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Actaeus

(145 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀκταῖος; Aktaîos), ‘he from the coast’ ( akte) or ‘of Akte’. [German version] [1] Attic primal king Attic primal king, the first (Paus. 1,2,6) or successor of Porphyrion (Paus. 1,14,7); father of the (first) Aglaurus, the wife of Cecrops and mother of Aglaurus [2], Herse and Pandrosus (Apollod. 3,180, who in 3,177 first made Cecrops the primal king). Attica was first called Acte after him, as was the Piraeus peninsula in the historical period (Apollod. 3,177; Harpocrat. s. v. Akte). According to Pherecydes (FGrH 3 F 60) he is father of Telamon of Glauce, the daughter of th…

Atymnius

(164 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀτύμνιος; Atýmnios). [German version] [1] Son of the Carian king Amisodarus Son of the Carian king Amisodarus. He and his brother Maris, companions at arms of Sarpedon, were killed by two sons of Nestor (Hom. Il. 16,317). Later, he is regarded as identical to Tymnius, the eponymous founder of the Carian city of Tymnus [1]. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Son of Zeus Son of Zeus (of the Phoenix: Schol. Apoll. Rhod. 2,178) and  Cassiopea, courted by the brothers Minos and Sarpedon in competition with each other. Otherwise Miletus, the son of Ap…

Eileithyia

(429 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Εἰλειθυία; Eileithyíai, Doric Ἐλευθ(υ)ία; Eleuth(y)ía, Mycenaean in Knosos e-reu-ti-ja). Greek goddess, worshipped almost exclusively by women in the context of pregnancy and birth, also in the context of children's and women's diseases (Diod. Sic. 5,73,4; [1]). Already known by Homer in this function (μογοστόκος, ‘concerned with the effort of giving birth’, Hom. Il. 16,187). The name itself seems to be telling ─ it can be connected with eleuth-, ‘to go, to come’ [2]. She has almost no independent myths: she was born at her important cult centre…

Bootes

(237 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Βοώτης; Boṓtēs). (‘Ox-driver’) One of the names of a constellation near that of Ursa Major; attested since Hom. Od. 5,272. If the latter constellation is thought of as a bear, the former, as its companion, is termed instead ‘bear-keeper’, Arktophylax (Arat. 91-83; Ov. Fast. 3,145; Manil. Astr. 1,316-318 etc.). Its brightest star is Arcturus (Arktouros), which occasionally gives its name to the whole constellation (Eratosth. Catast. 8). Various legends about the stars give a mythical background to the meaning of Bootes. 1. He is generally underst…

Epopteia

(205 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (ἐποπτεία; epopteía, ‘the seeing’). One of the levels of initiation into the  mysteries; whoever attained it, was epóptēs. In  Eleusis, whence the term originated, epopteia refers to the stage of initiation after the initial  myesis ─ epopteia either refers to the public ‘display’ during the celebration of the mysteries, in which myesis was the individual dedication which could take place outside of the celebrations, or rather a second facultative stage following on from the obligatory mýēsis [1; 2]. In any case, the term underlines the importance of vis…

Alcippe

(81 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀλκίππη; Alkíppē). Common woman's name in mythological epics. [German version] [1] Figure of Greek myth: daughter of Ares Daughter of Ares and Cecrop's daughter Agraulus, raped by  Halirrhotius (Apollod. 3,180), Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Figure of Greek myth: grandmother of Daedalus Grandmother of Daedalus, mother of Eupalamus by Metion (Apollod. 3,214). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [3] Figure from the Iliad: slave of Helena A slave of Helena (Hom. Od. 4,124). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Catreus

(61 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Κατρεύς; Katreús). Son of  Minos and Pasiphae, eponym of the Cretan town Catre; he is killed by his son  Althaemenes, even though he fled to Rhodes to avoid his father who had been warned by an oracle (Apollod. 3,12-16); when his grandson  Menelaus takes part in his funeral, Paris kidnaps Helena (ibid. 3,3). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Agalma

