Friday, June 21, 2013
TFBT: Random Notes from Hour Seventeen of “The Ancient Greek Hero”
“Daughter of Zeus, you will hear it all in brief. We are the eternal children of Night. We are called Curses at home beneath the earth.” (Eumenides 415) The "Curses" are called Erinnyes on earth. Is "Curses" another example of a divine name? Like Scamander on earth is called Xanthus in Olympus.
“And I will aid the suppliant and rescue him! For the mēnis of the suppliant would be awesome to mortals and gods, if I intentionally abandoned him” Apollo in Eumenides. I thought menis was limited to gods and Achilles. Is the suggestion here that Apollo failing to save Orestes will have cosmic consequences? Orestes is certainly no demi-god. So is menis attached to the results rather than victim?
“I establish this law court, which is untouched by desire for profit. It is fully deserving of reverence and is quick to anger. Watching over those who sleep, it is a wakeful guardian of the land.” Eumenides 704-706 Good writing!
“ the transformation of the Erinyes into the Eumenides represents their acculturation within the framework of Athenian society, where they are also known as the Semnai or 'Revered Ones' (there is a most revealing report about them in Pausanias 1.28.6-7). Conversely, such acculturation represents the transformation of the dead heroes of the past into the cult heroes of the immediate present.” The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours 17:17
“Be gone, quit my sanctuary of the seer’s art, or else you might be struck by a flying, winged, glistening snake shot forth from a golden bow-string, and then you would spit out black foam from your lungs in pain, vomiting the clotted blood.” Eumenides 180
“For one must nurse that little thing, which doesn’t yet have any thoughts, as if it were a grazing animal, of course one must, by following its twists and turns that lead toward a thought.” Agamemnon 755