Epaphus was the son of Zeus and Io. The name/word Epaphus means "Touch". This refers to the manner in which he was conceived, by the touch of Zeus' hand. He was born in Euboea, in the cave Boösaule (Herodotus, Strabo), or, according to others, in Egypt, on the river Nile, after the long wanderings of his mother. He was then concealed by the Curetes, by the request of Hera, but Io sought and afterward found him in Syria.
Epaphus is regarded in the myths as the founder of Memphis, Egypt. With his wife, Memphis (or according to others, Cassiopeia); he had one daughter, Libya. Another of his daughters bore the name of Lysianassa.
Epaphus also criticized Phaëton's heraldry, which prompted him to undertake his fateful journey in his father Phoebus' chariot of the sun. Belus, another mythological king of Egypt, is a grandson of Epaphus.
- Apollod. ii. 1. §§ 3, 4, 5. § 11; Gaius Julius Hyginus Fabulae 145, 149, 275; comp. Herod. iii. 27, 28. (cited by Schmitz)
- David Rohl: The Lords of Avaris. London, Arrow Books 2007
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Leonhard Schmitz (1870). "article name needed". In Smith, William. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.
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