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Cleaning the Augean stables in a single day.

 
                HERCULES 5th LABOR; CLEANING THE AUGEAN STABLES IN A SINGLE DAY 
 

This time Eurystheus gave Hercules the labor of traveling to Augean and cleaning the king of Augean's stables in a single day.

This doesn't seem like much of a task. Although these particular stables housed thousands of cattle, sheep, goats, and horses and the stable had not been cleaned in 30 years. The Augean king was said to have more cattle then any man in Greece.

When Hercules showed up he offered to clean the stables in a single day for 1/10 of the Augean king's entire cattle. Hercules didn’t say anything about how he was sent by Eurystheus or about his labors of redemption. The Augean King was so shocked at his fortune he agreed to pay Hercules IF he could do it in one day.

Hercules took the Augean king's son with him to witness the stables being cleaned. Hercules set to work tearing a big hole in the front of the stable yards. Next Hercules made a hole in the back wall of the stable yards. Hercules then dug a trench between 2 rivers flowing nearby. He then diverted the 2 rivers into the front of the stable yards and out the rear of the stable yards and back into the river with taking all the filth along with it.

Hercules returned to the Augean King to collect his payment. The Augean king had found out that Eurystheus had been the one to send Hercules and refused to pay him saying that if Hercules didn't agree he could always take the Augean King to court. So Hercules did just that. Hercules even had the Augean King's son testify that his father did indeed promise to pay Hercules 1/10 of all his cattle. The King reluctantly paid Hercules and then promptly banished him from his kingdom.

Hercules returned to Eurystheus to inform the king of the completion of Hercules labor. Word traveled fast, even for a time when they didn't have iPods, and Eurystheus had found out that Hercules was paid for his cleaning out of the stables, and therefore told Hercules that this labor (just like the 2nd labor) didn't count and Hercules would have to complete yet another labor before he would be able to be forgiven and retire on Mount Olympus.

 

For more Greek fun http://greece.mrdonn.org/games.html

 

 
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