Homer Hesiod Hymns Tragedy Remythologizing Tools Blackboard Info
CALYPSO 100.00%
A nymph, the daughter of Atlas, who dwelt on the island of Ogygia, where she gave a friendly welcome to Odysseus, whom she kept with her for seven years. (See ODYSSEUS.)
ATLAS 100.00%
The son of the Titan Iapetus and Clymene (or, according to anotlier account, Asia), brother of Menoetius, Prometheus, and Epimetheus. In Homer [Od. i. 52] he is called "the thinker of mischief," who knows the depths of the whole sea, and has under his care the pillars which hold heaven and earth asunder. In Hesiod [Theog. 517] he stands at the western end of the earth, near where the Hesperides dwell, holding the broad heaven on his head and unwearied hands. To this condition he is forced by Zeus, according to a later version as a punishment for the part which he took in the battle with the Titans. By the Ocean nymph Pleione he is father of the Pleiades, by Aethra of the Hyades. In Homer the nymph Calypso is also his daughter, who dwells on the island Ogygia, the navel of the sea. Later authors make him the father of the Hesperides, by Hesperis. It is to him that Amphitrite flies when pursued by Poseidon. As their knowledge of the West extended the Greeks transferred the abode of Atlas to the African mountain of the same name. Local stories of a mountain which supported the heaven would, no doubt, encourage the identification. In later times Atlas was represented as a wealthy king, and owner of the garden of the Hesperides. Perseus, with his head of Medusa, turned him into a rocky mountain for his inhospitality. In works of art he is represented as carrying the heaven; or (after the earth was discovered to be spherical), the terrestrial globe. Among the statues of Atlas the Farnese, in the Museum at Naples, is the best known. (See also OLYMPIC GAMES, fig. 3.) In Greek architecture, the term Atlantes was employed to denote the colossal male statues sometimes used in great buildings instead of columns to support an entablature or a projecting roof.
According to Hesiod, the daughters of Night; according to later accounts, daughters of Atlas and of Hesperis. Their names were Aegle, Arethusa, Erytheia, Hesperia. They dwell on the river Oceanus, near Atlas, close to the Gorgons, on the borders of eternal darkness, in the garden of the gods, where Zeus espoused Hera. Together with the hundred-headed dragon Ladon, the son of Phorcys or Typhon, they guard the golden apples which Goea (or Earth) caused to grow as a, marriage gift for Hera. (See HERACLES.)
MAIA 69.74%
Daughter of Atlas and Pleione, one of the Pleiads (q.v.), mother of Hermes by Zeus. The Romans identified her with an old Italian goddess of spring, Maia Maiestas (also called Fauna, Bona Dea, Ops), who was held to be the wife of Vulcan, and to whom the flamen of that god sacrificed a pregnant sow on the 1st of May.
IAPETUS 62.30%
Son of Uranus and Gaees, a Titan, who, either by Clymene or Asia, the daughter of Oceanns, became the father of Atlas, Menaetius, Promatheus, and Epimetheus. He was thrown into Tartarus, with his son Menaetius, on account of his rebellion against Zeus.
The seven daughters of Atlas and the Ocean-nymph Plelone, born on the Arcadian mountain Cyllene, sisters of the Hyades. The eldest and most beautiful, Maia, became the mother of Hermes by Zeus; Electra and Tayggete, of Dardanus and Lacedaemon by the same; Alcyone, of Hyrieus by Poseidon; Celaeno of Lycus and Nycteus by the same; Sterope or Asterope, of (Enomaus by Ares; Merope (i.e. the mortal), of Glaucus by Sisyphus. Out of grief, either for the fate of Atlas or for the death of their sisters, they killed themselves and were placed among the constellations. According to another legend, they were pursued for five years by the Giant hunter Orion (q.v.), until Zeus turned the distressed Nymphs and their pursuer into neighbouring stars. As the constellation of the seven stars, they made known by their rising (in the middle of May) the approach of harvest, and by their setting (at the end of October) the time for the new sowing. Their rising and setting were also looked upon as the sign of the opening and closing of the sailing season. One of the seven stars is invisible; this was explained to be Merope, who bid herself out of the shame at her marriage with a mortal. The constellation of the Pleiades seems also to have been compared to a flight of doves (Gr. peleides). Hence the Pleiades were supposed to be meant in the story told by Homer of the ambrosia brought to Zeus by the doves,-one of which is always lost at the Planetae rocks, but is regularly replaced by a new one [Od. xii 62]. Among the Romans, the constellation was called Vergiliae, the stars of spring.
HYADES 52.92%
Daughters of Atlas and of Aethra, and sisters of the Pleiades their number varies between two and seven. Being Nymphs who supplied nourishment by means of moisture, they were worshipped at Dodona as nurses of Zeus or of the infant Dionysus. As a reward for this they were placed in the sky as stars. At their rising about the same time as the sun, between May 7 and 21, rainy weather usually began. Hyades is naturally derived from the verb "to rain"; but the Romans, wrongly supposing it came from the Greek for "a pig," called the constellation" the little pigs" (suculoe).
