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Bk II:508-530. Bk XV:1-59.The Ocean, personified as a sea-god,
son of Earth and Air, and husband of Tethys his sister. Oceanus and Tethys are
also the Titan and Titaness ruling
the planet Venus. Some say from his waters all living things originated and
Tethys produced all his children. Visited by Juno
for help in punishing Callisto.
Bk IX:439-516.He married his sister, Tethys.
Bk XIII:898-968. With Tethys, he purges
Bk II:633-675. Daughter of Chiron
the Centaur and the water-nymph Chariclo,
and named after the river where she was born.
A prophetess of Apollo, she foretells Aesculapius’s fate and that of her father
Chiron. She is turned into a horse by the gods for her pains.
Bk III:572-596. Of Olenus, whose daughter
Aege is identified with Capella, the
‘she-goat’, the sixth brightest star in the sky (a binary yellow giant) in
the constellation Auriga, the Charioteer. Auriga is now usually associated
with Erichthonius, and Capella with Amaltheia
who suckled the infant Zeus.
Goddess of plenty, an old Italian deity, wife of Saturn
and patroness of husbandry.
Bk IX:439-516. She married her brother Saturn.
Bk XIV:101-153. The Underworld, the house
of the dead, and a name for Pluto (Dis) as the god of the Underworld.
Bk XV:479-546. Of Orestes, son of Agamemnon, applied to Diana because Orestes took the image of Diana
from Taurus to Aricia in Italy. The rites
of the sanctuary there, at Nemi, are the starting point for Frazer’s ‘The
Golden Bough’ (see Chapter I et seq.)
The mighty hunter, one of the giants, now a constellation with his two
hunting dogs and his sword and glittering belt. The brightest constellation
in the sky, it is an area of star formation in a nearby arm of the Galaxy
centred on M42 the Orion Nebula, which marks Orion’s sword. He is depicted
as brandishing a club and shield at Taurus the Bull. He was stung to death
by a scorpion, and now rises when Scorpio
sets and vice versa. His two dogs are Canis Major, which contains Sirius the
brightest star in the sky after the sun, and Canis Minor, which contains the
star Procyon, forming an equilateral triangle with Sirius and Betelgeuse the
red giant in Orion.
Bk VIII:183-235. Icarus is warned not to fly too near
Bk XIII:123-381. The stars are engraved
on Achilles’s shield.
Bk XIII:675-704. Orion’s daughters, Menippe
and Metioche, killed themselves as an offering to the gods to relieve the
city of Thebes from plague.
The mythical musician of Thrace, son of Oeagrus
and Calliope the Muse. His lyre, given to him by Apollo, and invented by Hermes-Mercury, is the constellation Lyra containing
the star Vega.
(See John William Waterhouse’s painting – Nymphs finding the head of Orpheus
– Private Collection, and Gustave Moreau’s painting – Orpheus – in the Gustave
Moreau Museum, Paris: See Peter Vischer the Younger’s Bronze relief – Orpheus
and Eurydice – Museum fur Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg: and the bas-relief –
Hermes, Eurydice and Orpheus – a copy of a votive stele attributed to Callimachus
or the school of Phidias, Naples, National Archaeological Museum: Note also
Rilke’s - Sonnets to Orpheus – and his Poem - Orpheus, Eurydice and Hermes.)
Bk X:1-85. He summons Hymen
to his wedding with Eurydice. After
she is stung by a snake and dies he travels to Hades,
to ask for her life to be renewed. Granted it, on condition he does not look
back at her till she reaches the upper world, he falters, and she is lost.
He mourns her, and turns from the love of women to that of young men.
Bk X:106-142. He sings the stories of: Ganymede, Hyacinthus, the Cerastae, the Propoetides,
Venus and Adonis, and through Venus’s ‘tale within a tale’
Atalanta and Hippomenes.
Bk XI:1-66. He is killed by the Maenads of Thrace and dismembered, his head and lyre
floating down the river Hebrus to the
sea, being washed to Lesbos. (This head
had powers of prophetic utterance) His ghost sinks to the fields of the Blessed
where he is reunited with Eurydice.
