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Rhadamanthus: Wikis

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In Greek mythology, Rhadamanthus (Ῥαδάμανθυς; also transliterated as Rhadamanthys or Rhadamanthos) was a wise king, the son of Zeus and Europa. Later accounts even make him out to be one of judges of the dead. His brothers were Sarpedon and Minos (also a king and later a judge of the dead). Rhadamanthus was raised by Asterion. He had two sons, Gortys and Erythrus.

In Greek and Roman accounts

According to one account, Rhadamanthus ruled Crete before Minos, and gave the island an excellent code of laws, which the Spartans were believed to have copied.

Driven out of Crete by his brother, Minos, who was jealous of his popularity, he fled to Boeotia, where he wedded Alcmene. Homer represents him as dwelling in the Elysian Fields (Odyssey, iv. 564), the paradise for the immortal sons of Zeus.

According to later legends (c. 400 BC), on account of his inflexible integrity he was made one of the judges of the dead in the lower world, together with Aeacus and Minos. He was supposed to judge the souls of Asians, Aeacus those of Europeans, while Minos had the casting vote (Plato, Gorgias, 524A).

Virgil (69 - 18 BC) makes Rhadamanthus one of the judges and punishers of the damned in the Underworld (Tartarus) section of The Aeneid.

Pindar says that he is the right-hand man of Cronus (now ruling Elysium) and was the sole judge of the dead.

Other uses

  • In Thomas Mann's novel The Magic Mountain, Rhadamanthys is the cynical nickname Mr. Settembrini uses for Doctor Behrens, head of the Davos Sanatorium, who decides who gets to leave and who has to remain hospitalized.
  • Rhadamanthus also lends its name to the English word 'rhadamanthine', an adjective describing any just but inflexible judgment. (The Aeneid, vi. 566)
  • The Kuiper belt object 38083 Rhadamanthus is named after this figure.
  • In Stephen King's Rose Madder, Rhadamanthus is the name of the white pony tied to the broken cart in Rosie's picture.
  • In Wild Arms 2, one of the major antagonists of the game is named Vinsfield Rhadamanthus.
  • In the popular manga series Saint Seiya , Wyvern Rhadamanthys is the name of one of the generals of hades.
  • In the Hyperion Cantos, Rhadamanth Nemes is sent after the main characters, encountering them on two occasions.
  • In John C. Wright's trilology The Golden Age, Rhadamanthus is the name of the artificial intelligence, called a Sophotech, that advises and serves the household of the protagonist, Phaethon, and his father, Helion, who in turn are named after the mythical Greek characters Phaëton and Helios.
  • In Charlotte Bronte's Villette, John Graham Bretton refers to himself as Rhadamanthus in his response of justice to the behavior of Ginerva Fanshawe, a young girl with whom he had been infatuated.
  • In the Playstation Game Persona 2, one of the first Personae available in the game is called Rhadamanthys.
  • In Philip Jose Farmer's World of Tiers , Rhadamanthus is the ruler of Atlantis Tier.
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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

RHADAMANTHUS (Gr. Rhadamanthys), in Greek mythology, son of Zeus and Europa and brother of Minos, king of Crete. Driven out of Crete by his brother, who was jealous of his popularity, he fled to Boeotia, where he wedded Alcmene. Homer represents him as dwelling in the Elysian fields (Odyssey, iv. 564). According to later legends, on account of his inflexible integrity he was made one of the judges of the dead in the lower world, together with Aeacus and Minos. He was supposed to judge the souls of Asiatics, Aeacus those of Europeans, while Minos had the casting vote (Plato, Gorgias, 424A).


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