Acrisio meets his fate on the path he takes to avoid it

Danae Perseus chest sea

Acrisio meets his fate on the path he takes to avoid it

On this occasion I will relate one of those stories from Greek mythology that are impressive, because they show the depth with which the ancient Greeks understood the great themes of life.

The consultation

It turned out that the king of Argos, Acrisio, was worried about not having a son. So he went to consult an oracle. And we already know what oracles are like. We bring them a problem and they return an even bigger problem to us.

So the oracle told him to forget about that idea of ​​having a male heir and, by the way, his daughter, Danae, would have a child, who would one day kill him.

The solution

Desperate to avoid his fate, Acrisio did not think much about it, and locked his daughter in a bronze tower (in other versions it was an underground bronze chamber) so that she would never meet a man.

But Zeus had fallen in love with her and descended from Olympus in the form of a rain of gold (no, it is not a golden shower). He passed through the bars and cracks, to Danae’s bedroom. What happened next, I leave it to your imagination.

We put together DNA from dad, DNA from mom…

This is how Perseus was born. In another version his father was Preto (I will talk about him in a moment).

At first, Danae raised Perseus in captivity, with the help of a servant who was faithful to her. But one day, when Acrisio happened to be passing near the tower, he heard the cry of the child.

Plan B

The first thing he did was to kill the maid. Then he put Danae and little Perseus in a wooden chest and threw it into the sea.

Look what I found on the beach

Dictis, a fisherman, found the chest on the shores of the island of Sefiros. He raised Perseus as his son and gave him a good education. Perseus grew up, and lived several adventures (more about this here). But eventually, he wanted to go home, and took the path to Argos.

Run, Acrisio, run

When he learned of the imminent arrival of his grandson, Acrisio was afraid, and fled. He took the path to Larisa. Once in Larisa, he felt more secure, and it seemed like a good idea to him, to attend a discus throwing tournament, just to distract himself a bit, and not think so much about death.

Fate is a bitch

But what Acrisio did not know was that Perseus was among the participants. And Perseus was a great hero, but he wasn’t very good at throwing the disc.

So, Perseus missed the shot, and the disc hit “poor” Acrisio between his eyebrows. He died without even knowing what hit him.

So if Acrisio had not gone to Larisa, he would not have fulfilled his fate. But fear was stronger and that was his downfall.

For having killed his grandfather, Perseus felt unworthy of the throne of Argos and exchanged it with his cousin, Megapentes, who at that time, was king of Tirinto, and was the son of Preto (so if we take the other version as valid, everything remains in the family)


  • Antes del Principio, by Ariel Pytrell
  • Wikipedia

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