Tantalus - Punishment Myth

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by mkprentice
Last updated 6 years ago

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Tantalus - Punishment Myth

Tantalus -Punishment Myth

Tantalus was a son of Zeus and Plouto. The special thing about him was that he had both a demigod parent, and a mortal one.

Michael Prentice

Tantalus' most famous cause for his punishment was offering up his son, Pelops, as a feast for the gods. He cut his son up into pieces and proceeded to sacrifice Pelops to the gods. Most of the gods refused this offering, as it was obviously such an awful, gruesome thing to feast upon. The only exeption being Demeter, who ate a piece of the child's shoulder inattentively. Luckily, Pelops was brought back to life by Zeus. He was later brought into Mount Olympus by a god called Poseidon. After some time, Zeus grew an anger at Tantalus and consequantly threw Pelops out of Olympus. Tantalus's actions were quite rightly considered horrific by the Greeks of classical times. For commiting these acts of cannibalism and kin slaying, Tantalus recieved his eternal punishment.

Why was he punished?

Tantalus's punishment was held in Tartarus, a place which was said to be "as far below the underworld as the earth is below the heavens" This was a common place for the evil to be punished for their crimes. For Tantalus' wrongdoings, he was to stand in a pool of water just beneath a fruit tree with low branches. Whenever he reached for a fruit to eat, the branches (and his intended snack) raised from his grasp. Also, whenever he bent down to get a drink from the pool of water, it shrunk before he could get any. This punishment cursed him with eternal deprivation of nourishment.

His punishment


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