After cutting off Medusa’s head, Perseus started his journey back to his home. On the way, he encountered a beautiful woman named Andromeda chained to some rocks. He learned from her that her mother, Cassiopeia, had offended Poseidon by stating that her won beauty was greater than the Nereids who attended Poseidon. To punish her, Poseidon had sent a flood and a sea serpent to harass the people of her country. An oracle had told Andromeda’s father, King Cephus, to sacrifice his Andromeda to the serpent to appease Poseidon. Andromeda begged Perseus to save her. Perseus agreed to help her, but first he wanted King Cephus to give him Andromeda’s hand in marriage. Cephus agreed.
When the sea serpent came for Andromeda, Perseus jumped on top of it and battled it to the death. Perseus was victorious and he then freed Andromeda. He went to her father to claim her in marriage, but Cephus had failed to mention that Andromeda had already been promised to Phineus. Phineus, with a small army, came to interrupt Perseus and Andromeda’s wedding. Perseus handled this by pulling Medusa’s head out of the bag and turned Phineus and his army all to stone.
Upon returning home, Perseus found his mother hiding from the King in a religious site. King Polydectes had begun pursuing her, which forced her to retreat to the temple for refuge. Perseus crashed a banquet of the king. When Perseus told his tale and how he had cut off Medusa’s head, the king doubted his story. To prove the deed was actually done, Perseus pulled the head out of the bag. The king and all his guests were turned to stone.
Perseus, Andromeda, and Danae (his mother) returned to their home at Argos. Acrisius, afraid of the prophecies that his grandson would kill him, fled to Larissa. Perseus followed him to Larissa, not for revenge, but to make peace with him. While there, Perseus entered a disc-throwing contest. He accidentally threw the disk into the crowd and killed one of the spectators. He discovered the spectator was his grandfather Acrisius.
So saddened by this accident, Perseus could not retun to Argos to claim his throne. Instead, he took the throne of the city of Tiryns and there he established the city of Mycenae. He and had six children with Andromeda to whom he was faithful the rest of his life.
Perseus and Andremeda by Pierre Mignard, Musee de Louvre, Paris
Perseus Fighting Phineus and his Companions by Luca Giordano, National Gallery, London
Major Gods and Goddesses
Introduction | Creation Story | Olympians VS. Titans | Creation of Man | Revolt of Giants
Abduction of Persephone | The Underworld | Visitors to Underworld | Amzon Warriors
Ares vs. Athena | Daedalus and Icarus | Echo and Narcissus | Judgement of Paris
Perseus and Andromeda | Trojan War
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