Summary “The Legend of Arion” by Herodotus

Periander was the tyrant of Corinth. With him, as the Corinthians say (and this story is also confirmed by the lesbians), the greatest miracle happened in life. Arion of Mephimna was carried out on a dolphin from the sea at Tenar. It was an incomparable cifar of its time and, as far as I know, was the first to compose a dithyramb, gave it a name and taught the choir for the production in Corinth. This is the time Arion spent most of his life at Periander and then decided to sail to Italy and Sikelia. There he made a great wealth, then wished to return to Corinth. He set off from Tarant and, since no more Corinthians trusted anyone, he hired a ship from Corinthian seafarers. And the shipmakers conceived an evil deed: in the open sea to throw Arion into the sea and seize his treasures.

Arion, guessing about their intent, begged to save his life, offering to give all his treasures. However, he failed to soften the ship-owners. They told Arion either to rob himself of life to be buried

in the ground, or immediately to dash into the sea. In this desperate situation, Arion nevertheless urged the ship-keepers (since this is their decision), at least let him sing in full attire of the singer, standing on the rower’s bench. He promised that, after singing his song, he would take his own life. Then the shipmen moved from the stern to the middle of the ship, rejoicing that they would hear the best singer in the world.

Arion, dressed in the complete outfit of the singer, took the cithara and, standing on the stern, performed a solemn song. Having finished the song, he, as was in all the outfit, rushed into the sea. Meanwhile, the sailors sailed to Corinth, and Arion, as they say, picked up a dolphin on his back and carried him to Tenar. Arion went ashore and went to Corinth in his attire of the singer. Upon arrival, he told everything that happened to him. Periander did not believe the story, and ordered Arion to be taken into custody and not let go anywhere, and watch the ship-keepers closely. When they arrived in Corinth, Periander called them to him and asked what they knew about Arion.

The ship-owners answered that Arion lives and lives somewhere in Italy and they-de left him in Taranta in full well-being. Then suddenly Arion appeared in the same garment in which he threw himself into the sea. The affected shipmen could no longer deny their guilt, as they were convicted. So tell the Corinthians and the lesbians. And on Tenar there is a small copper statue – the sacrificial gift of Arion, depicting a man on a dolphin.

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Summary “The Legend of Arion” by Herodotus