Triptolemus

Greek - A prince of Eleusis. Son of Celeus and Metaneira or of Ocean and Gaea. Son of Dysaules in some accounts. Brother of Demophoon. In some stories it was he who, as a baby, was placed in the fire to achieve immortality by Demeter who was temporarily employed as his wet nurse; in other versions, the baby was his brother Demophoon. In either case, the baby was snatched back by its mother and, though unharmed, did not achieve immortality. Some versions say that Demophoon was burned to death. Other stories say that it was he who told Demeter where to find her daughter who had been abducted by Hades and, after Demeter had got her daughter back, she returned to teach Triptolemus the science of agriculture which he spread throughout the land. When Lyncus, king of Scythia, tried to kill her protégé, Demeter turned the king into a lynx. Some versions describe him as a god depicted aboard the chariot drawn by winged serpents which Demeter gave him to compensate for the loss of his brother. Others say that he became a judge in the underworld with Rhadamanthus and Minos. He was said to have promulgated the law of Triptolemus which requires a man to honour his parents, offer sacrifices to the gods and do nothing to harm any man or animal. He is also credited with establishing the Eleusinian mysteries. Sometimes called Triptolemus, Triptolemos or Triptolemos.

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