He verily was busied thus, and was praying and offering sacrifice to Athena by the stern of the ship, when there drew nigh to him a man from a far land, one that was fleeing out of Argos
because he had slain a man;
and he was a seer. By lineage he was sprung from Melampus, who of old dwelt in Pylos
, mother of flocks, a rich man and one that had a very wealthy house among the Pylians, but had afterward come to a land of strangers, fleeing from his country and from great-hearted Neleus, the lordliest of living men,
who for a full year had kept much wealth from him by force.1
Now Melampus meanwhile lay bound with bitter bonds in the halls of Phylacus, suffering grievous pains because of the daughter of Neleus, and the terrible blindness of heart which the goddess, the Erinys, who brings houses to ruin,2
had laid upon him.
Howbeit he escaped his fate, and drove off the deep-lowing kine from Phylace
, and avenged the cruel deed upon godlike Neleus, and brought the maiden home to be his own brother's wife. For himself, he went to the land of other men, to horse-pasturing Argos
, for there it was appointed him
to dwell, bearing sway over many Argives. There he wedded a wife and built him a high-roofed house, and begot Antiphates and Mantius, two stalwart sons. Now Antiphates begot great-hearted Oicles, and Oicles Amphiaraus, the rouser of the host,
whom Zeus, who bears the aegis, and Apollo heartily loved with all manner of love. Yet he did not reach the threshold of old age, but died in Thebe, because of a woman's gifts. To him were born sons, Alcmaeon and Amphilochus. And Mantius on his part begot Polypheides and Cleitus.
Now Cleitus golden-throned Dawn snatched away by reason of his beauty, that he might dwell with the immortals; but of Polypheides, high of heart, Apollo made a seer, far the best of mortals, after that Amphiaraus was dead. He removed to Hyperesia
, having waxed wroth with his father,
and there he dwelt and prophesied to all men.
His son it was, Theoclymenus by name, who now came and stood by Telemachus; and he found him pouring libations and praying by his swift, black ship, and he spoke, and addressed him with winged words:
“Friend, since I find thee making burnt-offering in this place, I beseech thee by thine offerings and by the god, aye, and by thine own life and the lives of thy comrades who follow thee, tell me truly what I ask, and hide it not. Who art thou among men, and from whence? Where is thy city, and where thy parents?”