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希腊神话故事 11

The Birth of Perseus

In the land of Argos lived a king named Acrisius.

Acrisius was a good king and was respected by all the people of the land.

King Acrisius had been unlucky, however,because he had only one child, a daughter.

Her name was Danae, and she was both beautiful and kind.

When Danae reached the age of thirteen,Acrisius took her to a blind man who could see the future to ask what was in her fate.

The blind man told Acrisius that his daughter would give birth to a great hero.

This pleased the king greatly and he asked the blind man to tell him more.

“Be warned," said the blind man to the king, "That your daughter's son will one day murder you!".

Upon hearing this, King Acrisius became greatly angry and pulled out his knife to kill his daughter.

But when he looked into his daughter's eyes, his heart was filled with a father's love and all his anger disappeared.

“I cannot kill my own daughter”, he thought, "but I must make sure that she never gives birth to a son".

Upon returning to the capital city, King Acrisius ordered his builders to make a tall tower out of strong metal.

When the tower was finished, he locked Danae in the room at the top and ordered that no men ever go near the tower.

The king was a wise man and kept the only key to the room, in case any of the guards became interested in his daughter's beauty.

For the next year, not a single person entered Danae’s room.

Each day a young servant girl would come and put food through a small window for Danae to eat, but no other person ever entered the tower.

One day, the young servant girl heard asound coming from the room.

It was the sound of a baby crying!

The servant girl could not believe what she had heard and ran down to tell the king.

When the king heard the news, he was so shocked that he ran up to the top of the tower and threw open the strong metal door.

Inside sat Danae holding a young baby boy in her arms!

"How is this possible?”,demanded the king.

"Tell me which man has come in here and I will cut off his head myself!"

At this point, Danae told the king an amazing story.

“Father, it was no man who came in here”.

“The first night you locked me in the tower, I was so lonely that I cried and cried and could not stop”.

“The king of the gods, Zeus, heard my sad tears and came into the room to comfort me”.

“He came back each night and soon we fell in love”.

“I agreed to marry him secretly and many nights we lay together in my bed”.

“My son, this boy you see here in my arms is named Perseus, and he is the son of a god".

King Acrisius did not know whether to believe his daughter or not.

Yet, certainly, there was no way into the tower for an ordinary man.

"Perhaps",the king thought, "this child is the son of Zeus".

The king did not know what to do.

He felt great love for his daughter, and great respect and fear for the god Zeus.

But he remembered the words of the old man, and was afraid that his grandson would one day murder him.

In the end, fear won in the king's heart and he decided to kill both Danae and Perseus.

Yet the king did love his daughter, so this was a terrible hard decision for him to make.

He told his men to lock his daughter and her son in a heavy box and throw them in the sea.

The king himself watched all this happen and cried as he watched the box sink into the deep water.

Yet it was not Zeus's wish that his wife and son should die.

He called on Poseidon, the god of the sea, and told him to protect the box under the water.

Once the king and his men left, the box again floated to the top of the water and moved towards the island of Serapis.
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