Genealogy: House of Sparta

Atlas (Titan) Pleïone (mother of the Pleiades) Taÿete (Pleiade) Lelex, king of Laconia Myles, king of Laconia Eurotas, king of Laconia Sparta (eponym of Sparta) Lacedaemon, king of Sparta Amyclas, king of Sparta Argalus, king of Sparta Cynortas Oebalus, king of Sparta Hyacinthus, Spartan youth Hippocoon, king of Sparta Tyndareus, king of Sparta Leda (wife of Tyndareus) Thestius (king of Pleuron) Clytemnestra Timandra Helen of Troy Hermione Castor (Dioscuri) Polydeuces (Dioscuri) Icarius (co-king of Sparta) Penelope Odysseus (king of Ithaca) Telemachus Aerope (daughter of Catreus) Atreus (king of Mycenae) Thyestes (king of Mycenae) Pelopia (daughter of Thyestes) Menelaus (king of Sparta) Agamemnon (king of Mycenae) Aegisthus (king of Mycenae) Orestes (king of Argos and Sparta) Iphigeneia (high priestess of the Taurian Artemis Electra Tisamenus (king of Argos and Sparta) Pylades (son of Strophius of Phocis) Achilles (son of Peleus and Thetis) Neoptolemus (king of Epeirus) Andromache (wife of Hector) Helenus (Trojan seer) Paris (prince of Troy) Polycaon (king of Messenia) Messene (Queen of Messenia) Perieres (king of Messenia) Gorgophone Arene Aphareus (king of Messenia) Leucippus (king of Messenia) Idas Lynceus Marpessa (daughter of Evenus and Alcippe) Meleager (Calydonian hero) Cleopatra Phoebe (daughter of Leucippus) Phoebe (wife of Polydeuces) Hilaeira Aeolus (king of Thessaly) Acrisius (king of Argos) Danae Perseus (king of Mycenae) Andromeda (daughter of Cepheus) Lapithus (king of the Lapiths) Echemus (king of Arcadia) Phyleus (king of Dulichium) Meges (king of Dulichium)

 

The large family tree above, combined the Houses of Laconia and Messenia together. The links between the two kingdoms come from marriages.

The first link is when Polycaon, son of Lelex, migrated to Messenia and married the Argive princess, Messene.

The second link come from Gorgophone, daughter of Perseus and Andromeda. Gorgophone had married Perieres, son of Aeolus and king of Messenia. Gorgophone then married Oebalus, son of Cynortas and king of Sparta. Aphareus, Gorgophone’s son by her first marriage, had married his half-sister, Arene, Gorgophone’s daughter by her second husband, which provided the third link between Laconia and Messenia.

See House of Sparta for tales about this family. Information about the House of Messenia (such as Perieres, Aphareus and Leucippus, can be found in the Aeolid page.

 

Note that the Greek geographer Pausanias, gives two versions of the early genealogy of Lelex, which are different. In one passage, Myles was the father of Eurotas, not his brother (or half-brother?), which is different from what I had drawn above. So the early genealogy of Laconia can look like this –

Lelex, king of Laconia Myles, king of Laconia Polycaon (king of Messenia) Messene (Queen of Messenia) Eurotas, king of Laconia Sparta (eponym of Sparta) Lacedaemon, king of Sparta Amyclas, king of Sparta

Usually, Zeus had seduced Leda, wife of Tyndareus, so that Zeus was the father of Polydeuces and Helen, while at the same time, Leda gave birth to Castor and Clytemnestra, whose father was Tyndareus. Though, some authors say that Helen was not the daughter of Leda; they say Helen’s mother was really Nemesis, the goddess of retribution. There are couple of different variations of how Nemesis was seduced by Zeus. Whichever versions you might have read, Nemesis lay an egg, which Leda kept, until the egg hatched, and Helen was born. (See Helen, Leda or Nemesis.)

Oebalus, king of Laconia Gorgophone (daughter of Perseus and Andromeda) Tyndareus, king of Sparta Thestius (king of Pleuron) Leda (wife of Tyndareus) Nemesis (goddess of retribution) Castor (Dioscuri) Polydeuces (Dioscuri) Clytemnestra Timandra Helen of Troy Menelaus, king of Laconia Paris (or Alexander, Trojan prince) Nyx (primordial goddess of night)