In Greek mythology, Althaea was the daughter of King Thestius and Eurythemis, and wife of the king of Calydon, Oeneus. She had seven children, called Meleager, Melanippe, Toxeus, Thyreus, Clymenus, Deianeira and Gorge. She had an important role in the myth of her son Meleager; when he was born, the Fates appeared in the palace, saying that Meleager would die as soon as the last piece of wood in the hearth was consumed. Upon hearing it, Althaea removed that brand and buried it under the palace. Many years later, Oeneus did a sacrifice to all gods but forgot Artemis, who was infuriated; as revenge, she sent an unnaturally large boar to ravage the Calydonian lands. Meleager managed to kill the boar with the help of Atalanta and his mother’s brothers, but gave the skin of the boar as a prize to Atalanta. His uncles were angry and stole it from her, which caused Meleager’s fury and killed them. When Althaea found out, she burned the brand that was kept under the palace, causing her son’s death. After that, she ended her life with a dagger.
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