Son of the Titan Iapetus and the Ocean-nymph Clymene, brother of Atlas, Menoetius, and Epimetheus, father of Deucalion (q.v.). The most ancient account of him, as given by Hesiod [Theog. 521-616) is as follows. When the gods, after their conquest of the Titans, were negotiating with mankind about the honour to be paid them, Prometheus was charged with the duty of dividing a victim offered in sacrifice to the gods. He endeavoured to impose upon Zeus by dividing it in such a way as cleverly to conceal the half which consisted of flesh and the edible vitals under the skin of the animal, and to lay thereon the worst part, the stomach, while he heaped the bones together and covered them with fat.
daughter of Nereus and Doris, is the wife of Poseidon and queen of the sea. Poseidon saw her dancing with the Nereids on the island of Naxos, and carried her off. According to another account she fled from him to Atlas, when the god's dolphin spied her out and brought her to him. In Homer she is not yet called Poseidon's wife, but a sea-goddess, who beats the billows against the rocks, and has the creatures of the deep in her keeping. Her son is the sea-god Triton. She had no separate worship. She is often represented with a net confining her hair, with crabs' claws on the crown of her head, being carried by Tritons, or by dolphins and other marine animals, or drawn by them in a chariot of shells. As the Romans identified Poseidon with their Neptune, so they did Amphitrite with Salacia, a goddess of the salt waves.
TITANS 26.44%
The children of Uranus and Gaea, six sons and six daughters: Oceanus and Tethys, Hyperion and Theia (parents of Helios, Se1ene, Eos), Coeus and Phoebe (parents of Leto and Asteria), Cronus and Rhea (parents of the Olympian deities), Crius (father by Eurybia of Astraeus, Pallas, and Perses), Iapetus (father of Atlas, Menoetius, Prometheus, and Epimetheus, by the Ocean-nymph Clymene), Themis (mother of the Hours and Fates), and Mnemosyne (mother of the Muses). Like the parents, the children and grandchildren bear the name of Titan. Incited to rebellion by their mother Gaea, they overthrew Uranus (q.v.) and established as sovereign their youngest brother Cronus. He was dethroned in turn by his son Zeus, whereupon the best of the Titans and the majority of their number declared for the new ruler, and under the new order retained their old positions, with the addition of new prerogatives. The rest, namely, the family of Iapetus, carried on from Mount Othrys a long and fierce struggle with the Olympian gods, who fought from Mount Olympus. Finally, by help of their own kindred, the Hecatoncheires and the Cyclopes, whom by Hera's counsel Zeus had set free from their prison, they were conquered and hurled down into Tartarus, where the Hecatoncheires were set to guard them. A later legend represents the Titans as reconciled with Zeus and released from Tartarus, and assigns them a place with Cronus in the Islands of the Blest.
PELOPS 22.03%
Son of the Lydian or Phrygian king Tantalus and Dione, daughter of Atlas. When he was a child, his father slew him, cut him to pieces and seethed him, and set him as food before the gods. The gods did not touch the horrible meal; only Demeter, absorbed in grief for her stolen daughter, ate one shoulder. By the command of Zeus, Hermes replaced the pieces in the caldron, and Clotho drew the boy from it in renewed beauty, while Demeter replaced the missing shoulder by one made of ivory. Hence it was that his descendants, the Pelopidae, bore on one shoulder a mark of dazzling whiteness. Pelops, when grown to manhood, went to Pisa in Elis as a wooer of Hippodamia, daughter of king (Enomaus. He won the victory, the bride, and the kingdom, by the help of the winged steeds given him by Poseidon, and by the treachery of Myrtilus, the chariot driver of (Enomaus. When Myrtilus (or Myrsilus), a son of Hermes, claimed the promised reward, half the kingdom, Pelops hurled him from his chariot into the sea. Through his curse and the anger of Hermes, the baneful spell was once more cast upon the house of Pelops. He returned to Pisa, and, after he had made himself master of Olympia, he is said to have restored the games with great splendour, a service for which his memory was afterwards honoured above that of all other heroes. By another act of violence he obtained possession of Arcadia, and extended his power so widely over the peninsula that it was called after his name the Peloponnesus, or "island of Pelops." By Hippodamia he had six sons (cp. ALCATHOUS, ATREUS, PITTHEUS, THYESTES), and two daughters; and by then Nymph Axioche, a son Chrysippus. The latter, his father's favourite, was killed by Atreus and Thyestes, at the instigation of Hippodamia, and his dead body was cast into a well. Peleus discovered the crime, and banished the murderers from the country. Hippodamia thereupon took refuge with her sons at Midea in Argolis. On her death, Peleus buried her bones in the soil of Olympia.
