Homer Hesiod Hymns Tragedy Remythologizing Tools Blackboard Info
CALLIOPE 100.00%
MUSES 100.00%
In Greek mythology originally the Nymphs of inspiring springs, then goddesses of song in general, afterwards the representatives of the various kinds of poetry, arts, and sciences. In Homer, who now speaks of one, and now of many Muses, but without specifying their number or their names, they are considered as goddesses dwelling in Olympus, who at the meals of the gods sing sweetly to the lyre of Apollo, inspire the poet and prompt his song. Hesiod [Theog. 52-,76-,] calls them the nine daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne, born in Pieria, and mentions their names, to which we shall at the same time add the province and the attributes afterwards assigned to each (see cuts). (1) CALLIOPE (she of the fair voice), in Hesiod the noblest of all, the Muse of epic song; among her attributes are a wax tablet and a pencil. (2) CLIO (she that extols), the Muse of history; with a scroll. (3) EUTERPE (she that gladdens), the Muse of lyric song; with the double flute. (4) THALIA (she that flourishes), the Muse of comedy and bucolic poetry; with the comic mask, the ivy wreath, and the shepherd's staff. (5) MELPOMENE (she that sings), the Muse of tragedy; with tragic mask, ivy wreath, and occasionally with attributes of individual heroes, e.g. the club, the sword. (6) TERPSICHORE (she that rejoices in the dance), the Muse of dancing; with the lyre. (7) ERATO (the lovely one), the Muse of erotic poetry; with a smaller lyre. (8) POLYMNIA or POLYHYMNIA (she that is rich in hymns), the Muse of serious sacred songs; usually represented as veiled and pensive. (9) URANIA (the heavenly), the Muse of astronomy; with the celestial globe. Three older Muses were sometimes distinguished from these. MELETE (Meditation), MNEME (Remembrance), AOIDE (Song), whose worship was said to have been introduced by Aloidae, Otus and Ephialtes, near Mount Helicon. Thracian settlers, in the Pierian district at the foot of Olympus and of Helicon in Boeotia are usually mentioned as the original founders of this worship. At both these places were their oldest sanctuaries. According to the general belief, the favourite haunts of the Muses were certain springs, near which temples and statues had been erected in their honour: Castalia, at the foot of Mount Parnassus, and Aganippe and Hippocrene, on Helicon, near the towns of Ascra and Thespiae. After the decline of Ascra, the inhabitants of Thespiae attended to the worship of the Muses and to the arrangements for the musical contests in their honour that took place once in five years. They were also adored in many otherplaces in Greece. Thus the Athenians offered them sacrifices in the schools, while the Spartans did so before battle. As the inspiring Nymphs of springs they were early connected with Dionysus; the god of poets, Apollo, is looked on as their leader (Musagetes), with whom they share the knowledge of past, present, and future. As beings that gladden men and gods with their song, Hesiod describes them as dwelling on Olympus along with the Charites and Himeros. They were represented in art as virgin goddesses with long garments of many folds, and frequently with a cloak besides; they were not distingnished by special attributes till comparatively later times. The Roman poets identified them with the Italian Camence, prophetic Nymphs of springs and goddesses of birth, who had a grove at Rome outside the Porta Capena. (See EGERIA .) The Greeks gave the title of Muses to their nine most distinguished poetesses: Praxilla, Mcero, Anyte, Erinna, Te1esilla, Corinna, Nossis, Myrtis, and Sappho.
The Muse of dancing. (See MUSES.)
URANIA 85.03%
The Muse of astronomy (see MUSES).
The Muse of tragedy. For further details see MUSES.
THALIA 72.66%
The Muse of dancing and pastoral poetry. (See MUSES.)
i.e. leader of the, Muses, A title of (Apollo) the god of poets. (See APOLLO and MUSES.)
The Muse of serious songs of adoration. (See MUSES.)
The fount of the Muses, which was struck out of Mount Helicon, in Boeotia, by the hoof of the winged steed Pegasus. (See MUSES and PEGASUS.)
MUSEION 36.20%
Originally a temple of the Muses, then a place dedicated to the works of the Muses. In this sense the most remarkable and most important museum of antiquity was that established at Alexandria by Ptolemy Philadelphus in the first half of the 3rd century B.C. This institution contributed very largely towards the preservation and extension of Greek literature and learning. It was a spacious and magnificent edifice, supplied with everything requisite for its purpose, such as an observatory, a library, etc.; it lay near the royal palace and communicated immediately with the temple of the Muses. Noted men of erudition were there supported at the cost of the State, to enable them to devote themselves to their learned studies without interruption. They were under the supervision of principals chosen from their own body, while the priest of the Muses was at their head. Under the Roman emperors, when Egypt had become a province of the empire, it still continued, as an imperial institute and the centre of all learning, especially in mathematics and astronomy [Strabo, p. 794). Caracalla confiscated the pensions of the learned men attached to it, and the institution itself was completely destroyed during the civil wars under Aurelian in the 3rd century.
