Or Augeias (Αὐγείας), a son of Phorbas and Hyrmine, and king of the Epeians in Elis. According to some accounts he was a son of Eleius or Helios or Poseidon.1 His mother, too, is not the same in all traditions, for some call her Iphiboë or Naupidame.2
He is mentioned among the Argonauts, but he is more celebrated in ancient story on account of his connexion with Heracles, one of whose labors, imposed upon him by Eurystheus, was to clear in one day the stables of Augeas, who kept in them a large number of oxen (see Augean Stables). Heracles was to have the tenth part of the oxen as his reward, but when the hero had accomplished his task by leading the rivers Alpheus and Peneus through the stables, Augeas refused to keep his promise. Heracles, therefore, made war upon him, which terminated in his death and that of his sons, with the exception of one, Phyleus, whom Heracles placed on the throne of his father.3
The cleansing of the Augean stables is depicted on one of the metopes at the temple of Zeus in Olympia (ca. 460 BCE).
- Pausanias. Description of Greece v, 1.7; Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library ii, 5.5; Scholiast on Apollonius Rhodius, i, 172.
- Tzetzes on Lycophron, 41; Hyginus. Fabulae, 14.
- Apolod. l.c.; ii, 7.2; Diodorus Siculus, iv, 13, 33; Theocritus. Idylls, 25.
- Description of Greece v, 3.4, 4.1
- 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.