TABLE 20.68%
Tables served in ancient times only for the support of vessels necessary for meals; not (as with us) for writing and reading as well. As the couches on which people reclined at meal-times were not high, the tables were mostly lower than ours. Some were quadrangular and had four legs (fig. 1); this was for a long time the only form customary among the Romans. Others had circular or oval tops, and rested either on one leg or (more frequently) on three, to which the shape of animals' feet was given by preference (figs. 2, 3). The Greeks set a high value on the artistic adornment of their tables; but the Roman love of display expended more money on these articles of furniture than on any other. The feet were wrought in the finest metal, ivory, or stone work. The construction of the top of the table was a matter of special luxury. It was composed either of the nobler metals, rare kinds of stone, or costly varieties of wood. Especially costly were the monopodia or orbes, tables resting on one leg, with the wooden top cut out of a single log in the whole of its diameter. The most expensive and most sought-after wood was that of the citrus, an evergreen growing in the Atlas Mountains (which has been identified with the cypress, or juniper). The price of these mensoe citreoe, which were generally supported by one ivory leg, varied according to the dimensions of the diameter, which were sometimes as much as four feet and also according to the beauty of the grain, which was brought out by polish. The prices named for single specimens of such tables ranged from £5,438 to £15,226 [Pliny, N. H., xiii 92,96,102]. On account of the costliness of this kind of wood, the tops were sometimes made of some common material, especially maple, and covered over with a veneer of citrus. The small abacus served as a sideboard. Its square top, which was generally furnished with a raised rim, rested on one support (trapezophoron) which was made of marble, bronze, or silver, and lent itself readily to sculptural treatment. Another kind of ornamental table was the delphica, in the form of a Greek tripod with a round top. Tables were also included in the ordinary furniture of a temple, especially such as stood directly in front of the statue of the god, and on which were laid the offerings not intended to be burnt. (See SACRIFICES, figs. 1, 2.)
The chief national festival of the Greeks, which was celebrated in honour of Zeus at Olympia, in the Peloponnesian district Pisatis, belonging to the Eleans, at the point where the Cladeus runs into the Alpheus. The institution of this ancient festival is sometimes referred to Pisus, the mythical founder of the city Pisa, which was afterwards destroyed by the Eleans, and before whose gates lay the sanctuary of Zeus; sometimes to Pelops, in whose honour funeral games were held at this point on the banks of the Alpheus. These were restored, it is said, by Heracles, who instituted the regular order of the festival. This opinion did not become current until the Dorian States, established after the immigration of the Heraclidae into the Peloponnesus, had been admitted to a share in the festival, which was originally frequented only by the Pisatans and their immediate neighbours. This admission dates from Lycurgus of Sparta and Iphitus of Elis, who, at the direction of the Delphic oracle, restored the festival of Zeus, now fallen into oblivion, and established the sacred Truce of God (see EKECHEIRIA), which insured a safe conduct at the time of the festival for all strangers resorting thither, even through hostile territory. In course of time the membership extended itself further, over all the Hellenic states in and out of Greece; and the festival was not only visited by private individuals, but also received sacred envoys from the several states. Through all the assaults of time it lasted on, even during the Roman rule, and was not abolished until 394 A.D., under the reign of Theodosius. From the time of the above-mentioned restoration by Iphitus and Lycurgus it was a quinquennial celebration; that is, it was held once in every four years, in midsummer (July to August), about the beginning or end of the Greek year. A regular and continuous list of the victors was kept from 776, when Corcebus won the race in the stadium, and with this year begins the Olympiad reckoning prevalent among the historians from the time of Timaeus. The duration of the festival was in course of time extended to at least five days. The place where the festival was celebrated was the Altis (see Plan), a sacred precinct at the foot of the hill of Cronus (Kronos), 403 feet high. The precinct, which was about 750 feet long by 570 feet broad, was surrounded by a wall ascribed to Heracles, having entrances at the N.W. and S.W. The centre, both by position and by religious association, was formed by the great sacrificial altar of Zeus, which rose on an elliptical base 128 feet in circumference to a height of 32 feet, and was composed of the ashes of the victims mingled with the water of the Alpheus. Round it were grouped the four most important sanctuaries, the temples of Zeus, Hera (Heraion), the Mother of the Gods (Metroon), and the holy inclosure of Pelops (Pelopion), besides a multitude of altars consecrated some to gods and some to heroes, and a countless host of dedicatory offerings and statues of every kind, among them, south-east of the temple of Zeus, the Nice of Paeonius (q.v.). The temple of Zeus, which was begun about 572 B.C. by the Elean Libo, was not completed in its main outline until about 450. It was a Doric hypaethral building (i.e. it had no roof over the cella, or temple proper); it was also peripteral (i.e. it was surrounded by a single row of columns). It was built of the local conchyliferous, limestone [called poros by Pausanias, v 10 § 2]. In its more finished parts it was overlaid with fine stucco, giving the appearance of marble, and was also richly decorated with colour. It was 210 feet in length, 91 in breadth, and 65 in height. The outer hall had 6 columns along its breadth and 13 along its length (each 34 feet high), while the inner hall had a double row of 7 columns. The eastern pediment was occupied by a representation of the contest between Pelops and OEnomans, with Zeus as the contre (fig. 1); the western, by one of the battle between the Centaurs and Lapithae, with Apollo as centre (fig. 2). The former was designed by the already-mentioned Paeonius; the latter, by Alcamenes of Athens. The accompanying cuts indicate the figures belonging to the two pediments, so far as their fragmentary portions were recovered in the excavations begun by the Germans in 1875. [While the outer metopes beneath these pediments had no ornament except a large plain boss on each, twelve other metopes sculptured with reliefs used to adorn the outer walls at each end of the cella or temple proper, six over the door of the pronaos, and six over that of the opisthodomos. All of these have been discovered: four by the French in 1829, and eight by Germans in 1875-9. Their subjects are the labours of Heracles. The