In Greek mythology, the Golden Fleece (Greek: χρυσόμαλλον δέρας khrusómallon dérās) is the fleece of the golden-woolled,[a] winged ram, which was held in Colchis. The fleece is a symbol of authority and kingship.
It figures in the tale of the hero Jason and his crew of Argonauts, who set out on a quest for the fleece by order of King Pelias, in order to place Jason rightfully on the throne of Iolcus in Thessaly. Through the help of Medea, they acquire the Golden Fleece. The story is of great antiquity and was current in the time of Homer (eighth century BC). It survives in various forms, among which the details vary.
Athamas the Minyan, a founder of Halos in Thessaly but also king of the city of Orchomenus in Boeotia (a region of southeastern Greece), took the goddess Nephele as his first wife. They had two children, the boy Phrixus (whose name means "curly"—as in ram's fleece) and the girl Helle. Later Athamas became enamored of and married Ino, the daughter of Cadmus. When Nephele left in anger, drought came upon the land.
Ino was jealous of her stepchildren and plotted their deaths: in some versions, she persuaded Athamas that sacrificing Phrixus was the only way to end the drought. Nephele, or her spirit, appeared to the children with a winged ram whose fleece was of gold.[b] The ram had been sired by Poseidon in his primitive ram-form upon Theophane, a nymph[c] and the granddaughter of Helios, the sun-god. According to Hyginus, Poseidon carried Theophane to an island where he made her into a ewe, so that he could have his way with her among the flocks. There Theophane's other suitors could not distinguish the ram-god and his consort.
Nepheles' children escaped on the yellow ram over the sea, but Helle fell off and drowned in the strait now named after her, the Hellespont. The ram spoke to Phrixus, encouraging him,[d] and took the boy safely to Colchis (modern-day Georgia), on the easternmost shore of the Euxine (Black) Sea.
Phrixus settled in the house of Aeetes, son of Helios the sun god. He hung the Golden Fleece preserved from the sacrifice of the ram on an oak in a grove sacred to Ares, the god of war and one of the Twelve Olympians. The golden fleece was defended by bulls with hoofs of brass and breath of fire. It was also guarded by a never sleeping dragon with teeth which could become soldiers when planted in the ground. The dragon was at the foot of the tree on which the fleece was placed.
Pindar employed the quest for the Golden Fleece in his Fourth Pythian Ode (written in 462 BC), though the fleece is not in the foreground. When Aeetes challenges Jason to yoke the fire-breathing bulls, the fleece is the prize: "Let the King do this, the captain of the ship! Let him do this, I say, and have for his own the immortal coverlet, the fleece, glowing with matted skeins of gold".
In later versions of the story, the ram is said to have been the offspring of the sea god Poseidon and Themisto (less often, Nephele or Theophane). The classic telling is the Argonautica of Apollonius of Rhodes, composed in the mid-third century BC Alexandria, recasting early sources that have not survived. Another, much less-known Argonautica, using the same body of myth, was composed in Latin by Valerius Flaccus during the time of Vespasian.
Where the written sources fail, through accidents of history, sometimes the continuity of a mythic tradition can be found among the vase-painters. The story of the Golden Fleece appeared to have little resonance for Athenians of the Classic age, for only two representations of it on Attic-painted wares of the fifth century have been identified: a krater at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a kylix in the Vatican collections.[f][g]  In the kylix painted by Douris, ca 480-470, Jason is being disgorged from the mouth of the dragon, a detail that does not fit easily into the literary sources; behind the dragon, the fleece hangs from an apple tree. Jason's helper in the Athenian vase-paintings is not Medea— who had a history in Athens as the opponent of Theseus— but Athena.
The very early origin of the myth in preliterate times means that during the more than a millennium when it was to some degree part of the fabric of culture, its perceived significance likely passed through numerous developments.
Several euhemeristic attempts to interpret the Golden Fleece "realistically" as reflecting some physical cultural object or alleged historical practice have been made. For example, in the 20th century, some scholars suggested that the story of the Golden Fleece signified the bringing of sheep husbandry to Greece from the east;[h] in other readings, scholars theorized it referred to golden grain,[i] or to the sun.[j]
A more widespread interpretation relates the myth of the fleece to a method of washing gold from streams, which was well attested (but only from c. 5th century BC) in the region of Georgia to the east of the Black Sea. Sheep fleeces, sometimes stretched over a wood frame, would be submerged in the stream, and gold flecks borne down from upstream placer deposits would collect in them. The fleeces would be hung in trees to dry before the gold was shaken or combed out. Alternatively, the fleeces would be used on washing tables in alluvial mining of gold or on washing tables at deep gold mines.[k] Judging by the very early gold objects from a range of cultures, washing for gold is a very old human activity.
