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In Greek mythology, Hippolyte was an Amazonian queen who possessed a magical girdle given to her by Ares, her father. One of Heracles' Twelve Labors was to retrieve this girdle. He had succeeded but, at the last moment, his traveling companion, Theseus, kidnapped Antiope, one of Hippolyte's sister. The Amazons attacked (because Hera spread a rumor that Heracles was there to attack them or kidnap Hippolyte) but Heracles and Theseus made it away with the girdle and Antiope, whom Theseus later married. The Amazons then attacked Athens to get their queen back but lost.

From this point in the story, versions vary

  1. Heracles kidnapped Hippolyte's sister, Melanippe, and demanded the girdle as the ransom. Hippolyte complied and Heracles released her.
  2. Heracles kills Hippolyte as they flee with the girdle
  3. Antiope is killed in the battle for the girdle or for Athens
  4. Antiope and Theseus both survive and marry each other (son: Hippolytus). Theseus eventually leaves her for Phaedra
  5. Hippolyte and Theseus both survive and marry each other (son: Hippolytus) When Theseus left Hippolye for Phaedra, she brought her warriors into their wedding and promised to kill everyone present; she instead was killed by Theseus' men or accidentally by Penthesilea, another Amazon.
  6. Theseus marries Hippolyte, who gives birth to Hippolytus but dies before Theseus marries Phaedra