HOME
The Info List - Diomedes





Diomedes
Diomedes
(/ˌdaɪəˈmiːdiːz/ or /ˌdaɪˈɒmɪdiːz/[1]) or Diomede (/ˈdaɪəmiːd/;[2] Greek: Διομήδης Diomēdēs 'God-like cunning, advised by Zeus') is a hero in Greek mythology, known for his participation in the Trojan War. He was born to Tydeus
Tydeus
and Deipyle and later became King of Argos, succeeding his maternal grandfather, Adrastus. In Homer's Iliad Diomedes
Diomedes
is regarded alongside Ajax as one of the best warriors of all the Achaeans (behind only Achilles
Achilles
in prowess). Later, he founded ten or more Italian cities. After his death, Diomedes
Diomedes
was worshipped as a divine being under various names in Italy
Italy
and also in Greece.

Contents

1 Early myths 2 Trojan War

2.1 Diomedes' place among Achaeans 2.2 Weapons 2.3 Diomedes
Diomedes
in Aulis 2.4 Palamedes 2.5 Diomedes
Diomedes
in the Iliad 2.6 Amazons 2.7 A dispute with Achilles 2.8 Antilochus' funeral games 2.9 Achilles' funeral games 2.10 Neoptolemus 2.11 Another prophecy 2.12 The Palladium 2.13 The Wooden Horse

3 Aftermath

3.1 After the fall of Troy 3.2 Life in Italy 3.3 Cities founded by Diomedes 3.4 Hero
Hero
cult of Diomedes

4 Death

4.1 Immortality 4.2 Afterlife

5 The Troilus and Cressida
Troilus and Cressida
legend 6 See also 7 References 8 External links

Early myths[edit] Diomedes
Diomedes
was, on his father’s side, an Aetolian, and on his mother's an Argive. This is because his father Tydeus
Tydeus
left Calydon
Calydon
and fled to Argos
Argos
in order to avoid being persecuted by his uncle Agrius. He married King Adrastus's daughter Deipyle. Tydeus
Tydeus
was one of the Seven Against Thebes. This expedition failed and all leaders, including Tydeus, were killed. Tydeus
Tydeus
was Athena’s favourite warrior at the time, and when he was dying she wanted to offer him a magic elixir (which she had obtained from her father) that would make him immortal. However, she withdrew the intended privilege in apparent disgust when Tydeus
Tydeus
gobbled down the brains of the hated enemy who had wounded him. According to some, Diomedes
Diomedes
was four years old when his father was killed. At the funeral of their fathers, the sons of Seven Against Thebes (Aegialeus, Alcmaeon, Amphilocus, Diomedes, Euryalus, Promachus, Sthenelus, Thersander) met and vowed to vanquish Thebes one day. They called themselves "Epigoni" because they were born "after everything has happened". Ten years later, the Epigoni appointed Alcmaeon as their commander in chief and gathered an army. They added to their forces from Argos contingents from Messenia, Arcadia, Corinth, and Megara. This army, however, was a small one compared to the forces of Thebes. The Epigoni war is remembered as the most important expedition in Greek Mythology before the Trojan War. It was a favorite topic for epics, but, unfortunately, all of these epics are now lost. The main battle took place at Glisas where the warrior Aegialeus (son of King Adrastus of Argos) was slain by King Laodamas. Diomedes
Diomedes
was fifteen years old by then and was considered the mightiest of all. Vanquished by the Epigoni, the Thebans followed the counsel of Tiresias
Tiresias
and fled. Epigoni took the city, and most Argive
Argive
commanders returned rich to their countries after having sacked Thebes, but the city they handed over to Thersander. Adrastus died of grief when he learned that his son Aegialeus had perished in the battle at Glisas. Aegialeus was married to Comaetho, daughter of Tydeus
Tydeus
(sister of Diomedes). Diomedes, in turn, married Aegialeus's daughter Aegialia when he returned from battle. He was then appointed as the King of Argos
Argos
and thus became one of the most powerful rulers of Hellas at such a young age. According to some, Diomedes
Diomedes
ruled Argos
Argos
for more than five years and brought much wealth and stability to the city during his time. He was a skilled politician and was greatly respected by other rulers. He still kept an eye on Calydonian politics (his father’s homeland), and when the sons of Agrius (led by Thersites) put Oeneus (Diomedes’ grandfather) in jail and their own father on the throne, Diomedes decided to restore the throne to Oeneus. Diomedes
Diomedes
attacked and ceded the kingdom, slaying all the traitors except Thersites, Onchestus (who escaped to Peloponnesus) and Agrius (who killed himself) restoring his grandfather to the throne. Later, Oeneus passed the Kingdom to his son-in-law Andraemon and headed for Argos
Argos
to meet Diomedes. He was assassinated on the way (in Arcadia) by Thersites
Thersites
and Onchestus. Unable to find the murderers, Diomedes founded a mythical city called "Oenoe" at the place where his grandfather was buried to honour his death. Later, Thersites
Thersites
fought against the Trojans in the Trojan War
Trojan War
and noble Diomedes
Diomedes
did not mistreat him (however, Thersites
Thersites
was hated by all Achaeans). In fact, when Thersites
Thersites
was brutally slain by Achilles
Achilles
(after having mocked him when the latter cried over Penthesilia's dead body) Diomedes
Diomedes
was the only person who wanted to punish Achilles. Diomedes
Diomedes
became one of the suitors of Helen and, as such, he was bound by the oath of Tyndareus, which established that all the suitors would defend and protect the man who was chosen as Helen's husband against any wrong done against him in regard to his marriage. Accordingly, when the seducer Paris stole Menelaus' wife, all those who had sworn the oath were summoned by Agamemnon
Agamemnon
(Menelaus’ brother), so that they would join the coalition that was to sail from Aulis to Troy in order to demand the restoration of Helen and the Spartan property that was stolen. Trojan War[edit] Diomedes
Diomedes
is known primarily for his participation in the Trojan War. According to Homer, Diomedes
Diomedes
enters the war with a fleet of 80 ships, third only to the contributions of Agamemnon
Agamemnon
(100 ships) and Nestor (90). Both Sthenelus and Euryalus (former Epigoni) fought under his command with their armies. Sthenelus was the driver of Diomedes’ chariot and probably his closest friend. All the troops from Argos, Tiryns, Troezen and some other cities were headed by Diomedes. Diomedes' place among Achaeans[edit] Although he was the youngest of the Achaean kings, Diomedes
Diomedes
is considered the most experienced leader by many scholars (he had fought more battles than others, including the most important war expedition before the Trojan War
Trojan War
– even old Nestor had not participated in such military work). Second only to Achilles, Diomedes
Diomedes
is considered to be the mightiest and the most skilled warrior among the Achaeans. He was overwhelming Telamomian Ajax in an armed sparring contest when the watching Achaeans bade the men to stop and take equal prizes because they feared for Ajax's life. Ajax gave Diomedes
Diomedes
the prize (long sword) because Diomedes
Diomedes
drew the first blood. He vanquished (and could have killed) Aeneas
Aeneas
(the second best Trojan warrior) once. He and Odysseus
Odysseus
were the only Achaean heroes who participated in covert military operations that demanded discipline, bravery, courage, cunning, and resourcefulness. Diomedes
Diomedes
received the most direct divine help and protection. He was the favorite warrior of Athena
Athena
(who even drove his chariot once). He was also the only hero except Heracles, son of Zeus, that attacked - and even wounded - Olympian gods (most notably Ares, whom he struck with his spear). Once, he was even granted divine vision in order to identify immortals. Only Diomedes
Diomedes
and Menelaus
Menelaus
were offered immortality and became gods in post-Homeric mythology. Weapons[edit] The god Hephaestus
Hephaestus
made Diomedes' cuirass for him. He was the only Achaean warrior apart from Achilles
Achilles
who carried such an arsenal of gear made by Hera's son. He also had a round shield with the mark of a boar. In combat, he also carried a spear as well as his father's sword. His golden armor bore a crest of a boar on the breast. It was created by a mortal smith but was blessed by Athena, who gave it to Tydeus. When he died, it passed to Diomedes. A skilled smith created the sword for Tydeus, which bore designs of a lion and a big boar. Diomedes
Diomedes
in Aulis[edit] In Aulis, where Achaean leaders gathered, Diomedes
Diomedes
met his brother in arms Odysseus, with whom he shared several adventures. Both of them were favorite heroes of Athena
Athena
and each shared characteristics of their patron goddess-- Odysseus
Odysseus
her wisdom and cunning, and Diomedes her courage and skill in battle; though neither was wholly bereft of either aspect. They began to combine their efforts and actions already when being in Aulis. Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
were Agamemnon’s most trusted officers. When the sacrifice of Iphigenia
Iphigenia
(Agamemnon’s daughter) became a necessity for Achaeans to sail away from Aulis, king Agamemnon
Agamemnon
had to choose between sacrificing his daughter and resigning from his post of high commander among Achaeans (in which case Diomedes
Diomedes
would probably become the leader). When he decided to sacrifice his daughter to Artemis, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
were among the few Achaean officers familiar with his plans. The two unscrupulous friends carried out this order of Agamemnon
Agamemnon
by luring Iphigenia
Iphigenia
from Mycenae to Aulis, where murder, disguised as wedding, awaited her. Palamedes[edit] Once in Troy, Odysseus
Odysseus
murdered Palamedes (the commander who outwitted Odysseus
Odysseus
in Ithaca, forcing him to stand by his oath and join the alliance), drowning him while he was fishing. According to other stories, when Palamedes advised the Achaeans to return home, Odysseus accused him of being a traitor and forged false evidence and found a fake witness to testify against him,[3] whereupon Palamedes was stoned to death. Some say that both Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
drowned Palamedes.[4] Another version says that he conspired with Odysseus
Odysseus
against Palamedes,[5] and under the pretence of having discovered a hidden treasure, they let him down into a well and there stoned him to death.[6] Others say that, though Diomedes
Diomedes
guessed or knew about the plot, he did not try to defend Palamedes, because Odysseus
Odysseus
was essential for the fall of Troy. Diomedes
Diomedes
in the Iliad[edit] Diomedes
Diomedes
is one of the main characters in the Iliad. This epic narrates a series of events that took place during the final year of the great war. Diomedes
Diomedes
is the key fighter in the first third of the epic. According to some interpretations, Diomedes
Diomedes
is represented in the epic as the most valiant soldier of the war, who avoids committing hubris. He is regarded as the perfect embodiment of traditional heroic values. While striving to become the best warrior and attain honor and glory, he does not succumb to the madness which 'menos' might entail. He was the only human except for Heracles, to be granted strength (with permission) to directly fight with immortals themselves and injures two Olympian immortals (both Ares
Ares
and Aphrodite) in a single day. However, he still displays self-restraint and humility to retreat before Ares
Ares
and give way to Apollo thus remaining within mortal limits. This is in contrast to Patroclus
Patroclus
(who does not give way when opposed by Apollo) and Achilles
Achilles
(who resorts to fight the river Scamander on his own). His character also helps to establish one of the main themes of the epic; how human choices and efforts become insignificant when fate and immortals are in control. Diomedes
Diomedes
follows Homeric tradition closely and having absolute faith on the superiority of fate, he predicts the conclusion of Achilles' efforts to go against fate. Apart from his outstanding fighting abilities and courage, Diomedes
Diomedes
is on several crucial occasions shown to possess great wisdom, which is acknowledged and respected by his much older comrades, including Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Nestor. Diomedes, Nestor and Odysseus
Odysseus
were some of the greatest Achaean strategists. Throughout the Iliad, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Nestor are frequently seen speaking first in war-counsel. Instances of Diomedes' maturity and intelligence as described in parts of the epic:

