"Wine-man." A son of Porthaon, brother of Agrius and Melas and husband of Althaea, by whom he became the father of Tydeus and Meleager, and was thus the grandfather of Diomedes. He was king of Pleuron and Calydon in Aetolia.1 According to the tragic poets he was a son of Porthaon and Euryte, and besides the two brothers mentioned above, Alcathous, Laocoon, Leucopeus, and Sterope, are likewise called his brothers and sister.2 His children are said to have been Toxeus, whom he himself killed, Thyreus (Phereus), Clymenus, Periphas, Agelaus, Meleager, Gorge, Eurymede, Melanippe, Mothone, and Deianeira.3 His second wife was Melanippe, the daughter of Hipponous, and by her he is said by some to have become the father of Tydeus, who according to others was his son by his own daughter Gorge.4
Oeneus is said to have been deprived of his kingdom by the sons of Agrius, who imprisoned him and ill used him. But he was subsequently avenged by Diomedes, who slew Agrius and his sons, and restored the kingdom either to Oeneus himself, or to his son-in-law Andraemon, as Oeneus was too old. Diomedes took his grandfather with him to the Peloponnese, but some of the sons who lay in ambush, slew the old man, near the altar of Telephus in Arcadia. Diomedes buried his body at Argos, and named the town of Oenoe after him.5
According to others Oeneus lived to a very old age with Diomedes at Argos, and died a natural death.6 Homer knows nothing of all this; he merely relates that Oeneus once neglected to sacrifice to Artemis, in consequence of which she sent a monstrous boar into the territory of Calydon, which was hunted by Meleager.7 The hero Bellerophon was hospitably received by him, and received a costly girdle as a present from him.8
- Homer. Iliad v, 813; ix, 543; xiv, 115 ff.
- Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library i, 7.10; Apollonius Rhodius. Argonautica i, 192; Hyginus. Fabulae, 14.
- Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library i, 8.1; Pausanias. Description of Greece iv, 35.1; Antoninus Liberalis, 2.
- Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library i, 8.4 ff.; Diodorus Siculus. Historical Library iv, 35; comp. Tydeus.
- Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library i, 8.5 ff.; Antoninus Liberalis, 37; Diodorus Siculus. Historical Library iv, 65.
- Pausanias. Description of Greece ii, 25.2.
- Iliad ix, 532 ff.
- ibid. vi, 216 ff.
- ibid. ii, 638 ff.
- 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.