Neleus (Νηλεύς) was the son of Poseidon and Tyro and brother of Pelias. Tyro was married to Cretheus (with whom she had three sons, Aeson, Pheres, and Amythaon) but loved Enipeus, a river god. She pursued Enipeus, who refused her advances. One day, Poseidon, filled with lust for Tyro, disguised himself as Enipeus and from their union was born Pelias and Neleus, twin boys. Tyro exposed her sons on a mountain and they were raised by a maid. When they reached adulthood, Pelias and Neleus found Tyro and killed her stepmother, Sidero, for having mistreated her. Sidero hid in a temple to Hera but Pelias killed her anyway, causing Hera's undying hatred of Pelias. Neleus and Pelias fought for the crown, and Neleus was banished to Messenia, becoming King of Pylos. Heracles later asked Neleus to cleanse him of a blood-debt and was refused. Heracles killed Neleus and his sons, including Alastor but excluding Nestor.[1] With Chloris, Neleus was the father of Pero, Periclymenus, Alastor and Nestor.

Modern references

Neleus (or a statue of him, at least) appeared in the Mary Poppins book entitled Mary Poppins Opens the Door, by P.L. Travers, and also has a prominent role in the song "Jolly Holiday" in the stage musical of Mary Poppins.


  1. ^ Ovid, II, 689.

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