In Book IV Agamemnon
Agamemnon
taunts Diomedes
Diomedes
by calling him a far inferior fighter compared to his father. His enraged comrade Sthenelus urges Diomedes
Diomedes
to stand up to Agamemnon
Agamemnon
by responding that he has bested his father and avenged his death by conquering Thebes. Diomedes
Diomedes
responded that it was part of Agamemnon's tasks as a leader to urge forward the Achaean soldiers, and that men of valour should have no problem withstanding such insults. However, when Agamemnon
Agamemnon
later uses the same kind of taunting on Odysseus, the latter responds with anger. Although Diomedes
Diomedes
dismissed Agamemnon’s taunting with respect, he did not hesitate to point out Agamemnon’s inadequacy as a leader in certain crucial situations. In Book IX, Agamemnon
Agamemnon
proposes going back to Hellas because Zeus has turned against them. Diomedes
Diomedes
then reminds him of the previous insult and tells him that his behavior is not proper for a leader. Achaean council – Book IX Diomedes
Diomedes
points out that because Troy is destined to fall, they should continue fighting regardless of Zeus’ interventions. Fate and Gods were with Achaeans at the start and therefore Zeus’ interventions could only be temporary. Even if all other Achaeans have lost their faith and goes home, he and Sthenelus would still remain and continue to fight till Troy is sacked. "The sons of the Achaeans shouted applause at the words of Diomed, and presently Nestor rose to speak. 'Son of Tydeus,' said he, 'in war your prowess is beyond question, and in council you excel all who are of your own years; no one of the Achaeans can make light of what you say nor gainsay it, but you have not yet come to the end of the whole matter. You are still young- you might be the youngest of my own children—still you have spoken wisely and have counselled the chief of the Achaeans not without discretion;'" Achaean council – Book IX When Agamemnon
Agamemnon
tried to appease Achilles's wrath so that he would fight again, by offering him many gifts, Nestor appointed three envoys to meet Achilles
Achilles
(Book IX). They had to return empty handed; Achilles had told them that he will leave Troy and never return. The Achaeans were devastated at this. Diomedes
Diomedes
points out the folly of offering these gifts which ultimately served only to encourage Achilles' pride to the level that he now wishes to defy fate. Diomedes
Diomedes
then makes a prediction (based on Homeric tradition) that eventually becomes true. He says that even if Achilles
Achilles
somehow manages to leave Troy, he will never be able to stay away from battle because human efforts and choice cannot defy fate; "let him go or stay—the gods will make sure that he will fight." In Book XV, Zeus says to Hera that he had already made a plan to make sure that Achilles
Achilles
will eventually enter the battle. Diomedes
Diomedes
also encourages Agamemnon
Agamemnon
to take the lead of next day's battle. "But when fair rosy-fingered morn appears, forthwith bring out your host and your horsemen in front of the ships, urging them on, and yourself fighting among the foremost." (Book IX) Agamemnon
Agamemnon
accepts this counsel and the next day's battle starts with his "aristeia" where he becomes the hero of the day.

