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14 votes
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Greek myth about an athlete who kills another man with a discus

I think that you are probably thinking of the legend of Perseus. After rescuing the princess Andromeda, he accompanied his mother Danaë back to Argos, and took part in some funeral games that were ...
Clara Díaz Sanchez's user avatar
9 votes
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What does Athena mean by "suave, seductive words" in the Odyssey?

Earlier in book 1 it was explained that Odysseus wanted to return home to his wife Penelope and his kingdom of Ithaca, but Calypso kept him imprisoned because she wanted to marry him: But one man ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
7 votes
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In search of: The Lexicon of Exekias/Ezekias

I think this is most likely to be the lexicon of Hesychius, titled "Συναγωγὴ Πασῶν Λεξέων κατὰ Στοιχεῖον" or "The Alphabetical Collection of All Words". Hesychius of Alexandria was ...
alexg's user avatar
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7 votes
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Who is the 'pale Titan-woman' in Swinburne's 'Ave atque Vale'?

The general interpretation of this line is that it's an allusion to Baudelaire's poem La Géante (The Giantess). From Walter Martin's translation in an omnibus edition: When Mother Nature filled the ...
CDR's user avatar
  • 3,388
6 votes
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Did Lord Byron fluff his Greek in his poem beginning 'Maid of Athens, ere we part'?

I am Greek and familiar with the poem, and I can say that Sumelic and Scott are right to interpret this as a misunderstanding of Byron. Ζωή μου means indeed My life, while Ζώη μου means nothing at all,...
Maria A.'s user avatar
6 votes
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What is the "black sphinx" in Greek magical papyrus IV?

The word σφίγξ was used not only for the mythological Sphinx, but also for a kind of monkey or ape. This animal is mentioned in a few ancient authors, but not with enough detail to identify the ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
6 votes
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What does Athena mean by 'slaughtering his droves of sheep and cattle'?

You are of course correct that the sheep and cattle foreshadow the eventual fate of the Achaeans themselves. But in the first instance, they are literally meant. In Odysseus's absence, over a hundred ...
verbose's user avatar
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5 votes
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What does Athena mean in this passage of book 3 of the Odyssey?

This is as straightforward as it comes. Telemachus is disheartened and fears his father may not return. Mentor/Athena chastises him on giving up. The two components are: The gods can do anything (so ...
cmw's user avatar
  • 1,135
5 votes

Who is the 'pale Titan-woman' in Swinburne's 'Ave atque Vale'?

Swinburne’s ‘Ave atque Value’ (1868) is subtitled “In Memory of Charles Baudelaire”, who died in 1867. The poem contains allusions to a number of Baudelaire’s poems, and when looking for a “pale Titan-...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
5 votes
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Meaning of Hesiod's line "reproaching the sons whom he himself begot..."

Here’s a bit more context from Caldwell’s translation: Great Ouranos, their father, called his sons Titans, reproaching the sons whom he himself begot; he said they strained in wickedness to do a ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
5 votes
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Who are the '12 children of Aiolos Hippotadês', as introduced in Book 10, The Grace of the Witch, of Homer's Odyssey?

The children of Aiolos follow a similar pattern to some other divine families in Greek mythology. First, according to Hesiod, the primordial gods Gaia and Ouranos had twelve children (the Titans), six ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
4 votes
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Has any writer claimed that Hector, not Achilles, is the true hero of the Iliad?

The French essayist, journalist, critic and translator Émile Montégut, who translated all of Shakespeare's plays in the years 1867–1873, wrote something about this in the introduction to his ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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4 votes

Do we have (non-biblical) literary allusions referring to person as a "χριστός"?

I understand you to be asking how χριστός was understood in Greek prior to being used in the Septuagint to translate Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ maschiach meaning “anointed”, from מָשַׁח mashach “anoint”, used in ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
4 votes
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On Some Grand Lines in a Greek Tragedy

The quotation is from Aeschylus, Prometheus Bound lines 550–551. Here is a transliteration into Roman characters: oúpōe tàn Diòs harmonían thnatō̃n parexíasi boulaí In Herbert Weir Smyth's ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 30.1k
4 votes

What evidence supports Calypso's island being Gozo (Malta)?

Strabo said that it was Callimachus who identified Ogygia with Gozo, but he thought the idea ridiculous: Some allowance might be made for others, but no manner of excuse can be put forward for ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
3 votes

Greek Alexander Romance - Plot device or other function of Alexander's surreptitious stealing of Persian drinking cups?

I don’t have access to the Penguin version, but from my reading of the online Greek to English Translation version here the cups are not just of superior craftmanship they are gold as becomes evident ...
schweppz's user avatar
  • 1,219
3 votes
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Unabridged version of the Alexander Romance

Difficulties in the question There are a couple of points in the question where I suspect that it is misinterpreting the Wikipedia article on the Alexander Romance. The question says, “Looking into ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
2 votes
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May we find the digital text renderings of the Herculaneum scrolls?

There will always be a lag between what's online and new discoveries, but there are several places you access the papyri. You can see the pictures of the papyri on Chartes, but the website is all in ...
cmw's user avatar
  • 1,135
2 votes

Greek myth about an athlete who kills another man with a discus

In addition to Clara Diaz Sanchez' answer, I'd like to reveal some of the complexity of the Greek Myths around this subject, where there are many variations and overlaps between different mythological ...
twhitney's user avatar
  • 121
2 votes

What is the "black sphinx" in Greek magical papyrus IV?

Classics is such a deep field, but it rewards persistence. When I read Lycophron's Alexandra, I encountered that enigmatic term "Black Sphinx" and I remembered I had this question about it. ...
Arash Howaida's user avatar
2 votes

Why did Andromache call the men of Sparta ‘devious plotters and the master of lies’?

TL;DR: It is not possible to identify the specific events or circumstances that motivated Euripides to write this speech. The diatribe against the Spartans in Andromache was surely intended to have a ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
1 vote

Who is the 'pale Titan-woman' in Swinburne's 'Ave atque Vale'?

This poem also has many callbacks, most notably the title, to the Roman Catullus' poem of the same name. That poem contains the line "fortūna mihī tētē abstulit ipsum", "Fortuna has ...
thegreatemu's user avatar
1 vote

is it possible to adapt ancient graeco-roman prosodic styles, forms, principles, modifications into modern verses?

Classical Greek and Latin had poetry based on syllable length, and not on syllabic stress, which is what modern English poetry is based on. The meters of Greek and Latin poetry are thus called ...
Peter Shor's user avatar
1 vote

Did Lord Byron fluff his Greek in his poem beginning 'Maid of Athens, ere we part'?

I don't know Greek (ancient or modern). The accentuation of "Ζώη μοῦ, σάς ἀγαπῶ" seems to be wrong, but that isn't what the Daily JSTOR article "When Lord Byron Tried to Buy a Twelve-...
sumelic's user avatar
  • 814
1 vote

What does Heraclitus mean by "if you do not expect the unexpected"?

Here's my translation from college: For those who've discovered the mystery, there is no path. It's difficult to transliterate and semantically convey at the same time. Greek is too pristine, robust ...
Aletheus's user avatar

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