Definitions

Amphion

Amphion

[am-fahy-uhn, am-fee-]
Amphion: see Antiope 1.

In Greek mythology, twin sons of Zeus by the mortal Antiope. As infants the two were left to die on Mount Cithaeron, but were found and raised by a shepherd. Amphion grew up to become a great musician and singer, while Zethus became a hunter and herdsman. According to legend, they built the city of Thebes after the stone blocks arranged themselves into walls at the sound of Amphion's lyre. Amphion became king of Thebes, and he married Niobe, with whom he had six sons and six daughters. When their children were killed by the gods, he committed suicide.

Learn more about Amphion and Zethus with a free trial on Britannica.com.

This article is about Amphion in Greek and mythology. For naval vessels named Amphion, see HMS Amphion, Swedish Amphion and USS Amphion, and for speakers, see Amphion Loudspeakers.

There are several characters named Amphion (Greek: Ἀμφίων) in Greek mythology:

  • Amphion,son of Zeus and Antiope, and twin brother of Zethus (see Amphion and Zethus). Together they are famous for building Thebes. Amphion married Niobe, and killed himself after the loss of his wife and children (the Niobids) at the hands of Apollo and Artemis. One of his surviving children was the daughter now renamed as Chloris. However, other accounts (including Homer, in the Odyssey) claim that Chloris was a daughter of another Amphion, ruler of Minyan Orchomenus (see below).
  • Amphion, son of Iasus and Persephone (a mortal woman, not the wife of Hades). This Amphion is an obscure character, said to be a king of the Minyans of Orchomenus, in Boeotia.
  • Amphion, son of Hyperasius and Hypso, an Argonaut.

Popular culture

  • Amphion is also the name of a well known progressive rock group from the early to mid 1990`s. They released 3 CD`s and one of the members went solo and released 3 more.

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