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Amythaon

(109 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀμυθάων; Amytháōn). Son of Cretheus and Tyro in Iolcus, brother of Phereus and Aeson, half brother of Neleus and Pelias, the sons of Poseidon (Hom. Od. 11,235-259; Hes. fr. 38). He settles in Pylos, which Neleus founded, and here he fathers his sons Melampus and Bias (Diod. Sic. 4,68,3; Apollod. 1,93; 96). He appears with his relatives in Iolcus, to demand Iason's inheritance from Pelias; he is one of the Argonauts (Pind. Pyth. 4,126). A part of Elis is called Amythaonia after him; before Pelias and Neleus he renews the Olympic games (Paus. 5,8,2). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, …

Historiola

(145 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (‘Little story’). Modern term describing brief tales built into magic formulas, providing a mythic precedence for a magically effective treatment. Historiolas are already documented in Mesopotamian and ancient Egyptian  magic. In the Graeco-Egyptian  magic papyri (PGM), they provide references to both Greek (e.g. PGM XX) and Egyptian (e.g. PGM IV 1471) mythology, and to Christian legends in Christian rites. However, historiolas should not be understood as abridgments of well-known myths or as ad hoc inventions, rather the narrator understands them as p…

Aeolia

(131 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Αἰολία sc. νῆσος; Aiolía nêsos). Residence of  Aeolus [2], the lord of the winds. It is a floating island, which is hedged around by steep cliffs and a bronze wall (Hom. Od. 10.3 f.); in a certain contrast to these fairy-tale motives -- especially the floating of the island -- is the very Greek idea that the city and the ‘beautiful houses’ of A. and his family are on this island (loc. cit.13). Since the 5th cent. it is sited in actual geography and in particular identified with the Liparic or Aeolic Islands (Αἰόλου νῆσοι) (Antiochus of Syracuse FGrH 555 F 1; Thuc. 3,88). Graf, Fri…

Argeius

(142 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀργεῖος; Argeîos). [German version] [1] Son of Likymnios Son of Licymnius. In two myths he is the doomed battle comrade of Hercules. He accompanies him together with his brother Melas on the quest to conquer Oichalia; both are slain and are buried by Hercules (Apollod. 2,156). According to another version he accompanies Hercules on his Trojan campaign, in spite of his father's resistance; Hercules had to swear an oath promising to bring him back. When he is slain outside Troy, Hercules burns the corpse and brings back the ashes (Schol. Hom. Il. 1,52). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) …

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)

Agave

(121 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀγαύη; Agaúe). Daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia, spouse of Echion, mother of  Pentheus. She chides her sister  Semele, who had conceived Dionysus by Zeus and was consumed by lightning. Dionysus takes revenge on A., through getting her and her sisters to tear Pentheus, who opposes Dionysus, into pieces in a frenzy. Triumphantly A. carries the head of her son, whom she had thought to be a wild animal, to her home. A. is already a tragic figure in Aeschylus, but especially so in Eur. Bacchae (cf. also Ov. Met. 3,701 ff.). The artistic tradition also knows her in the…

Hemithea

(358 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἡμιθέα; Hēmithéa, ‘demigoddess’). Name of a healing goddess in Castabus on the Carian Chersonnese. Her sanctuary, whose archaeological traces go back to the late 7th cent. BC at the earliest, was expanded under Rhodian hegemony and achieved more than regional fame until the decline of Rhodes after 167 BC. In the sanctuary, patients received healing dreams through  incubation ( klísis, ‘incubation (room)’ in an inscription from c. 150 BC, SEG 14,690); H. also aided women in childbirth (Diod. Sic. 5,63). The cult forbade the use of wine and the …

Lapis

(355 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(stone) denotes various stones used for ritual purposes in Roman cult worship. [German version] [1] Silex kept in the sanctuary of Iuppiter on the Capitol A silex which was kept in the sanctuary of Iuppiter Feretrius on the Capitol (Fest. 81,18 L.) was of particular significance in some ancient oath ceremonies, which ran according to the principle, common in the swearing of oaths, of analogy in action [1]: a) The Fetiales concluded international treaties by killing a pig with the silex from the sanctuary of Iuppiter Feretrius, thereby calling down the same death upon themse…

