Prelude (290–409): Ceyx, king of Trachis, just west of the Malian Gulf, was the son of Lucifer, the morning star, and he bore witness to his birth by the radiance of his face (271–2). He was a man of peace, unlike his brother, Daedalion, a fierce soldier, who, in a frenzy of grief at the murder of his daughter by Diana was pitied by Apollo and turned into a hawk (339–45). This was followed by another weird episode – the appearance of a monstrous wolf, which, after causing widespread destruction, was turned into a stone by Thetis (365–406). A (410–73): Worried by these strange events, Ceyx decides he must consult the oracle of Apollo. He cannot, however, go to Delphi, which is not far south, because it is being blockaded by Phorbas and the Phlegyans. So he prepares to go to Claros on the coast of Asia Minor. As the ship moves out to sea, Ceyx stands on the poop waving to his wife (A 465).
Alcyone waves back, even though she is prostrate on the ground – collapsaque corpore toto est (460).
Ovid gives a beautiful description of how first Ceyx himself ceases to be visible, then the hull moves out of sight and only the sails on the yard-arm can still be seen; finally, they, too, disappear over the horizon (A 466–71).