Bk XI:85-145. He taught Midas and Eumolpus
the Bacchic rites.
Bk I:689-721. An ancient name for the island
of Delos, originally of an islet nearby
(Quail Island), and an epithet of Diana,
the Delian goddess.
Bk XV:307-360. Once a floating island.
The Egyptian god, Ousir, identified with Dis
and Bacchus-Dionysus. A nature god, the son of
Geb and Nut, born in Thebes in Upper Egypt. His consort was Isis. The story is of his death initiated by
his brother Set, and his resurrection thanks to Isis, Thoth, Anubis and Horus.
Bk IX:666-713. He was searched for by Isis
BkVI:1-25. A river in northern Lydia,
a tributary of the River Hermus.
Bk XI:85-145. The site of the royal capital
of Lydia is at Sardis nearby, and
both are near Mount Tmolus. Its
waters become a gold-bearing stream at the touch of Midas.
Bk XV:622-745. A city of Lucania in Italy.
The site is near modern Agropoli on the Bay of Salerno, a ruin in a wilderness,
with Doric temples that surpassed those of Athens. Originally called Poseidonia,
the city of Neptune, it was founded
by Greeks from Sybaris in the 6th
c. BC. It became Paestum when
it passed into the hands of the Lucanians in the 4th century. It was taken
by the Romans in 273 BC. In antiquity it was famous for its roses, which flowered
twice a year, and its violets. Malaria eventually drove away its population.
Bk XIII:1-122. The son of Nauplius, Naupliades. He revealed Ulysses pretence of madness and drew him
into the expedition against Troy.
Ulysses subsequently hid gold in Palamades’s tent, and claimed it was a bribe
from Priam. Palamedes died dishonoured. Ulysses defends
The sons of Jupiter and the nymph Thalia, worshipped
in Sicily at Palica, where a temple
and two lakes were sacred to them.
Bk V:385-424. Dis
passes through the sulphurous swamps there while abducting Proserpine.
Bk XIV:772-804. The feast of Pales, the
god of shepherds, celebrated on April 21st, the day on which Rome was founded. (753BC)
Bk XIII:1-122. An image of Pallas, said to have fallen from the sky at Troy. The safety of Troy depended on its
preservation according to an oracle. It was stolen by Ulysses and Diomede.
Bk I:689-721. The god of woods and shepherds.
He wears a wreath of pine needles. He pursues the nymph Syrinx and she is changed into marsh reeds.
He makes the syrinx or pan-pipes from the reeds. He is represented by the
constellation Capricorn, the sea-goat, a goat with a fish’s tail. Pan jumped
into a river to escape the monster Typhon.
Bk XI:146-171. He competes with Apollo, but his reeds are inferior to the music
of the lyre.
Bk XIV:512-526. He inhabits caves.
Bk XIV:623-697.Woodland deities (plural)
who pursue Pomona.
The Three Fates. The Three Sisters, the daughters of Night. Clotho, the
spinner of the thread of life, Lachesis, chance or luck, and Atropos, inescapable
destiny. Clotho spins, Lachesis draws out, and Atropos shears the thread.
Their unalterable decrees may be revealed to Jupiter
but he cannot change the outcome.
Bk V:487-532. They have made a decree that
Persephone can return to heaven so long as she has not
eaten anything in the underworld, and Jupiter is subject to the decree.
Bk VIII:451-514. They prophesy the span of
Meleager’s life, linking it to the
burning brand of wood in the fire.
Bk IX:159-210.A mountain in Arcadia. In the Third Labour Hercules captures the Ceryneian Hind there,
sacred to Diana, that had bronze hooves
and golden antlers like a stag, so that some called it a stag.
Bk VIII:81-151. Bk IX:714-763.The daughter of the Sun and the nymph Crete (Perseis). She was
the wife of King Minos of Crete and mother
of Phaedra and Ariadne.
She was inspired, by Poseidon,with a mad passion for a white bull from
the sea, and Daedalus built for her a wooden frame in the
form of a cow, to entice it. From the union she produced the Minotaur, Asterion, with a bull’s head and
a man’s body.