best preserved of the series, and one of them which, as compared with the rest, is apparently the work of a mature and well-trained school of sculpture, is that representing Heracles bearing the heavens. Atlas stands by, offering to Heracles the apples of the Hesperidess, and on the other side one of the daughters of Atlas is touching the hero's burden with her arm, as though endeavouring to aid him in sustaining it (fig. 3).] In the chamber at the western end of the cella stood the greatest work of Greek art, wrought in gold and ivory by Phidias (q.v.). Outside the sacred inclosure, though still in direct connexion with it, were, to the west, the Gymnasium, and to the east the Hippodrome and the Stadium. [The Hippodrome has been washed away by the encroachments of the Alpheus. The Stadium, which was 600 Olympic feet in length, has been excavated to an extent sufficient to determine the length of the single course, between the starting-place and the goal, to be 192·27 metres-630·81845073 English feet. The Olympic foot therefore measured ·3204 of a metre-1·05120036 feet. The parallel grooves in the slabs of stone at each end of the Stadium still show the spot where the feet of the competitors in the footrace were planted at the moment immediately preceding the start. There is room for 20 at either end, separated from one another by posts at intervals of four Olympic feet from one another (fig. 4).] The festival consisted of two parts: (1) the presentation of offerings, chiefly of course to Zeus, but also to the other gods and heroes, on the part of the Eleans, the sacred embassies and other visitors to the feast; and (2) the contests. In the first Olympiad the contest consisted of a simple match in the Stadium (race-course) which had a length of a trifle more than 210 yards. The runners ran in heats of four, and then the winners in each beat competed together, the first in the final heat being proclaimed victor. About 724 B.C. the double; course (diaulos) was introduced, in which the runners had to make a circuit of the goal and return to the starting-point; about 720 came the dolichos or long race, where the distance of the stadium had to be covered either 6, 7, 8, 12, 20, or 29 times [Scholiast on Soph., Electra 691]; in 708, the pentathlon, or five-fold contest, consisting of leaping, running, quoit (diskos and spear-throwing, and wrestling (the last being also practised by itself); in 688, boxing. In 680 chariot-racing on the Hippodrome was introduced, and, though this was twice as long as the Stadium, it had to be traversed from eight to twelve times in both directions (at first with four horses, after 500 with mules, and after 408 with two horses). From 648 there were races, in which the horsemen, towards the end of the race, bad to leap from their horses and run beside them with the bridle in their hands. With the same year began the practice of the pancration (a combination of wrestling and boxing); with 520, the race in armour, with helmet, greaves and shield, though afterwards the shield alone was carried. Competitions between heralds and trumpeters also found a place here. Originally it was only men who took part in the contests; bat after 632, boys also shared in them. The contests were open only to freemen of pure Hellenic descent, provided that no personal disgrace had in any way attached to them; but, after the Romans came into closer relationship with Greece, they were opened to them also, and indeed (as is well known) the Romans were not officially considered barbarians. Even to barbarians however, and to slaves, permission was given to view them, while it was refused to all married women [Pausanias, vi 20, § 9], or more probably all women whatsoever, except the priestess of Demeter, who even received a place of honour among the spectators. Those who took part in the competitions had to take a solemn oath at the altar of Zeus to the effect that they had spent at least ten months in preparation for the games, and that they would not resort to any unfair trick in the course of their contest: this oath was taken for boy competitors by an older relative. Special practice for thirty days at Elis was also usual, but probably only for those who were coming forward for the first time. The duties of heralds and judges were discharged by the Hellanodici, appointed by popular election from among the Eleans themselves. Their number rose in course of time from 1 to 2, 9, 10, and 12, but after 348 it was always 10. Distinguished by purple robes, wreaths of bay-leaves, and a seat of honour opposite the Stadium, they kept guard over the strict observance of all the minute regulations for the contests, and in general maintained order. In these duties they were supported by a numbpr of attendants provided with staves. Transgressions of the laws of the games, and unfairness on the part of competitors, were punished by forfeiture of the prize or by fines of money, which went to the revenue of the temple. Out of the money from penalties of this kind, a whole row of bronze images of Zeus (called zanes) was erected in front of the eleven treasure-houses along the eastern end of the northern wall of the Altis. The games were opened with the sound of trumpets and the proclamation of heralds, the marshalling of the various competitors in the Stadium, accompanied by the announcement of their name and country by the herald, and the appointment by lot of the pairs of combatants. The victors in the several pairs of competitors had then apparently to contend in couples with each other until one couple alone remained, and the winner in this was declared victor. If the number of combatants had been uneven, so that one of them had remained without an opponent, he had finally to meet this rival. The contests were accompanied by the music of flutes. The name of the victor (and one, whom no adversary had come forward to meet, counted for victor), as well as his home, were proclaimed aloud by the herald, and a palm-branch presented to him by the Hellanodici. The actual prize he only received at the general and solemn distribution on the last day of the festival. This was originally some article of value, but, at the command of the Delphic oracle, this custom was dropped, and the victors were graced by a wreath of the leaves of the sacred wild olive, said to have been originally planted by Heracles, which had been cut with a golden knife by a boy of noble family with both parents living. After about 540 the victors also possessed the right to put up statues of themselves in the Altis. The festival ended with a sacrifice made by the victors wearing their crowns at the six double altars of the hill of Cronus, and with a banquet in the Prytaneum of the Altis. Brilliant distinctions awaited the victor on his return home, for his victory was deemed to have reflected honour on his native land at large. He made his entry, clad in purple, upon a chariot drawn by four white horses, amidst the joyous shouts of all the people, and then rode amid an exultant escort to the temple of the highest god, and there deposited his wreath as a votive offering. During the ride, as also at the banquet which followed thereupon, the song of victory, often composed by the most celebrated poets, was chanted by choral bands. There was no lack of other rewards: at Athens the Olympian victor received 500 drachmae, the right to a place of honour at all public games, and board in the Prytaneum for the rest of his life. The opportunity afforded by the assembling of so vast a crowd from all parts of Greece at Olympia was utilized, from about the middle of the 5th century before Christ, by authors, orators, poets, and artists, to make themselves known in the widest circles by the recital or exhibition of their works. When the compliment of a crown was offered by one state to another, the distinction was made generally known by being proclaimed by the heralds at the Olympian Games. <picture> <multi n="1">
