Many of these are as far-fetched as the original stories themselves. Nevertheless, in spite of these reworkings, his work does preserve many stories of myth not found elsewhere.
0674992164 - Strabo: Geography, Volume Iv, Books 8-9 Loeb Classical Library No 196 by Strabo
Introduction 2. Dionysus 3.
Dionysus 5. Priapus 6.
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Hermaphroditus 7. The Muses 8. Heracles 9. The Birth of Heracles Twelve Labours of Heracles Labour 1: Nemean Lion Labour 2: Hydra Labour 3: Erymanthian Boar Labour 4: Cerynitian Hind Labour 5: Stymphalian Birds Labour 6: Augean Stables Labour 7: Cretan Bull Founding of the Olympic Games Labour 8: Horses of Diomedes Labour 9: The Amazons Labour Cattle Geryon Heracles on Crete The Pillars of Heracles Introduction on the myths recounted by the historians chap.
On Dionysus, Priapus, Hermaphroditus, and the Muses chaps. On Heracles and the twelve Labours, and the other deeds of his up to the time of his deification chaps. On the Argonauts and Medea and the daughters of Pelias chaps.
On the descendants of Heracles chaps. On Theseus and his labours chaps. On the Seven Against Thebes chaps. On Neleus and his descendants chap. On the Lapiths and Centaurs chaps. On Asclepius and his descendants chap. On the daughters of Asopus and the sons born to Aeacus chap. On Dardanus and his descendants as far as Priam chap. On Daedalus, the Minotaur, and the campaign of Minos against the king Cocalus chaps.
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On Aristaeus, Daphnis, Eryx, and Orion chaps. For, in the first place, the antiquity of the events they have to record, since it makes record difficult, is a cause of much perplexity to those who would compose an account of them; and again, inasmuch as any pronouncement they may make of the dates of events does not admit of the strictest kind of proof or disproof, a feeling of contempt for the narration is aroused in the min of those who read it; furthermore, the variety and the multitude of the heroes, demi-gods, and men in general whose genealogies must be set down make their recital a difficult thing to achieve; but the greatest and most disconcerting obstacle of all consists in the fact that those who have recorded the deeds and myths of the earliest times are in disagreement among themselves.
Likewise Callisthenes and Theopompus, who were contemporaries of Ephorus, held aloof from the old myths. For very great and most numerous deeds have been performed by the heroes and demi-gods and by many good men likewise, who, because of the benefits they conferred which have been shared by all men, have been honoured by succeeding generation with sacrifices which in some cases are like those offered to the gods, in other cases like such as are paid to heroes, and of one and all the appropriate praises have been sung by the voice of history for all time.
And we shall begin with Dionysus because he not only belongs to a very ancient time but also conferred very great benefactions upon the race of men. The Egyptians, for example, say that the god who among them bears he name Osiris is the one whom the Greeks call Dionysus. But the Indians likewise declare that this god was born among them, and that after he had ingeniously discovered how to cultivate the vine he shared the benefit which wine imparts with human beings throughout the inhabited world.
After Cadmus had traversed a wide territory without being able to find her, he despaired of ever returning to his home; and when he had arrived in Boeotia, in obedience to the oracle which he had received he founded the city of Thebes. Thereupon Zeus, taking up the child, handed it over to the care of Hermes, and ordered him to take it to the cave in Nysa, 4 which lay between Phoenicia and the Nile, where he should deliver it to the nymphs that they should rear it and with great solicitude bestow upon it the best of care.
And as he visited the inhabited world almost in its entirety, he brought much land under cultivation and in return for this received most high honours at the hands of all men. He also discovered the drink made out of barley and called by some zythos , the bouquet of which is not much inferior to that of wine. The preparation of this drink he taught to those peoples whose country was unsuited to the cultivation of the vine.
In Boeotia, out of gratitude to the land of his birth, he freed all the cities and founded a city whose name signified independence, which he called Eleutherae. They state also that he excelled in sagacity and was the fist to attempt the yoking of oxen and by their aid to effect the sowing of the seed, this being the reason why they also represent him as wearing a horn.
They also add that he was accompanied on his campaigns by a personal attendant and caretaker, Seilenus, who was his adviser and instructor in the most excellent pursuits and contributed greatly to the high achievements and fame of Dionysus. Furthermore, in order to ward off the headaches which every man gets from drinking too much wine he bound about his head, they report, a band mitra , which was the reason for his receiving the name Mitrephorus 15 ; and it was this head-band, they say, that in later times led to the introduction of the diadem for kings.
The younger one also inherited the deeds of the older, and so the men of later times, being unaware of the truth and being deceived because of the identity of their names, thought there had been but one Dionysus. When wine was first discovered, the mixing of water with it had not as yet been devised and the wine was drunk unmixed; but when friends gathered together and enjoyed good cheer, the revelers, filling themselves to abundance with the unmixed wine, became like madmen and used their wooden staves to strike one another.