Achilles beloved friend whose death
causes him to re-enter the fight against the Trojans.
Bk XIII:123-381. He pushed the Trojans
back from the Greek ships, dressed in Achilles’s armour.
Bk VIII:329-375. One of the Calydonian Boar
hunters. He is knocked down by the boar’s charge.
Pelasgus, Pelasgian, Pelasgi
Bk III:528-571. The old Latin household gods,
two in number, whose name derives from penus a larder, or storage room
for food. They were closely linked to the family and shared its joys and sorrows.
Their altar was the hearth, which they shared with Vesta. Their images were placed at the back
of the atrium in front of the Genius, the anonymous deity that protected and
was the creative force in all groups and families, and, as the Genius of the
head of the house and represented as a serpent, was placed between the Lar
(Etruscan guardian of the house) and Penates. At meals they were placed between
the plates and offered the first food. The Penates moved with a family and
became extinct if the family did.
Bk V:149-199. Polluted by violence.
Bk V:487-532. Arethusa’s household gods have moved with her
to her new home in Sicily.
Bk V:642-678. Triptolemus enters the palace: ‘regis
subit ille penates’.
Bk VII:501-613. The people of Aegina afflicted with plague abandon their
Bk VIII:81-151. Scylla betrays her city and her gods.
Bk VIII:611-678. Philemon and Baucis
are visited by the gods, Jupiter
and Mercury, disguised as mortals, so that heavenly
gods meet the humblest of household gods.
Bk IX:439-516. The just Minos cannot deny Miletus access to his home (‘est patriis arcere
Bk IX:595-665. Byblis flees her home.
Bk XII:536-579. Nestor’s household gods overthrown by Hercules.
Bk XV:418-452. Aeneas carried his gods away from Troy.
Bk XV:843-870. Vesta is worshipped amongst Caesar’s ancestral gods.
The wife of Ulysses, and daughter of Icarius and the
(See J R Spencer Stanhope’s painting- Penelope – The De Morgan Foundation)
Bk VIII:260-328. Her father-in-law Laertes is present at the Calydonian Boar Hunt.
Bk XIII:481-575. Hecuba imagines herself Penelope’s servant
after Ulysses takes her as a prize at the fall of Troy.
Bk XIV:623-697. She is pestered by many
suitors (a hundred and eight, in Homer), while she waits faithfully for Ulysses
to return from Troy.
Bk VIII:236-259. The sister of Daedalus. Her son Talus was killed by Daedalus
in a fit of jealousy, thrown from the Athenian citadel, but Pallas turned him into the partridge, which takes its name
from his mother, perdix perdix.
Bk VII:350-403. An ancient Attic king. He was held in such high esteem by
his people that Jupiter would have
killed him, but changed him into an eagle and his wife Phene
into an osprey at Apollo’s request.
The son of Jupiter and Danae, grandson of Acrisius, King of Argos. He was conceived as a result of Jupiter’s
rape of Danae, in the form of a shower of gold. He is represented by the constellation
Perseus near Cassiopeia. He is depicted
holding the head of the Medusa, whose
evil eye is the winking star Algol. It contains the radiant of the Perseid
meteor shower. His epithets are Abantiades,
Acrisioniades, Agenorides, Danaeius, Inachides, Lyncides.
(See Burne-Jones’s oil paintings and gouaches in the Perseus series particularly
The Arming of Perseus, The Escape of Perseus, The Rock of Doom, Perseus slaying
the Sea-Serpent, and The Baleful Head.)( See Benvenuto Cellini’s bronze Perseus
- the Loggia, Florence)
Bk IV:604-662. His divine origin is rejected
by Acrisius, his grandfather. He returns from defeating the Gorgon, Medusa, carrying her snaky head, that
turns people to stone on sight.
Bk IV:604-662. He turns Atlas to stone with the Gorgon’s head. He is equipped
with the wings and curved sword (scimitar) of Mercury.
Bk IV:663-705. He offers to rescue Andromeda.
Bk IV:706-752. He defeats the sea serpent,
wins Andromeda and is promised a kingdom as a dowry by Cepheus.
