Opheltes

Opheltes

[uh-fel-teez]
Opheltes (also known as Archemoros) is a boy from Greek mythology, the son Nemean king Lykourgos and Queen Eurydike.

"When their son was born, Lykourgos consulted the oracle at Delphi in order to find out how he might insure the health and happiness of his child. The priestess replied that the child must not touch the ground until he had learned to walk.

One day his nursemaid, Hypsipyle, was walking with the young Opheltes in her arms. She met the Seven Argive generals marching against Thebes. They ask her where the nearest wellspring was. Hypsipyle put Opheltes on the ground in a bed of wild celery and walked away with them, to show them where it was. While she was away, a snake strangled Opheltes.

"After this incident the generals held a funeral celebration for Opheltes and they arranged sport games to honor him. According to one myth this was the beginning of the famous Nemean Games.

After the child's death, he was renamed Archemoros ("the forerunner of death").

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