Diomedes' aristeia ("excellence"—the great deeds of a hero) begins in Book V and continues in Book VI. This is the longest aristeia in the epic. Some scholars claim that this part of the epic was originally a separate, independent poem (describing the feats of Diomedes) that Homer
Homer
adapted and included in the Iliad.[7] Diomedes' aristeia represents many of his heroic virtues such as outstanding fighting skills, bravery, divine protection/advice, carefully planned tactics of war, leadership, humility and self-restraint. Book V begins with Athena, the war-like goddess of wisdom putting valour into the heart of her champion warrior. She also makes a stream of fire flare from his shield and helmet. Diomedes
Diomedes
then slays a number of Trojan warriors including Phegeus (whose brother was spirited away by Hera’s son before being slain by Diomedes) until Pandarus
Pandarus
wounds him with an arrow. Diomedes
Diomedes
then prays to Athena
Athena
for the slaughter of Pandarus. She responds by offering him a special vision to distinguish gods from men and asks him to wound Aphrodite
Aphrodite
if she ever comes to battle. She also warns him not to engage any other god. He continues to make havoc among the Trojans by killing Astynous, Hypeiron, Abas, Polyidus, Xanthus, Thoon, Echemmon and Chromius (two sons of Priam). Finally, Aeneas
Aeneas
(son of Aphrodite) asks Pandarus
Pandarus
to mount his chariot so that they may fight Diomedes
Diomedes
together. Sthenelus warns his friend of their approach. Diomedes
Diomedes
faces this situation by displaying both his might and wisdom. Although he can face both of these warriors together, he knows that Aphrodite
Aphrodite
may try to save her son. He also knows the history of Aeneas' two horses (they descend from Zeus's immortal horses). Since he has to carry out Athena's order, he orders Sthenelus to steal the horses while he faces Aphrodite’s son.

Diomedes
Diomedes
attacking Aeneas- Aphrodite
Aphrodite
stands behind him

Pandarus
Pandarus
throws his spear first and brags that he has killed the son of Tydeus. The latter responds by saying "at least, one of you will be slain" and throws his spear. Pandarus
Pandarus
is killed and Aeneas
Aeneas
is left to fight Diomedes
Diomedes
(now unarmed). Not bothering with weapons, Diomedes picks up a huge stone and crushes his enemy's hip with it. Aeneas faints and is rescued by his mother before Diomedes
Diomedes
can kill him. Mindful of Athena's orders, Diomedes
Diomedes
runs after Aphrodite
Aphrodite
and wounds her arm. Dropping her son, the goddess flees towards Olympus. Apollo now comes to the rescue of the Trojan hero. Disregarding Athena's advice, Diomedes
Diomedes
attacks Apollo twice before Apollo warns him not to match himself against immortals. Respecting Apollo, Diomedes
Diomedes
then withdraws himself from that combat. Although he has failed in killing Aeneas, Sthenelus, following his orders, has already stolen the two valuable horses of Aeneas. Diomedes
Diomedes
then became the owner of the second best pair of horses (after Achilles’ immortal ones) among Achaeans.

Diomedes
Diomedes
and Athena
Athena
attacking Ares

Aphrodite
Aphrodite
complained to her mother about Diomedes' handiwork. The latter reminded her of mighty Heracles
Heracles
(now, an Olympian himself) who held the record of wounding not one but two Olympians as a human. The transgression of Diomedes
Diomedes
by attacking Apollo had its consequences. Urged by Apollo, Ares
Ares
came to the battlefield to help Trojans. Identifying the god of war, Diomedes
Diomedes
protected the Achaeans by ordering them to withdraw towards their ships. Hera saw the havoc created by her son and together with Athena, she came to the Achaeans' aid. When Athena
Athena
saw Diomedes
Diomedes
resting near his horses, she mocked him, reminding him of Tydeus
Tydeus
who frequently disobeyed her advice. Diomedes replied "Goddess, I know you truly and will not hide anything from you. I am following your instructions and retreating for I know that Ares
Ares
is fighting among the Trojans". Athena
Athena
answered " Diomedes
Diomedes
most dear to my heart, do not fear this immortal or any other god for I will protect you." Throwing Sthenelus out of the chariot and mounting it herself, the goddess (who invented the chariot and taught humans to drive it) drove straight at Ares. She also put on the helmet of Hades, making her invisible to even gods. Ares
Ares
saw only Diomedes
Diomedes
in the chariot and threw his spear which was caught by Athena. Diomedes
Diomedes
then threw his spear (which was guided by Athena) at Ares, wounding his stomach. The god screamed in a voice of ten thousand men and fled away. This was how Diomedes
Diomedes
became the only human to wound two Olympians in a single day. Book VI - Diomedes
Diomedes
continued his feats by killing Axylus and Calesius. Hector’s brother Helenus described Diomedes' fighting skills in this manner: "He fights with fury and fills men's souls with panic. I hold him mightiest of them all; we did not fear even their great champion Achilles, son of an immortal though he be, as we do this man: his rage is beyond all bounds, and there is none can vie with him in prowess." Helenus then sent Hector
Hector
to the city of Troy to tell their mother about what was happening. According to the instructions of Helenus, Priam's wife gathered matrons at the temple of Athena
Athena
in the acropolis and offered the goddess the largest, fairest robe of Troy. She also promised the sacrifice of twelve heifers if Athena
Athena
could take pity on them and break the spear of Diomedes. Athena, of course, did not grant it. Meanwhile, one brave Trojan named Glaucus challenged the son of Tydeus to a single combat. Impressed by his bravery and noble appearance, Diomedes
Diomedes
inquired if he were an immortal in disguise. Although Athena has previously told him not to fear any immortal, Diomedes
Diomedes
displayed his humility by saying, "I will not fight any more immortals."

