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Written by David Ninomiya, aka Theseus

Well, since Theseus is my alias, I thought I should explain who this guy is.  He's a Greek human, who made Athens; a major city of Attica, into a great city, killed villains, and led an amazing life.  Yet his life was full of personal tragedies, making him a very interesting and complex figure in Greek mythology.  There is so much to tell about Theseus that it was hard to condense his whole life into a few pages.  I tried to give just the basics of his life and this seems long, sorry about that.

Parents King Aegeus ("father") and Princess Aethra (mother)

King Aegeus, (king of Athens) was infertile so he went to the Delphic oracle for advice on how to have a child. He received advice, but didn't "get it" so on his way back, he passed the city of Troezen, where King Pittheus understood the instructions, and made him drunk.  While drunk, Pittheus made it so Aegeus would sleep with Princess Aethra (Pittheus' daughter).  However in the same night, Poseidon also slept with her, and NO, Aethra is not a whore or something. When Aegeus left for Athens he told Aethra that, if she gave birth to a male child, she should raise him. Aegeus then left a sword and sandals under a rock, and told Aethra that when his son could push the rock and get the items, that she should send him to Athens.

Early life (couldn't find much, sorry)

Theseus was born and was raised in Trozen by his mother Aethra and his grandfather Pittheus.  He had an adequate education, but because he was in Trozen, he did not receive as good an education that you might get in Athens.  When he was 16, he pushed the rock away, took the sword and sandals, and headed for Athens.

Theseus' adventures on his journey towards Athens

Theseus, on his journey from Trozen to Athens to meet his father Aegeus, killed every bandit and villain along the way.  Sinis pulled down two pine trees and strapped his victims to them. He would then let the trees go, thus hurling the victim whom was strapped to the trees through the air to their death. Theseus then killed Sinis by this method.  Theseus then met up with Periphetes, who carried a clubbed passers-by to death.  Periphetes stopped Theseus along his journey, but Theseus stole the club and killed him.  Sciron made passers-by wash his feet, and in the act of washing he kicked them into the sea to be eaten by a huge turtle. Theseus however seized Sciron by the feet and threw him into the sea.  Cercyon compelled passers-by to wrestle, and when they wrestled, he killed them. While Cercyon and Theseus wrestled, Theseus lifted him up and dashed him to the ground, killing him.  Then Theseus met Procrustes, who offered a bed to rest in to people who passed by.  With this bed, he stretched the short men to fit it, and cut off body parts of the large men so they could fit it.  Theseus felt that he had to punish him Procrustes, so, big surprise, he killed him.

Theseus' arrival in Athens

When Theseus arrived to Athens, his "father" Aegeus was married to Medea.  Neither Aegeus nor Medea liked him, for different reasons, so they made a plan to invite him to dinner and poison him.  Aegeus didn't like him cause after killing all those evil dudes, Theseus was very popular in Athens.  So much so, that Aegeus was afraid the people would make him king. Aegeus didn't know, but Medea knew who Theseus was (his son), and she thought if he was revealed as Aegeus' son, that she would lose some influence in the kingdom.  Just as Medea gave Theseus the glass to poison him, Aegeus caught sight of the sword he hid under the rock years earlier, and when Theseus was about to drink the potion that Medea had prepared, Aegeus dashed the cup from his hands at the last second.

The Minotaur and Ariadne

The Minotaur was a half man, half bull.  Minos, (king of Crete), forced the people of Athens to send seven young men and women every year to be food for the Minotaur as a tribute to him (Minos).  Theseus thought this yearly practice was stupid, and volunteered to be one of the victims in an attempt to slay Minotaur and put an end to all of this. Ariadne however, the daughter of Minos, fell in love with Theseus, obtained the map to the Labyrinth from its constructor, and disclosed the way out to Theseus.  She also gave him a ball of yarn, so he could find his way out after he killed the Minotaur.  Theseus found the Minotaur and killed him, and with Ariadne's help, found his way out, fled from Crete and came to Naxos with her. Ariadne offered to help him if he would agree to carry her away to Athens and have her to wife, but on arriving to Naxos, Dionysus; god of fertility and vegetation, ordered Theseus to leave her because he wanted Ariadne for himself.

