37 The Dorians

When Diomedes arrived in Argos after the capture of Ilion, he rebuked his wife Aigialeia for her sexual licentiousness. He himself went to Calydon in Aitolia, killed Agrios and his sons and restored the kingdom to his grandfather Oineus. As he sailed back to Argos, he was drawn off course by a storm to the Ionian Sea. When he arrived there, Daunios, the king of the Daunians, recognized him and asked him, in return for a piece of land and marriage to his daughter, to fight alongside them in a war against the Messapians. Diomedes accepted the proposition. After marshalling his troops, he defeated the Messapians. He got his land and apportioned it out to the Dorians who were his companions. With Daunios’ daughter he had two sons, Diomedes and Amphinomos. After he died an old man among the Daunians, the Dorians buried him with due honors on the island and named it Diomedeia. They themselves continued to farm the land they were allotted next to the king’s territory. It produced an excellent crop due to their expertise in farming

After Daunios died, the Illyrian barbarians out of jealousy formed designs on their land. The Illyrians appeared suddenly and destroyed all the Dorians on the island as they were offering sacrificial victims. By the will of Zeus the Greeks’ bodies disappeared, but their souls transformed into birds. Still to this day when a Greek ship comes into the harbor, the birds fly around it, but they avoid an Illyrian ship and all of them disappear from the island.


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