Like the tale of Tantalus from a couple of weeks ago, this is also a tale of a King who also was invited to a party in Olympus and did something so stupid and boorish that he was condemned to Tartarus for eternal damnation. First, we must look at our titular character and see what he did before he would go to that faithful party and met with his destiny of never ending torment and punishment.
I got my present for you right here, father-in-law!
Our character's name was Ixion and he was the king of the Lapiths, the most ancient tribe in the realm of Thessaly, he was also the son of either the war god Ares, a dude named Antion, or the wicked Phlegyas. Whoever his father was he grew up to be a fine young man and eventually inherited the kingdom of the Lapiths. He then set his sights on the beautiful Dia and promised her father Deioneus a lavish wedding gift if he could marry his daughter. However, Ixion did not honor his promise and gave Deioneus nothing, so in retaliation Deioneus stole some of Ixion's horses. Ixion hid his resentment of his father-in-law and invited him over to a feast in Larissa. During the party, Ixion then pushed his father-in-law into bed of hot coals, thus preventing himself from paying his in-law anything.
The Greek Gods had typically weird places to hold parties
Ixion went insane so after, corrupted by the evilness of his act, and none of the neighboring princes in the region would perform the ritual that would absolve Ixion's guilt for the murder of his father-in-law. He became an outlaw and was shunned, it was said that he was the first to ever commit the crime of murdering his own kin. He was already destined for a horrible punishment in the afterlife, but Zeus had pity and brought him up to Olympus to sit with the other gods in a feast. However, instead of being grateful, he decided to do something even more stupid than murdering his in-law.
Did anyone tell you how hot you are?
Yes instead of being grateful of being able to sit next to the gods (something that rarely happened to any mortal) he grew lustful of ZEUS'S wife! This is a big no no in the customs of party manners in Ancient Greece and I don't know what is wrong with Ixion of doing such an idiotic move (but then I realized, he went bugfuck INSANE!) Now is the part where some hypocrisy comes to Zeus, the god who frequently raped women and sired many demigod bastards, when he gets angry at the fact that another man is planning on raping his wife. (Just a little bit hypocritical Zeus, don't lightning bolt me bro!) To confirm that Ixion was planning to take his wife on the Ixion express, he had a test. He created an exact living copy of Hera out of clouds and gave her over to the lustful king, who thought it was Hera herself.
Behold the product of a mad king and a cloud clone!
Ixion immediately had sex to who he thought was Hera, only to realize too late that it was a trick by Zeus. The cloud Hera, subsequently named Nephele (where we get the word nephos which means cloud) gave birth to a weird race of half-man half-horse beings known today as the Centaurs. (that's not what I was expecting) Anyway back to Ixion, who after failing Zeus' test was expelled from Olympus and almost immediately struck by a lightning bolt (Guess Zeus was still sore).
Man this either a horrible nightmare or a sadomasochist's ultimate dream
Now dead, Ixion was sent immediately to Tartarus by Hermes, who handed him over to the "jailers" who were ordered by Hades to bind Ixion onto a flaming wheel, where he would forever spin in burning agony (symbolism for lust?) And so he would be in eternal pain, except when the lyre player Orpheus came along with his divine tunes, causing the wheel to stop for a little bit, but once the musical hero had left, the wheel began to spin once again.