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In Greek mythology, Lelex was a King of Laconia (then named Lelegia). He was married to the Naiad nymph, Cleochareia. He had several sons, includingMyles, Polycaon, Pterelaus, and Cteson. The parentage of Lelex is variously stated. It is given as Poseidon by Libya (daughter of Epaphus, thus making Lelex of Egyptian origin; or his father is said to be the sun-god Helius; or he was said to be autochthonous.

Lelex is the ancestor of the Spartans. His grandson (fathered by Myles) was Eurotas. Eurotas had a daughter named Sparta, who would later marry Lacedaemon. Lacedaemon named the city of Sparta after his wife; however, the city's name would also be his own, as it was called either Lacedaemon or Sparta interchangeably. Sources indicate that Perseus is a descendant of Lelex. Lelex's great granddaughter Sparta, gave birth to a daughter named Eurydice (no relation to Orpheus' Eurydice), who had married Acrisius, the king of Argos. Eurydice became the mother of Danae, thus making her Perseus' grandmother.

Lelex appears to have been conceived by ancient mythographers as the eponymous founder of the Lelegians, a semi-mythical people that lived on both sides of the Aegean Sea.

Son of Poseidon

There was another Lelex. He was the son of Poseidon and Libya, and was a king of Attica.


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