Bk IV:753-803. At his marriage feast he relates
his adventures, the theft of the Graeae’s
single eye, and the taking of Medusa’s
head. He tells how Medusa acquired her snaky hair. He is aided by Minerva, and equipped with her bronze shield.
Bk V:30-73. He is attacked by Phineus,
who escapes him. He kills Athis and Lycabas, a pair of friends and lovers.
Bk V:74-106. Bk
V:107-148. He kills many of Phineus’s
Bk V:149-199. He is forced to use the Gorgon’s head.
Bk V:200-249. He petrifies Phineus, overcomes Proetus
who has seized the kingdom of his grandfather Acrisius, and petrifies him,
and turns Polydectes king of Seriphus
Bk XIII:705-737The Phaeacians, the fabled
inhabitants of the island of Scheria, where Ulysses lands. See Homer’s Odyssey.
(Possibly identified with Corfu). Aeneas
Bk II:344-366. The eldest of the Heliads, the daughters of Clymene and the Sun, sisters of Phaethon,
who are turned into poplar trees as they mourn for him, their tears becoming
drops of amber.
Bk IX:764-797. An island near Alexandria in
Egypt, site of the lighthouse. Protected by Isis
as goddess of the sea.
Bk XV:259-306. Subsequently silted up
and linked to the mainland.
Of Phegeus king of Psophis in Arcadia. Father of Alphesiboea, the first wife
of Alcmaeon, who left her to marry Callirhoe and was killed by the brothers
Bk IX:394-417. His sword in his son’s hands
kills Alcmaeon and punishes him for the murder of Eriphyle.
Bk IX:211-272. The son of Poeas.
He lights Hercules’s funeral pyre
and receives from him the bow, quiver and arrows that will enable the Greeks
to finally win at Troy, and that had
been with Hercules when he rescued Hesione
Bk XIII:1-122. Bitten by a snake on Lemnos, he is abandoned there on Ulysses advice. Ulysses accepts that Philoctetes
and his weapons are essential for the defeat of Troy.
Bk XIII:399-428. Ulysses brings Philoctetes
and the weapons to Troy.
The daughter of Pandion, sister of Procne, raped by
her sister’s husband Tereus.
Bk VI:438-485. Convinces her father
to allow her to visit her sister Procne, unaware of Tereus’s lust for her.
Bk VI:486-548. Tereus violates her,
and she vows to tell the world of his crime.
Bk VI:549-570. He severs her tongue
and tells Procne she is dead.
Bk VI:571-619. Philomela communicates
with Procne by means of a woven message, and is rescued
by her during the Bacchic revels.
Bk VI:619-652. She helps Procne
to murder Itys, the son of Tereus and
Bk VI:653-674. Pursued by Tereus
she turns into a swallow, with a red throat. (pectus is translated
here as throat, to correspond with the English swallow, hirundo rustica,
though in Egypt and elsewhere this bird has a chestnut red underbody as well
). Having no tongue, the swallow merely screams and flies around in circles.
Bk II:676-701. The mother of the centaur, Chiron. A nymph, the daughter of Oceanus whom Saturn
loved. he changed himself into a stallion and her into a mare, and their son
Chiron was half-horse, half-man, and a demi-god.
Bk VI:103-128. She is not referred to directly,
but her union with Saturn is alluded to in Arachne’s weaving.
Bk VII:1-73. King of Salmydessus
in Thrace, a blind prophet, who
had received the gift of prophecy from Apollo. He was blinded by the gods for prophesying
the future too accurately, and was plagued by a pair of Harpies. Calais
and Zetes, the sons of Boreas, rid him of their loathsome attentions,
in return for advice on how to obtain the Golden Fleece. The two winged sons
chased the Harpies to the Strophades
islands, were some say their lives were spared.
Bk I:313-347. Bk V:385-424. Bk VI:486-548. Bk VII:294-349. Bk XV:176-198. Bk XV:418-452. A
familiar name for Apollo as the sun-god, and so the sun itself.