HERMES 13.37%
Son of Zeus and of the Naiad Maia, daughter of Atlas. Immediately after his birth upon the Arcadian mountain of Cyllene, he gave proof of his chief characteristics, inventiveness and versatility, united with fascination, trickery, and cunning. Born in the morning, by mid-day he had invented the lyre; in the evening he stole fifty head of cattle from his brother Apollo, which he hid so skilfully in a cave that they could not be found; after these exploits he lay down quietly in his cradle. Apollo, by means of his prophetic power, discovered the thief and took the miscreant to Zeus, who ordered the cattle to be given up. However, Hermes so delighted his brother by his playing on the lyre that, in exchange for it, he allowed him to keep the cattle, resigned to him the golden staff of fortune and of riches, with the gift of prophecy in its humbler forms, and from that time forth became his best friend. Zeus made his son herald to the gods and the guide of the dead in Hades. In this myth we have allusions to several attributes of the god. In many districts of Greece, and especially in Arcadia, the old seat of his worship, Hermes was regarded as a god who bestowed the blessing of fertility on the pastures and herds, and who was happiest spending his time among shepherds and dallying with Nymphs, by whom he had numberless children, including Pan and Daphnis. In many places he was considered the god of crops; and also as the god of mining and of digging for buried treasure, His kindliness to man is also shown in his being the god of roads. At cross-roads in particular, there were raised in his honour and called by his name, not only heaps of stones, to which every passer by added a stone, but also the quadrangular pillars known as Hermae (q.v.) At Athens these last were set up in the streets and open spaces, and also before the doors. Every unexpected find on the road was called a gift of Hermes (hermaion). Together with Athene, he escorts and protects heroes in perilous enterprises, and gives them prudent counsels. He takes special delight in men's dealings with one another, in exchange and barter, in buying and selling; also in all that is won by craft or by theft. Thus he is the patron of tradespeople and thieves, and is himself the father of Autolycus (q.v.), the greatest of all thieves. He too it is who endowed Pandora, the first woman, with the faculty of lying, and with flattering discourse and a crafty spirit. On account of his nimbleness and activity he is the messenger of Zeus, and knows how to carry out his father's commands with adroitness and cunning, as in the slaying of Argos (the guard of Io), from which he derives his epithet of Argos-Slayer, or Argeiphontes. Again, as Hermes was the sacrificial herald of the gods, it was an important part of the duty of heralds to assist at sacrifices. It was on this account that the priestly race of the Kerykes claimed him as the head of their family (see ELEUSINIA). Strength of voice and excellence of memory were supposed to be derived, from him in his capacity of herald. Owing to his vigour, dexterity, and personal charm, he was deemed the god of gymnastic-skill, which makes men strong and handsome, and the especial patron of boxing, running, and throwing the discus; in this capacity the palaestrae and gymnasia were sacred to him, and particular feasts called Hermaia were dedicated to him. He was the discoverer of music (for besides the lyre he invented the shepherd's pipe), and he was also the god of wise and clever discourse. A later age made him even the inventor of letters, figures, mathematics, and astronomy. He is, besides, the god of sleep and of dreams, with one touch of his staff he can close or open the eyes of mortals; hence the custom, before going to sleep, of offering him the last libation. As he is the guide of the living on their way, so is he also the conductor of the souls of the dead in the nether-world (Psuchopompos), and he is as much loved by the gods of those regions as he is by those above. For this reason sacrifices were offered to him in the event of deaths, Hermae, were placed on the graves, and, at oracles and incantations of the dead, he was honoured as belonging to the lower world; in general, he was accounted the intermediary between the upper and lower worlds. His worship early spread through-out the whole of Greece. As he was born in the fourth month, the number four was sacred to him. In Argos the fourth month was named after him, and in Athens he was honoured with sacrifices on the fourth of every month. His altars and images (mostly simple Hermae) were in all the streets, thoroughfares, and open spaces, and also at the entrance of the palaestra. In art he is represented in the widely varying characters which be assumed, as a shepherd with a single animal from his flock, as a mischievous little thief, as the god of gain with a purse in his hand (cp. fig. 1), with a strigil as patron of the gymnasia, at other times with a lyre but oftenest of all as the messenger of the gods. He was portrayed by the greatest sculptors, such as Phidias, Polyclitus, Scopas, and Praxiteles, whose Hermes with the infant Dionysus was discovered in 1877, in the temple of Hera, at Olympia. (See PRAXITELES, and SCULPTURE, fig. 10.) In the older works of art he appears as a bearded and strong man; in the later ones he is to be seen in a graceful and charming attitude, as a slim youth with tranquil features, indicative of intellect and good will. His usual attributes are wings on his feet, a flat, broad-brimmed hat (see PETASUS), which in later times was ornamented with wings, as was also his staff. This last (Gr. kerykeion; Lat. caduceus, fig. 2) was originally an enchanter's wand, a symbol of the power that profinces wealth and prosperity, and also an emblem of influence over the living and the dead. But even in early times it was regarded as a herald's staff and an emblem of peaceful intercourse; it consisted of three shoots, one of which formed the handle, the other two being intertwined at the top in a knot. The place of the latter was afterwards taken by serpents; and thus arose our ordinary type of herald's staff. By the Romans Hermes was identified with MERCURIUS (q.v.).
