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Nanas, Nanus

(113 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Νάνας/ Nánas, Νάνος/ Nános). [German version] [1] Mythical leader of the Pelasgians Mythical leader of the Pelasgians at the time of their emigration to Italia (Hellanicus FGrH 323a F 4; Hdt. 1,57). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] Epithet of Odysseus There was a prophecy that Odysseus as N. would conclude a brotherhood in arms with Aeneas [1] in Italia (Lykophr. 1242ff.; cf. Dion. Hal. Ant. 1,72,2; 12,16). On Odysseus's Italian journey cf. Hom. Od. 11,119ff.; Hes. Theog. 1105 with comm. West. Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [3] King of the Segobrigii Mythical king of the…

Polypoetes

(129 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Πολυποίτης/ Polypoítēs). [German version] [1] Participant in the Trojan War Son of Peirithous and Hippodamia [2], takes part in the Trojan War with 40 ships, mostly mentioned together with Leonteus [1] (Hom. Il. 2,740 ff.; 12,182 ff.; 23,836 ff.; cf. Apollod. 3,130; Apollod. epit. 3,14). According to Quint. Smyrn. 12,318, he was one of the heroes inside the Trojan Horse. After the war, he goes to Colophon with Calchas (Apollod. epit. 6,2) and founds Aspendus (Eust. ad Hom. Il. 2,740). He was depicted together with Acamas in Polygnotus' [1] painting in the léschē

Nausithous

(143 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Ναυσίθοος; Nausíthoos). [German version] [1] Son of Poseidon and Periboea Son of Poseidon and Periboea, grandson of Eurymedon [1], king of the Phaeaces. He and his people flee from the  Cyclopes to the island of Drepane or Scheria. There he becomes the father of Alcinous [1] and Rhexenor. When Heracles [1] comes to him after having killed his own children, he purifies him (Hom. Od. 6,1-11; 7,56-63; Apoll. Rhod. 4,539-550). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] Son of Odysseus and Calypso Son of Odysseus and  Calypso (Hes. theog. 1017f.) or Circe (Hyg. Fab. 125). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) …

Ocrisia

(133 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Ὀκρησία/ Okrēsía; Ocresia). Aristocratic young woman from the town of Corniculum, which had been conquered by the Romans; mother of the Roman king Servius Tullius, whom she conceived from a phallus that had miraculously appeared from the fireside of Tarquinius (Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4,2; Plut. De fortuna Romanorum 10,323a-d; Ov. Fast. 6,627-636; Plin. HN 36,204; Arnob. 5,18). In Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4,1 and Liv. 1,39,5 this myth is rationalized: O. conceived her son before the town …

Nysus

(44 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Νύσος/ Nýsos). Male counterpart of Nysa [1]. He is the tutor of Dionysus. He exercises power in Thebes during the latter's campaign to India, but it is seized back again on his return (Hyg. Fab. 131, 167, 179). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Themis

(512 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Θέμις/ Thémis, literally 'law, sacred ordinance'). Greek goddess and divine personification of sacred ancient law (cf., in contrast, Dike [1]). She stands for the traditional order of things, be it based on human convention (as in Hom. Od. 14,56 about the correct treatment of strangers) or on nature itself (as in Hom. Od. 9,130 about the 'nature of woman'). She plays an important role in the orderly call for assemblies (cf. Hom. Il. 20,4 f. etc.). Originally, themis probably referred to 'what was laid down', in Mycenaean perhaps the word for 'debt' [1. 25 f., 106, 121]. A…

Merops

(177 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Μέροψ/Mérops). [German version] [1] Mythical king of the Meropians Mythical king of the Meropians on the island of Cos (Q. Smyrn. 8,6,71). From grief and longing for his spouse Echemeia, who had been sent to Hades, he is transformed into an eagle by Hera, and finally catasterized (Hyg. Astr. 2,16). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] Father of Eumelus Father of Eumelus [2] (Antoninus Liberalis 15; Agron [1]). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [3] Mythical king of the Ethiopians Mythical king of the Ethiopians, husband of Clymene [1] (Ov. Met. 1,755f.). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) …

Phalantus

(123 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Φάλανθος/ Phálanthos; Lat. Phalant[h]us). Mythological founder of Taranto (Taras; Antiochus of Syracuse FGrH 555 F 13; Ephorus FGrH 70 F 216; Paus. 10,10,6-8 and elsewhere). According to Antiochus l.c., P. founded Taranto as a result of the instruction by the oracle of Delphi after an uprising by the Parthenians, led by him, against Sparta during the first Messenian War had failed; according to Ephorus l.c., the Spartans persuaded the Parthenians to emigrate. However, according to Paus. l.c., Taranto already existed. Apart from that, Paus. 10,13,3 report…