Bk I:438-473. Destroys the Python
and founds the Pythian games. Falls in love with and pursues Daphne. Failing to catch her turns her into
the laurel tree. Institutes the use of laurel for ceremonial crowns. (See
Bernini’s sculpture – Apollo and Daphne – Galleria Borghese, Rome)
Bk II:531-565. Loves Coronis of Larissa who is unfaithful to him.
Bk II:612-632. Having killed her, he rescues
their unborn son Aesculapius and entrusts
him to Chiron the Centaur.
Bk III:1-49. His oracle reveals to Cadmus how he will found Thebes in Boeotia.
Bk VI:103-128. His disguises and his rape of
Isse are depicted by Arachne.
Bk VI:204-266. Helps to punish Niobe for her rejection of his mother Latona.
Bk VI:382-400. Defeats Marsyas in a contest of flute-playing and flays
Bk VII:350-403. Loves Rhodes, and Rhode the nymph of the island.
Bk VIII:1-80. He built the walls of Megara,
and where he rested his lyre the stones afterwards gave out a resonant, musical,
Bk VIII:329-375. Mopsus prays to him for help against the Calydonian
Bk IX:439-516. Fathered Miletus on the nymph Dione.
Bk IX:595-665. Byblis, Miletus’s daughter is his grandchild.
Bk X:106-142. He turns Cyparissus into a cypress tree.
Bk X:143-219. He turns Hyacinthus into the hyacinth (blue larkspur,
hyacinthos grapta) with the marks AI on the base of its petals.
Bk XI:1-66. He rescues the head of Orpheus who was his poet.
Bk XI:146-171. He competes on the lyre
with Pan on his reed-pipes.
Bk XI:266-345. He loves Chione and she bears him a son Philammon. He turns Daedalion
into a hawk.
Bk XIII:481-575. He aids Paris in killing Achilles.
Bk XIII:623-639. Bk XIII:640-674. Anius is his high priest on Delos.
Bk XIII:675-704. Aeneas consults the oracle, and is told to seek
out his ancient mother, and ancestral shore.
Bk XIV:101-153. Phoebus grants the Sibyl of Cumae
eternal life, but she forgets to ask for eternal youth, and is doomed to wither
away, until she is merely a voice.
Bk XV:622-745. Bk XV:622-745. His oracle is at Delphi. Aesculapius
is his son.
Bk XV:843-870. Vesta, as the Tauric Diana, is worshipped alongside himself.
The mythical bird, symbol of continually renewed existence.
Bk VII:1-73. The Golden Fleece of
the winged ram on which Phrixus son of Athamas and Nephele and brother of Helle, escaped, with his sister, from his stepmother
Ino, and fled to Colchis, in order to avoid being sacrificed.
Helle fell into the sea and the Hellespont
is named after her. Phrixus reached Colchis where Sol stables his horses, and sacrificed the
ram to Zeus, or in other versions Ares (Mars),
and it hung in the temple of Mars where it was guarded by a dragon. Its return
was sought by Jason and the Argonauts.
Bk VII:350-403. The friend of Cycnus(2), who brings him presents of tamed
animals and birds, but when his love is spurned refuses a last gift. Cycnus
attempts suicide but is turned into a swan.
The son of Saturn, and ancient king of Latium, husband of Canens.
Bk XIV:320-396. He is loved by Circe, and turned by her into a woodpecker that
bears his name. (Picus viridis is the green woodpecker, distinguished
by its red nape and crown, and its golden-green back.)
Bk XIV:397-434. His companions are turned
into wild beasts, and Canens wastes away with grief.
Pirene, Pirenis, Peirene
Bk II:227-271. Bk VII:350-403. The Pirenian Spring. A famous
fountain on the citadel of Corinth sacred
to the Muses, where Bellerephon took Pegasus
to drink. Pausanias says (II:iii, Corinth) that Peirene was a human being
who became a spring, through weeping for her son Cenchrias, killed by accident
by Artemis, and that the water is sweet to taste. (It has Byzantine columns,
and was once the private garden of the Turkish Bey.). The spring was said
never to fail. It was also the name of a fountain outside the city gates,
towards Lechaeum, into whose waters the Corinthian bronzes were dipped red-hot
The constellation of the fishes, the twelfth sign of the Zodiac. An ancient
constellation depicting two fishes with their tails tied together. It represents
Venus and Cupid
escaping from the monster Typhon. It contains the spring equinox, formerly
in Aries. The vernal equinox has moved into Pisces since ancient times due
to the effects of precession (the ‘wobble’ of the earth on its polar axis).