Diomedes
Diomedes
and Glaucus

Glaucus told the story of how he was descended from Bellerophon who killed the Chimaera and the Amazons. Diomedes
Diomedes
realized that his grandfather Oeneus hosted Bellerophon, and so Diomedes
Diomedes
and Glaucus must also be friends. They resolved to not fight each other and Diomedes
Diomedes
proposed exchanging their armours. Cunning Diomedes
Diomedes
only gave away a bronze armour for the golden one he received. The phrase ‘Diomedian swap’ originated from this incident. Book VII - Diomedes
Diomedes
was among the nine Achaean warriors who came forward to fight Hector
Hector
in a single combat. When they cast lots to choose one among those warriors, the Achaeans prayed "Father Zeus, grant that the lot fall on Ajax, or on the son of Tydeus, or upon Agamemnon." Ajax was chosen to fight Hector. Idaeus of the Trojans came for a peace negotiation, and he offered to give back all the treasures Paris stole plus more—everything except Helen. In the Achaean council, Diomedes
Diomedes
was the first one to speak: "Let there be no taking, neither treasure, nor yet Helen, for even a child may see that the doom of the Trojans is at hand." These words were applauded by all and Agamemnon
Agamemnon
said, "This is the answer of the Achaeans." Book VIII - Zeus ordered all other deities to not interfere with the battle. He made the Trojans stronger so they could drive away the Achaeans from battle. Then he thundered aloud from Ida and sent the glare of his lightning upon the Achaeans. Seeing this, all the great Achaean warriors—including the two Ajaxes, Agamemnon, Idomeneus
Idomeneus
and Odysseus—took flight. Nestor could not escape because one of his horses was wounded by Paris’ arrow. He might have perished if not for Diomedes. This incident is the best example for Diomedes’ remarkable bravery. Seeing that Nestor's life was in danger, the son of Tydeus
Tydeus
shouted for Odysseus' help. The latter ignored his cry and ran away. Left alone in the battleground, Diomedes
Diomedes
took his stand before Nestor and ordered him to take Sthenelus’ place. Having Nestor as the driver, Diomedes bravely rushed towards Hector. Struck by his spear, Hector’s driver Eniopeus was slain. Taking a new driver, Archeptolemus, Hector advanced forward again. Zeus saw that both Hector
Hector
and Archeptolemus were about to be slain by Diomedes
Diomedes
and decided to intervene. He took his mighty Thunderbolt and shot its lightning in front of Diomedes’ chariot. Nestor advised Diomedes
Diomedes
to turn back since no person should try to transgress Zeus’ will. Diomedes
Diomedes
answered, " Hector
Hector
will talk among the Trojans and say, 'The son of Tydeus
Tydeus
fled before me to the ships.' This is the vaunt he will make, and may the earth then swallow me." Nestor responded, "Son of Tydeus, though Hector
Hector
say that you are a coward the Trojans and Dardanians will not believe him, nor yet the wives of the mighty warriors whom you have laid low." Saying these words, Nestor turned the horses back. Hector, seeing that they had turned back from battle, called Diomedes
Diomedes
a "woman and a coward" and promised to slay him personally. Diomedes
Diomedes
thought three times of turning back and fighting Hector, but Zeus thundered from heaven each time. When all the Achaean seemed discouraged, Zeus sent an eagle as a good omen. Diomedes
Diomedes
was the first warrior to read this omen, and he immediately attacked the Trojans and killed Agelaus. At the end of the day's battle, Hector
Hector
made one more boast, "Let the women each of them light a great fire in her house, and let watch be safely kept lest the town be entered by surprise while the host is outside... I shall then know whether brave Diomed will drive me back from the ships to the wall, or whether I shall myself slay him and carry off his bloodstained spoils. Tomorrow let him show his mettle, abide my spear if he dare. I ween that at break of day, he shall be among the first to fall and many another of his comrades round him. Would that I were as sure of being immortal and never growing old, and of being worshipped like Athena
Athena
and Apollo, as I am that this day will bring evil to the Argives." These words subsequently turned out to be wrong. In spite of careful watch, Diomedes
Diomedes
managed to launch an attack upon the sleeping Trojans. Hector
Hector
was vanquished by Diomedes
Diomedes
yet again and it was Diomedes
Diomedes
that ended up being worshipped as an immortal. Book IX - Agamemnon
Agamemnon
started shedding tears and proposed to abandon the war for good because Zeus was supporting the Trojans. Diomedes
Diomedes
pointed out that this behavior was inappropriate for a leader like Agamemnon. He also declared that he will never leave the city unvanquished for the gods were originally with them. This speech signifies the nature of Homeric tradition where fate and divine interventions have superiority over human choices. Diomedes
Diomedes
believed that Troy was fated to fall and had absolute and unconditional faith in victory. However, this was one of the two instances where Diomedes' opinion was criticized by Nestor. He praised Diomedes’ intelligence and declared that no person of such young age could equal Diomedes
Diomedes
in counsel. He then criticized Diomedes
Diomedes
for not making any positive proposal to replace Agamemnon's opinion – a failure which Nestor ascribed to his youth. Nestor believed in the importance of human choices and proposed to change Achilles' mind by offering many gifts. This proposal was approved by both Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Odysseus. The embassy failed because Achilles
Achilles
himself had more faith in his own choices than fate or divine interventions. He threatened to leave Troy, never to return believing that this choice will enable him to live a long life. When the envoys returned, Diomedes
Diomedes
criticized Nestor’s decision and Achilles' pride saying that Achilles’ personal choice of leaving Troy is of no importance (therefore, trying to change it with gifts is useless). Diomedes
Diomedes
said, "Let Achilles
Achilles
stay or leave if he wishes to, but he will fight when the time comes. Let’s leave it to the gods to set his mind on that." (In Book 15, Zeus tells Hera that he has already planned the method of bringing Achilles
Achilles
back to battle, confirming that Diomedes
Diomedes
was right all along) Book X – Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Menelaus
Menelaus
rounded up their principal commanders to get ready for battle the next day. They woke up Odysseus, Nestor, Ajax, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Idomeneus. While the others were sleeping inside their tents, king Diomedes
Diomedes
was seen outside his tent clad in his armour sleeping upon an ox skin, already well-prepared for any problem he may encounter at night. During the Achaean council held, Agamemnon
Agamemnon
asked for a volunteer to spy on the Trojans. Again, it was Diomedes
Diomedes
who stepped forward. The son of Tydeus
Tydeus
explained "If another will go with me, I could do this in greater confidence and comfort. When two men are together, one of them may see some opportunity which the other has not caught sight of; if a man is alone he is less full of resource, and his wit is weaker." These words inspired many other heroes to step forward. Agamemnon
Agamemnon
put Diomedes
Diomedes
in charge of the mission and asked him to choose a companion himself. The hero instantly selected Odysseus
Odysseus
for he was loved by Athena
Athena
and was quick witted. Although Odysseus
Odysseus
had deserted Diomedes
Diomedes
in the battlefield that very day, instead of bashing him, the latter praised his bravery in front of others. Odysseus' words hinted that he actually did not wish to be selected. Meanwhile, in a similar council held by Hector, not a single prince or king would volunteer to spy on Achaeans. Finally Hector
Hector
managed to send Dolon, a good runner, after making a false oath (promising him Achilles' horses after the victory). On their way to the Trojan camp, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
discovered Dolon approaching the Achaean camp. The two kings lay among the corpses till Dolon passed them and ran after him. Dolon proved to be the better runner but Athena
Athena
infused fresh strength into the son of Tydeus
Tydeus
for she feared some other Achaean might earn the glory of being first to hit Dolon. Diomedes
Diomedes
threw his spear over Dolon’s shoulders and ordered him to stop. Dolon gave them several valuable pieces of information. According to Dolon, Hector
Hector
and the other councilors were holding conference by the monument of great Ilus, away from the general tumult. In addition, he told about a major weakness in Trojan army. Only the Trojans had watchfires; they, therefore, were awake and kept each other to their duty as sentinels; but the allies who have come from other places were asleep and left it to the Trojans to keep guard. It is never explained in the epic why Dolon, specially mentioned as a man of lesser intelligence, came to notice this flaw while Hector
Hector
(in spite of all his boasting) completely missed/ignored it. On further questioning, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
learnt that among the various allies, Thracians were the most vulnerable for they had come last and were sleeping apart from the others at the far end of the camp. Rhesus was their king and Dolon described Rhesus’ horses in this manner; "His horses are the finest and strongest that I have ever seen, they are whiter than snow and fleeter than any wind that blows". Having truthfully revealed valuable things, Dolon expected to be taken as a prisoner to the ships, or to be tied up, while the other two found out whether he had told them the truth or not. But Diomedes
Diomedes
told him: "You have given us excellent news, but do not imagine you are going to get away, now that you have fallen into our hands. If we set you free tonight, there is nothing to prevent your coming down once more to the Achaean ships, either to play the spy or to meet us in open fight. But if I lay my hands on you and take your life, you will never be a nuisance to the Argives again." Having said this, Diomedes cut off the prisoner's head with his sword, without giving him time to plead for his life. Although the original purpose of this night mission was spying on the Trojans, the information given by Dolon persuaded the two friends to plan an attack upon the Thracians.They took the spoils and set them upon a tamarisk tree in honour of Athena. Then they went where Dolon had indicated, and having found the Thracian king, Diomedes
Diomedes
let him and twelve of his soldiers pass from one kind of sleep to another; for they were all killed in their beds, while asleep. Meanwhile, Odysseus gathered the team of Rhesus’ horses. Diomedes
Diomedes
was wondering when to stop. He was planning to kill some more Thracians and stealing the chariot of the king with his armour when Athena
Athena
advised him to back off for some other god may warn the Trojans.

Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
stealing Rhesus' horses

This first night mission demonstrates another side of these two kings where they employed stealth and treachery along with might and bravery. In Book XIII, Idomeneus
Idomeneus
praises Meriones and claims the best warriors do in fact excel in both types of warfare, 'lokhos' (ambush) and 'polemos' (open battle). Idomeneus’ words portray ambush, "the place where the merit of men most shines through, where the coward and the resolute man are revealed", as type of warfare only for the bravest.[8] The first night mission also fulfills one of the prophecies required for the fall of Troy: that Troy will not fall while the horses of Rhesus feed upon its plains. According to another version of the story, it had been foretold by an oracle that if the stallions of Rhesus were ever to drink from the river Scamander, which cuts across the Trojan plain, then the city of Troy would never fall. The Achaeans never allowed the horses to drink from that river for all of them were stolen by Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
shortly after their arrival. In a different story (attributed to Pindar), Rhesus fights so well against the Achaeans that Hera sends Odysseus
Odysseus
and Diomedes
Diomedes
to kill him secretly at night. Another version (Virgil and Servius) says that Rhesus was given an oracle that claims he will be invincible after he and his horses drink from the Scamander. In all these versions, killing Rhesus by Diomedes
Diomedes
was instrumental for the victory. The horses of Rhesus were given to king Diomedes. According to some scholars, the rest of Thracians, deprived of their king, left Troy to return to their kingdom. This was another bonus of the night mission. Book XI- In the forenoon, the fight was equal, but Agamemnon
Agamemnon
turned the fortune of the day towards the Achaeans until he got wounded and left the field. Hector
Hector
then seized the battlefield and slew many Achaeans. Beholding this, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
continued to fight with a lot of valor, giving hope to the Achaeans. The king of Argos slew Thymbraeus, two sons of Merops, and Agastrophus. Hector
Hector
soon marked the havoc Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
were making, and approached them. Diomedes
Diomedes
immediately threw his spear at Hector, aiming for his head. This throw was dead accurate but the helmet given by Apollo saved Hector's life. Yet, the spear was sent with such great force that Hector
Hector
swooned away. Meanwhile, Diomedes
Diomedes
ran towards Hector to get his spear. Hector
Hector
recovered and mingled with the crowd, by which means he saved his life from Diomedes
Diomedes
for the second time. Frustrated, Diomedes
Diomedes
shouted after Hector
Hector
calling him a dog. The son of Tydeus, frequently referred to as the lord of war cry, was not seen speaking disrespectful words to his enemies before. Shortly after that Paris jumped up in joy for he managed to achieve a great feat by fixing Diomedes' foot to the ground with an arrow. Dismayed at this, Diomedes
Diomedes
said "Seducer, a worthless coward like you can inflict but a light wound; when I wound a man though I but graze his skin it is another matter, for my weapon will lay him low. His wife will tear her cheeks for grief and his children will be fatherless: there will he rot, reddening the earth with his blood, and vultures, not women, will gather round him." Under Odysseus' cover, Diomedes
Diomedes
withdrew the arrow but unable to fight with a limp, he retired from battle. Book XIV- The wounded kings (Diomedes, Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Odysseus) held council with Nestor regarding the possibility of Trojan army reaching their ships. Agamemnon
Agamemnon
proposed drawing the ships on the beach into the water but Odysseus
Odysseus
rebuked him and pointed out the folly of such council. Agamemnon
Agamemnon
said, "Someone, it may be, old or young, can offer us better counsel which I shall rejoice to hear." Wise Diomedes
Diomedes
said, "Such a one is at hand; he is not far to seek, if you will listen to me and not resent my speaking though I am younger than any of you ... I say, then, let us go to the fight as we needs must, wounded though we be. When there, we may keep out of the battle and beyond the range of the spears lest we get fresh wounds in addition to what we have already, but we can spur on others, who have been indulging their spleen and holding aloof from battle hitherto." This council was approved by all. Book XXIII- In the funeral games of Patroclus, Diomedes
Diomedes
(though wounded) won all the games he played. First, he participated in the chariot race where he had to take the last place in the starting-line (chosen by casting lots). Diomedes
Diomedes
owned the fastest horses after Achilles
Achilles
(who did not participate). A warrior named Eumelus took the lead and Diomedes
Diomedes
could have overtaken him easily but Apollo (who had a grudge against him) made him drop the whip. Beholding this trick played by the sun-god, Athena
Athena
reacted with great anger. She not only gave the whip back to the son of Tydeus
Tydeus
but also put fresh strength to his horses and went after Eumelus to break his yoke. Poor Eumelus was thrown down and his elbows, mouth, and nostrils were all torn. Antilochus
Antilochus
told his horses that there is no point trying to overtake Diomedes
Diomedes
for Athena
Athena
wishes his victory. Diomedes
Diomedes
won the first prize – "a woman skilled in all useful arts, and a three-legged cauldron". The chariot race is considered as the most prestigious competition in the funeral games and the most formal occasion for validating the status of the elite.[9] In this way Diomedes
Diomedes
asserts his status as the foremost Achaean hero after Achilles. Next, he fought with great Ajax in an armed sparring contest where the winner was to draw blood first. Ajax attacked Diomedes
Diomedes
where his armour covered his body and achieved no success. Ajax owned the biggest armour and the tallest shield which covered most of his body leaving only two places vulnerable; his neck and armpits. So, Diomedes maneuvered his spear above Ajax's shield and attacked his neck, drawing blood. The Achaean leaders were scared that another such blow would kill Ajax and they stopped the fight. Diomedes
Diomedes
received the prize for the victor. This is the final appearance of Diomedes
Diomedes
in the epic. It is seen that although Diomedes
Diomedes
received Athena’s help without asking for it, Odysseus
Odysseus
prayed for help even before the start of the footrace he participated. It is generally accepted that Athena
Athena
is closest to Diomedes
Diomedes
in the epic. In the early traditions, Athena
Athena
(a virgin goddess) is described as being shy in the company of males.[citation needed] But she spoke to the hero without any disguise in Book V where he could see her in the true divine form (a special vision was granted to him). Such an incident doesn’t happen even in the other Homeric Epic, The Odyssey where Athena
Athena
disguises herself while speaking to Odysseus. Amazons[edit] Penthesileia led a small army of Amazons
Amazons
to Troy for the last year of the Trojan War. Two of her warriors, named Alcibie and Derimacheia, were slain by Diomedes. A dispute with Achilles[edit] Penthesileia killed many Achaeans in battle. She was, however, no match for Achilles, who killed her. When Achilles
Achilles
stripped Penthesileia of her armour, he saw that the woman was young and very beautiful, and seemingly falls madly in love with her. Achilles
Achilles
then regrets killing her. Thersites
Thersites
mocked Achilles
Achilles
for his behaviour, because the hero was mourning his enemy. Enraged, Achilles
Achilles
killed Thersites
Thersites
with a single blow to his face. Thersites
Thersites
was so quarrelsome and abusive in character, that only his cousin, Diomedes, mourned for him. Diomedes
Diomedes
wanted to avenge Thersites, but the other leaders persuaded the two mightiest Achaean warriors against fighting each other. Hearkening to prayers of comrades, the two heroes reconciled at last. According to Quintus Smyrnaeus, the Achaean leaders agreed to the boon of returning her body to the Trojans for her funeral pyre. According to some other sources, Diomedes
Diomedes
angrily tossed Penthesileia's body into the river, so neither side could give her decent burial.[10] Antilochus' funeral games[edit] Nestor's son was killed by Memnon, and Achilles
Achilles
held funeral games for Antilochus. Diomedes
Diomedes
won the sprint.[11] Achilles' funeral games[edit] After Achilles' death, the Achaeans piled him a mound and held magnificent games in his honor. According to Apollodorus, Diomedes
Diomedes
won the footrace. Smyrnaeus says that the wrestling match between he and Ajax the Great
Ajax the Great
came to a draw. Neoptolemus[edit] After the death of Achilles, it was prophesied that Troy could not be taken if Neoptolemus
Neoptolemus
(Achilles's son) would not come and fight. According to Quintus Smyrnaeus, Odysseus
Odysseus
and Diomedes
Diomedes
came to Scyros to bring him to the war at Troy. According to the Epic Cycle, Odysseus and Phoenix did this. Another prophecy[edit] The Achaean seer named Calchas
Calchas
prophesied that Philoctetes
Philoctetes
(whom the Achaeans had abandoned on the island of Lemnos due to the vile odour from snakebite) and the bow of Heracles
Heracles
are needed to take Troy. Philoctetes
Philoctetes
hated Odysseus, Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Menelaus, because they were responsible for leaving him behind. Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
were charged with achieving this prophecy also. Knowing that Philoctetes
Philoctetes
would never agree to come with them, they sailed to the island and stole the bow of Heracles
Heracles
by a trick. According to Little Iliad, Odysseus
Odysseus
wanted to sail home with the bow but Diomedes
Diomedes
refused to leave Philoctetes
Philoctetes
behind. Heracles
Heracles
(now a god) or Athena
Athena
then persuaded Philoctetes
Philoctetes
to join the Achaeans again (with the promise that he will be healed) and he agreed to go with Diomedes. The bow of Heracles
Heracles
and the poisoned arrows were used by Philoctetes to slay Paris; this was a requirement to the fall of Troy. According to some, Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
were sent into the city of Troy to negotiate for peace after the death of Paris.[12] The Palladium[edit]

