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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Medea, In Her Role as a Hero - Part IV

Medea’s support of Jason allows him to secure the Golden Fleece. At that moment, with the fleece in their possession, Medea, Jason, and the surviving Argonauts are fugitives. They are deep in enemy territory, and their situation appears hopeless.

Once again, the prime mover of the succeeding events is Medea. She devises a plan for their escape. She abducts her younger brother and kills him, then has the body of the boy cut up into pieces. She tosses the pieces into the sea so that her father would have to delay his pursuit of the Argonauts to pick up the divided corpse of his son.

This is a gruesome scene. Medea has committed the crime of fratricide, she has also desecrated the body of the dead, but she has done this in order to preserve the life of her betrothed.

She has done committed these crimes out of love, a love inspired by the divine power of Eros. Therefore, Medea can be forgiven, even a crime as horrible as fratricide, under the power of Eros she could not be considered to be responsible for her actions, while under the laws of men, her allegiances had shifted from her father’s house to her husband’s.

As a result of Medea’ shrewd tactics, Jason and the Argonauts were able to escape the wrath of Aeetes and the Colchians. It is Medea’s uncompromising heroism that leads them through the challenge.

Medea defies the world, and all traditions, nothing will stop her from achieving her ambition.

In keeping with the motif of the heroic journey, Medea then follows Jason across the sea.

Their journey is fraught with difficulty, but Medea triumphs over them all in order that she might be with Jason.


When they arrive in safe harbor, Jason honors his promise and formally takes the princess Medea as his wife. He takes the holy vows of matrimony, swearing his oath before Zeus, and all the other gods.