Hercules saves Hesiona, daughter of Laomedon

On the way back to Tiryns from the Amazon country Hercules arrived on ships with his army to Troy. A heavy sight appeared before the eyes of the heroes when they landed near Troy. They saw the beautiful daughter of the king of Troy Laomedon, Hesiona, chained to a rock near the seashore. She was doomed, like Andromeda, to be torn to pieces by a monster coming out of the sea. This monster sent as punishment to Laomedon Poseidon for refusing to pay him and Apollo a fee for the construction of the walls of Troy. The proud king, who, according to the verdict of Zeus, had to serve both gods, even threatened to cut off their ears if they demanded payment.

Zeus and Ganymede
Zeus and Ganymede.
(Sculpture group of the V century BC)

Then, the enraged Apollo sent a terrible pestilence on all the possessions of Laomedon, and Poseidon - a monster that devastated, sparing no one, the environs of Troy. Only by sacrificing his daughter's life could Laomedon save his country from a terrible disaster. Against his will, he had to chain his daughter Hesione to a rock by the sea.

Seeing the unfortunate girl, Hercules volunteered to save her, and for saving Hesione, he demanded from Laomedon as a reward those horses that the thunderer Zeus gave to the king of Troy as a ransom for his son Ganymede. He was once abducted by the eagle of Zeus and carried off to Olympus. Laomedon agreed to Hercules' demands. The great hero ordered the Trojans to build a rampart on the seashore and hid behind it. As soon as Hercules hid behind the rampart, a monster swam out of the sea and, opening its huge mouth, rushed at Hesiona. With a loud cry, Hercules ran out from behind the rampart, rushed at the monster and plunged his double-edged sword deep into his chest. Hercules saved Hesiona.

When the son of Zeus demanded the promised reward from Laomedon, the king felt sorry to part with the wonderful horses, he did not give them to Hercules and even drove him away with threats from Troy. Hercules left the possessions of Laomedon, holding his anger deep in his heart. Now he could not take revenge on the king who had deceived him, because his army was too small and the hero could not hope to take possession of impregnable Troy soon. The great son of Zeus could not stay long under Troy - he had to hurry with the belt Hippolyta to Mycenae.