(168 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (ἄγαλμα; ágalma). Derived from the Greek agállein, ‘to praise, honour’ (especially a deity, cf. Hsch. s. v.), is actually everything that adorns, from honour (Hom. Il. 4,144) to weapons (Alc. fr.15) to children (Aesch. Ag. 208). But it is found especially in the religious sphere; here, already in Homer, agalma is the votive offerings, like   anathema (Hom. Od. 3,438; IG I3 552, 617 and passim). More narrowly, agalma designates statues (Hdt. 1,131; Isoc. Or. 9,57), but also sculpture in contrast to painting (Aristot. Pol. 1336 b 15). Later the term agalma could mean th…

Arachne

(127 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀράχνη; Aráchnē). The metamorphosis of A. (‘Spider’) is told in Ov. Met. 6,5-145 according to an unknown Greek source. The daughter of the Colophonian wool-dyer Idmon is a brilliant weaver and is living in Hypaipa in Lydia. She challenges Athena, patron of the art of weaving, to a competition: A. surpasses the goddess with her technical skills, whereupon the goddess hits the girl in anger and tears up her weaving. A., full of despair, hangs herself and Athena turns her into a spid…

Icarius

(329 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἰκάριος; Ikários). [German version] [1] Att. hero Attic hero, whose cult (probably in the deme Icaria) is recorded as early as the 5th cent. (IG I3 253, 6.9); sacrifices to him, his daughter  Erigone [1] and their dog are mentioned by Ael. NA 7,28. His myth is known in various facets since the ‘Erigone’ of Eratosthenes, which has survived only in fragments (Hyg. Poet. Astr. 2,4; Apollod. 3,192f., etc.). The god  Dionysus comes to I., is fed by him, and gives him the first wine as thanks. When I. serves this to his nei…

Parthenos

(379 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Παρθένος; Parthénos). [German version] [1] Divine epithet primarily of Athena 'Maiden' (in the sense of an unmarried woman of marriageable age) is the epithet of several Greek goddesses (Hom. H. ad Venerem 7-30 mentions Athena, Artemis, and Hestia), particularly Athena as the goddess of Athens [1]: the statue of Phidias is the 'so-called Parthenos' (Paus. 5,11,10; 10,34,8); from the image on them (head of Athena), parthénoi (plural) is also a nickname for Attic coins (Poll. 9,74). The epithet parthenos often refers to the role of these goddesses in the lives of women [1;…

Cabiri

(2,062 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Κάβειροι; Kábeiroi, Lat. Cabiri). A group of divine beings (usually two), appearing occasionally but also one alone. They can be found in a series of local  mystery cults, were not actually Pan-Hellenic, and according to ancient views, were pre-Greek or not even Greek at all (Phrygian or Thracian) (overviews [1; 2]). [German version] A. Name The origin and meaning of the name C. are vague, the spelling not entirely clear: The texts traditionally use Kábeiroi, dialectal inscriptions also refer to Kábiroi. According to ancient thought, the name derives from a Phrygian mounta…

Alector

(157 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
A suggestive hero name (‘Defender’), which occurs in various genealogies. [German version] [1] Figure from the Odyssee: servant of Menelaus Father (Schol. Hom. Od. 4,22) or uncle (Pherecyd. FGrH 3 F 132) of Eteoneus, servant of Menelaus (Hom. Od. 4,22) and Iphiloche (Echemela), whom Megapenthes, Menelaus' son by a slave woman, married (Hom. Od. 4,10); he was son of  Argeius and Hegesandra (Pherecydes loc. cit.). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Mythical argive king Argive. King, son of Megapenthes, father of Anaxagoras (Paus. 2,18,4) and of Iphis (Apollod. 3,60). Graf,…

