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Socus

(83 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Σῶκος; Sôkos). Trojan, son of Hippasus [2], challenges Odysseus to battle to avenge the death of his brother Charops [4] (Hom. Il. 11,430-433: one of the rare direct speeches by a 'minor' combatant). He wounds Odysseus so badly that he has to leave the battle field, but not before killing the fleeing S. and directing a sneering speech of triumph to him (ibid. 11,434-458). Nünlist, René (Basle) Bibliography P. Wathelet, Dictionnaire des Troyens de l'Iliade, vol. 2, 1988, s. v. S., 1001-1004.

Stentor

(108 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Στέντωρ/ Sténtōr, aptonym: 'roarer' [1]). Greek warrior at Troy, whose powerful voice is equivalent to those of 50 men. In his guise Hera gives the Greeks a dressing-down (Hom. Il. 5,784-792). S. himself does not appear anywhere. This 'lacuna' was increased in ancient exegesis by scholarly speculations (Schol. AbT Hom. Il. 5,785): he had to lose his life because he had challenged Hermes to a competition in shouting (for the motif cf. Thamyris), and is the inventor of the war trump…

Dolon

(126 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Δόλων/ Dólōn, cf. δόλος/ dólos, ‘guile’). Son of the Trojan herald Eumedes. During a night reconnaissance raid in the Greek camp, for which he had volunteered in order to gain Achilles' immortal horses, he fell into the hands of the Greek scouts Diomedes and Odysseus. In an (unsuccessful) bid to save his skin, he readily betrayed his own cause, which cost the life of the Trojan ally, the Thracian King Rhesus (Hom. Il. 10, so-called Doloneia, probably post- Iliad [1]; [Eur.] Rhes.). By contrast with this portrait of D. ─ for the Stoa he was the archetypical…

Calchas

(284 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Κάλχας; Kálchas, Lat. Calchas). Son of Thestor, seer and augur for the Greeks during the Trojan War who ‘knew what is, what will be, and what was’ (Hom. Il. 1.70). To the army gathered in  Aulis awaiting departure, C. correctly prophesied, based on the flight of birds, that Troy would be defeated in the tenth year of the war (Hom. Il. 2.303ff.; Kypria argumentum p. 40 Bernabé). When the Greek fleet was prevented from departing due to lack of wind, C. explained that Artemis was ang…

Copreus

(173 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Κοπρεύς; Kopreýs). [German version] [1] Servant of Eurystheus Son of  Pelops. He transmits to  Hercules the tasks ordered by  Eurystheus, who fears personal contact. For this reason, Homer reverses the normally descending genealogical line in hero epics and refers to C. as ‘the worse father of the better son’ (Hom. Il. 15,639-641). In Eur. Heracl., C. demands in Eurystheus' name the release of the  Heraclidae, who are seeking asylum from the Attic king  Demophon [2]. According to Apollod. 2,5,1, Eurystheus had cleansed C. from a blood guilt. The name is not originally derived from kópro…

Thersites

(222 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Θερσίτης; Thersítēs). Greek warrior at Troy. In the Iliad (Hom. Il. 2,211-277) T. is a physically deformed (the corresponding description is unique in the Iliad) and quarrelsome grumbler, hated by all for his sarcastic remarks - esp. by Achilles [1] and Odysseus. After the latter has stopped the army from returning home, T. attacks Agamemnon with arguments consciously referring to those of Achilles (Hom. Il. B. 1) but also criticizing him. Odysseus silences him by attacking him verbally and physically, …

Clonius

(93 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Κλονίος; Kloníos). [German version] [1] Commander of the Boeotian contingent at Troy commanded, with four other leaders, the Boeotian contingent at Troy (Hom. Il. 2,495); died in a sea battle at the hand of  Agenor [5] (ibid. 15,340). Nünlist, René (Basle) [German version] [2] Companion of Aeneas Aeneas [1] had with him two Clonii, who fell in battle against Turnus and Messapus respectively (Verg. Aen. 9,574; 10,749). One of Aeneas' companions with the name of Clonius is said to have founded the gens Cloelia (Paul. Fest. 48,16 L.). Nünlist, René (Basle)

Eumaeus

(104 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Εὔμαιος; Eúmaios). The faithful swineherd of  Odysseus (Hom. Od., esp. Bks. 14-17; 20-22); son of a king, he was abducted as a child owing to the betrayal of a Phoenician maid and was sold. Hard-working, caring, pious and unconditionally faithful to his absent master, E. represents the type of the loyal vassal. The meeting with Telemachus on E.'s farm, in accordance with Athena's directive (Hom. Od.13,404), marks the beginning of Odysseus's homecoming within Ithaca. From there E. …

Procrustes

(109 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Προκρούστης/ Prokroústēs, 'stretcher', Lat. Procrustes). Highwayman in Attica who would lie in wait for travellers and torture them to death by stretching them and hitting their limbs with a hammer (alternative name: Προκόπτης/ Prokóptēs, 'persuader'), until they fitted his enormous bed ('Procrustes' bed'). Together with Sinis and Sciron, P. represents a 'plague on the land' from which  Theseus with civilizing intentions liberates the region (Bacchyl. 18,19-30; Xen. Mem. 2,1,14; Diod. Sic. 4,59; Hyg. Fab. 38; Ov…

Meriones

(284 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Μηριόνης; Mēriónēs). Cretan, son of Molus (Molos). As a young soldier efficient in battle and a faithful and devoted follower of Idomeneus [1], he takes part in the Trojan campaign (Hom. Il.). Together with the sons of Nestor, Antilochus and Thrasymedes, M. represents the second guard of the Greek army consisting of younger warriors. This guard performed duties suited to their age (e.g. night watch: ibid. 9,79ff.) and had to prove their worth on the battle field, mainly after the …

