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The Alcmaeonids were a powerful aristocratic family of Athens. Megacles was eponymous archon when Cylon tried to become tyrant of Athens. He permitted the murder of Cylon's supporters in an act of sacrilege when they had taken sanctuary at the temple of Athena on the Acropolis. As part of the cleansing the city was required to undergo to atone for the sacrilege, the Alcmaeonids were expelled from Athens.
The Alcmaeonids returned to Athens with the help of the king of Lydia, but went back into exile during the tyranny of Pisistratus.
Famous members of this family are Cleisthenes, Pericles, and Alcibiades.
Read more about the
Curse of the Alcmaeonids.