In Greek architecture there were three orders of columns: the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. (I) Doric: Figures 1 and 2 give instances of the Doric style from the temple at Paestum and the Parthenon at Athens. The Doric column consists (a) of the shaft, which increases in diameter almost invisibly up to about one-quarter of its height, and diminishes slightly after that point. It has no base, but rests immediately on the stylobate. It is surrounded with semi-circular flutings, meeting each other at a sharp angle. These were chiselled with a cedar-wood tool after the separate drums had been put together. (b) The capital (Lat. capitulum). This consists of three parts, (a) the hypotrachelion, or neck of the column, a continuation of the shaft, but separated by an indentation from the other drums. It is wider at the top than at the bottom, and is generally ornamented with several parallel and horizontal rings. (b) The echinus, a circular moulding or cushion, which widens greatly towards the top. (c) The abax or abacus, a square slab supporting the architrave or episylion. The height of the shaft is usually 5 1/2 times, the distance between the columns 1 1/2 times the diameter of the base of the column. The architrave is a quadrangular beam of stone, reaching from pillar to pillar. On this again rests the frieze, zophoros, so called from the metopes which are adorned with sculptures in relief. These metopes are square spaces between the triglyphs: the triglyphs are surfaces out into three concave grooves, two whole grooves in the centre, and two half grooves at the sides. One is placed over each pillar, and one between each pair of pillars. The entablature is completed by a projecting cornice, a slab crowned with a simple heading-course, the lower surface of which is ornamented with sloping corbels (Gk. stagones, Lat. mutuli). (II) Ionic Columns. An instance is given in fig. 3 from the temple on the Ilissus at Athens. These are loftier than the Doric, their height being 8 1/2-9 1/2 times the diameter of the, lower part. The enlargement of the lower part is also less than in the Doric columns, the distance between each column greater (two diameters), the flutings (generally 24 in number) deeper, and separated by small flat surfaces. The Ionic column has a base consisting of a square slab (plinthos), and several cushion like supports separated by grooves. The capital, again, is more artistically developed. The neck, instead of fluting, has five leaves worked in relief. The echinus is very small and ornamented with an egg pattern. Over it, instead of the abacus, is a Four-cornered cushion ending before and behind in spiral volutes, supporting a narrow square slab, which is also adorned with an egg pattern. The architrave is divided into three bands, projecting one above the other, and upon it rises, in an uninterrupted surface, the frieze, adorned with reliefs, continuously along its whole length. Finally, the cornice is composed of different parts. (III) The Corinthian column (fig. 4, from the monument of Lysicrates, at Athens). The base and shaft are identical with the Ionic, but the capital takes the form of an open calix formed of acanthus leaves. Above this is another set of leaves, from between which grow stalks with small leaves, rounded into the form of volutes. On this rests a small abacus widening towards the top, and on this again the entablature, which is borrowed from the Ionic order. On the human figures employed instead of columns to support the entablature, see ATLAS, CANEPHORI, CARYATIDES. The Romans adopted the Greek styles of column, but not always in their pure form. They were fondest of the Corinthian, which they laboured to enrich with new and often excessive ornamentation. For instance, they crowned the Corinthian capital with the Ionic, thus forming what is called the Roman or composite capital. The style known as Tuscan is a degenerate form of the Doric. The Tuscan column has a smooth shaft, in height=7 diameters of the lower part, and tapering up to three-quarters of its lower dimensions. Its base consists of two parts, a circular plinth, and a cushion of equal height. The capital is formed of three parts of equal height. In other styles, too, the Romans sometimes adopted the smooth instead of the fluted shaft, as for instance in the Pantheon (fig. 5). Single columns were sometimes erected by the Greeks, and in imitation of them by the Romans, as memorials to distinguished persons. A good example is the Columna Rostrata, or column with its shaft adorned with the beaks of ships, in the Roman Forum. This was set up in commemoration of the naval victory of Duilius over the Carthaginians (261 B.C.). Among the columns which survive, the most magnificent is that of Trajan, erected in the Forum of Trajan 113 A.D. It rises on a quadrangular pediment to the height of 124 feet; its diameter below is about 10 feet, and a little less in the upper part. An interior spiral staircase of 185 steps leads to the summit. The shaft, formed of twenty-three drums of marble, is adorned with a series of reliefs, 3 feet 3 inches high and 200 feet long, in a series of twenty-two spirals. They represent scenes in Trajan's Dacian campaigns, and contain 2,500 human figures, with animals, engines, etc. On a cylindrical pedestal at the summit there once stood a gilded statue of the emperor, which, since the year 1587, has made way for a bronze figure of St. Peter. A similar column is that of Marcus Aurelius, 122 feet high, on the Piazza Colonna. Since 1589 the statue of St. Paul has been substituted for that of the emperor. The reliefs, in twenty spirals, represent events in the emperor's war with the Marcomanni.
