Greek Mythology >> Greek Gods >> Rustic Gods >> River Gods >> Axius (Axios)


Greek Name




Latin Spelling

Axius, Axenus


River Axius

AXIOS was a river-god of Makedonia (Macedonia) and Paionia (Paeonia) in northern Greece.

The River Axios had its headwaters in the mountains of Paionia and flowed south to empty into the Aegean sea near Pella, capital of Makedonia. The major neighbouring rivers were the Strymon to the east, and Haliakmon (Haliacmon) in the south. The Brykhon (Brychon) stream of nearby Khalkidike was also personified.


[1] OKEANOS & TETHYS (Hyginus Preface)


[1] PELEGON (by Periboia) (Homer Iliad 21.141; Apollodorus E4.7)
[2] KLEOMEDE (alluded by Quintus Smyrnaeus 6.605)


A′XIUS (Axios), a Paeonian river-god, who begot by Periboca a son, Pelegon, the father of Asteropaeus. (Hom. Il. xxi. 141, with the note of Eustath..)

Source: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.


Homer, Iliad 4. 848 ff (trans. Lattimore) (Greek epic C8th B.C.) :
"The Paionians (Paeonians) [allies of the Trojans] . . . from Amydon far away and the broad stream of Axios (Axius), Axios, whose stream on all earth is the lovelies."

Homer, Iliad 21. 140 ff :
"[The Trojan ally] Asteropaios (Asteropaeus) the son of Pelegon; who in turn was born of the wide-running river Axios (Axius), and of Periboia (Periboea), eldest of the daughters of Akessamenos (Acessamenus), for she lay in love with the deep-whirling river. Against this man Akhilleus (Achilles) rose up, and he came to face him from the river, holding two spears, for Xanthos [the River of Troy] had inspired valour into his heart . . .
[Asteropaios speaks :] ‘I am from Paionia (Paeonia) far away, where the soil is generous . . . For my generation, it is from the broad waters of Axios, Axios, who floods the land with the loveliest waters. His son was Pelegon . . . but I am Pelegon's son . . .’
[Akhilleus replies :] ‘It is hard even for those sprung of a river to fight against the children of Kronos (Cronus), whose strength is almighty. You said you were of the generation of the wide-running river, but I claim that I am of the generation of great Zeus . . . and Zeus is stronger that Rivers that run to the sea, so the generation of Zeus is made stronger than that of a River.’"

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca E4. 7 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Akhilleus (Achilles) driving the Trojans in a body to the Skamandros (Scamander), where he destroyed many, including Asteropaios (Asteropaeus), the son of the river Axios' (Axius') son Pelegon. In fury the river [i.e. Skamandros (Scamander) of Troy] rose up against him."

Quintus Smyrnaeus, Fall of Troy 6. 605 ff (trans. Way) (Greek epic C4th A.D.) :
"Laophoon the son of Paion (Paeon) [king of the Paionians], born by Axios' (Axius') flood of bright-haired Kleomede (Cleomede)."

Antoninus Liberalis, Metamorphoses 8 (trans. Celoria) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Eurybaros [of Phokis] son of Euphemos (Euphemus), a descendant of the River Axios (Axius)."

Pseudo-Hyginus, Preface (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"From Oceanus and Tethys [were born] the Oceanides . . . Of the same descent Rivers: Strymon, Nile, Euphrates, Tanais, Indus, Cephisus, Ismenus, Axenus [Axios], Achelous, Simoeis, Inachus, Alpheus, Thermodon, Scamandrus, Tigris, Maeandrus, Orontes."





A complete bibliography of the translations quoted on this page.