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House of Atreus

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The House of Atreus was a royal family descending from Zeus. They ruled Mycenae and Sparta at the height of their power. Well known members of the family are Agamemnon and Pelops.

Pelops

Pelops

Curse

The family was subject to a curse beginning with Tantalus.

Tantalus

Tantalus killed his own son and served him to Zeus and the Olympians at a banquet. He was punished for this by having to stand in a pool in Tartarus, surrounded by trees. When he tried to drink, the pool would drain itself and when he tried to eat a fruit from the tree, the branches would move out of his reach. From hsi name comes the word "tantalize".

Broteas

Broteas was the second son of Tantalus and was born deformed.
NiobeWeepingRock AglayanKaya MountSipylus ManisaTurkey

Niobe

Tantalus II

Tantalus was the son of Broteas and also suffered due to the curse put on his namesake. He was overthrown as King of Lydia and the Heraclidae began their rule.

Niobe

Niobe was Tantalus' daughter. She married Amphion and bore fourteen children (the Niobids), seven girls and seven boys. She taunted Leto becuase the goddess only had two children. When Leto's children, Apollo, and Artemis grew up, they shot and killed the Niobids. Niobe then fasted for four days and Leto turned her to stone. Her stone form, the Weeping Rock, can still be seen near Mt Sipylus, Turkey. 

401px-Tholos of Atreus

Tomb of Atreus

Pelops

Pelops was brought back to life by Zeus and  eventually won the hand of Hippodamia in marriage, but at the cost of  his father-in-law's life in a chariot race. Also, his father-in-law's charioteer cursed the family with his dying breath.

Atreus

Atreus was Pelop's eldest son and was married to Aerope, who eventually deserted him for his brother Thyestes. When Thyestes exiled him from Mycenae, he eventually returned but was killed by Aegisthus, his nephew/grand-nephew (Aegisthus' father was Thyestes, his mother was Thyestes' daughter Pelopia).

Thyestes

Thyestes committed adultery with Atreus' wife and bore a daughter, Pelopia. When he consulted an oracle on how to have a son, he was told to rape his daughter. Out of their incestuous union came Aegisthus. was eventually killed by his brother's two sons.
457px-Brogi, Giacomo (1822-1881) - n. 4140 - Roma - Vaticano - Menelao - Busto in marmo

Bust of Menelaus

510px-Murder Aegisthus Louvre K320

Orestes and Pylades murder Aegisthus


Agamemnon

Atreus' eldest son - when Agamemnon returned from Troy, he was killed by his wife Clytaemnestra, and her new lover Aegisthus, his own cousin.

Menelaus

Atreus' younger son - when Menelaus returned from Crete, he found his wife Helen was abducted by Paris, the prince of Troy. This event sparked the Trojan War.

Aegisthus

Aegisthus was Thyestes' son/grandson and was murdered by Orestes after he committed adultery with Clytaemnestra and killed Agamemnon

Orestes

Orestes was the last victim of the curse. He killed his mother and Aegisthus after they murdered his father. He was plagued by the Furies but eventually cleared of the charges of matricide.

Tisamenus

Orestes' son was the last Atreid monarch, being defeated by the Heraclidae, who returned to claim the Peloponessus as the rightful inheritance of their famed ancestor.

Family Tree

Atreid Genealogy in Greek mythology
 
 
 
 
Plouto
 
Zeus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Hera
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tantalus
 
Eurythemista
 
Ares
 
Harpina
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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
Chart

A chart showing the relations between the Atreids (blue), the Perseids (purple)and the ruling houses of Athens (light green), Sparta (green) and Ithaca (pink)

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