Greek Culture Hero


Andromache and Astyanax by Pierre Paul Prud'hon (nineteenth century)

Andromache and Astyanax by Pierre Paul Prud'hon (nineteenth century)

The Metropolitan Museum of ArtPublic Domain


Astyanax (also called Scamandrius) was the son of Hector and Andromache, a prince and princess of Troy. During the sack of Troy, Astyanax—still a small child—was viciously killed by either Neoptolemus or Odysseus, who hurled him from the city walls.[1]

Who were Astyanax’s parents?

A: Astyanax’s father was Hector, the eldest son of King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy, and thus the heir to the throne. He was a great warrior who led the Trojan forces against the Greeks during the Trojan War. Astyanax’s mother was Andromache, daughter of King Eetion of Cilician Thebes. In Greek mythology, she was often considered a model of marital love and loyalty.

Why was Astyanax killed?

A: There are different accounts of why the Greeks killed Astyanax during the fall of Troy. According to some, the boy was killed to prevent him from seeking vengeance for his family and city; according to others, he was sacrificed to the gods in exchange for favorable winds; finally, some sources claimed he was murdered out of simple bloodlust.