Strabo describes the way in which gold could be washed:
"It is said that in their country gold is carried down by the mountain torrents, and that the barbarians obtain it by means of perforated troughs and fleecy skins, and that this is the origin of the myth of the golden fleece—unless they call them Iberians, by the same name as the western Iberians, from the gold mines in both countries."
Another interpretation is based on the references in some versions to purple or purple-dyed cloth. The purple dye extracted from the purple dye murex snail and related species was highly prized in ancient times. Clothing made of cloth dyed with Tyrian purple was a mark of great wealth and high station (hence the phrase "royal purple"). The association of gold with purple is natural and occurs frequently in literature.[l]
Jason attempts to put the serpent guarding the golden fleece to sleep. The snake is coiled around a column at the base of which is a ram and on top of which is a bird.
The following are the chief among the various interpretations of the fleece, with notes on sources and major critical discussions:
The 1965 VFL Golden Fleece Night Premiership was the Victorian Football League end of season cup competition played in September of the 1965 VFL Premiership Season. Run as a knock-out tournament, it was contested by the eight VFL teams that failed to make the 1965 VFL finals series. It was the tenth VFL Night Series competition. Games were played at the Lake Oval, Albert Park, then the home ground of South Melbourne, as it was the only ground equipped to host night games. This was the first time the Night Series cup had a naming rights sponsor in Golden Fleece petroleum products. North Melbourne won its first night series cup defeating Carlton in the final by 40 points.1966 Golden Fleece Cup
The 1966 VFL Golden Fleece Night Premiership was the Victorian Football League end of season cup competition played in September of the 1966 VFL Premiership Season. Run as a knock-out tournament, it was contested by the eight VFL teams that failed to make the 1966 VFL finals series. It was the eleventh VFL Night Series competition. Games were played at the Lake Oval, Albert Park, then the home ground of South Melbourne, as it was the only ground equipped to host night games. North Melbourne won its second night series cup in a row defeating Hawthorn in the final by 53 points.
Three rule changes, all of which were eventually permanently adopted in the VFL, were trialled during this series:,
A free kick was awarded against a player if the ball was kicked out of bounds on the full. Adopted in 1969.
A 50yd square was drawn in the centre of the ground, and no more than four players from each team were allowed within the square during a centre bounce; this was to reduce congestion at centre bounces. Adopted in a modified form in 1973.
The number of boundary umpires was increased from two to four. Adopted in 2008.1969 Golden Fleece Cup
The 1969 VFL Golden Fleece Night Premiership was the Victorian Football League end of season cup competition played in September of the 1969 VFL Premiership Season. Run as a knock-out tournament, it was contested by the eight VFL teams that failed to make the 1969 VFL finals series. It was the 14th VFL Night Series competition. Games were played at the Lake Oval, Albert Park, then the home ground of South Melbourne, as it was the only ground equipped to host night games. Hawthorn won its second night series cup in a row, defeating Melbourne in the final by 5 points.Aries (astrology)
Aries (♈) (meaning "ram") is the first astrological sign in the zodiac, spanning the first 30 degrees of celestial longitude (0°≤ λ <30°). Under the tropical zodiac, the Sun transits this sign from approximately March 20 to April 21 each year. This time duration is exactly the first month of the Solar Hijri calendar (Hamal/Farvardin/Wray). The symbol of the ram is based on the Chrysomallus, the flying ram that provided the Golden Fleece.According to the tropical system of astrology, the Sun enters the sign of Aries when it reaches the March equinox, which occurs on average on March 21 (by design). Because the Earth takes approximately 365.24 days to go around the Sun, the precise time of the equinox is not the same each year, and generally will occur about six hours later from one year to the next until reset by a leap year. February 29 of a leap year causes that year's vernal equinox to fall about eighteen hours earlier compared with the previous year. From 1800 to 2050 inclusive the vernal equinox date has (or will) range(d) from March 19 at 22:34 UT1 in 2048 to March 21 at 19:15 UT1 in 1903.Under the sidereal zodiac, the sun currently transits Aries from April 15 to 14 May (approximately).
Aries is the first fire sign in the zodiac, the other fire signs being Leo and Sagittarius. Individuals born between these dates, depending on which system of astrology they subscribe to, may be called Arians or Ariens.The equivalent in the Hindu solar calendar is Meṣa.Ferdinand I of Austria
Ferdinand I (19 April 1793 – 29 June 1875) was the Emperor of Austria from 1835 until his abdication in 1848. As ruler of Austria, he was also President of the German Confederation, King of Hungary, Croatia and Bohemia (as Ferdinand V), King of Lombardy–Venetia and holder of many other lesser titles (see grand title of the Emperor of Austria).
