The Golden Fleece was the fleece of the golden ram that was held in Colchis, and the object of desire for Jason, who organised an expedition with the Argonauts in order to retrieve it.
The myth has it that Athamas, king of the city of Orchomenos, married the goddess Nephele, with whom he had two children, Phrixus and Helle. Later, he took Ino as his second wife, who hated her stepchildren and plotted to kill them. She would have succeeded, but at the last second, Nephele sent a flying golden ram to save her children from their stepmother. She then told her children not to look down while the ram was flying. However, Helle looked down, felt dizzy and fell into the part of the sea that took her name, Hellespont. The ram and Phrixus eventually reached Colchis, where the boy was warmly welcomed by the king, Aeetes. Phrixus gave the golden fleece of the ram as a gift to the king, grateful for his hospitality. Aeetes placed the golden fleece in a garden which was guarded by a never sleeping dragon. Jason later arrived in Colchis, and after successfully completing the three tasks that Aeetes had given to him, he retrieved the golden fleece.
See Also: Jason, Argonauts, Athamas, Nephele, Phrixus, helle, Ino, Aeetes
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