Diomedes
Diomedes
with The Palladium-Johan Tobias Sergel, Konstakademin, Stockholm.

After Paris' death, Helenus left the city but was captured by Odysseus. The Achaeans somehow managed to persuade the seer/warrior to reveal the weakness of Troy. The Achaeans learnt from Helenus, that Troy would not fall, while the Palladium, image or statue of Athena, remained within Troy's walls. The difficult task of stealing this sacred statue again fell upon the shoulders of Odysseus
Odysseus
and Diomedes.[13]

Diomedes
Diomedes
with the Palladium approaches an altar

Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
stealing the Palladium

Odysseus, some say, went by night to Troy, and leaving Diomedes waiting, disguised himself and entered the city as a beggar. There he was recognized by Helen, who told him where the Palladium was. Diomedes
Diomedes
then climbed the wall of Troy and entered the city. Together, the two friends killed several guards and one or more priests of Athena's temple and stole the Palladium "with their bloodstained hands".[14] Diomedes
Diomedes
is generally regarded as the person who physically removed the Palladium and carried it away to the ships. There are several statues and many ancient drawings of him with the Palladium.

Diomedes
Diomedes
with The Palladium-Glyptothek Munich

According to the Little Iliad, on the way to the ships, Odysseus plotted to kill Diomedes
Diomedes
and claim the Palladium (or perhaps the credit for gaining it) for himself. He raised his sword to stab Diomedes
Diomedes
in the back. Diomedes
Diomedes
was alerted to the danger by glimpsing the gleam of the sword in the moonlight. He turned round, seized the sword of Odysseus, tied his hands, and drove him along in front, beating his back with the flat of his sword.[15] From this action was said to have arisen the Greek proverbial expression “Diomedes’ necessity”, applied to those who act under compulsion.[16] The expression 'Diomedeian Compulsion' also originated from this.[17] (The incident was commemorated in 1842 by the French sculptor Pierre-Jules Cavelier in a muscle-bound plaster statue). Because Odysseus
Odysseus
was essential for the destruction of Troy, Diomedes
Diomedes
refrained from punishing him. Diomedes
Diomedes
took the Palladium with him when he left Troy. According to some, he brought it to Argos
Argos
where it remained until Ergiaeus, one of his descendants, took it away with the assistance of the Laconian Leagrus, who conveyed it to Sparta.[18] Others say that he brought it to Italy. Some say that Diomedes
Diomedes
was robbed of the palladium by Demophon in Attica, where he landed one night on his return from Troy, without knowing where he was.[19] According to another tradition, the Palladium failed to bring Diomedes
Diomedes
any luck due to the unrighteous way he obtained it. He was informed by an oracle, that he should be exposed to unceasing sufferings unless he restored the sacred image to the Trojans. Therefore, he gave it back to his enemy, Aeneas.[20] Stealing the Palladium after killing the priests was viewed as the greatest transgression committed by Diomedes
Diomedes
and Odysseus
Odysseus
by Trojans. Odysseus
Odysseus
used this sentiment to his advantage when he invented the Trojan Horse
Trojan Horse
stratagem. The Wooden Horse[edit] This stratagem invented by Odysseus
Odysseus
made it possible to take the city. Diomedes
Diomedes
was one of the warriors inside. He slew many Trojan warriors inside the city. According to Quintus Smyrnaeus, while slaughtering countless Trojans, Diomedes
Diomedes
met an elderly man named Ilioneus who begged for mercy. Despite his fury of war, Diomedes
Diomedes
held back his sword so that the old man might speak. Ilioneus begged "Oh compassionate my suppliant hands! To slay the young and valiant is a glorious thing; but if you smite an old man, small renown waits on your prowess. Therefore turn from me your hands against young men, if you hope ever to come to grey hairs such as mine." Firmly resolved in his purpose, Diomedes
Diomedes
answered. "Old man, I look to attain to honored age; but while my Strength yet exists, not a single foe will escape me with life. The brave man makes an end of every foe." Having said this, Diomedes
Diomedes
slew Ilioneus. Some of the other Trojan warriors slain by Diomedes
Diomedes
during that night were Coroebus who came to Troy to win the hand of Cassandra,[21] Eurydamas and Eurycoon. Cypria says that Polyxena died after being wounded by Odysseus
Odysseus
and Diomedes
Diomedes
in the capture of the city.[22] Aftermath[edit] After the fall of Troy[edit] During the sacking and looting of the great city, the seeress Cassandra, daughter of Priam
Priam
and Hecuba, clung to the statue of Athena, but the Lesser Ajax raped her. Odysseus, unsuccessfully, tried to persuade the Achaean leaders to put Ajax to death, by stoning the Locrian leader (to divert the goddess's anger). Diomedes
Diomedes
and other Achaean leaders disagreed because Ajax himself clung to the same statue of Athena
Athena
in order to save himself. The failure of Achaean leaders to punish Ajax the lesser for the sacrilege of Athena's altar resulted in earning her wrath. However, she did not punish Diomedes. Athena
Athena
caused a quarrel between Agamemnon
Agamemnon
and Menelaus
Menelaus
about the voyage from Troy. Agamemnon
Agamemnon
then stayed on to appease the anger of Athena. Diomedes
Diomedes
and Nestor held a discussion about the situation and decided to leave immediately. They took their vast armies and left Troy. They managed to reach home safely but Athena
Athena
called upon Poseidon to bring a violent storm upon most of other Achaean ships. Diomedes
Diomedes
is one of the few Achaean commanders to return home safely. Since the other Achaeans suffered during their respective 'nostoi' (Returns) because they committed an atrocity of some kind, Diomedes' safe nostos implies that he had the favour of the gods during his journey.[23] The Palamedes affair haunted several Achaean Leaders including Diomedes. Palamedes's brother Oeax went to Argos
Argos
and reported to Aegialia, falsely or not, that her husband was bringing a woman he preferred to his wife. Others say that Aegialia herself had taken a lover, Cometes (son of Sthenelus), being persuaded to do so by Palamedes's father Nauplius. Still others say that despite Diomedes's noble treatment of her son Aeneas, Aphrodite
Aphrodite
never managed to forget about the Argive
Argive
spear that had once pierced her flesh in the fields of Troy. She helped Aegialia to obtain not one, but many lovers. (According to different traditions, Aegialeia was living in adultery with Hippolytus, Cometes or Cyllabarus.)[24] In any case Aegialia, being helped by the Argives, prevented Diomedes from entering the city. Or else, if he ever entered Argos, he had to take sanctuary at the altar of Hera, and thence flee with his companions by night.[25] Cometes was shortly the king of Argos, in Diomedes' absence, but was quickly replaced by the rightful heir, Cyanippus, who was the son of Aegialeus. Life in Italy[edit] Diomedes
Diomedes
then migrated to Aetolia, and thence to Daunia (Apulia) in Italy. He went to the court of King Daunus, King of the Daunians. The king was honored to accept the great warrior. He begged Diomedes
Diomedes
for help in warring against the Messapians, for a share of the land and marriage to his daughter. Diomedes
Diomedes
agreed the proposal, drew up his men and routed the Messapians. He took his land which he assigned to the Dorians, his followers. The two nations 'Monadi' and the 'Dardi' were vanquished by Diomedes
Diomedes
along with the two cities of 'Apina' and 'Trica'.[26] Diomedes
Diomedes
later married Daunus's daughter Euippe and had two sons named Diomedes
Diomedes
and Amphinomus. Some say that, after the sack of Troy, Diomedes
Diomedes
came to Libya (due to a storm), where he was put in prison by King Lycus (who planned on sacrificing him to Ares). It is said that it was the king's daughter Callirrhoe, who loosing Diomedes
Diomedes
from his bonds, saved him. Diomedes
Diomedes
is said to have thanklessly sailed away, and the girl killed herself with a halter.[27] Cities founded by Diomedes[edit] The Greeks and Romans credited Diomedes