Motif research

(484 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] is the study of the motif understood as the 'smallest unit of content' within traditional narratives (myth, legend, folktale [1]). Such a unit might be a plot (the burning of an object which is connected to a person's life will kill that person: Meleager [1]) or a characteristic person (the youngest son is the cleverest: Zeus). Motif research has long dominated the study of folk-tales and myths. However, a precise and standard definition of ‘motif’ and its distinction from related…

Averruncus

(38 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] Deity with scarcely any attestation, who wards off evil ( deus, in Varro, Ling. 7,102, hence θεὸς ἀποτρόπαιος Gloss. 3,290,31). The name also exists in the form Auruncus (Gell. NA 5,12,14). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Genita Mana

(136 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] Goddess, mentioned by Plutarch (Quaest. Rom. 52,277a) and Pliny (HN 29,14,58) in conjunction with a canine sacrifice. According to Plutarch, the prayer during the sacrifice was for ‘none of the house slaves to become good (χρηστός, chrēstós)’, interpreted as a euphemism for ‘dead’. Plutarch links the name of the goddess to childbirth. Modern interpretations proceed hardly any further [1; 2]. A Diva Geneta appears in Agnone (mid-3rd cent. BC [3]), whereas Mana is referred to as a deity of the Underworld in Mart. Cap.…

Enagonius

(67 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἐναγώνιος; Enagṓnios). Epiclesis of the deities responsible for the Gymnasium, the athletic exercises and the young men engaging in them there; it was especially widespread from the Hellenistic period onwards.  Hermes in particular bears this epithet in many Greek cities but it is also found with Apollo (in various cities), Aphrodite (Athens) and even Dionysus (Magnesia on the Maeandrus). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Bacis

(210 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Βάκις; Bákis). Ecstatic seer from Boeotia, supposed author of hexametric oracles, which have been in circulation since the Persian Wars (Hdt. 7,20; 77; 96; 9,43). Other oracles refer to the reconstruction of Messene (Paus. 4,27,4) or to Theban rites (ibid., 9,15,7; 10,32,8-11); Athenian inscriptions possibly attest to an oracle (IG II4968; SEG.10,175) [1]. The nymphs had driven B. to madness (Paus. 4,27,4; 20,12,11), supposedly those of the Corycian grotto (Schol. Aristoph. Pax 1279). B. also cures madness, like the seer  Melamp…

Abantiades

(38 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] Each descendant of  Abas [1], such as Acrisius (Ov. Met. 4,607), Canethus (Apoll. Rhod. 1,78), Idmon (Apoll. Rhod. 2,815) and Perseus, the great-grandson of Abas (Ov. Met. 4,673 and passim). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Aganippe

(102 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀγανίππη; Aganíppē). [German version] [1] A spring on Mount Helicon, sacred to the muses A spring on Mount Helicon, sacred to the muses, at Thespia in Boeotia; whoever drank from it, was drawn into poetic ecstasy (Verg. Ecl. 10,12; Paus. 9,29,5;  Hippocrene). The spring nymph of the same name is the daughter of the river god Termessus (Paus. 9,29,5) [1]. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Mythical person, also known as Eurydice Wife of  Acrisius, mother of Danae (Hyg. Fab. 63). Otherwise, she is called Eurydice (Apollod. 2,26). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) Bibliography 1 P. F…

Alastor

(235 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (ἀλάστωρ, also ἐλάστωρ; alástōr, elástōr). Spirit of vengeance, who especially compels atonement for blood guilt; also epithet of avenging deities who thereby re-establish order, like the Erinnyes or Zeus Alastor (Orph. h. 73,3) or Alasterus/Elasterus (Athens, Thasos, Paros). In Athens he is god of a phratria (Demosth. or. 43,57), in Thasus of an aristocratic group; both these carry out murder atonement [1]. The alastor is credited with the sending of illness (Hippoc. De morbo Sacro 1; Soph. Trach. 1235). From Cyrene and Sel…

