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Leocritus

(98 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Ληόκριτος, Λειώκριτος; Lēókritos, Leiṓkritos). [German version] [1] Greek participant of the Trojan War Son of Arisbas, participates in the Trojan War on the Greek side and is killed by Aeneas [1] (Hom. Il. 17,344). Nünlist, René (Basle) [German version] [2] Suitor of Penelope A suitor of Penelope. He opposes Mentor, who speaks for Telemachus, in the public assembly, sarcastically approves his travel plans and doubts that the return of Odysseus would constitute a danger to the suitors (Hom. Od. 2,242ff.). He is killed by Telemachus during the slaying of the suitors (ibid. 22,294). Nünl…

Eris

(238 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ἔρις; Éris). Personification of (often warlike) strife, Latin  Discordia; in allegorical genealogy interpreted as sister of  Ares (Hom. Il. 4,441) or as daughter of  Nyx (Hes. Theog. 224ff., together with other negative ‘abstracta’). In the Iliad, E. (alone or in association with Ares and other personifications) triggers the fighting (Hom. Il. 11,3ff.; 4,439ff.). The post-Homeric Cypria make E. the person actually responsible for the Trojan War due to her instigating the judgement of Paris at the wedding of Peleus and Thetis (Cypria …

Iphianassa

(163 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Ἰφιάνασσα; Iphiánassa). [German version] [1] Daughter of Proetus and Stheneboea Daughter of  Proetus and  Stheneboea (Hes. fr. 129,16-24 M-W), cursed together with her sisters Lysippe and Iphinoe with madness owing to disrespect to the cult of Dionysus (Hes. fr. 131 M-W) or slander of Hera (Bacchyl. 11,40ff.). Finally, by sacrificing to Artemis Proteus makes her change Hera's mind. According to another version (Pherecydes, FGrH 3 F 114; Hdt. 9,34), the seer  Melampus heals the daughters after haggling fo…

Laestrygones

(260 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Λαιστρυγόνες; Laistrýgónes). A mythic and fairy-tale-like people of man-eating giants, who raise cattle but do not engage in agriculture (cf. Cyclopes). In the course of his wanderings, Odysseus lands in their country, where the sun never sets. After an initial friendly greeting of his scouts by the king's daughter, the mood shifts when they catch sight of the giant queen. The king, summoned by his wife, devours one of the Greeks, and the rest of the L. destroy the entire fleet.…

Thamyris

(160 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Θάμυρις/ Thámyris, also Θαμύρας/ Thamýras). Mythical singer from Thrace (cf. Orpheus), who in human overestimation of himself challenges the Muses to compete with him and, naturally, loses (for the motif, cf. Marsyas [1], Niobe, Capaneus). As a punishment they take his gift of song away (again) and maim him (Hom. Il. 2,594-600, without further specifying this; Hes. Cat. 65 speaks of blinding). The same subject was probably dealt with by Sophocles in his tragedy Thamyris (TrGF 4 F 236-245), in which the poet himself appeared as an actor (Soph. Test. Ha …

Cilla

(241 words)

Author(s): Schwertheim, Elmar (Münster) | Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] [1] Name of two settlements (Κίλλα; Kílla, Lat. Cilla). There seem to have been at least two settlements of this name. One is mentioned in Hdt. 1,149; it was one of the eleven Aeolian cities, and, according to [1. 216f.], was not located in the Troad. The other is mentioned in the ‘Iliad’ (Hom. Il. 1,38; 452) and was supposedly located near Chryse and Thebe -- probably north-west of the bay of Adramytteum; an exact localization has not been possible as yet. Different from that was perhaps…

Iambe

(142 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ἰάμβη; Iámbē). Maid in the house of  Celeus, where  Demeter, mourning her abducted daughter Persephone, accepts nothing but a simple chair, which I. offers to her (H. Hom. 2,192-197; reverse ritual related to thrónōsis, placing the initiant on a foot stool [1]). I. makes Demeter laugh with her cheeky jokes and provocative insults, thus improving her mood (H. Hom. 2,202-204, cf. SH 680,51ff.). This reflects the cultic practice of aischrologia (ritual insult). Evidently, there is a connection between the mythical figure of I. and the literary genre …

