Absyrtus

Absyrtus In Greek mythology, son of King Aeetes of Colchis; brother of Medea. In her flight from Colchis with her lover Jason, Medea cut Absyrtus into pieces and threw them one by one into the sea, so that Aeetes, stopping to pick them up, would be delayed in his pursuit of the lovers. Some variant accounts say Medea killed Absyrtus in Colchis, others, near Istria. Still other accounts say Absyrtus was not killed by Medea but arrived safely in Illyrium. Ovid’s Tristia (3.9) tells the tale of Medea and Absyrtus, which is alluded to in Shakespeare’s Henry VI, Part II (5.2.59). Other works dealing with the tale include Apollonius Rhodius’s Argonautica (4.3303—482) and Apollodorus’s Bibliotheca (Library) (1.9.24).

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Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow– Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante

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