Golgi

(191 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Γολγοί; Golgoí). Town on Cyprus that is considered by the scholarly Alexandrian writers to be one of the main cult centres of  Aphrodite (Theoc. 15,100 and Lycophr. 589; Catull. 36,14; 64,69); its eponymous hero Golgus is considered to be the son of Aphrodite and  Adonis (Schol. Theoc. 15,100). According to Paus. 8,15,2, the sanctuary was the oldest on Cyprus; it was founded long before the establishment of the sanctuary in Paphus by Agapenor; the town itself was regarded as a col…

Acraea

(93 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀκραία; Akraía). [German version] [1] Rock hill in Argolis Rock hill in Argolis, whose name in the saga is derived from Acraea, a daughter of the river god Asterion (Paus. 2,17,1); Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Also Acraeus: epiclesis of goddesses (also Acraeus, Ἀκραῖος) epiclesis of goddesses (Aphrodite, Artemis, Athens, Hera, the Phrygian Meter [1]) and gods (Zeus [2]; Men) whose sanctuaries were located on a hill. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) Bibliography 1 Denkschriften der Akad. Wien 80, 1962, 5 no. 2 2 H. Schwabl, s. v. Acraea, RE X A, 265 f.

Galaxia

(71 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (τὰ Γαλάξια; tà Galáxia). Athenian festival in honour of the mother of the gods, named after the milk gruel served on the occasion (Hsch. s.v. G.). The importance of the festival is indicated by the evidence provided by ephebic inscriptions, that in the Hellenistic period the epheboi offered sacrifices for the goddess and dedicated a golden bowl to her (from IG II1 470,13). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Andraemon

(105 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀνδραίμων; Andraímōn). [German version] [1] Mythical founder of Amphissa Mythical founder of Amphissa in Ozolian Locris (Paus. 10,38,5), husband of Gorge and successor to her father  Oeneus in Calydon (Apollod. 1,64; 78). His son Thoas leads the Aetolians at Troy (Hom. Il.2,638; 7,168; Ov. Met. 13,357). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Son of Oxylus Son of Oxylus, husband of  Dryope; A. is also stepfather of  Amphissus through Apollo (Ant. Lib. 32,3; Ov. Met. 9,333). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [3] Pylian, founding hero of Colophon Pylian, founding …

Chiron

(432 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Χίρων; Chírōn or Χείρων; Cheírōn). Centaur; son of the nymph Philyra and  Kronos; for the seduction of Philyra Cronus changed himself into a horse, which explains C.'s likeness to that animal (Apollod. 1,9; Verg. G. 3,92); his poetic name, after his mother, is Phil(l)yrides or Philyreios. Of his daughters, born to him by the nymph Chariclio, Ocyroe is an ecstatic seer (Ov. Met. 2,635-639); Endeis too, wife of  Aeacus and mother of Peleus, is held to be either his daughter (Hyg. Fab. …

Apatouria

(439 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀπατούρια; Apatoúria). Attic/Ionian festival of ‘common fathers/progenitors’ ( sṃ-pator-, explained as homopatṓria (Schol. Aristoph. Ach. 146). It was regarded as a feature of all Ionians (Hdt. 1,147) and is also, to judge by the personal name Apaturias, found in all the areas they founded [1]. It was the festival of the tribal associations, the phratries; accordingly, Zeus Phratrios and Athena Phratria (Plat. Euthyd. 302d; Schol. Ar. Ach. 146) are connected with it, and also Hephaestus (Istros FGrH 334 F 2) and perhaps also Apollo …

Kourotrophos

(367 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (κουροτρόφος; kourotróphos, ‘child nourishing’) is, as the title of a function, the name or epiclesis of numerous Greek gods and goddesses concerned with the growing up of the new generation and its introduction into the world of adults (lists in [1. 189-195]). The epiclesis is used of Artemis (Diod. Sic. 5,73,5), Demeter (Hsch. s.v. kourotrophos), Eileithyia, Ge (Hes. Theog. 479f.) and the nymphs. It is also attested for Hecate in Hes. Theog. 450-452 and, from Hom. Il. 19,142 onwards, for local river gods. A kourotrophos mentioned in an inscription might be a ma…

