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Cecrops

Κέκρωψ). A hero of the Pelasgic race, said to have been the first king of Attica. He was married to Agraulos, daughter of Actaeus, by whom he had a son, Erysichthon, who succeeded him as king of Athens, and three daughters, Agraulos, Hersé, and Pandrosos. In his reign Poseidon and Athené contended for the possession of Attica, but Cecrops decided in favour of the goddess. Cecrops is said to have founded Athens—the citadel of which was called Cecropia, after him—to have divided Attica into twelve communities, and to have introduced the first elements of civilized life. (See Athenae.) He instituted marriage, abolished bloody sacrifices, and taught his subjects how to worship the gods. The later Greek writers describe Cecrops as a native of Saïs in Egypt, who led a colony of Egyptians into Attica, and thus introduced from Egypt the arts of civilized life; but this account is rejected by some of the ancients themselves, and by the ablest modern critics.

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