Bk X:1-85. Bk
X:143-219. The last sign of the solar year, preceding the spring equinox
in ancient times. A water sign.
Bk XIV:75-100. An island not far from
Cumae in Italy. The modern Ischia. It was called
Pithecusa by its Greek colonists, then Inarime by the Romans. It is the largest
island in the Bay of Naples.
Bk I:668-688. The Seven Sisters, the daughters,
with the Hyades and the Hesperides, of Atlas the Titan.
Their mother was Pleione the naiad. They were chased
by Orion rousing the anger of Artemis to whom they were dedicated
and changed to stars by the gods. The Pleiades are the star cluster M45 in
the constellation Taurus. Their
names were Maia, the mother of Mercury by Jupiter, Taÿgeta, Electra, Merope, Asterope, Alcyone
(the brightest star of the cluster), and Celaeno.
Bk VI:146-203. Niobe claims one of the Pleiads as her mother,
Dione; or, in an alternative reading, Ovid would make Dione a sister of the
Pleiades, but not one of them. (Traditionally she is a Pleiad: an alternative
name for one of the seven sisters above?)
Bk XIII:123-381. The stars are engraved
on Achilles’s shield.
Plough, Ursa Major, The Great
Bear, The Big Dipper
Bk II:150-177. The constellation of Ursa Major.
It represents Callisto turned into
a bear by Jupiter. The two stars
of the ‘bowl’ furthest from the ‘handle’, Merak and Dubhe, point to Polaris
the pole star. The ‘handle’ points to Arcturus in Bootes,
who is the Herdsman or Bear Herd (Arcturus means the Bearkeeper).
The God of the Underworld, elder brother of Jupiter
and Neptune, and like them the son of Saturn and Rhea.
Bk XIV:623-697. A beautiful wood nymph
(hamadryad) of Latium, devoted to horticulture.
She is loved by Vertumnus who
sets out to woo her, in disguise.
Bk XIV:698-771. He reveals his true form
and she loves him also.
Bk XV:745-842. The second son of Pompey
the Great conquered in the sea battles, off Sicily, between Mylae and Naulochus,
by Agrippa, Augustus’s admiral, in 36
Bk XI:749-795. Bk XIV:445-482. The King of Troy at the time of the Trojan War, the son
of Laomedon, husband of Hecuba, by whom he had many children. In the
Metamorphoses Ovid mentions Hector,
Helenus, Paris, Polydorus, Deiphobus,
Cassandra and Polyxena.
Aesacus was his son by Alexiroe.
Bk XII:1-38. He mourns for Aesacus, thinking
Bk XII:579-628. Achilles’s death alone brings him pleasure after
the death of Hector.
Bk XIII:123-381. Heard Ulysses’s case for Helen’s return in front of the Trojan senate.
Bk XIII:399-428. He is murdered at Jupiter’s altar as Troy falls.
Bk XIII:429-480. He had sent his son
Polydorus to be brought up in the court of Polymestor of Thrace who had married his daughter Ilione.
Bk XIII:481-575. Hecuba counts him lucky to have died with
Bk XIII:576-622. The uncle of Memnon, since Memnon’s father Tithonus is his brother.
The Pan of Mysia in Asia Minor, venerated as Lampsacus.
God of gardens and vineyards. His phallic image was placed in orchards and
gardens. He presided over the fecundity of fields, flocks, beehives, fishing
and vineyards. He became part of the retinue of Dionysus.
Bk IX:324-393. Pursues Lotis who is changed into a lotus-tree.
Bk XIV:623-697. He pursues Pomona.
Bk XIV:75-100. An island off the coast
of Campania (Southern Italy).
Bk VI:401-438. The daughter of Pandion,
king of Athens, married to Tereus, king of Thrace.
Bk VI:438-485. Persuades Tereus
to bring her sister Philomela to stay with her.
