previous next

Now Menelaus had by Helen a daughter Hermione and, according to some, a son Nicostratus;1 and by a female slave Pieris, an Aetolian, or, according to Acusilaus, by Tereis, he had a son Megapenthes;2 and by a nymph Cnossia, according to Eumelus, he had a son Xenodamus.


1 Homer definitely affirms (Hom. Od. 4.12-14; compare Hom. Il. 3.174ff.) that Helen had only one child, her daughter Hermione. But according to Hesiod, whose verses are quoted by the Scholiast on Soph. El. 539, Helen afterwards bore a son Nicostratus to Menelaus. Compare Scholiast on Hom. Od. iv.11, who tells us further that according to more recent writers Helen had a son Corythus or Helenus by Alexander (Paris). According to Dictys Cretensis v.5, Helen had three sons by Alexander, namely, Bunomus, Corythus, and Idaeus, who were accidentally killed at Troy through the collapse of a vaulted roof. The Scholiast on Hom. Il. iii.175, says that the Lacedaemonians worshipped two sons of Helen, to wit, Nicostratus and Aethiolas. He further mentions, on the authority of Ariaethus, that Helen had by Menelaus a son Maraphius, from whom the Persian family of the Maraphions was descended. See Dindorf's edition of the Scholiast on the Iliad vol. i. pp. 147ff., vol. iii. p. 171. According to one account, Helen had a daughter by Theseus before she was married to Menelaus; this daughter was Iphigenia; Helen entrusted her to her sister Clytaemnestra, who reared the child and passed her off on her husband Agamemnon as her own offspring. This account of the parentage of Iphigenia was supported by the authority of Stesichorus and other poets. See Paus. 2.22.6ff.; Ant. Lib. 27. Sophocles represents Menelaus as having two children before he sailed for TroySoph. Elec. 539ff.).

2 Compare Hom. Od. 4.10-12.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (Sir James George Frazer)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Troy (Turkey) (2)

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (4 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: