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One ofthe greatest Greek heroes of all time, Theseus was born the son of Aegeus, king of Attica, and Aethra, a daughter of the king of Troezene. His father had left Aethraearly in Theseus' life, and had hidden his sword and sandals under a great rock atTroezene, telling her that when the boy was able to move the rock, he would be readyto come to Athens, and that he should bring the sword and sandals as a token with him. Theseus accomplished this feat when only sixteen, and set out for the court of hisfather.Reaching Athens, he fell foul of Medea, who was then the consort of Aegeus, the witch giving him a poisoned drink. But Aegeus, recognising the sword and sandals, cried out, knocked the goblet from Theseus' startled fingers, and thus the life of his son was saved. Medea fled, cursing both father and son, predicting thatthey should bring each other only sorrow and grief.

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