The Palace Of Alkinoos

: Nature Myths And Stories For Little Children

On a high plain covered with flowers once lived good King Alkinoos and

his gentle people, the Phaiakians.

They were great sailors and went about in silver ships without rudders

or sails.

These wonderful ships went slowly or very fast just as the sailors


For many years the Phaiakians were peaceful and happy.

Though they were as brave as they we
e gentle, they hated war.

Far below the Phaiakians, in a valley, lived a people larger, darker,

fiercer than themselves.

These dark people cared for nothing so much as war and conquest.

When they saw the silver ships with the golden prows, they wanted them

for their own.

They armed themselves and made ready for a great battle.

To be sure of victory, they borrowed the thunder and lightning from


The day came and all was ready for the dark people to advance.

They reached the land of the Phaiakians in the morning and King

Alkinoos came forward to meet them.

They soon saw that he alone was more powerful than their entire army.

He was dressed in armor so bright that it dazzled their eyes to look at

it. It was covered with millions of golden arrows tipped with diamonds.

The king showed the frightened people how he could shoot the arrows in

all directions at the same time.

The dark people trembled with fear, but King Alkinoos smiled at them,

and then he and his people sailed slowly away toward the West.

On and on they went, until they came to a great silver sea.

Here they stopped and built a palace for their king.

This palace was made of silver and gold and precious stones.

Its towers were rose color and shone with a wonderful light.

Its steps were of pure gold.

On each side of the silver gates were huge dogs which guarded the


There were boys in the halls dressed in white, holding burning torches.

There were girls weaving wonderful curtains and painting pictures upon

the walls.

There were mountains and fountains, and rivers and lakes.

There were singing birds and flower gardens, and little children


Even to this day, the great king often sits in his palace in the West

when his day's work is done.

He loves to see the people glide about upon the silver sea, in their

ships without rudders or sails.

The fierce, dark people still go to war.

They seldom let the gentle king see them fighting.

Yet often after a brave battle, Alkinoos comes out of his palace and

smiles brightly upon them. The dark people blush and seem to smile at

the king.

You must find out how much good these dark people do and how the King of

the Phaiakians helps them in their work, if you wish to understand their