It is on a similar basis that he other appellations or epithets have been given to him, but we feel that it would be a long task to tell of them and inappropriate to the history which we are writing. He was thought to have two forms, men say, because there were two Dionysoi, the ancient one having a long beard, because all men in early times wore long beards, the younger one being youthful and effeminate and young, as we have mentioned before.
Satyrs also, it is reported, were carried about by him in his company and afforded the god great delight and pleasure in connection with their dancings and their goat-songs. There is general agreement also, they say, that he was the inventor of thymelic 20 contests, and that he introduced places where the spectators could witness the shows and organized musical concerts; furthermore, he freed from any forced contribution to the state those who had cultivated any sort of musical skill during his campaigns, and it is for these reasons that later generations have formed musical associations of the artists of Dionysus 21 and have relieved of taxes the followers of this profession.
As for Dionysus and the myths which are related about him we shall rest content with what has been said, since we are aiming at due proportion in our account. Some, however, relate that the generative member, since it is the cause of the reproduction of human beings and of their continued existence through all time, became the object of immortal honour. Honours are accorded him not only in the city, in the temples, but also throughout the countryside, where men set up his statue to watch over their vineyards and gardens, and introduce him as one who punishes any who cast a spell over some fair thing which they possess.
And in the sacred rites, not only of Dionysus but of practically all other gods as well, this god receives honour to some extent, being introduced in the sacrifices to the accompaniment of laughter and sport. Some say that this Hermaphroditus is a god and appears at certain times among men, and that he is born with a physical body which is a combination of that of a man and that of a woman, in that he ahs a body which is beautiful and delicate like that of a woman, but hast he masculine quality and vigour of man. But there are some who declare that such creatures of two sexes are monstrosities, and coming rarely into the world as they do they have the quality of presaging the figure, sometimes for evil and sometimes for good.
But let his be enough for us on such matters. Homer, for instance, writes:. The Muses, nine in all, replying each to each with voices sweet; They are also believed to be virgins, as most writers of myths say, because men consider that the high attainment which is reached through education is pure and uncontaminated. But since we have spoken sufficiently on these matters we shall turn our discussion to the deeds of Heracles.
For as regards that magnitude of the deeds which he accomplished it is generally agreed that Heracles has been handed down as one who surpassed all men of whom memory from the beginning of time ahs brought down an account; consequently it is a difficult attainment to report each one of his deeds in a worthy manner and to present a record which shall be on a level with labours so great, the magnitude of which won for him the prize of immortality.
In the theatres, for instance, though we hare persuaded there have existed no Centaurs who are composed of two different kinds of bodies nor any Geryones with three bodies, we yet look with favour upon such products of the myths as these, and by our applause we enhance the honour of the god. However, we shall leave such considerations and relate his deeds from the beginning, basing our account on those of the most ancient poets and writers of myth. The prowess which was found in him was not only to be seen in his deeds, but was also recognized even before his birth.
Now at this very time Athena, approaching the spot in the company of Hera and being amazed at the natural vigour of the child, persuaded Hera to offer it the breast. But when the boy tugged upon her breast with greater violence than would be expected at his age, Hera was unable to endure the pain and cast the babe from her, whereupon Athena took it to its mother and urged her to rear it. Consequently the inhabitants of Argos, on learning of what had taken place, gave him the name Heracles because he had gained glory kleos by the aid of Hera, 33 although he had formerly been called Alcaeus.
Other children are given their names by their parents, this one alone gained his name by his valour. Indeed, while he was still a youth 34 in age he first of all restored the freedom of Thebes, returning in this way to the city, as though it were the place of his birth, the gratitude which he owed it. Indeed, when the agents of the Minyans appeared to require the tribute and were insolent in their exactions, Heracles mutilated 35 them and then expelled them from the city.
Heracles, however, persuading the young men of his age to strike for the freedom of their fatherland, took out of the temples the suits of armour which had been affixed to their walls, dedicated to the gods by their forefathers as spoil from their wars; for there was not to be found in the city any arms in the hands of a private citizen, the Minyans having stripped the city of its arms in order that the inhabitants of Thebes might not entertain any thought of revolting from them. Then appearing unawares before the city of the Orchomenians and slipping in at their gates he burned the palace of the Minyans and razed the city to the ground.
While he was thus greatly at a loss, Hera sent upon him a frenzy, and in his vexation of soul he fell into a madness.
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And while all extended him sympathy and joined in his grief, for a long while he stayed inactive at home, avoiding any association or meeting with men; at last, however, time assuaged his grief, and making up his mind to undergo the dangers he made his appearance at the court of Eurystheus. This was a beast of enormous size, which could not be wounded by iron or bronze or stone and required the compulsion of the human hand for his subduing. L - Apollonius Rhodius -- Apollonius Rhodius.
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