Anchises

(583 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀγχίσης; Anchísēs). Son of Capys (Hom. Il. 20,239) and of a Themis (Apollod. 3,141) or a Naiad (Dion. Hal. 1,62,2); besides Priam, one of the most respected heroes of Troy, already in the Iliad described as father of  Aeneas [1] by Aphrodite. The Homeric Aphrodite hymn (h. 5) describes how the shepherd A. is seduced by Aphrodite on Mount Ida and thus becomes father of Aeneas; because of this his lineage will rule in the Troad [1]. Later hymns report that Aphrodite had also given h…

Aether

(240 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Αἰθήρ; Aithḗr). The ‘radiantly clear’ heaven, since the epic (Hom. Il. 2,412) domicile of the gods; in the cosmology up to late antiquity the highest and purest part of the cosmos (Macrob. Sat. 1,17,70). In cosmogonic poetry aether has various roles. For Hesiod the light aether is the son of the dark power Nyx ‘Night’ (and Erebus, Acusilaus of Argus FGrH 2 F 6b), but brother of Hemera, ‘Day’ (Theog. 124); with Hemera he generates the enigmatic Brotus (Hes. fr. 400), according to l…

Astyoche

(170 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀστυόχη; Astyóchē). Common mythic-epic woman's name, which is easily adapted to the hexameter, for instance: [German version] [1] Sister of  Agamemnon and Menelaus Sister of  Agamemnon and Menelaus, wife of the Phocian Strophius, who was the father of Pylades (Hyg. Fab. 117). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Daughter of  Laomedon Daughter of  Laomedon (Apollod. 3,146), wife of Telephus, mother of Eurypylus, whom she sent to help Priam (Apollod. Ep. 5,12). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [3] Daughter of an Actor Daughter of an  Actor, through Ares mo…

Antho

(63 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀνθώ; Anthṓ). Daughter of the usurper  Amulius, from whom she gained the promise that Rea Silvia would not be killed (Plut. Romulus 3,4, following Fabius Pictor and Diocles of Peparethus). The Greek name (‘flower’) has aetiological foundations. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) Bibliography C. Ampolo, in: C. Ampolo, M. Manfredini (eds.), Plutarco. Le vite di Teseo e Romolo, 1988, 280 f. T. P. Wiseman, Remus, 1995, 142.

Caeculus

(180 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] Mythical founder of  Praeneste (Cato Orig. 59 Peter; Verg. Aen. 7,678-81; Serv. Aen. 7,678; Solin. 2,9, according to the libri Praenestini; Festus s.v.). Conceived from a spark of the hearth fire and thus a son of  Vulcanus (or euhemeristically -- according to Cato -- found on a hearth), he was abandoned and brought up by his maternal uncles. He gathered shepherds around him, and with them founded the town. This myth is a combination of familiar motives (birth from the hearth fire like  Tarquinius Pr…

Chronos

(422 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Χρόνος, ‘Time’). Personification of Time, which appears in Greek religious thought as one of the primary powers and often as an allegorical reinterpretation of the primal deity  Kronos; cf. e.g. Pherecydes of Soros (Diels, Vorsokr. 7 vol. 1), where C. appears next to the primal pair Zas and Chtonia as a primal deity [2; 3]. He is particularly important in the Orphic theogonies and cosmogonies from their beginnings on; instead of the Hesiodic  Chaos, he appears as the father of Er…

Antiphus

(102 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἄντιφος; Ántiphos). The name of a number of Homeric heroes on both the Trojan (Il. 2,864; 12,191) and the Greek sides (Il. 2,678; 17,68). Those of interest are: [German version] [1] Son of Priam and Hecabe The son of Priam and Hecabe. Achilles captures him on Mount Ida, Priam ransoms him, and finally A. is killed by Agamemnon in battle (Il. 11,101, cf. 4,489). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Figure of the Odyssee, son of the Ithacan Aegyptus Son of the Ithacan Aegyptus, brother of the suitor of Eurynomus, whom Polyphem killed (Od. 2,15-22). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
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