Ferdinand succeeded on the death of his father Francis II and I on 2 March 1835. He was incapable of ruling his empire because of his mental deficiency, so his father, before he died, made a will which promulgated that Ferdinand should consult Archduke Louis on all aspects of internal policy and urged him to be influenced by Prince Metternich, Austria's Foreign Minister.Following the Revolutions of 1848, Ferdinand abdicated on 2 December 1848. He was succeeded by his nephew, Franz Joseph. Following his abdication, he lived in Hradčany Palace, Prague, until his death in 1875.Ferdinand married Maria Anna of Savoy, the sixth child of Victor Emmanuel I of Sardinia. They had no children.Ferdinand VII of Spain
Ferdinand VII (Spanish: Fernando; 14 October 1784 – 29 September 1833) was twice King of Spain: in 1808 and again from 1813 to his death. He was known to his supporters as the Desired (el Deseado) and to his detractors as the Felon King (el Rey Felón). After being overthrown by Napoleon in 1808 he linked his monarchy to counter-revolution and reactionary policies that produced a deep rift in Spain between his forces on the right and liberals on the left. Back in power in 1814, he reestablished the absolutist monarchy and rejected the liberal constitution of 1812. A revolt in 1820 led by Rafael de Riego forced him to restore the constitution thus beginning the Liberal Triennium: a three year period of liberal rule. In 1823 the Congress of Verona authorized a successful French intervention restoring him to absolute power for the second time. He suppressed the liberal press from 1814 to 1833 and jailed many of its editors and writers. Under his rule, Spain lost nearly all of its American possessions, and the country entered into civil war on his death.
His reputation among historians is very low. Historian Stanley Payne writes:
He proved in many ways the basest king in Spanish history. Cowardly, selfish, grasping, suspicious, and vengeful, [he] seemed almost incapable of any perception of the commonwealth. He thought only in terms of his power and security and was unmoved by the enormous sacrifices of Spanish people to retain their independence and preserve his throne.Ferdinand VI of Spain
Ferdinand VI (Spanish: Fernando VI; 23 September 1713 – 10 August 1759), called the Learned (el Prudente) and the Just (el Justo), King of Spain from 9 July 1746 until his death in 1759, was the third ruler of the Spanish Bourbon dynasty. He was the fourth son of the previous monarch Philip V and his first wife Maria Luisa of Savoy.Golden Fleece (clipper)
Golden Fleece was an 1855 medium clipper in the California trade, built by Paul Curtis. She was known for arriving with cargoes in good condition, for making passages in consistently good time, and for catching fire with a load of ice.Golden Fleece (horse)
Golden Fleece (1979–1984) was an American-bred and Irish-trained Thoroughbred race horse and sire. In a career which consisted of only four races, he was undefeated, with his most notable success coming on his final racecourse appearance in the 1982 Epsom Derby.Jason
Jason (; Ancient Greek: Ἰάσων Iásōn [i.ǎː.sɔːn]) was an ancient Greek mythological hero who was the leader of the Argonauts whose quest for the Golden Fleece featured in Greek literature. He was the son of Aeson, the rightful king of Iolcos. He was married to the sorceress Medea. He was also the great-grandson of the messenger god Hermes, through his mother's side.
Jason appeared in various literary works in the classical world of Greece and Rome, including the epic poem Argonautica and the tragedy Medea. In the modern world, Jason has emerged as a character in various adaptations of his myths, such as the 1963 film Jason and the Argonauts and the 2000 TV miniseries of the same name.Louis I of Spain
Louis I (Luis Felipe; 25 August 1707 – 31 August 1724) was King of Spain from 15 January 1724 until his death in August the same year. His reign is one of the shortest in history, lasting for just over seven months.Order of the Golden Fleece
The Distinguished Order of the Golden Fleece (Spanish: Insigne Orden del Toisón de Oro, German: Berühmt Orden vom Goldenen Vlies) is a Roman Catholic order of chivalry founded in Bruges by the Burgundian duke Philip the Good in 1430, to celebrate his marriage to the Princess Isabella of Portugal. Today, two branches of the Order exist, namely the Spanish and the Austrian Fleece; the current grand masters are Felipe VI, King of Spain, and Karl von Habsburg, grandson of Emperor Charles I of Austria, respectively. The chaplain of the Austrian branch is Cardinal Graf von Schönborn, Archbishop of Vienna.