On returning to Athens from Crete after killing the Minotaur, Theseus was supposed to put white sails on his ship to signify he was victorious, but he forgot this detail and left the black sails up accidentally. Aegeus seeing the black sails from the Acropolis in Athens thought that Theseus had died so he threw himself into what is now known as the Aegean Sea.

Theseus, king of Athens

When Theseus was declared Aegeus' successor to be the next king of Athens, his cousins the Pallantidai, sons of Pallas would not accept it and they went to war.  However, Theseus kicked their sorry butts, and became king, but had to live in temporary exile in Trozen because he had killed his cousins.

As king of Athens, Theseus combined the once scattered people of the countryside into Athens.  He also created democracy in Athens and was also a champion of the oppressed, for he built shelters for exiles. He also minted money.

The Amazons and Hippolyta, (aka Hippolyte, aka Antipote aka Melanippe)

As king of Athens, Theseus was wise and generous, but he still had a love of danger and adventure. He fought the Amazons, and abducted the queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta, daughter of Ares, god of war.  She's also known as Melanippe, Hippolyte or Queen Antipote. Hippolyta was on of the greatest queens of the Amazons and one of the most beautiful and strongest women of her time.  They married and had a son together; Hippolytus.  However, the Amazonians retaliated against Theseus for stealing their queen, and invaded Athens.  However, Theseus overcame them in the final battle, and showed those Amazonians who's the boss.  They did take Hippolyta back to the Amazons, and while in the Amazons, she had a dispute with Hercules over a golden girdle. The dispute ended when Hercules believed Hippolyta plotted against him, so Hercules killed her.


Remember some lady named Ariadne?  She was the lady who helped Theseus beat the Minotaur, but whom Theseus left on Naxos.  Well, she married that dude Dionysus; god of fertility and vegetation.  Ariadne's father Minos had another daughter, named Phaedra, and he gave her to Theseus.  This was shortly after his first wife Hippolyta had gone back to the Amazons and was killed by Hercules.  Phaedra gave Theseus two children, Acamas and Demophon. Hippolytus, Theseus' first son liked Artemis, and didn't recognize Aphrodite, the goddess of love.  Because of this, Aphrodite made Phaedra fall in love with Hippolytus, (her stepson).  When she was making advances toward her stepson (YUCK), he threatened to expose her.  Phaedra then hung herself, but wrote in a letter saying Hippolytus made advances toward her, which was a lie.  Theseus, believing this letter invoked Poseidon, to scare Hippolytus' horses and cause his demise.  Aesculapius saved him, and as Theseus learned from Artemis that his son was innocent, they were reunited.


Hippolytus was the son of Theseus and Hippolyta.  He was an excellent hunter and charioteer.  When he repulsed the advances of his step-mother, Phaedra, she accused him of attempting to seduce her. Theseus asked Poseidon for advice, and the god sent a huge sea-monster against Hippolytus, which so frightened his horses that they dragged him to his death. He was restored to life by Aesculapius.

Friendship with Pirithous, Helen, and the underworld

Theseus was friends with Pirithous, and they decided on marrying Zeus's daughters.  Theseus wanted Helen, and Pirithous wanted Persephone.  The two went to Sparta, and kidnapped Helen, then fled.  Since Helen was too young to be married, Theseus left her in the care of his mother Aethra in Aphidna, and then set out to find Persephone.  Helen's brothers then invaded Attica and searched for their sister, but could not find her.  Someone tipped them off she was not in Attica, but in Aphidna, so they went and found her there.  They took over the city and took Theseus' mother Aethra prisoner for hiding Helen, then placed Menestheus as king of Athens.

In the mean time, while Theseus and Pirithous were searching for Persephone in the underworld, they met Hades, God of the underworld, and were taken as prisoners.  Hercules came and rescued Theseus, but the Gods would not give permission for Pirithous to return, so he remained trapped in the underworld.

Theseus' death

After returning from the underworld, Theseus came back to Athens, only to see it being run by Menestheus.  He left for Crete to meet up with Deucalion, his brother in law, but a storm washed him up on Scyros.  On Scyros, he found Lycomedes who seemed nice, but pushed Theseus off a cliff, ending his life.  His sons Acamas and Demophon had rescued their grandmother, Theseus' mother Aethra after Menestheus died.  After Menestheus' death, the two brothers took over Athens.

Chart of Theseus' Family Tree

Chart of Theseus' distant relatives

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