, "very steadfast"), was the king of Mycenae and Argos in Southern Greece.

He was the son of Atreus and Aerope, the brother of Menelaus, the spouse of Clytaemnestra, and the father of Electra, Iphigenia, Chrysothemis, and Orestes. When Menelaus's wife, Helen, was abducted by the Trojan prince Paris, Agamemnon commanded an army of Greek warriors with Menelaus that invaded Troy, as told in the Iliad.

After a decade of fighting in Troy, Agamemnon returned home and was murdered by Clytemnastra and her new lover, Aegisthus, his cousin and the killer of Atreus. Some versions of the myth say that Clytemnastra or Aegisthus solely killed him while in another they both do the killing.

BackgroundEdit

Atreus, the father of Agamemnon, murdered the children of his twin brother Thyestes and fed them to him after discovering Thyestes' adultery with his wife, Aerope. Thyestes and his daughter had a child named Aegisthus. He vowed revenge on Atreus' children and successfully murdered Atreus restoring his father's rule. He took the throne and ruled Mycenae with Thyestes. Agamemnon and his brother, Menelaus, took refuge with the King of Sparta, Tyndareus. They respectively married Tyndareus' daughters, Clytemnastra and Helen. Agamemnon had his four children, Orestes, Electra, Iphigenia, and Chrysothemis, with Clytemnastra. After Tyndareus, Menelaus took control of the Spartan throne while Agamemnon had successfully drove out Aegisthus and Thyestes with Menelaus's help. He reclaimed his father's throne and, through conquest, had become the most powerful Greek ruler.

Agamemnon's family history had been marred by rape, murder, incest, and treachery, consequences of the heinous crime perpetrated by their ancestor, Tantalus, and then of a curse placed upon Pelops, son of Tantalus, by Myrtilus, whom he had murdered. Thus misfortune hounded successive generations of the House of Atreus , until atoned by Orestes in a court of justice held jointly by humans and gods.

Trojan WarEdit

When Paris of Troy took Helen back to Troy with him, Menelaus sought Agamemnon's help in retrieving her. Agamemnon, who wanted to conqueror Troy, lead a coalition of Greek kingdoms to attack Troy.

Preparing for departure from Aulis, a port in Boeotia, Agamemnon's army incurred the wrath of the goddess Artemis. There are several reasons for this: Artemis is angry for the young men who will die at war in Troy, Artemis is angry due to Agamemnon slaying a sacred animal of Artemis, or that he boasted that he was equal in hunting. Plague and a lack of wind prevented his army from sailing. Eventually, the prophet Calchas says that the sacrifice of his daughter, Iphigenia, will allow him to sail for Troy. Agamemnon, in some versions, willingly sacrifices his daughter and sets sail; whereas in other versions, prepares to sacrifice Iphigenia, but Artemis replaces her with a deer at the last minute. In the latter, she is said to have been whisked away to Taurus in Crimea where she became the goddess Hecate, according to the Greek writer Hesiod.

Agamemnon was the commander-in-chief of the Achaean (Greek) army during the Trojan War. During the fighting, Agamemnon killed Antiphus, a son of Priam, and 15 other Trojan soldiers. Agamemnon's teamster, Halaesus, later fought with the significant early "Roman" founder Aeneas in Italy. The Iliad tells os the story of the quarrel between Agamemnon and Achilles in the tenth and last year of the war. Agamemnon took an attractive slave, as a prize, Briseis, from Achilles. Achilles, the greatest warrior of the age, withdrew from battle in revenge and nearly cost the Greek armies the war. (Later however Achilles returned when Patroclus his friend had died wearing Achilles' armor.)

Although not the equal of Achilles in bravery, Agamemnon was a representative of kingly authority. As commander-in-chief, he summoned the princes to the council and led the army in battle. He took the field himself, and performed many heroic deeds until he was wounded and forced to withdraw to his tent. His chief fault was his overwhelming haughtiness; an over-exalted opinion of his position that led him to insult Chryses and Achilles, thereby bringing great disaster upon the Greeks.

After the capture of Troy, Cassandra, doomed prophetess and daughter of Priam, fell to Agamemnon's lot in the distribution of the prizes of war.

DeathEdit

Agamemnon was afterwards slain by Clytaemnestra and her lover, Agisthos, in Argos after his grand return from Troy, in his house. He later was avenged by his son Orestês who, with the help of Electra, killed their mother and Aegisthus.

He appears later as a shade in the Land of the Dead where Odysseus comes to in the Odyssey, and warns Odysseus likewise to not create a big show on his own return to Ithaca, telling him that wives of the Achaeans can't be trusted, for fear that Penelopê his wife might have turned against Odysseus during the twenty years of him being gone at Troy and would slay him as Clytaemnestra did to Agamemnon. Odysseus took this advice.

FamilyEdit

Atreid Genealogy in Greek mythology
 
 
 
 
Plouto
 
Zeus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hera
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tantalus
 
Eurythemista
 
Ares
 
Sterope
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Oenomaus of Pisa
 
Evarete
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Oeme
 
 
Broteas
 
 
 
 
Niobe
 
Amphion
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Perseus of Mycenae
 
Andromeda
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pelops
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hippodamia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tantalus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Atreus
 
Aerope
 
 
 
Thyestes
 
 
 
Nicippe
 
Sthenelus
 
Electyron
 
Eurydice
 
Astydamia
 
Alcaeus
 
Pittheus
 
Henioche
 
Alcathous
 
Pyrgo
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pelopia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eurystheus
 
Zeus
 
Alcmene
 
 
 
 
 
Amphitryon
 
 
 
 
 
Aethra
 
Aegeus of Athens
 
Periboea
 
Telamon of Aegina
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Helen
 
Menelaus
 
 
 
Agamemnon
 
Clytaemnestra
 
Aegisthus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Heracles
 
 
 
Iphicles
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Theseus
 
 
 
 
 
Ajax
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hermione
 
 
 
Orestes
 
 
Iphigenia
 
 
 
Electra
 
Pylades
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tisamenus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Strophius
 
 
 
 
 
Medon
Preceded by:
Aegisthus (First Rule)
King of Mycenae
Mythic
Succeeded by
Aegisthus (Second Rule)

Start a Discussion Discussions about Agamemnon

Also on Fandom

Random Wiki