Abecedarii

(120 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (sc. psalmi or hymni). Songs whose verses or stanzas each begin with a letter of the alphabet in sequence. They are documented in Jewish literature from Jer. 1-4 onwards; Ps 145 is a devotional prayer to this day. In pagan literature they are documented for instance in the late hymns to Dionysus (Anth. Pal. 9,524) or Apollo (Anth. Pal. 9,525) and in magical texts (PGM IV 1363). In Christian literature Augustine's Psalm contra partem Donati (PL 43,25-32) is the best known, composed in 393 or 394 for the ‘entirely uneducated to learn by heart’.  Acrostich. Graf, Fritz (Columb…

Aenarete

(27 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Αἰναρέτη). Wife of  Aeolus (Hes. fr. 10a 31; Schol. Pl. Min. 315c), who is called Enarete in Apollod. 1,51. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Aegle

(191 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Αἴγλη; Aíglē). Suggestive name (‘glory’, ‘radiance’) for youthful radiant heroines, who can have genealogical connections to Helios: [German version] [1] Naiade, with Helios, mother of the Charites Naiade, with Helios, mother of the Charites (Paus. 9,35,5; Verg. Ecl. 6,20). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Daughter of Helios One of the Heliades, daughter of Helios and Clymene, who was turned into a poplar tree together with her sisters, after the death of her brother Phaethon (Hyg. Fab.154; 156, following Hesiod). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [3] He…

Iamus

(194 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἴαμος; Íamos). Forefather of the Elean family of seers named Iamidai, who were active in Olympia alongside the  Clytidae (Hdt. 9,33) up to the fall of the sanctuary. They usually read prophecies in the flames of the sacrificial fire (cf. Pind. Ol. 8,2f.), but Thrasybulus invented divination from the intestines of dogs (Paus. 6,2,4). Their prophecies were also expressed in detailed oracles ( lógia) (Paus. 3,11,6). They were closely connected to Sparta (where the tomb of the Iamidai was located, Paus. 3,12,8), although their service to Messene…

Lepreus

(117 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Λεπρέος, Λεπρεύς; Lepréos, Lepreús). The son of Pyrgeus or Caucon. He is the founder and eponym of Lepreum ( Triphylia). His grave lay allegedly in Phigalia (this is a reflection of Lepreum's claim to Arcadian). L. advised Augeias to imprison Heracles but Heracles was reconciled with him. He entered into an athletic competition with Heracles (e.g. about who could eat a bull faster) but lost and was killed in the subsequent armed fight. This local legend, the source of which was…

Dionysia

(484 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Διονύσια; Dionýsia). Term for the festival of  Dionysus, characteristic for the cult of Dionysus in many Greek poleis; the Dionysia often took place in the winter months. (1) In Athens, the Dionysia were a part of a cycle of festivals extending over four winter months, which started with the rural Dionysia (τὰ κατ' ἄγρους Δ., in the month of Poseideon), was followed by the Lenaea (month of Gamelion) and the Anthesteria (month of Anthesterion), and culminated in the urban or Great Dionysia (τά ἐν ἄστει Δ., …

Hyacinthides

(203 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ὑακινθίδες; Hyakinthídes). Name of a group of Athenian goddesses, in whose honour a yearly sacrificial festival with maiden dances was held, and who received wineless offerings prior to an army's march into battle. The mythical reason for these rites can be found in the legend that the H. had been sacrificed by  Erechtheus in order to fend off an invasion. Their names and number vary; certain names indicate a relationship to Artemis (who in Sparta received sacrifices prior to a ba…

Amphimachus

(162 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
(Ἀμφίμαχος; Amphímachos). [German version] [1] Son of Elektryon Son of Electryon, king of Mycenae, brother of  Alcmene (Apollod. 2,52). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [2] Son of Molionic Cteatus Son of Molionic Cteatus, grandson of Actor or of Poseidon. As suitor of Helen (Apollod. 3,129), together with Thalpius he led a section of the Epeians at Troy (Hom. Il. 2,620). He was killed by Hector (Hom. Il. 13,185-205). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) [German version] [3] Son of Nomion Son of Nomion, brother of Nasturtes, with whom A., as an ally of the Trojans, leads t…