Diomedes
with the foundation of several Greek settlements in Magna Graeca
Magna Graeca
in southern Italy: Argyrippa or Arpi, Aequum Tuticum (Ariano Irpino), Beneventum (Benevento), Brundusium (Brindisi), Canusium (Canosa), Venafrum
Venafrum
(Venafro), Salapia, Spina, Garganum, Sipus (near Santa Maria di Siponto),[28] Histonium (Vasto),Drione (San Severo),[citation needed] and Aphrodisia or Venusia (Venosa). The last was made as a peace-offering to the goddess, including temples in her honor.[29] Virgil's Aeneid
Aeneid
describes the beauty and prosperity of Diomedes' kingdom. When war broke out between Aeneas
Aeneas
and Turnus, Turnus tried to persuade Diomedes
Diomedes
to aid them in the war against the Trojans. Diomedes told them he had fought enough Trojans in his lifetime and urged Turnus that it was best to make peace with Aeneas
Aeneas
than to fight the Trojans. He also said that his purpose in Italy
Italy
is to live in peace.[30] Venulus, one of Latinus' messengers, recalls the mission to Diomedes
Diomedes
after they seek his help in the war against the Rutulians. He states that when he found Diomedes, he was laying the foundations of his new city, Argyrippa.[31] Diomedes
Diomedes
eventually speaks and states that, as punishment for his involvement at Troy, he never reached his fatherland of Argos
Argos
and that he never saw his beloved wife again.The hero also states that birds pursue him and his soldiers, birds which used to be his companions and cry out everywhere they land, including the sea cliffs.[32] Ovid, on the other hand, writes that Venulus came to the home of exiled Diomedes
Diomedes
in vain, but he was erecting walls with the favour of Iapygian Daunus, his new father-in-law, which would make the city Luceria, not Argyrippa.[33] The worship and service of gods and heroes was spread by Diomedes
Diomedes
far and wide : in and near Argos
Argos
he caused temples of Athena
Athena
to be built.[34] His armour was preserved in a temple of Athena
Athena
at Luceria in Apulia, and a gold chain of his was shown in a temple of Artemis in Peucetia. At Troezene he had founded a temple of Apollo Epibaterius and instituted the Pythian games there.[35] Other sources claim that Diomedes
Diomedes
had one more meeting with his old enemy Aeneas
Aeneas
where he gave the Palladium back to the Trojans. Hero
Hero
cult of Diomedes[edit] Hero
Hero
cults became much more commonplace from the beginning of the 8th century onwards, and they were widespread throughout several Greek cities in the Mediterranean by the last quarter of the century. Diomedes’ cults were situated predominantly in Cyprus, Metapontum, and other cities on the coast of the Adriatic sea (The archaeological evidence for the hero cult of Diomedes
Diomedes
comes mostly from this area). There are also vestiges of this cult in areas like Cyprus and some mainland Greek cities, given the inscriptions on votive offerings found in temples and tombs, but the popularity is most evident along the Eastern coast of Italy. This cult reached so far East in the Mediterranean due to the Achaean migration during the 8th century.[36] The most distinct votive offerings to the hero were actually found within the island of Palagruža on the Adriatic.[37] Strabo claims that the votive offerings in the Daunian temple of Athena
Athena
at Luceria contained votive offerings specifically addressing Diomedes.[38] Diomedes
Diomedes
was worshipped as a hero not only in Greece, but on the coast of the Adriatic, as at Thurii and Metapontum. At Argos, his native place, during the festival of Athena, his shield was carried through the streets as a relic, together with the Palladium, and his statue was washed in the river Inachus.[39] There are two islands named after the hero (Islands of Diomedes) on the Adriatic. Strabo mentions that one was uninhabited. A passage in Aelian's On Animals explains the significance of this island and the mysterious birds which inhabit it. Strabo reflects on the peculiarities of this island, including the history tied to Diomedes' excursions and the regions and peoples among which he had the most influence. He writes that Diomedes
Diomedes
himself had sovereignty over the areas around the Adriatic, citing the islands of Diomedes
Diomedes
as proof of this, as well as the various tribes of people who worshiped him even in contemporary times, including the Heneti and the Dauni. The Heneti sacrificed a white horse to Diomedes
Diomedes
in special groves where wild animals grew tame.[40] This cult was not widespread; cults like those of Herakles and Theseus had a much more prominent function in the Greek world due to the benefits which they granted their followers and the popular mythological traditions of these figures. Death[edit] Strabo lists four different traditions about the hero's life in Italy. For one, he claims that at the city of Urium, Diomedes
Diomedes
was making a canal to the sea when he was summoned home to Argos. He left the city and his undertakings half-finished and went home where he died. The second tradition claims the opposite, that he stayed at Urium until the end of his life. The third tradition claims he disappeared on Diomedea, the uninhabited island (called after him) in the Adriatic where the Shearwaters who were formerly his companions live, which implies some kind of deification. The fourth tradition comes from the Heneti, who claim Diomedes
Diomedes
stayed in their country and eventually had a mysterious apotheosis.[41] One Legend says that on his death, the albatrosses got together and sang a song (their normal call). Others say his companions were turned into birds afterwards. The family name for albatrosses (Diomedea) originates from Diomedes.[42] On San Nicola Island of the Tremiti Archipelago there is an Hellenic period tomb called Diomedes's Tomb. According to a legend, the goddess Venus seeing the men of Diomedes
Diomedes
cry so bitterly transformed them into birds (Diomedee) so that they could stand guard at the grave of their king. In Fellini's movie 8½, a cardinal tells this story to actor Marcello Mastroianni.[citation needed] Immortality[edit] According to the post Homeric stories, Diomedes
Diomedes
was given immortality by Athena, which she had not given to his father. Pindar mentions the hero's deification in Nemean X, where he says "the golden-haired, gray-eyed goddess made Diomedes
Diomedes
an immortal god." In order to attain immortality, a scholiast for Nemean X says Diomedes married Hermione, the only daughter of Menelaus
Menelaus
and Helen, and lives with the Dioscuri as an immortal god while also enjoying honours in Metapontum and Thurii.[43] He was worshipped as a divine being under various names in Italy
Italy
where Statues of him existed at Argyripa, Metapontum, Thurii, and other places. There was a temple consecrated to Diomedes
Diomedes
called 'The Timavum' at the Adriatic.[44] There are traces in Greece also of the worship of Diomedes. The first two traditions listed by Strabo give no indication of divinity except later through a hero cult, and the other two declare strongly for Diomedes' immortality as more than a mere cult hero. Afterlife[edit] There are less known versions of Diomedes' afterlife. A drinking song to Harmodius, one of the famous tyrannicides of Athens, includes a reference to Diomedes
Diomedes
as an inhabitant of the Islands of the Blessed, along with Achilles
Achilles
and Harmodius.[45] In his Inferno, Dante sees Diomedes
Diomedes
in the Eighth Circle of Hell, where the "counsellors of fraud" are imprisoned for eternity in sheets of flame. His offenses include advising the theft of the Palladium and, of course, the strategem of the Trojan Horse. The same damnation is imposed on Odysseus, who is also punished for having persuaded Achilles
Achilles
to fight in the Trojan war, without telling him that this would inevitably lead to his death. The Troilus and Cressida
Troilus and Cressida
legend[edit] Diomedes
Diomedes
plays an important role in the medieval legend of Troilus and Cressida, in which he becomes the girl's new lover when she is sent to the Greek camp to join her traitorous father. In Shakespeare's play of that title, Diomedes
Diomedes
is often seen fighting Troilus over her. See also[edit]