Ouroboros

(189 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Οὐροβόρος; Ourobóros). Snake biting its own tail, frequently used as a symbol by ancient alchemists but also appearing frequently in Graeco-Egyptian magical papyri (PGM 7, col. 17; cf. PGM 1,145f.; 12,203f.; 12,274f.; 36,184). It represents the unity of all forces and processes in the cosmos. By investigating a single matter accurately one understands everything: the macrocosm is reflected in the microcosm. The formula that explains the symbol is evidently meant to express the pri…

Perimele

(56 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Περιμήλη/ Perimḗlē). [German version] [1] Daughter of Admetus Daughter of Admetus, mother of Magnes, the eponym of the region of Magnesia (Antoninus Liberalis 23; schol. Eur. Alc. 269). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] Daughter of Amythaon Daughter of Amythaon, mother of Ixion (Diod. Sic. 4,69; schol. Pind. Pyth. 2,39 Drachmann). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Mnemon

(81 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Μνήμων; Mnḗmōn). [German version] [1] Slave of Achilles Slave of Achilles [1] whose sole responsibility it was to warn his master not to kill any of Apollo's offspring as he was predestined to die soon thereafter. He forgets to issue the warning when Achilles is fighting Cycnus [2] and Tennes and is consequently put to death (Lycoph. 240-242 with schol. ad loc.; Plut. Quaest. Graec. 28). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] see Artaxerxes [2] II see Artaxerxes [2] II

Polyxo

(198 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
(Πολυξώ/ Polyxṓ). [German version] [1] One of the Hyades One of the Hyades. Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [2] Mother of Antiope Wife of Nycteus, mother of Antiope [1]. Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) [German version] [3] Wife of Tlepolemus Wife of Tlepolemus. After he fell in the Trojan War, she holds funeral games for him in Rhodes where she had fled with him from Argos. When her friend Helena [1] flees to her, she has her - as the guilty party in the war in which her husband died - hanged on a tree by female servants dressed as Erinyes…

Phthonos

(54 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (φθόνος/ phthónos, Latin invidia). 'Envy, jealousy', particularly what was known as phthónos theôn, the 'jealousy of the gods', which is directed against humans who aspire to transgress the boundaries with the divine (Hybris); (cf. Hdt. 1,32; 3,40 etc.); as a personification P. appears in Eur. Tro. 768 etc. Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Perigune

(59 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Περιγούνη; Perigoúnē). Daughter of Sinis, who was struck dead by  Theseus; with the latter, mother of Melanippus [3]. Later she became the wife of Deioneus, the son of Eurytus [1] of Oechalia, and with him the mother of Nisus [1] of Megara (Plut. Theseus 8, p. 4c-d; Athen. 13,557a; Hyg. Fab. 198,1). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Membliarus

(50 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Μεμβλίαρος; Memblíaros, also Βλίαρος; Blíaros). Mythical Phoenician settler, member of the expedition undertaken by Cadmus [1] in search of his sister Europa [2]. He stayed behind on the island of Thera, whence he colonised the nearby island of Anaphe (Hdt. 4,147; Paus. 3,1,7f.). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Ploutos

(339 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Πλοῦτος/ Ploûtos). Personification of wealth, esp. the wealth of the harvest (cf. also Abundantia, Consus, Copia, Ops [3]). Son of Demeter and Iasion (Hes. Theog. 969-974), conceived in Crete (Hom. Od. 5,125-128). P. assures those who meet him of prosperity. The reference to him in H. Hom. ad Cererem 483-489 is evidence of his prominent role in the Mysteria of Eleusis [1]: after handing over the mysteries to humans, Demeter and her daughter Kore retire to Olympus, sending P. to those they love, to whom he brings blessings and affluence ( ibid. 488f.), apparently in rew…

Priolas

(48 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Πριόλας; Priólas). Local hero of Priola near Heraclea [7], brother of Bormus and Mariandynus (Poll. 4,55). Killed in battle; Heracles [1] takes part in his funeral games; every year ritual threnodies are held in his honour (Apoll. Rhod. 2,780-785 with schol.). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

Phorcides

(40 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Φορκίδες/ Phorkídes, also Φορκυνίδες/ Phorkynídes or Φορκυνάδες/ Phorkynádes). Daughters of Phorcys [1], viz. the Gorgons (Gorgo [1]) and the Graeae; the latter were brought to the stage by Aeschylus in his Phorcides (TrGF 3 F 261f.). Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)

First man

(404 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] Graeco-Roman antiquity had no conception of a 'first man' in the sense of the Judaeo-Christian myth of Adam and Eve. The first point of comparison appears with the myth of the Ages of Man in Hes. Op. 109-200. According to this, there were various races of men during the Golden, Silver, Bronze, Heroic and (present) Iron Ages (Period, Era), each of which (except the last) was superseded by the next. While the first two demonstrated characteristics that were rather superhuman and uto…

Medusa

(31 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
[German version] (Μέδουσα; Médousa). Mythological monster, one of the three Gorgons (see Gorgo [1]): M. is mortal, whereas her two sisters Sthenno and Euryale are immortal. Käppel, Lutz (Kiel)
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