Kanephoroi

(267 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Κανηφόροι/ Kanēphóroi, ‘basket-carriers’) were girls carrying the offering basket (κανοῦν, kanoûn ) in Greek offering processions, especially in the great state processions; on illustrations of offering scenes and processions, this basket has three handles and is carried on the top of the girls' heads [1; 2. 10-12]. To be kanephoros was an honour for beautiful freeborn daughters (Aristoph. Lys. 646). In Athens, kanephoroi are mentioned especially for the processions of Panathenaea (IG II2 334; Aristid. or. 18,2), of Dionysia (Syll.2 388,32) and of the pythaḯs se…

Amulius

(85 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] Son of Albanian king Procas, younger brother of Numitor. He forced his brother to abdicate, had his brother's son killed, made his daughter Rhea Silvia a vestal and punished her for her pregnancy. Later Numitor was again restored to his rightful situation by Romulus and Remus, but A. was killed (Liv. 1,4,10-11; Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 1,79-83; Origo gen. Rom. 19-21) Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) Bibliography G. Brugnoli, Reges Albanorum, in: Atti del Convegno Virgiliano di Brindisi nel bimillenario della morte, 1983, 157-190.

Kataibates

(158 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Καταιβάτης/ Kataibátēs, ‘he who descends’). Epiclesis of Zeus and of Hermes. For Zeus the epiclesis is epigraphically documented numerous times and is applied to the god who manifests himself through the lightning strike (‘who [in lightning] descends’). The piece of ground hit by lightning ( enēlýsion, Poll. 9, cf. the Roman fulmen condere) cannot be walked on ( ábaton), is consecrated to Zeus and is marked by a monument or an altar. The fact that the Athenians consecrated the location where Demetrius [2] Poliorcetes dismounted from his…

Anthropomorphism

(689 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (‘Formation in human shape’, anthrōpophyḗs Hdt. 1,131). A feature of Graeco-Roman representations of deities, not only in external appearance but also in terms of self-definition, which contrasts the Graeco-Roman cult with an absence of images (Hdt. 1,131; Tac. Germ. 9) or with an animal cult (Xen. Mem. 1,1,14 [1]). While animal-headed demons are attested and bird forms are disputed [2] in Minoan-Mycenaean art, Hesiod and Homer make use of a radical anthropomorphism [3]. This applies for instance to the external form, where the …

Antaeus

(252 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀνταῖος; Antaîos). Libyan giant, son of Poseidon, who forced strangers into a wrestling match and decorated his father's temple with their skulls; he remained unconquered, as long as he remained in contact with the earth (as whose son he was regarded), but finally Hercules conquered him by lifting him up off the ground and strangling him (Pind. Isthm. 3,70; Apollod. 2,115; Aug. civ. 18,12). Attic vase paintings portrayed the battle numerous times [1], and in Plato he is a heroic wrestler together with  Cercyon (leg. 7,796a). Quite separate from him is the A. menti…

Andreus

(49 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀνδρεύς; Andreús). Eponymous king of the island of Andros, established by Rhadamanthys (Diod. Sic. 5,79). Son of the son of Apollo and the Delian priest-king Anius (Ov. Met. 13,647-50). The Andrians made a gift of his statue to Delphi (Paus. 10,13,4). Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)

Antilochus

(120 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] (Ἀντίλοχος; Antílochos). Oldest son of  Nestor. He is the actual leader of the Pylians at Ilion. Poseidon, the god of Mycenean Pylos, protects him (Hom. Il. 13,554 f.); Achilles loves him as a comrade (Hom. Il. 23,556). Achilles avenges him when he falls by the hand of Memnon (Hom. Od. 4,187), sacrificing himself for Nestor (Pind. Pyth. 6,28). A., Achilles and Patroclus are laid together in a tumulus in Sigeum (Od. 24,71-84); in Hades they and Ajax are together (Od. 11,46 f., cf. 3…

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,…
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