Bk VI:549-570. Tereus rapes and
mutilates her sister, and tells Procne that Philomela is dead.
Bk VI:571-619. Philomela
communicates with her by means of a woven message, and she rescues her during
the Bacchic rites.
Bk VI:619-652. She murders her son
Itys and serves the flesh to Tereus.
Bk VI:653-674. Pursued by Tereus
she turns into a nightingale. The bird’s call, mourning Itys, is said to be
‘Itu! Itu!’ which is something like the occasional ‘chooc, chooc’ among its
wide range of notes.
Bk VII:425-452. A famous robber who trimmed
or stretched his guests’ bodies to the size of his bed. Theseus served him in the same way, destroying
him. Possibly identical with Polpemon.
Bk XV:307-360. The daughters of Proetus king of Tiryns,
Lysippe, Iphinoe, and Iphianassa, who were maddened by the gods, and whose
madness Melampus purged. (Clitor,
Nonacris and the Styx are in the Mount Chelmos area, described
interestingly by Pausanias, VIII 18, where he also describes the purification
of the Proetides at Lousoi, in the sanctuary of Artemis.)
Bk I:68-88. The son of Iapetus by the nymph Cleomene, and father
of Deucalion. Sometimes included among
the seven Titans, he was the wisest
of his race and gave human beings the useful arts and sciences. Jupiter first withheld fire and Prometheus
stole it from the chariot of the Sun.
Jupiter had Prometheus chained to the frozen rock in the Caucasus where a
vulture tore at his liver night and day for eternity. (See Aeschylus’s ‘Prometheus
Bound’, and Shelley’s ‘Prometheus Unbound’)
Bk X:220-242. Girls of Amathus who denied Venus’s divinity. They became public prostitutes,
and turned to stone, as they lost their sense of shame. This is a tale based
on the ritual public prostitution which was a feature of the worship of Diana
(at Ephesus) and Astarte, etc. and at the Temple in Jerusalem during the deviations
from the worship of Jehovah, by the Jews.
Proserpina, Proserpine, Persephone
A Pigmy, one of the dwarf peoples.
Bk VI:70-102. The Queen of the Pygmies
turned into a crane by Juno and forced to war against her own people.
A Cyprian who fashioned an ivory statue of a beautiful
girl that he brought to life, calling her Galatea. (See the sequence of four
paintings by Burne-Jones, ‘Pygmalion and the Image’, Birmingham Museum and
Art Gallery, England, titled: The Heart Desires, The Hand Refrains, The Godhead
Fires, The Soul Attains: See also Rameau’s operatic work ‘Pygmalion’)
Bk X:243-297. Venus brings her to life, and he marries
her. She gives birth to a daughter, Paphos
who gives her name to the island of Cyprus, sacred to Venus.
King of Thrace.
Bk V:250-293. He offered the Muses shelter, and then attempted violence. They
flew away: he tried to follow and was killed.
The famous Greek philosopher of Samos, the Ionian island, who took
up residence at Crotona in Italy, where
Numa came to be his pupil. His school was
later revived at Tarentum. He
flourished in the second half of the 6th century BC.
Bk XV:60-142. He teaches the vegetarian
ethic based on the sanctity of life.
BkXV:143-175. He teaches the doctrine
of the transmigration of souls, metempsychosis, and was Euphorbus at the time of the Trojan War.
Bk XV:176-198. He teaches the doctrine
of eternal flux. This is the panta rei (πάντα
ρει), ‘all things flow’, taught by Heraclitus the Ephesian,
(flourished c500 BC), but not apparently original with him: he also said ‘you
cannot step in the same river twice’ as attested by Plato.
Bk XV:199-236. He teaches the four ages
Bk XV:237-258. He teaches here a theory
of the rarefaction and condensation of the four ‘elements’ that is attributed
to Anaximenes of the Milesian school of philosophers. (Founded by Thales,
and ended by the fall of Miletus in 494 BC.) Anaximenes also taught that air
was the primary Urstoff . His theory introduced the idea of changes
of quantity creating changes of quality. Like other Ionian philosophers the
eternity of matter, and its transformations, is assumed.