Cebriones

(89 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Κεβριόνης; Kebriónēs). Bastard son of  Priamus, half-brother of  Hector, who makes him his chariot driver after Archeptolemus' death (Hom. Il. 8,318f.). C. participates in the storming of the Greeks' ship camp; the chariot is entrusted to a weaker fighter for this time period (ibid. 12,91ff.). Finally, Patroclus kills C. with the throw of a stone and ridicules him as he falls from the chariot by comparing him with a diver (ibid. 16,737-750). Nünlist, René (Basle) Bibliography P. Wathelet, Dictionnaire des Troyens de l'Iliade, Vol. 1, 1988, 677-679.

Rhesus

(268 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (῾Ρῆσος/ Rhêsos, Latin Rhesus). King of Thrace, son of Eïoneus (Hom. Il. 10,138) or of the river god Strymon ([Eur.] Rhes. 279). R. and his snow-white horse appear only in the tenth year of the war as an ally of the Trojans and dies on the first night, without having played any part in battle. Caught on his nightly tour of reconnoissance, Dolon has betrayed R. and his men. Diomedes kills the men in their sleep, as R. has foreseen in a nightmare, and Odysseus makes off with the horses…

Sarpedon

(481 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle) | von Bredow, Iris (Bietigheim-Bissingen) | Hild, Friedrich (Vienna)
(Σαρπηδών/ Sarpēdṓn). [German version] [1] Son of Zeus and Laodameia [1]. Son of Zeus and Laodameia [1]. In the Trojan War, S. and his cousin Glaucus [4] command the Lycians (Lycii), the strongest and remotest allies of the Trojans (Hom. Il. 2,876-877; the name S. is also of Lycian origin [1]). Zeus' son S. wins a duel with Zeus' grandson Tlepolemus (ibid. 5,628-662) and plays a decisive part in storming the defensive wall around the Greek camp (ibid. 12,290-471). Here his rousing speech to Glaucus (ibid. …

Cedalium

(100 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Κηδαλίων, κήδαλον, Kēdalíōn, kḗdalon, which probably describes a tool: ‘poker’?). Comes from the island of Naxos, initiates  Hephaestus into the blacksmith's craft at the request of his mother  Hera (schol. Hom. Il. 14,296). On Lemnos, Hephaestus makes C. the leader of blinded  Orion. Sitting on his shoulders, C. leads Orion towards the sun, through whose rays Orion is healed of his blindness (Hes. fr. 148a M-W; Eratosth. Katasterismoi 32; Apollod. 1,4,3). Scarcely more than the title is known of Sophocles' satyr play ‘C.. (TrGF IV fr. 328-333). Nünlist, René (Basl…

Capaneus

(154 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Καπανεύς; Kapaneús). Son of Hipponous [3], married to  Evadne [2] and father of  Sthenelus. C. is one of the  Seven against Thebes (and is therefore to be included in the Theban epics even if he does not appear in the surviving fragments). His boastful statement that not even the strike of a thunderbolt from Zeus could prevent him from taking part in the conquest of Thebes provokes Zeus to strike him down just so (Aesch. Sept. 423ff.). According to Stesichorus (fr. 194 PMG),  Ascl…

Coeranus

(203 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Κοίρανος; Koíranos). [German version] [1] Descendant of Melampus Belongs to the family tree of  Melampus (Hes. Cat. 136,3), but his exact position therein is not certain; father of the seer  Poly(e)idus (Pherecydes FGrH 3 F 112; Paus. 1,43,5). Nünlist, René (Basle) [German version] [2] Charioteer of Meriones Charioteer for  Meriones; he saves  Idomeneus' [1] life by bringing a chariot to him at exactly the right moment, so that he instead of Idomeneus is hit by  Hector's spear (Hom. Il. 17,611-614). The motif of ‘substitution death’ is typical of Homer's epics [1]. Nünlist, René (Bas…

