Aethlius or Aithlios (Ancient Greek: Ἀέθλιος means "winning the prize") was, in Greek mythology, the first king of Elis.[1]


Aethlius was the son of Zeus and Protogeneia (daughter of Deucalion),[2][3] and was married to Calyce of whom he fathered Endymion.[4] According to some accounts, Endymion was himself a son of Zeus and first king of Elis.[5] Other traditions again made Aethlius a son of Aeolus, who was called by the name of Zeus.[6]


Aethlius led Aeolians from Thessaly and founded Elis. According to Eusebius, as a means of challenging his sons, Aethlius use the concept of Olympics of the Idaean Dactyls and it was from his name that the adversaries are called athletes. After Aethlius, his sons Epeius and then Endymion, Alexinus and Oenomaus were each in charge of the sacrifices connected with the festival.[7]


  1. ^ Pausanias, v. 1. § 2
  2. ^ Pseudo-Apollodorus. Bibliotheca, 1.7.2
  3. ^ Gaius Julius Hyginus, Fabulae 155
  4. ^ Schmitz, Leonhard (1867), "Aethlius (1)", in Smith, William (ed.), Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology, 1, Boston, MA, p. 51
  5. ^ Pseudo-Apollodorus. Bibliotheca, 1.7.5
  6. ^ Pausanias, v. 8. § 1.
  7. ^ Eusebius. Chronography, 69


  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSmith, William, ed. (1870). "Aethlius (1)". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.