King of Ithaca, son of Laertes and Anticlea, daughter of Autolycus. In post-Homeric legend he is called a son of Sisyphus, borne by Anticlea before her marriage with Laertes. According to Homer, his name, "the hater," was given him by his grandfather Autolycus, because he himself had so often cherished feelings of hatred during his life [Od. xix 402]. His wife Penelope (or Penelopeia), daughter of Icarius (see OEBALUS), is said by later legends to have been obtained for him by her uncle Tyndareos in gratitude for counsel given by him. (See TYNDAREOS.) When his son Telemachus was still an infant, Agamemnon and Menelaus, as Homer tells us, prevailed on him to take part in the expedition against Troy. Their task was hard, as it had been predicted to him that it would be twenty years before he saw his wife and child again. Later writers relate that he was bound as one of Helen's suitors to take, part in the scheme, but tried to escape his obligation by feigning madness, and among other acts yoked a horse and an ox to his plough and so ploughed a field. When however Palamedes, who with Nestor and Menelaus was desirous of taking him to Troy, proceeded to place Telemachus in the furrow, he betrayed himself and had to accompany them to war. He led the men of Ithaca and the surrounding isles to Troy in twelve vessels. In contrast to the later legend, which represents him as a cowardly, deceitful and intriguing personage, he always appears in Homer among the noblest and most respected of the heroes, and, on account of his good qualities, he is the declared favourite of Athene. He combines in his person courage and determined perseverance with prudence, ingenuity, cunning and eloquence. Accordingly he is employed by preference as a negotiator and a spy. Thus, after the disembarkation, he goes with Menelaus into the enemy's city to demand the surrender of Helen. Again, he is among those who are despatched by the Greeks to reconcile with Agamemnon the enraged Achilles. With Diomedes, who delights in his company, he captures the spy Dolon and surprises Rhesus; with the same hero he is said by later legend to have stolen the Palladium from Troy. When Agamemnon faint-heartedly thinks of flight, he opposes this idea with the utmost decision. Everywhere he avails himself of the right time and the right place, and, where courage and cunning are needed, is ever the foremost. After Achilles' death, in the contest with Ajax, the son of Telamon, he receives the hero's arms as a recognition of his services, and by his ingenuity brings about the fall of Troy. Shortly before it, he steals into the city in the garb of a beggar, in order to reconnoitre everything there; he then climbs with the others into the wooden horse, and contrives to control the impatient and the timid alike until the decisive moment. His adventures during the return from Troy and on his arrival in his native country form the contents of the Odyssey of Homer. Immediately after the departure Odysseus is driven to the Thracian Ismarus, the city of the Cicones, and, though he plunders them, loses in a surprise seventy-two of his companions. When he is now desirous of rounding the south-east point of the Peloponnesus, the promontory of Malea, he is caught by the storm and carried in nine days to the coast of North Africa, on to the land of the Lotophagi (Lotus-eaters) whence he has to drag his companions by force to prevent their forgetting their homes for love of the sweet lotus food. Thence the voyage passes into the legendary world of the Western sea, then little known to the Greeks. Odysseus comes first to the country of the Cyclopes (q.v.), where, with twelve of his comrades, he is shut up in a cavern by Polyphemus. The monster has already devoured half of Odysseus' companions before the latter intoxicates him (fig. 1), deprives him of his one eye, and by his cunning escapes with his comrades. From this time the anger of Poseidon, on whom Polyphemus calls for revenge, pursues him and keeps him far from his country. On the island of Aeolus, the Keeper of the Winds (q.v.), he finds hospitable entertainment, and receives on his departure a leathern bag in which are inclosed all the winds except the western. The latter would carry him in nine days to the coast of Ithaca, but, whilst Odysseus is taking rest, his comrades open the bag, which they imagine to contain treasure, and the winds thus released carry them back to Aeolus. He orders them off from his island, regarding them as enemies of the gods. On coming to Telephylus, the city of Lamus, king Antiphates and his Loestrygones, cannibals of immense stature, shatter eleven of their vessels, and the twelfth is saved only by Odysseus' wariness. (See PAINTING, fig. 5.) On the island of Aeaea the sorceress Circe turns part of his crew into swine, but, with the help of Hermes, he compels her to restore them to their human shape and spends a whole year with her in pleasure and enjoyment. When his companions urge him to return home, Circe bids him first sail toward the farthest west, to the entrance into the lower world on the farther bank of Oceanus, and there question the shade of the seer Tiresias concerning his return. (See HADES, REALM OF.) From the latter he learns that it is the malice of Poseidon that prevents his return, but that nevertheless he will now attain his object if his comrades spare the cattle of Helios on the island of Thrinacia; otherwise it will only be after a long time, deprived of all his comrades and on a foreign shit, that he will reach his home. Odysseus then returns to the isle of Circe and sets out on his homeward voyage, supplied by her with valuable directions and a favouring wind. Passing the isles of the Sirens (q.v.) and sailing through Scylla and Charybdis (q.v.), he reaches the island of Thrinacia, where he is compelled