Pověst o Perseovi – vypracovala RNDr. Dagmar Benešová

Pověst o Perseovi

Perseus

According to prophecy Acrisius, the king of Argos, should be killed by his grandson. So he closed his daughter Danae into underground, where any men were forbiden to enter. However the ruler of all gods Zeus came to her through the ceiling like the gold rain and Danae gave birth to a son Perseus. Angry Akrision put his daughter and grandson into a wooden chest, hammered the cover and threw the chest into the sea. Waves brought it to the island Serifos, where the king Polydektes ruled. He fell in love with Danae and looked after her and her son. However Danae did not love Polydectes. Perseus grew into a man endowed with many virtues. He was beautiful like a god, he was extremely strong and brave and also skillful and succesful. Polydectes hoped to gain Danae after Perseus had left the island. He wanted Perseus proved his divine origin doing something extremely difficult. Perseus agreed so Polydectes asked him to kill Gorgone Medusa and bring her head. It was really superhuman task. Three sisters Gorgones lived at an undisclosed location. They were winged monsters with sharp fangs and vipers instead hair. Medusa, the only one of them, was lethal. Looking at Gorgones everybody turned to stone. However Perseus was a son of the ruler of gods so the gods helped him. Messenger of gods Hermes gave Perseus a magic curved sword that never missed target. The divine Athene gave him shiny copper shield in which everything reflected like in a mirror. So Perseus was able to avoid looking at Medusa and he could look at her reflection instead. Before getting to Gorgones Perseus had to go a long distressful way. He got into a bleak land where three Graies lived. They were Gorgones´ sisters. They had just one eye and they had to share it. Perseus stole them the eye and promised to give it back when they said him where Gorgones lived. On the way he met good-natured nymphs who gave him three useful things: a helmet of the ruler of the underworld Hades that made a man invisible, winged flying sandals and magic bag changing its size according its content. Invisible Perseus took off and attacked Medusa with his magic sword. He cut her head, put it into the bag and flew fast away. A stream of dark blood ran out from Medusa´s body and a giant Chrysaor and a winged horse Pegasos appeared. On his way back Perseus arrived in northwest Africa where Titan Atlas lived. He insulted Perseus and so Perseus showed him Medusa´s head. Titan turned to the mountains Atlas. On the next way over Sahara Medusa´s blood dropped from the bag and the drops changed into poissoned snakes. They killed all life in Sahara and turned the territory to a dessert. Using the divine gifts Perseus also saved the beautiful princess Andromeda who should be victimed to a sea monster. Perseus got married Andromeda and arrived in Serifos to fulfill his promise and bring the Medusa´s head to Polydectes. However the king did not believe that Perseus fulfilled the task and called him a braggart and liar. So Perseus put Medusa´s head out of the bag to prove he told truth. The king turned to stone. Perseus with his wife Andromeda and mother Danae went to his birthplace Argos. Accidentaly he killed there his grandfather Acrisios. So the prophecy was fulfilled.

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