Classical Greek Mythology

Perseus and Medusa

What happened to Perseus after he killed Medusa?

Perseus stuffed the head of Medusa into the kibisis and fled her now-awakened and pursuing sisters, using the magic sandals and the helmet of Hades to provide him with the necessary speed and invisibility.

The flying hero was passing over the land of King Cepheus and Queen Cassiopeia when he noticed a young woman tied to a cliff. He flew down to the maiden and immediately fell in love. The girl was Andromeda, the daughter of Cepheus and Cassiopeia. When Cassiopeia had claimed to be more beautiful than the sea nymphs known as the Nereids, she was punished for her arrogance by being required to choose between a devastating flood and the sacrifice of her daughter. She chose the latter, and the girl was left chained to the cliff for a sea monster to feed on. Perseus, however, killed the monster and freed Andromeda in return for her hand in marriage. When courtiers of Cepheus tried to undermine the agreement, Perseus held up Medusa’s head for them to see, and they were all turned to stone.

Now with Andromeda, Perseus traveled to Seriphos, where the hero went to the palace of the king and announced that he had brought the promised gift. When the king and his courtiers insulted him, he again held up Medusa’s head, turning them all to stone. The circle of stones is still in Seriphos. Perseus now returned the Medusa head to Athene, who placed it on her shield, and he left with his wife and mother for Argos. There the original prophecy of the oracle was fulfilled when during some games, the wind caused Perseus’s discus to strike and kill his grandfather, Acrisius. The oracles of the gods do not lie.


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