A son of Pelops and Hippodamia, brother of Atreus and Thyestes, first married Pyrgo and afterwards Euaechme, and was the father of Echepolis (Ischepolis), Callipolis, Iphinoe, Periboea, and Automedusa.1 Pausanias2 relates that, after Euippus, the son of king Megareus, was destroyed by the Cythaeronian lion, Megareus, whose elder son Timalcus had likewise fallen by the hands of Theseus, offered his daughter Euaechme and his kingdom to him who should slay that lion. Alcathous undertook the task, conquered the lion, and thus obtained Euaechme for his wife, and afterwards became the successor of Megareus. In gratitude for this success, he built at Megara a temple of Artemis Agrotera and Apollo Agraeus. He also restored the walls of Megara, which had been destroyed by the Cretans.3 In this work he was said to have been assisted by Apollo, and the stone, upon which the god used to place his lyre while he was at work, was even in late times believed, when struck, to give forth a sound similar to that of a lyre.4

Echepolis, one of the sons of Alcathous, was killed during the Calydonian Hunt in Aetolia, and when his brother Callipolis hastened to carry the sad tidings to his father, he found him engaged in offering a sacrifice to Apollo, and thinking it unfit to offer sacrifices at such a moment, he snatched away the wood from the altar. Alcathous imagining this to be an act of sacrilegious wantonness, killed his son on the spot with a piece of wood.5 The acropolis of Megara was called by a name derived for that of Alcathous.6



  1. Pausanias. Description of Greece i, 42.1, 4, 43.4; Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library ii, 4.11; iii, 12.7.
  2. Description of Greece i, 41.4.
  3. ibid. i, 41.5.
  4. ibid. i, 4.1; Ovid. Metamorphoses viii, 15 ff.; Cicero. Ciris, 105; Theognis, 751.
  5. Pausanias. Description of Greece i, 42.7.
  6. ibid. i, 42.7.


  • Smith, William. (1870). Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. London: Taylor, Walton, and Maberly.

This article incorporates text from Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology (1870) by William Smith, which is in the public domain.