The New International Encyclopædia/Deucalion
DEUCA′LION (Gk. Δευκαλίων) . According to the Greek myth, a son of Prometheus, grandson of Japetus, and husband of Pyrrha. The crimes of the race of men then living led Zeus to destroy them in a great flood, but Deucalion, warned by his father, saved himself and his wife in a chest (λάρναξ), which floated for nine days on the waters, and then grounded on Mount Othrys in Thessaly. Other and later versions made Deucalion land on Mount Parnassus, or Athos, or even Etna. Deucalion and Pyrrha now offered up sacrifices to Zeus Phyxius, i.e. Zeus, the protector of fugitives, and when Zeus through Hermes promised to grant his wish, he begged for human companions. Bidden to throw the ‘bones of their mother,’ i.e. the stones of the earth, over their shoulders, they obeyed, and the stones thrown by Deucalion became men, and those by Pyrrha women. The story of Deucalion seems to have sprung up near Dodona, or in Thessaly, where he was said to have settled after the flood, and thence spread over the Greek world. His grave was shown at Athens, where he was said to have founded the temple of Olympian Zeus. Through his son Hellen (q.v.), he became the ancestor of the Greeks. Though many details of the story are late, some of the features were known to the Hesiodic poetry. Consult Usener, Die Sintflutsagen (Bonn, 1899).