Having had only 1,200 recipients ever since its establishment, the Spanish Order of the Golden Fleece has been referred to as the most prestigious and exclusive order of chivalry in the world, both historically and contemporaneously. Unlike any other distinction, the Golden Fleece is only granted for life, meaning it must be returned to the Spanish Monarch whenever the recipient deceases. Each collar is fully coated in gold, and is estimated to be worth around $60,000 USD, making it the most expensive chivalrous order.Orders, decorations, and medals of Georgia
Orders, decorations, and medals of Georgia are the orders, state decorations and medals that are granted by the national government of Georgia for meritorious achievements in national defense, state improvement, and the development of democracy and human rights.
They may be granted to any citizen of Georgia and to people with foreign citizenship or without any citizenship. Individuals may also be honored posthumously with state awards. Nominations are made by government officials.
Most of the Georgian state awards were established in 1992. Six years later, in 1998, the Order of the Golden Fleece was created. In 2004, the St. George's Victory Order and the Order of the National Hero of Georgia were added. Additional orders were created in 2009.
The current Georgian Law on Georgian State Awards recognizes 12 official awards: National Hero Award; St. George's Victory Order; David Agmashenebeli Order; Queen Tamar's Order; Presidential Order of Excellence, St. Nicholas Order; Golden Fleece Order; Vakhtang Gorgasali's Order – I, II, III ranks, Order of Honor, Medal “Civil Commitment”; Medal “Military Courage”; Medal “Military Honor”; “Honor” Medal.Pelias
Pelias (; Ancient Greek: Πελίας) was king of Iolcus in Greek mythology. The son of Tyro and the god Poseidon, he was the one who sent Jason on the quest for the Golden Fleece.Philip the Good
Philip the Good (French: Philippe le Bon; Dutch: Filips de Goede; 31 July 1396 – 15 June 1467) was Duke of Burgundy as Philip III from 1419 until his death. He was a member of a cadet line of the Valois dynasty, to which all the 15th-century kings of France belonged. During his reign, Burgundy reached the apex of its prosperity and prestige and became a leading center of the arts. Philip is known in history for his administrative reforms, his patronage of Flemish artists such as Jan van Eyck and Franco-Flemish composers such as Gilles Binchois, and the capture of Joan of Arc. In political affairs, he alternated between alliances with the English and the French in an attempt to improve his dynasty's position. As ruler of Flanders, Brabant, Limburg, Artois, Hainaut, Holland, Zeeland, Friesland and Namur, he played an important role in the history of the Low Countries.The Golden Fleece (The Avengers)
The Golden Fleece is the eleventh episode of the third series of the 1960s cult British spy-fi television series The Avengers, starring Patrick Macnee and Honor Blackman. It originally aired on ABC on 7 December 1963. The episode was directed by Peter Hammond and written by Roger Marshall and Phyllis Norman.The Golden Fleece (painting)
The Golden Fleece, originally known as Shearing at Newstead, is an 1894 painting by the Australian artist Tom Roberts. The painting depicts sheep shearers plying their trade in a timber shearing shed at Newstead North, a sheep station near Inverell on the Northern Tablelands of New South Wales. The same shed is depicted in another of Roberts' works, Shearing Shed, Newstead (1894).The painting was originally titled Shearing at Newstead but was renamed The Golden Fleece after the Golden Fleece of Greek mythology to honour the wool industry and the nobility of the shearers. This was in keeping with Roberts' conscious idealisation of the Australian pastoral worker and landscape.The painting, said to be "an icon of Australian art", is part of the collection of the Art Gallery of New South Wales.Tintin and the Golden Fleece
Tintin and the Golden Fleece (in the original French, Tintin et le Mystère de La Toison d'or, meaning Tintin and the Mystery of the Golden Fleece) is a film first released in France on 6 December 1961. Featuring characters from The Adventures of Tintin comic book series written and drawn by the Belgian writer-artist Hergé, it was a live-action film with actors made-up to look like the characters and featured an original storyline not based on any of the books.
The film is set in Turkey and Greece with the main characters of Tintin and Captain Haddock searching for treasure after inheriting a ship called the Golden Fleece. The film was followed by a less successful sequel, Tintin and the Blue Oranges.Ulysses and the Golden Fleece
Ulysses and the Golden Fleece is a graphic adventure game released in 1981 for the Apple II. It was created by Bob Davis and Ken Williams. With a graphic at the top of the game screen, the player navigates the game via a two-word command parser. The game was ported to the Atari 8-bit family, Commodore 64, and IBM PC.
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