Atreus

Son of Pelops and king of Mycenae. With his wife and former daughter-in-law through his son Pleisthenes, Aerope, he had adopted his grandchildren: two sons, Agamemnon and Menelaus, and a daughter, Anaxibia. His brother Thyestes seduced Aerope in an attempt to sieze the throne, and Atreus punished him severely by killing his sons and serving them to Thyestes. When Thyestes realized what he had eaten he cursed Atreus, a curse that would torment Agamemnon later. According to one version this was when Zeus changed the course of the sun.One story tells us that Thyestes raped his own daughter, Pelopia. When she bore a child by him, the son Aegisthus, she put him out to die, being the fruit of incest, but Atreus saved the baby and brought him up. When Aegisthus was old enough Atreus sent him to kill Thyestes. After the rape, Pelopia had stolen Thyestes sword and put it by her sons side. When Thyestes recognized the sword that Aegisthus bore, Pelopia killed herself with it. Aegisthus brought the bloody weapon to Atreus, who now thought his brother finally had been killed. In stead, Aegisthus killed him, and returned to his father, and side by side they ruled Mycenae.

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