to land by his comrades. They are there detained for a month by contrary winds; at length his comrades, overcome by hunger, in spite of the oath they have sworn to him, slaughter, during his absence, the finest of the cattle of Helios. Scarcely are they once more at sea, when a terrible storm breaks forth, and Zeus splits the ship in twain with a flash of lightning, as a penalty for the offence. All perish except Odysseus, who clings to the mast and keel, and is carried back by the waves to Scylla and Charybdis, and after nine days reaches the island of Ogygia, the abode of the nymph Calypso, daughter of Atlas. For seven years he dwells here with the nymph, who promises him immortality and eternal youth, if he will consent to remain with her and be her husband. But the yearning for his wife and home make him proof against her snares. All the day long he sits on the shore gazing through his tears across the broad sea; fain would he catch a glimpse, were it only of the rising smoke of his home, and thereafter die. So his protectress, Athene, during Poseidon's absence, prevails on Zeus in an assembly of the gods to decree his return, and to send Hermes to order Calypso to release him. Borne on a raft of his own building, he comes in eighteen days near to Scheria, the island of the Phaeacians, when Poseidon catches sight of him and shatters his raft in pieces. However, with the aid of the veil of Ino Leucothea (q.v.), he reaches land in safety and meets with Nausicaa, the king's daughter, who conducts him into the Phaeacian city before her parents Alcinous (q.v.) and Arete. He receives the most hospitable treatment, and is then brought loaded with presents by the Phaeacians on board one of their marvellous vessels to his country, which he reaches after twenty years' absence, while asleep. He arrives just in time to ward off the disaster that is threatening his house. After his mother Anticlea had died of grief for her son, and the old Laertes had retired to his country estate in mourning, more than a hundred noble youths of Ithaca and the surrounding isles had appeared as suitors for the hand of the fair and chaste Penelope, had persecuted Telemachus, who was now growing up to manhood, and were wasting the substance of the absent Odysseus. Penelope had demanded a respite from making her decision until she had finished weaving a shroud intended for her father-in-law, and every night unravelled the work of the day. In the fourth year one of her attendants betrayed the secret; she had to complete the garment, and when urged to make her decision promised to choose the man who should win in a shooting match with Odysseus bow, hoping that none of the wooers would be able even so much as to bend it. Just before the day of trial, Odysseus lands on the island disguised by Athena as a beggar. He betakes himself to the honest swineherd Eumoeus, one of the few retainers who have remained true to him, who receives his master, whom he fails to recognise, in a hospitable manner. To the same spot Athene brings Telemachus, who has returned in safety, in spite of the plots of the suitors from a journey to Nestor at Pylus and Menelaus and Helen in Sparta. Hereupon Odysseus makes himself known and, together with his son and retainer, concerts his plan of revenge. In the shape of a beggar he betakes himself to the house, where he manfully controls his anger at the arrogance of the suitors which is displayed towards himself, and his emotion on meeting Penelope. Next day the shooting match takes place. This involves shooting through the handles of twelve axes with the bow of Eurytus (q.v.), which the latter's son Iphitus had once presented to the young Odysseus. None of the suitors can bend the bow, and so Odysseus takes hold of it, and bends it in an instant, thus achieving the master-shot. Supported by Telemachus, Eumaeus, and the herdsman Philcetius, and with the aiding presence of Athens, he shoots first the insolent Antinous, and then the other suitors. He next makes himself known to Penelope, who has meanwhile fallen into a deep sleep, and visits his old father. In the meantime the relatives of the murdered suitors have taken up arms, but Athene, in the form of Mentor (q.v.) brings about a reconciliation. The only hint of Odysseus' end in Homer is in the prophecy of Tiresias, that in a calm old age a peaceful death will come upon him from the sea. In later poetry Telegonus, the son of Odysseus by Circe, is sent forth by his mother to seek out his father. He lands at Ithaca, and plunders the island: Odysseus proceeds to meet him, is wounded by him with a poisonous sting-ray, given by Circe to her son as a spear-point, and dies a painfal death, which thus comes "from the sea." On Telegonus discovering that he has killed his father, he carries the dead body home with him, together with Penelope and Telemachus, and there the latter live a life of immortality, Telemachus becoming husband of Circe, and Telegonus of Penelope. Besides Telegonus, the legend told of two sons of Odysseus by Circe, named Agrius and Latinus, who were said to have reigned over the Etruscans. Telegonus in particular was regarded by the Romans as the founder of Tusculum [Ovid, Fasti, iii 92], and Praeneste [Horace, Odes iii 29, 8]. In later times the adventures of Odysseus were transferred as a whole to the coast of Italy: the promontory of Circeii was regarded as the abode of Circe, Formiae as the city of the Laestrygones. Near Surrentum was found the island of the Sirens; near Cape Lacinium that of Calypso, while near to Sicily were the isle of Aeolus, Scylla, and Charybdis, and, on the Sicilian shore, the Cyclopes. Odysseus is generally represented as a bearded man, wearing a semi-oval cap like that of a Greek sailor. (See fig. 1.)
Type: Standard
gutter splint
gutter splint
gutter splint