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Ἀγαμέμνων). The son of Atreus and brother of Menelaüs. Driven from Mycenae after the murder of Atreus (q.v.) by Thyestes, the two young princes fled to Sparta, where King Tyndareos gave them his daughters in marriage—Clytaemnestra to Agamemnon, and Helen to Menelaüs. While the latter inherited his father-in-law's kingdom, Agamemnon not only drove his uncle out of Mycenae, but so extended his dominions that in the war against Troy for the recovery of Helen the chief command was intrusted to him, as the mightiest prince in Greece. He contributed one hundred ships manned with warriors, besides lending sixty to the Arcadians. (On the immolation of his daughter Iphigenia at Aulis, see Iphigenia.) In Homer he is one of the bravest fighters before Troy; yet, by arrogantly refusing to let Chryses, priest of Apollo, ransom his daughter Chryseïs, who had fallen to Agamemnon as the prize of war, be brought a plague on the Grecian host, which he afterwards almost ruined by ruthlessly carrying off Briseïs, the prize of Achilles, who henceforth sulked in his tents and refused to fight. After the fall of Troy, Agamemnon came home with his captive, the princess Cassandra; but at supper he and his comrades were murdered by his wife's lover, Aegisthus, while the queen herself killed Cassandra. Such is Homer's account; the tragic poets make Clytaemnestra, in revenge for her daughter's immolation, throw a net over Agamemnon while bathing, and kill him with the help of Aegisthus. In Homer his children are Iphianassa, Chrysothemis, Laodicé, and Orestes; the later legend puts Iphigenia and Electra in the place of Iphianassa and Laodicé. Agamemnon was worshipped as a hero. His name is the title of a play by Aeschylus (q.v.). See the articles Achilles; Orestes; Pelopidae; Trojan War.

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