Tantalus and His Children.

Tantalus was one of the mortal sons of Zeus, favored more by other Gods than Zeus himself. They gave him many advantages that only immortals were aloud to endure. They let him dine with them and let him drink ambrosia with them. After condescending to dine with him in his banquet in his palace, he boiled his own son; Pelops, and gave him to the Gods to feast upon his boiled flesh. In thriving anger, the Olympians sent him to a pool in Hades, where every time he bent down to drink something the water would vanish, that appear when he rose up. There were ripe, juicy fruits all around him, but as he reached to pick them the would be blown away by a fierce wind. He probably regretted everything he had done as he sat in that pool with a throat crackling with thirst and a stomach empty of hunger.

Pelops was brought back to life by the Gods. The Gods’ aspects of¬†cannibalism which Tantalus tried to bring out seemed to have shown when either Demeter or Thetis had eaten of the dish. This was revealed when the boys body had one normal shoulder and the other off. Other than that problem, Pelops lived a fair life, for a while. He fell in love and married Princess Hippodamia. Many would say he was lucky to have her, and even lucky to be alive after her attempt to have her. He was lucky because many people died for her, because her father would tell the man wanting the princess to race with him, and if they won they’s marry her, but if they’d lose they would have to be killed. Her father had two of the best superior race horses, given to him by Ares. Even though Pelops’s horses were only mortals, he trusted them. Pelops won, but there is a story in which Hippodamia bribed her father’s charioteer, Myrtilus, to pull out the bolts which held her father’s chariot. She either did this because she was in love with Pelops or because she wanted the death’s to stop. However; later on, even after the help Myrtilus gave Pelops he killed the charioteer, leaving a curse on the family. Thjat probably explains why they all had bad luck afterwards.

Tantalus’s other child, Niobe, was also greatly favored by the Gods. She was married to an Amphion who was the son of Zeus, and a great musician. His brother, Zethus, was always judgmental of his lack of strength and masculinity. Together, they wanted to build a wall to fortify Thebes, and Zethus’s brother proved his strength when he was singing so powerfully that the stones built the wall. He soon discovered that Niobe had the same arrogance as her father boiling inside of her. She wanted to defy the Gods in the worst way. She had seven sons and seven daughters, whom she gathered along with people of Thebes to worship Leto. As they lit incense, Niobe told them they were worshiping her, and saying that she was better than all the God’s. but, like always, the Gods were listening, who sent down Apollo and Artemis to shoot down all her fourteen children. She fell down, then turned to stone, but cried for eternity. Like father like daughter.

 

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