I noticed a mild incongruity in my rewrite of Cadmus, if you’re to believe he actually abdicated his throne to his grandson. That was one of those things I was really trying to avoid, and you can be sure that a minimum number of years needs to be enforced for something like that. For instance, Pentheus would have to be at least fifteen.

What I think it’ll have to be is Cadmus’s adventures actually span two blocks of time, his first exty years as an adventurer before settling down, followed by his next exty years ruling Thebes and dealing with the problems associated with being a king before his grandson reached age. I’ve tweaked another couple things, too, like Polydorus.

Contrary to myth, I’ve figured that rather than Polydorus being one of Cadmus’s own, he’ll be a young man adopted from Phocis who reminds Cadmus of himself. Agave, Semele, and Autonoe, recorded as daughters of Cadmus, will all still be there, though with some minor alterations to nature and role. Like divinity.

Nymphs are all well and good, but I’m trying to move gods aside. Semele was said to have been a goddess, and she was the mother of Dionysus, a god. That doesn’t really jive with me at this stage. While I’m more than happy to drag and drop the gods into myths at any point (or erase them utterly), I don’t want to muck around in genetics.

I figure Polydorus rules as a regent for a time, as an indication of the continued relations between Boeotia and Phocis (Cadmus still likes his home, after all), before giving the throne over to his natural heir by his daughter Agave and her husband Echion, Pentheus. Now there’s been a goodly amount of time to have passed.

What follows is a brief account of Pentheus’s troubles:


Agave, daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia, was married to Echion, of one noble Aones families. She bore Pentheus, who would become king after his grandfather Cadmus eventually abdicated the throne. (Pentheus’s adopted brother Polydorus would also spend time as king before Pentheus grew old enough for the job.)

During the rule of Polydorus and Pentheus, worship of the regent (a lesser deity) Dionysus first became prevalent in Boeotia. Though Dionysus represents life in the name of Demeter, many of the cults that initially sprang up were peopled by wild, young upstarts who caused no end of grief. Pentheus banned open worship.

Those followers of Dionysus, collectively known as Maenads, based their worship around a cult location in the Kithairon Mountains, which were sacred to Dionysus. They secretly seduced various members of the royal family, which included Agave, Autonoe, and Semele, the mother and aunts of Pentheus.

Pentheus was lured to Kithairon by his own family, and then the Maenads turned on him, and rent his body to pieces before triumphantly parading his corpse around Thebes. The rule of Thebes was then turned back over to Polydorus, an adopted son of Cadmus from Phocis, who also faced trouble from the Maenads.

Following the murder of King Pentheus of Thebes, the Maenads enchanted several pieces of his body for use in their rituals.