The Ancient Library
 

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Jason

554

jason;

ment and diadem. When the latter put on the garment, she, together with her father, was con­ sumed by the poisonous fire that issued from the vestment. Medeia also killed her children by Jason, viz. Mermerus and Pheres, and then fled in a cha­ riot drawn by winged dragons, the gift of Helios, to Athens. Her younger children she placed, pre­ vious to her flight, as suppliants on the altar of Hera Acraea, but the Corinthians took them away and put them to death. (Apollod. i. 9. § 16 ; Ov. Met. vii.; Tzetz. ad Lycoph. 175 ; Eurip. Medeia; Find. Pyfh. iv.; Apollon. Rhod. Argon.) Accord­ ing to Diodorus (iv. 54), Medeia set the royal palace at Corinth on fire, in which Creon and Glauce were burnt, but Jason escaped; further, she had three sons, Thessalus, Alcimenes, and Ther- sander, the two last of whom were killed, whereas Thessalus, who escaped, afterwards became the ruler of lolcus. Medeia herself first escaped to Thebes, where she cured Heracles, and afterwards to Athens. The earliest accounts we have do not mention Medeia's murder of her children, but re­ present her as a priestess at Corinth, where she was killed by the Corinthians (Aelian, V. H. v. in fin.); and Pausanias (ii. 3, in fin.) relates, that after the death of Corinthus, Medeia was invited from lolcus, and ruled over Corinth, as her lawful paternal inheritance, in conjunction with Jason. Medeia concealed her children in the temple of Hera, hoping thereby to make them immortal; but Jason, indignant at this conduct, deserted her, and returned to lolcus, whereupon Medeia also quitted Corinth, leaving the government to Sisyphus. Ja­ son is also mentioned among the Calydonian hunters (Apollod. i. 8. § 2) ; and it is further stated, that he and the Dioscuri joined Peleus, for the purpose of assisting him in taking vengeance on Astydameia, the wife of Acastus, and conquered and destroyed lolcus. (Schol. ad Find. Nem. iii. 55; Apollod. iii. 13. § 7.) Later writers represent Jason as having in the end become reconciled to Medeia, as having returned with her to Colchis, and as having there restored Aeetes to his kingdom, of which he -had been deprived. (Tacit. Ann. vi. 34 ; Justin, xlii. 2.) The death of Jason is also related differ­ ently ; for, according to some, he made away with himself from grief (Diod. iv. 55), and, according to others, he was crushed by the poop of the ship Argo, under which he laid down on the advice of Medeia, and which fell upon him. (Schol. on the Argument of Eurip. Med.) He was wor­ shipped as a hero in several parts of the ancient world (Strab. xi. pp. 526, 531) : his marriage with Medeia was represented on the chest of Cypselus. (Paus. v. 18. § L) [L. S.]

JASON ('Ia<r&>*/), tyrant of Pherae and Tagus of Thessaly (Diet, of Antiq. s. v. Tagus), was pro­bably the son of lycophron, who established a tyranny on the ruins of aristocracy at Pherae, about the end of the Peloponnesian war, and aimed at dominion over all the Thessalians. (Xen. Hell. ii. 3. § 4; Diod. xiv. 82.) From this passage of Diodorus we know that Lycophron was still alive in b. c. 395, but we cannot fix the exact time at which Jason succeeded him, nor do we find any­thing recorded of the latter till towards the close of his life. Wyttenbach, however (ad Plut. Mor. p. 89, c.), may possibly be right in his conjecture that the Prometheus who is mentioned by Xeno-phon as engaged in struggles against the old aristo­cratic families of Thessaly, with the aid of critias,

JASON.

was no other than Jason. (Xen. Mem. i. 2. § 24, Hell. ii. 3. § 36; Schneid. ad loc.) It is at least certain that the surname in question could not have been applied more appropriately. He not only adopted, but expanded the ambitious designs of Lycophron, and he advanced towards the fulfil­ment of his schemes ably, energetically, and un­scrupulously. In b.c. 377 we find him aiding Theogenes to seize the Acropolis of Histiaea in Euboea, from which, however, the latter was after­wards dislodged by the Lacedaemonians under Therippidas or Herippidas. (Diod. xv. 30; Palm, and Wess. ad loc.; Casaub. ad Polyaen. ii. 21.) In b. c. 375 all the Thessalian towns had been brought under Jason's dominion, with the excep­tion of Pharsalus, which had been entrusted by the citizens to the direction of polydamas. Alcetas I., king of Epeirus, was associated with him rather as a dependent than an ally, and Thebes was leagued with him from enmity to Sparta, from which latter state, though it had supported Lyco­phron (Diod. xiv. 82), he held aloof, probably be­cause of its connection with Pharsalus (Xen. Hell. vi. 1. §§ 2, 13), and also from the policy of taking the weaker side. He already kept in his pay 6000 picked mercenaries, with whose training he took personally the greatest" pains; and if he could unite Thessaly under himself as Tagus, it would furnish him, in addition, with a force of 6000 cavalry and more than 10,000 foot. The neigh­bouring tribes would yield him a body of light-armed troops, with which no others could cope. The Thessalian Penestae would effectually man his ships, and of these he would be able to build a far larger number than the Athenians, as he might calculate on possessing as his own the resources of Macedonia and all its ship-timber. If once there­fore the lord of Thessaly, he might fairly hope to become the master of Greece ; and when Greece was in his power, the weakness of the Persian empire, as shown especially by the retreat of the Ten Thousand and the campaigns of Agesilaus in Asia, opened to him an unbounded and glorious field of conquest. (Xen. Hell. vi. 1. §§ 4—12; comp. Isocr. ad Phil. p. 106, c. d.; Diod. xv. 60 j Val. Max. ix. 10, Ext. 2.) But the first step to be taken was to secure the dominion of Pharsalus. This he had the means of effecting by force, but he preferred to carry his point by negotiation, and accordingly, in a personal conference with Poly­damas, he candidly set before him the nature and extent of his plans and his resources, represented to him that opposition on the part of Pharsalus would be fruitless, and urged him therefore to use his influence to bring over the town to submission, promising him the highest place, except his own, in power and dignity. Polydamas answered that he could not honourably accept his offer without the consent of Sparta, with which he was in alli­ance ; and Jason, with equal frankness, told him to lay the state of the case before the Lacedaemonians, and see whether they could adequately support Pharsalus against his power. Polydamas did so, and the Lacedaemonians replied that they were unable to give the required help, and advised him to make the best terms he could for himself and his state. Polydamas then acceded to the pro­posal of Jason, asking to be allowed to retain the citadel of Pharsalus for those who had entrusted it to him, and promising to use his endeavours to bring the town into alliance with him, and to aid

Pages
About | First

553

554

555
letter/word  
volume
page #  
Search this site
Google


ancientlibrary.com
WWW
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of Isidore-of-Seville.com.