ALPHEUSFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In Greek mythology Alpheus, or Alpheios (Greek meaning whitish) has a number of tales to his name.
1. Alpheus as man. Hunting in the forests of Greece, Alpheus saw Artemis and desired her. He followed her across all of Greece until she came to Letrinoi. There, Artemis and her nymphs smeared their faces with mud. Alpheus, who had decided to rape Artemis could not distinguish between the Goddess and her nymphs. He fled. This episode stands out because Artemis is usually far more savage and lethal with would-be lovers.
2. Alpheus as a river (present Alfeios River) and river-god, thus like most river-gods a son of Oceanus and Tethys. One of Artemis's nymphs was Arethusa and, having failed to win his Goddess, Alpheus fell in love with Arethusa while she was bathing in his waters. But Arethusa, like her Goddess, desired nothing more than to hunt and be free in the forest so she ran from Alpheus. Finally, arriving at the Island of Ortygia she called upon Artemis who transformed her into a stream. Alpheus flowed through Greece and under the ocean until he rose again near to Arethusa and their waters mingled.
There is no need for these two stories to clash, Alpheus the
hunter is also Alpheus the river-god.