(Χάριτες [Chárites]; Latin Gratiae)
When in the sixth book of his Poetica Aristotle specifies myth as the lynchpin of tragedy, he means by this, with good reason, ‘action’ (praxis) and the ‘representation’ (mimesis) of action. Accordingly, a mythical figure is normally characterized by its story or a group of stories. This ‘normal’ mythological situation does not apply to the C. [6.5].
Rather, the C. stand throughout antiquity and well into the modern period for a particular ‘essence’, the nature of…