Polydamas

(428 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle) | Cobet, Justus (Essen) | Badian, Ernst (Cambridge, MA)
(Πολυδάμας/ Polydámas, in Homer with metrical lengthening Πουλυδάμας/ Poulydámas). [German version] [1] Trojan Trojan, son of Panthous. On the basis of his experience P. possesses an understanding of the past and the future. As an astute and level-headed counsellor he represents the pessimistic alter ego of Hector, the town’s defender, who was born on the same day as P. Nevertheless, at the decisive moment P.’ sensible advice (retreat into the town) is not taken heed of. At this occasion, his character is (n…

Sisyphus

(349 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Σίσυφος; Sísyphos). Mythical fraudster and penitent in the Underworld. Son of Aeolus [1], father of Glaucus [2], grandfather of Bellerophon, founder and king of Corinth (Corinthus), legendary and proverbial fraudster, who as a punishment in the Underworld has to roll a rock up a mountain, but every time just before reaching the summit it rolls back down into the valley (Hom. Od. 11,593-600). S. earns the punishment by conquering death (i.e. abandoning the boundaries placed on huma…

Teichoscopy

(119 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (τειχοσκοπία/ teichoskopía, ‘viewing from the walls’). Term, coined already in Antiquity (Schol. Eur. Phoen. 88), for the scene in the Iliad in which Helen (Helena [I 1]) identifies for Priamus the most important leaders of the Greek army (Agamemnon, Odysseus, Menelaus, Ajax [1], Idomeneus [1]) from the Trojan walls (Hom. Il. 3,161-244, imitated e.g. by Eur. Phoen. 88-192). The Homeric narrator has Helen observe an event happening elsewhere at the same time and present it verbally toPriam (and hence …

Hekatoncheires

(196 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ἑκατόγχειρες, centimani = ‘hundred-handed’). Briareus (also called Aegaeon: Hom. Il. 1,403f.), Cottus and Gy(g)es (for the name forms see [1]) are powerful monsters (hundred arms, fifty heads: Hes. Theog. 147ff.), offspring of  Uranus and  Gaia. They were chained by their father and thrown into Tartarus (617ff.). Zeus frees them and, on account of their hundred arms, makes them allies in the battle with the  Titans (626ff.). The belief that the H. later guarded the defeated Titans…

Tithonus

(219 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Τιθωνός; Tithōnós). Member of the Trojan royal family, grandson of Ilus [1], son of Laomedon [1] and hence a brother of Priamus. Eos, the  goddess of dawn, abducted the extremely attractive T. and makes him her lover (cf. Cephalus [1], Cleitus [1], Orion [1]). According to the Homeric formula Eos brings light in the morning, by rising from "T.' bed" (Hom. Il. 11,1 et passim). The result of their union is the Aethiopian king Memnon [1]. Eos asks Zeus for immortality for T., but neg…

Sirens

(706 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle) | Bäbler, Balbina (Göttingen)
(Σειρῆνες/ Seirḗnes; Latin Sirenes, Sirenae). [German version] I. Mythology Mythical female creatures who sing seductively Sirens are mythical beings (in Greek myth female) in ancient sailors' tales (the earliest evidence - admittedly without context - extends back to the Mycenaean period [1]). Their seductive song makes sailors forget their home  (cf. Lotophagi) and perish. Instructed by Circe, Odysseus outwits the Sirens: he stops the ears of his companions with wax and has himself tied to the mast with inst…

Tydeus

(361 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle) | Kinzl, Konrad (Peterborough)
(Τυδεύς; Tydeús). [German version] [1] Son of Oeneus and Periboea Son of Oeneus and Periboea [6]. He has to leave his home after killing one of his relatives (for his motive: [1. 175]). In Argos, Adrastus [1] gives him his daughter Deipyle in marriage. In the siege of Troy, their son Diomedes [1] fights hard to match the achievements of his father in every way. As one of the Seven against Thebes, T. is part of an embassy to the city and emerges victorious from a series of contests with the Thebans. On his…
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