Lotophagi

(200 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Λωτοφάγοι; Lōtophágoi, ‘lotus-eaters’). Peaceful, mythical fairytale people, living exclusively on the magical plant lotos. The country of the L. is the second stop on Odysseus' journey; their scouts give Odysseus and his companions a warm welcome and invite them in good faith to eat from the lotos. In doing so, they entirely forget their previously strong urge to return home and have to be brought back to the ship against their will (Hom. Od. 9,82-104). In its core, the L. story corresponds to a widespread fairytale motif [1]. In antiquity and modern t…

Leiodes

(75 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ληώδης, Λειώδης; Lēṓdēs, Leiṓdēs). The son of Oenops, priest. He is one of Penelope's suitors, whom he loathes, however, keeping to himself. L. is the first suitor to try his luck in the archery contest and is then reproached by Antinous [1] for his supposedly defeatist advice (Hom. Od. 21,144ff.). When Odysseus slays the suitors, L. points out his detached relationship to the others in vain (ibid. 22,310-329). Nünlist, René (Basle)

Talthybius

(130 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ταλθύβιος; Talthýbios). Herald and follower of Agamemnon (Hom. Il. 1,320 f.), at whose command he and Eurybates [1] unenthusiastically go and fetch from Achilles [1] the object of their dispute, Briseis (ibid. 1,327-347). T. also acts in the service of all Greeks, e.g. when he and the Trojan herald Idaeus [3a] interrupt the single combat between Ajax [1] and Hector (ibid. 7,273-312); as a general Greek herald he also appears in Euripides (Hec., Tro.), who makes the idea of the "un…

Telemachus

(472 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Τηλέμαχος; Tēlémachos). Only son of Odysseus and Penelope (cf. Telegonus). As often, the name of the son ('far fighter') reflects a characteristic of the father [1]. T. is portrayed in the Odyssey as well brought-up but uncertain and lacking initiative. He watches the activities of Penelope's suitors without feeling able to do anything about them, until Athena, in the guise of Mentes [2], encourages him to a more self-assertive demeanour (Hom. Od. 1,269-305). He summons the first …

Laertes

(236 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Λαέρτης; Laértēs). Son of Arcesius and of Chalcomedusa, husband of Anticlea, father of Odysseus (cf. the latter's patronymic, Laertiádēs, ‘son of L.’); in his various depictions, the last is the most important function of L., who has little significance of his own. The image of him in the ‘Odyssey’ is the formative one it has shaped all later representations. Before the beginning of the Trojan War, for reasons of age, L. passes his power to Odysseus. Even when Odysseus does return to assume the th…

Thrinacie

(95 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Θρινακίη; Thrinakíē). Mythical island, near Scylla [1] and Charybdis (Hom. Od. 12,260f.), on which the daughters of the sun god Helios (Sol) mind his sacred oxen. In vain Teiresias and Circe warn Odysseus that his and his companions' fate depends on the oxen's being unharmed (ibid. 11,110-112; 12,137-139): when Odysseus falls asleep, his starving companions, instigated by Eurylochus [1], slaughter the animals (ibid. 12,260-402), and all therefore later die, while Odysseus alone su…

Leocritus

(98 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Ληόκριτος, Λειώκριτος; Lēókritos, Leiṓkritos). [German version] [1] Greek participant of the Trojan War Son of Arisbas, participates in the Trojan War on the Greek side and is killed by Aeneas [1] (Hom. Il. 17,344). Nünlist, René (Basle) [German version] [2] Suitor of Penelope A suitor of Penelope. He opposes Mentor, who speaks for Telemachus, in the public assembly, sarcastically approves his travel plans and doubts that the return of Odysseus would constitute a danger to the suitors (Hom. Od. 2,242ff.). He is killed by Telemachus during the slaying of the suitors (ibid. 22,294). Nünl…

Eris

(238 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Ἔρις; Éris). Personification of (often warlike) strife, Latin  Discordia; in allegorical genealogy interpreted as sister of  Ares (Hom. Il. 4,441) or as daughter of  Nyx (Hes. Theog. 224ff., together with other negative ‘abstracta’). In the Iliad, E. (alone or in association with Ares and other personifications) triggers the fighting (Hom. Il. 11,3ff.; 4,439ff.). The post-Homeric Cypria make E. the person actually responsible for the Trojan War due to her instigating the judgement of Paris at the wedding of Peleus and Thetis (Cypria …

Iphianassa

(163 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
(Ἰφιάνασσα; Iphiánassa). [German version] [1] Daughter of Proetus and Stheneboea Daughter of  Proetus and  Stheneboea (Hes. fr. 129,16-24 M-W), cursed together with her sisters Lysippe and Iphinoe with madness owing to disrespect to the cult of Dionysus (Hes. fr. 131 M-W) or slander of Hera (Bacchyl. 11,40ff.). Finally, by sacrificing to Artemis Proteus makes her change Hera's mind. According to another version (Pherecydes, FGrH 3 F 114; Hdt. 9,34), the seer  Melampus heals the daughters after haggling fo…

Laestrygones

(260 words)

Author(s): Nünlist, René (Basle)
[German version] (Λαιστρυγόνες; Laistrýgónes). A mythic and fairy-tale-like people of man-eating giants, who raise cattle but do not engage in agriculture (cf. Cyclopes). In the course of his wanderings, Odysseus lands in their country, where the sun never sets. After an initial friendly greeting of his scouts by the king's daughter, the mood shifts when they catch sight of the giant queen. The king, summoned by his wife, devours one of the Greeks, and the rest of the L. destroy the entire fleet.…
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