The Children of Zeus: Aphrodite (page 105 upper)

Chapter 2: The Olympians

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Euripides, Hippolytos 1 ff

Aphrodite
Mighty and of high renown, among mortals and in heaven alike, I am called the goddess Aphrodite. Of all those who dwell between the Euxine Sea and the Pillars of Atlas and look on the light of the sun, I honor those who reverence my power, but I lay low all those who think proud thoughts against me. For in the gods as well one finds this trait: they enjoy receiving honor from mortals. Continue ReadingGreek Text

Stesichoros 223 PMG Poetae Melici Graeci, p. 120, ed. D. L. Page. Oxford 1962.

Euripides, Troiades 929-44

but Cypris spoke in rapture of my loveliness, and promised him this gift, if she should have the preference over those two for beauty. Now mark the inference I deduce from this; Cypris won the day over the goddesses, and thus far has my marriage proved of benefit to Hellas, that you are not subject to barbarian rule, neither vanquished in the strife, nor yet by tyrants crushed. What Hellas gained, was ruin to me, sold for my beauty, and now I am reproached for that which should have set a crown upon my head. But you will say I am silent on the real matter at hand, how it was I started forth and left your house by stealth. With no small goddess at his side he came, my evil genius, call him Alexander or Paris, as you will; and you, villain, left him behind in your house, and sailed away from Sparta to the land of Crete. Greek Text

ApB 3.14.4 – Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library)

In consequence of the wrath of Aphrodite, for she did not honor the goddess, this Smyrna conceived a passion for her father, and with the complicity of her nurse she shared her father’s bed without his knowledge for twelve nights. But when he was aware of it, he drew his sword and pursued her, and being overtaken she prayed to the gods that she might be invisible; so the gods in compassion turned her into the tree which they call smyrna ( myrrh). Greek Text

Hyginus, Fabulae 58

SMYRNA: Smyrna was the daughter of Cinyras, King of the Assyrians, and Cenchreis. Her mother Cenchreis boasted proudly that her daughter excelled Venus in beauty. Venus [Aphrodite], to punish the mother, sent forbidden love to Smyrna so that she loved her own father. The nurse prevented her from hanging herself, and without knowledge of her father, helped her lie with him. She conceived, and goaded by shame, in order not to reveal her fault, hid in the woods. Venus later pitied her, and changed her into a kind of tree from which myrrh flows; Adonis, born from it, exacted punishment for his mother’s sake from Venus.  Latin Text

Aischylos, Danaides fr 44 R – Tragicorum Graecorum Fragmenta 3, pp. 159-60, ed. S. L. Radt. Göttingen 1985.

Lucretius, De Rerum Naturae 1 ff

Mother of Rome, delight of Gods and men,
Dear Venus that beneath the gliding stars
Makest to teem the many-voyaged main
And fruitful lands- for all of living things
Through thee alone are evermore conceived,
Through thee are risen to visit the great sun-
Before thee, Goddess, and thy coming on,
Flee stormy wind and massy cloud away,
For thee the daedal Earth bears scented flowers,
For thee waters of the unvexed deep
Smile, and the hollows of the serene sky
Glow with diffused radiance for thee!
For soon as comes the springtime face of day,
And procreant gales blow from the West unbarred,
First fowls of air, smit to the heart by thee,
Foretoken thy approach, O thou Divine,
And leap the wild herds round the happy fields
Or swim the bounding torrents. Thus amain,
Seized with the spell, all creatures follow thee
Whithersoever thou walkest forth to lead,
And thence through seas and mountains and swift streams,
Through leafy homes of birds and greening plains,
Kindling the lure of love in every breast,
Thou bringest the eternal generations forth,
Kind after kind. And since ’tis thou alone
Guidest the Cosmos, and without thee naught
Is risen to reach the shining shores of light,
Nor aught of joyful or of lovely born,
Thee do I crave co-partner in that verse
Which I presume on Nature to compose
For Memmius mine, whom thou hast willed to be
Peerless in every grace at every hour-
Wherefore indeed, Divine one, give my words
Immortal charm. Continue Reading.  Latin Text

 

Literary sources edited by Elena Bianchelli, Retired Senior Lecturer of Classical Languages and Culture, Univ. of Georgia, February 2021

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