1437 Diomedes, a minor asteroid Diomedes
Diomedes
(Thracian king) HMS Diomede - 4 British ships named after Diomedes USS Diomedes
Diomedes
(ARB-11)

References[edit]

^ Jones, Daniel; Roach, Peter, James Hartman and Jane Setter, eds. Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary. 17th edition. Cambridge UP, 2006. ^ Idem. ^ Aeneid
Aeneid
II.82–99 ^ Cypria testimonium 30 [Bernabé] = Pausanias 10.31.2 ^ "Cypria" fragment 27. Greek Epic Fragments: From the Seventh to the Fifth Centuries BC, translated by M.L. West (Loeb Classical Library, 2003), 105. ^ Dict. Cret. ii. 15 ; comp. Paus. x. 31. § 1. ^ D.B. Monro (ed.), The Iliad: Books I-XII, p. 309 ^ Iliad
Iliad
13.277–278 ^ Nassos Papalexandrou, The Visual Poetics of Power: Warriors, Youths, and Tripods in Early Greece [Lanham: Lexington Books, 2005], 28–29 ^ Tzetz. ad Lycoph. 993 ; Dict. Cret. iv. 3. ^ "Aethiopis" argument 4. Greek Epic Fragments, 113. ^ Dict. Cret. v. 4 ^ "Little Iliad" argument 4. Greek Epic Fragments, 123. ^ Virg. Aen. ii. 163 ^ Eustath. ad Hom. p. 822. ^ Plato, Republic 493D ^ Aristophanes, Ecclesiazusae 1029; Plato, Republic 493D; Zenobius 3.8. ^ Plut. Quaest. Graec. 48. ^ Pausanias, Description of Greece I.28.9. ^ Serv. ad Aen. ii. 166, iii. 407, iv, 427, v. 81. ^ "Little Iliad" argument 24. Greek Epic Fragments, 137. ^ Scholia to Euripides Hecuba
Hecuba
41 ^ "Returns" argument 1. Greek Epic Fragments, 155. ^ Dictys Cretensis 6. 2; Tzetzes
Tzetzes
on Lycophron 609; Servius on Aeneid 8. 9. ^ Tzetzes
Tzetzes
on Lycophron 602 ^ Pliny the Elder, The Natural History, III. 16.—The Second Region of Italy. ^ Plut. Parall. Gr. et Rom. 23. ^ Serv. ad Aen viii. 9, xi. 246; Strab. vi. pp. 283, 284; Plin. H. N. iii. 20; Justin, xii. 2. ^ Serv. on Verg. A. 11.246. ^ Paus. i. 11; Serv. ad Aen. viii. 9. ^ Virgil, Aeneid
Aeneid
XI.246–247. ^ Virgil, Aeneid
Aeneid
XI.246–247. ^ Ovid, Metamorphoses XIV.457. ^ Plut. de Flum. 18; Paus. ii. 24. § 2 ^ Schol. ad Pind. Nem. x. 12 ; Scylax, Peripl. p. 6; comp. Strab. v. p. 214, &c. ^ Farnell, Lewis Richard. Greek Hero
Hero
Cults and Ideas of Immortality. Chicago: Ares
Ares
Publishers Inc., 1921: 290) ^ Robert Parker, On Greek Religion (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2011): 245. ^ Strabo, Geography 6.3.9. Translated by Horace Leonard Jones. Loeb Classical Press, 1923. ^ Callimachus, Λοετρὰ Παλλάδος, line 35., Farnell 1921: 290. ^ Strabo, Geography 5.1.9. Translated by Horace Leonard Jones. Loeb Classical Press, 1923. ^ Strabo, Geography 6.3.9. Translated by Horace Leonard Jones. Loeb Classical Press, 1923. ^ Gotch, A. F. (1995) [1979]. "Albatrosses, Fulmars, Shearwaters, and Petrels". Latin Names Explained. A Guide to the Scientific Classifications of Reptiles, Birds & Mammals. New York, NY: Facts on File. p. 190. ISBN 0-8160-3377-3.  ^ J.B. Bury, Pindar: Nemean Odes (Amsterdam: Adolf M. Hakkert, 1965), 199. ^ Strabo, Geography 5.1.9 ^ Skolion 894. Taken from Nagy 1999: 197.

External links[edit]

Media related to Diomedes
Diomedes
at Wikimedia Commons Greek Mythology Index

v t e

Characters in the Iliad

Achaeans

Acamas Achilles Agamemnon Agapenor Ajax the Greater Ajax the Lesser Alcimus Anticlus Antilochus Arcesilaus Ascalaphus Automedon Balius and Xanthus Bias Calchas Diomedes Elephenor Epeius Eudoros Euryalus Eurybates Eurydamas Eurypylus Guneus Helen Ialmenus Idomeneus Leitus Leonteus Lycomedes Machaon Medon Meges Menelaus Menestheus Meriones Neoptolemus Nestor Nireus Odysseus Palamedes Patroclus Peneleos Philoctetes Phoenix Podalirius Podarces Polites Polypoetes Promachus Protesilaus Prothoenor Schedius Stentor Sthenelus Talthybius Teucer Thersites Thoas Thrasymedes Tlepolemus

Trojans

Aeneas Aesepus Agenor Alcathous Amphimachus Anchises Andromache Antenor Antiphates Antiphus Archelochus Asius Asteropaios Astyanax Atymnius Axylus Briseis Calesius Caletor Cassandra Chryseis Chryses Clytius Coön Dares Phrygius Deiphobus Dolon Epistrophus Euphemus Euphorbus Glaucus Gorgythion Hector Hecuba Helenus Hyperenor Hypsenor Ilioneus Imbrius Iphidamas Kebriones Laocoön Lycaon Melanippus Mentes Mydon Mygdon of Phrygia Othryoneus Pandarus Panthous Paris Pedasus Peirous Phorcys Polites Polydamas Polybus Polydorus Priam Pylaemenes Pylaeus Pyraechmes Rhesus of Thrace Sarpedon Theano Ucalegon

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 74660488 GN

.