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Aias


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Son of Oĭleus, the Locrian chieftain. In Homer Aias leads the Locrian contingent to Troy with 40 ships. He is ‘much lesser’ than Telamonian Aias (hence often called the Lesser Aias), quick‐footed, and often paired with his great namesake as a brave fighter. He can, however, be an unpleasant character, on occasion grossly rude, hated by Athena, and finally drowned by Poseidon for blasphemy against the gods while scrambling ashore after shipwreck. In the Sack of Troy he dragged Cassandra away from the statue of Athena to rape her, and in so doing loosened the statue from its plinth. This is a favourite scene in Archaic and Classical art.

Subjects: Classical Studies.


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