The Titanomachia and Zeus’ Rise to Power (page 55, with art)

Chapter 1: The Early Gods

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Mousaios, Eumolpia 2B15 Die Fragmente der Vorsokratiker 1, p.25, ed. H. Diels and W. Kranz. 6th ed. Berlin 1951.

Pausanias 9.29.2

The sons of Aloeus held that the Muses were three in number, and gave them the names of Melete (Practice), Mneme (Memory) and Aoede (Song). Greek Text

Homer, Odyssey 24.60

And the Muses, nine in all, replying to one another with sweet voices, led the dirge. Greek Text

Euripides, Rhesos 915-25

Muse
Many indeed are the wounds, Thamyris, son of Philammon, that you have inflicted on my heart, in your life and in your death. Yes, for it was your pride, your own undoing, and your rivalry with the Muses that made me mother of this poor son of mine. For as I crossed the river’s streams I came too near to Strymon’s fruitful couch, that day we Muses came to the brow of Mount Pangaeus with its soil of gold, furnished forth with all our music for one great trial of minstrel skill with that clever Thracian bard; and we blinded him, Thamyris, the man who often reviled our craft. Greek Text

ApB 1.3.3-4 – Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library)

Clio fell in love with Pierus, son of Magnes, in consequence of the wrath of Aphrodite, whom she had twitted with her love of Adonis; and having met him she bore him a son Hyacinth, for whom Thamyris, the son of Philammon and a nymph Argiope, conceived a passion, he being the first to become enamored of males. But afterwards Apollo loved Hyacinth and killed him involuntarily by the cast of a quoit. And Thamyris, who excelled in beauty and in minstrelsy, engaged in a musical contest with the Muses, the agreement being that, if he won, he should enjoy them all, but that if he should be vanquished he should be bereft of what they would. So the Muses got the better of him and bereft him both of his eyes and of his minstrelsy. Euterpe had by the river Strymon a son Rhesus, whom Diomedes slew at Troy; but some say his mother was Calliope. Thalia had by Apollo the Corybantes; and Melpomene had by Achelous the Sirens, of whom we shall speak in treating of Ulysses. Greek Text

Scholia A to Homer, Iliad 10.435 – Scholia Graeca in Homeri Iliadem I, p. 364, ed. W. Dindorf and E. Maass. Oxford 1875.

Greek Text

Scholia to Euripides, Rhesos 346 – Scholia in Euripidem, ed. E. Schwartz, vol. 2, p. 335. Berlin 1891. 

Greek Text

Homer, Iliad 594-600

and [those] that had their abodes in Cyparisseïs and Amphigeneia and Pteleos and Helus and Dorium, where the Muses met Thamyris the Thracian and made an end of his singing, even as he was journeying from Oechalia, from the house of Eurytus the Oechalian: for he vaunted with boasting that he would conquer, were the Muses themselves to sing against him, the daughters of Zeus that beareth the aegis; but they in their wrath maimed him, and took from him his wondrous song, and made him forget his minstrelsy. Greek Text

Hesiod, Ehoiai (Catalogue of Women) fr 65 MW – Fragmenta Hesiodea, pp. 41-42, ed. R. Merkelbach and M. L. West. Oxford 1967.

Pausanias 4.33.7

Homer states that the misfortune of Thamyris took place here in Dorium, because he said that he would overcome the Muses themselves in song. But Prodicus of Phocaea, if the epic called the Minyad is indeed his, says that Thamyris paid the penalty in Hades for his boast against the Muses. My view is that Thamyris lost his eyesight through disease, as happened later to Homer. Homer, however, continued making poetry all his life without giving way to his misfortune, while Thamyris forsook his art through stress of the trouble that afflicted him. Greek Text

Polygnotos’ Nekuia painting at Knidian Lesche, Delphi (known through Pausanias’ description and modern reconstructions)

Pausanias 10.30.8

In this part of the painting is Schedius, who led the Phocians to Troy, and after him is Pelias, sitting on a chair, with grey hair and grey beard, and looking at Orpheus. Schedius holds a dagger and is crowned with grass. Thamyris is sitting near Pelias. He has lost the sight of his eyes; his attitude is one of utter dejection; his hair and beard are long; at his feet lies thrown a lyre with its horns and strings broken. Greek Text

Detail with Thamyris on lower right, from C. Robert’s reconstruction of Polygnotos’ Nekuia, J.G. Frazer, Pausanias’s Description of Greece, vol. V, Commentary (2nd ed. 1913), pl. opposite p. 372.

Euripides, Rhesos 915-25

Muse
Many indeed are the wounds, Thamyris, son of Philammon, that you have inflicted on my heart, in your life and in your death. Yes, for it was your pride, your own undoing, and your rivalry with the Muses that made me mother of this poor son of mine. For as I crossed the river’s streams I came too near to Strymon’s fruitful couch, that day we Muses came to the brow of Mount Pangaeus with its soil of gold, furnished forth with all our music for one great trial of minstrel skill with that clever Thracian bard; and we blinded him, Thamyris, the man who often reviled our craft. Greek Text

Asklepiades 12F10 – Die Fragmente der griechischen Historiker 1p. 170, ed. F. Jacoby. 2d ed. Leiden 1957.

ApB 1.3.3 – Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library)

Hyacinth, for whom Thamyris, the son of Philammon and a nymph Argiope, conceived a passion, he being the first to become enamored of males. But afterwards Apollo loved Hyacinth and killed him involuntarily by the cast of a quoit. And Thamyris, who excelled in beauty and in minstrelsy, engaged in a musical contest with the Muses, the agreement being that, if he won, he should enjoy them all, but that if he should be vanquished he should be bereft of what they would. So the Muses got the better of him and bereft him both of his eyes and of his minstrelsy. Greek Text

Scholia A to Homer, Iliad 2.595 – Scholia Graeca in Homeri Iliadem I, p. 121, ed. W. Dindorf and E. Maass. Oxford 1875.

Greek Text

Scholia b to Homer, Iliad 2.595 – Scholia Graeca in Homeri Iliadem 3, p. 142, ed. W. Dindorf and E. Maass. Oxford 1877

Greek Text

Pollux, Onomastikon 4.141 – Iulii Pollucis Onomasticon, p. 811, ed. W Dindorf. Leipzig 1828

Greek Text

Oxford, Ashmolean Museum G291 (V530): Attic red-figure hydria with blinding of Thamyris

P. Gardner, “Vases Added to the Ashmolean Museum (Continued), “The Journal of Hellenic Studies 25 (1905), pp. 67-68, p. 1.1

 Beazley Archive Pottery Database

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Artistic Sources edited by Frances Van Keuren, Prof. Emerita, Lamar Dodd School of Art, Univ. of Georgia, March 2018

Literary Sources edited by Elena Bianchelli, Senior Lecturer of Classical Languages and Culture, Univ. of Georgia, July 2020

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