Tantalus (son of Broteas)

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In Greek mythology Tantalus, not to be confused with his more famous grandfather and namesake (Tantalus) who was also called Atys, was the son of Broteas. He ruled over the city of Lydia. He was the first husband of Clytemnestra and was slain by Agamemnon, King of Mycenae, a soldier in the Trojan War, who made Clytemnestra his wife. After he died, the Tantalid dynasty finished because Agron took the throne. He was a great-great-grandson of Heracles and Omphale, Atys's stepmother, and therefore, Tantalus II's second cousin once removed by marriage.


Agamemnon's father, Atreus, was a first cousin to Tantalus. Agamemnon killed Tantalus and married Clytemnestra. He then became the king of Argos and Mycenae. Agamemnon fought in the Trojan War. On his return, he was killed either by Clytemnestra or by his cousin Aegisthus. Clytemnestra and Aegisthus married and ruled Mycenae until Agamemnon's son Orestes killed Aegisthus and Clytemnestra in revenge.

Tantalus's family members[edit]

Tantalus is a member of a family with a troubled history.


Tantalus's grandfather, also named Tantalus, sacrificed his son, Pelops, to the gods. Since the Olympians hated human sacrifice, they restored Pelops back to life and gave him a team of Poseidon's horses. They also killed Tantalus and he was tortured in the Underworld. Pelops would win a chariot race with his team of horses and gain the right to marry a princess named Hippodamia,


His father was Broteas, the brother of Niobe and Pelops. Broteas carved the image of Cybele, a Phyrgian equivalent of the Titaness Rhea. The image was sacred to the Magnesians. Broteas, like his son, also ruled over Pisa. Since he was a hunter and did not honor Artemis, he was sacrificed on a pyre. It was similar to the punishment of Actaeon.


Niobe was Broteas's sister. She had fourteen children and bragged about them at a ceremony dedicated to Leto, the mother of the gods Apollo and Artemis, boasting that Leto only had two children. To punish her, Apollo and Artemis killed all of Niobe's children.


Tantalus's uncle, see section on Tantalus (father of Broteas).

Manes or Tmolus[edit]

Manes, also known as Tmolus (father of Atys), was the first king of Lydia, which was then called Maeonia after him. He married Omphale but gave birth to Atys with Plouto. Manes was gored to death by a bull and Omphale became the queen. The list of Tantalid rulers of Lydia is: Manes, Omphale, Atys, Broteas, and Tantalus II.

Heraclids or Tylonids[edit]

After Tantalus II was killed, his second cousin twice removed by marriage, Agron, took the kingdom of Lydia. Agron was the son of Ninus, Ninus was the son of Belus, Belus was the son of Alcaeus, and Alcaeus was the son of Heracles and Omphale. This was the beginning of a new dynasty, called the Heraclids. Agron's son and successor was Ardys I.

See also[edit]