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In Greek mythology, the "Argonauts" (ancient Greek) were a band of heroes who, in the years before the Trojan War, accompanied Jason to Colchis in his quest for the Golden Fleece. Their name comes from their ship, the Argo which in turn was named after its builder Argus. They were sometimes called Minyans, after a prehistoric tribe of the area.

After the death of King Cretheus, the Aeolian Pelias usurped the Iolcan throne from his half-brother Aeson and became king of Iolcus in Thessaly ''(near the modern city of Volos)''. Because of this unlawful act, an oracle had warned him that a descendant of Aeolus would seek revenge. Pelias put to death every prominent descendant of Aeolus he could reach, but spared Aeson at the dramatic pleas of his mother Tyro. Pelias, however, kept Aeson prisoner and forced him to renounce his inheritance. Later, Aeson married Polymele, who bore him a son named Diomedes. Pelias intended to kill the baby at once, but Polymele summoned her kinswomen to weep over him, as if he were a still-born. She faked a burial and smuggled the baby to Mount Pelion, where he was r...

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