Dido's Fiery Death

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When Mutto, king of Tyre, died, he left his kingdom to his children, Pygmalion and Dido.

Pygmalion became king, and Dido married Sicharbas, the most important person in the kingdom after Pygmalion. Sicharbas was killed by Pygmalion, who wanted his wealth. Dido, fearful, took her husband's treasure and fled by boat. On the water, she threw what appeared to be containers of gold into the sea, but they were actually filled with sand. She went to Cyprus, where, instructed by the gods, a priest of Zeus slept with her, and then she went to Africa. Dido asked the Africans for land, and was told that she could take as much land as she could envelop in a bull's hide. She had the hide of a bull cut into thin strips, and so obtained much land. She founded a city, shifting the site from a place where they discovered the head of an ox to one where they found the head of a horse. The city grew, became so powerful that a neighboring king, Iarbas, demanded that Dido marry him or he would war with her. Dido did not like the idea, delayed for three months, then threw herself on a funeral pyre and died. See also: Anna.

Subjects: Religion.

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