The husband of Harpe and father of Lycius, Ortygius, Harpasus, and Artemicha. He lived in Mesopotamia, near Babylon, and was beloved by Apollo and Artemis. Having heard that the Hyperboreans sacrificed asses to Apollo, he wished to introduce the same custom at Babylon; but Apollo threatened him, and commanded that only sheep, goats, and heifers should be sacrificed.

Lycius and Harpasus, the sons of Cleinis, however, persisted in sacrificing asses, whereupon Apollo infuriated the animals so as to attack the family of Cleinis. Other divinities, however, took pity upon the family, and changed all its members into different birds.



  • Antoninus Liberalis, 20.
  • 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.