Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The legend of King Midas and all he touched turned to gold

The story of King Midas has had many variations that have been retold and added to many times. This version of the story taken from the ancient Greek adds some modern variations.

An old Satyr “Silenus” a teacher of gods and head of the satyrs had been drinking wine and had wandered off for one of his extended walks!

The drunken Satyr was later found in a ditch by some peasants and taken to their king. Their king “King Midas” recognized the Satyr and gave him rooms and food and invited the satyr to stay at the palace until he wished to leave.

Silenus entertained King Midas and his friends with his great songs and stories. After 11 days King Midas took Silenus back to his king “Bacchus”. Bacchus was so pleased to have Silenus back he offered King Midas a wish as a reward.

King Midas wished that: "Whatever he touched would turn to gold".

Midas rejoiced in his new power and quickly touched an oak twig that transformed itself into gold. Then he touched a stone that quickly turned yellow and also changed to gold.

As soon as the king arrived home he ordered the servants to create a feast.

"So Midas, king of Lydia, swelled at first with pride when he found he could transform everything he touched to gold; but when he beheld his food grow rigid and his drink harden into golden ice then he understood that this gift was a bane and in his loathing for gold, cursed his prayer.”

Midas now hated the gift he had wished for so, he prayed to Bacchus, begging to be delivered from starvation. Bacchus heard, and consented by telling Midas to wash in the river Pactolus.

Midas went to the river and when his hands touched the waters, the power flowed from him and into the river, and the sands of the river Pactolus were forever turned into gold.

See more about gold and silver