Daughter of Uranus and Gaea, and one of the Titanides, the goddess of memory, by Zeus, mother of the Muses (q.v.), in company with whom she was usually worshipped.
Dionysius of Alexandria. A Greek poet of the 2nd century A.D. Two hymns of his have survived, one to the Muse Calliope, the other to Apollo. A special interest attaches to them from the fact that the principle of their composition has been preserved in ancient musical notation.
A Greek poet of Athens; one of the less important writers of the Old Attic Comedy, and a frequent butt of the other comic poets. In B.C. 405, however, his Muses took the second prize after Aristophanes' Frogs. We have only short fragments of about ten of his plays.
a spring sacred to the Muses on Mount Helicon, near Thespiae in Bceotia, whose water imparted poetic inspiration. Also the nymph of the same, daughter of the river-god Permessus.
LINUS 17.24%
A hero representing probably a god of the old Greek nature-worship; his death, symbolic of the flagging vegetation during the heat of the dog-days, was hymned in widely known lanittys. The lament for Linus is mentioned as early as Homer [Il. xviii 570). In Argos an ancient festival of Linus was long continued. Here he was said to be the son of Apollo and the princess Psamathe). Born in secret and exposed by his mother the child grew up at a shepherd's among the lambs, until tom in pieces by dogs. Psamathe, however, on the news of what had happened, was put to death by her father. Apollo in wrath sent against the land a monster in female form, named Poine. By this monster mothers were robbed of their children, nor were the Argives freed from the curse until, by the bidding of the oracle, they appeased Apollo by building a temple, and establishing an expiatory festival in honour of the boy and his mother. This was celebrated in the dog-days, in what was hence called the "Month of Lambs," as the "Feast of Lambs" (Arneis) or the "Slaying of Dogs" (Cynphontis), whereat lambs were sacrificed, and the dogs which ran about free were slain, while women and children lamented Linus and Psamathe in mournful songs. In other places, e.g. in Thebes, on Helicon, and on Olympus, Linus, as son of Amphimarus and the Muse Urania, was known as a minstrel, the inventor of the Linus-song, who met with an early death, and whose grave was pointed out in different places. He was said to have challenged Apollo to a contest, and for that reason to have been slain by the god. On Helicon, the mountain of the Muses, his statue was placed in a grotto, where year by year, before the sacrifice to the Muses, a sacrifice for the dead was offered up to him. In later times he was described as the teacher of Heracles, who, when reprimanded, slew him with the lyre.
A Thracian bard, mentioned by Homer [Il. ii 595], son of Philammon and the Nymph Argiope. He boasted that he could rival the Muses, and was therefore deprived by them of sight and voice, and the power of playing the lute. According to later legends, he expiated his arrogance by being punished in Hades.
A nymph, the daughter of the river-god Achelous. Pursued by Apollo, she threw herself into a spring on Mount Parnassus, which took its name after her. The spring was consecrated to Apollo and the Muses, and it was in its water that the pilgrims to the neighbouring shrine of Delphi purified themselves. The Roman poets indulged in the fiction that it conferred poetic inspiration.
Several Roman poetesses bear this name. For the first, see TIBULLUS. A second, who is mentioned by Martial about the time of Domitian, wrote amatory poems which are lost. A poem in seventy hexameters and entitled a Satire, being a complaint to the Muse for the expulsion of the philosophers from Rome by Domitian (89 and 93 A.D.), is written in her name; but this puerile performance is of a later date, her name having been wrongly attached to it.
RHESUS 14.09%
Son of Eioneus, or Strymon, and one of the Muses, king of the Thracians. He came to help Priam, but, in the very night after his arrival before Troy, was surprised by Diomedes and Odysseus, and slain by the former, together with twelve of his companions, while Odysseus took away his swif horses of glistening whiteness. It had been prophesied that, if these fed on Trojan fodder, or drank of the Xanthus before Troy, the town could not be taken.
RHESUS 14.09%
Son of Eioneus, or Strymon, and one of the Muses, king of the Thracians. He came to help Priam, but, in the very night after his arrival before Troy, was surprised by Diomedes and Odysseus, and slain by the former, together with twelve of his companions, while Odysseus took away his swif horses of glistening whiteness. It had been prophesied that, if these fed on Trojan fodder, or drank of the Xanthus before Troy, the town could not be taken.
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